Apartheid and Beyond: South African Writers and the Politics of Place

Apartheid and Beyond: South African Writers and the Politics of Place

by Rita Barnard
     
 

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Apartheid and Beyond offers trenchant, historically sensitive readings of writings by Coetzee, Gordimer, Fugard, Tlali, Dike, Magona, and Mda, focusing on the intimate relationship between place, subjectivity, and literary form. It also explores the way apartheid functioned in its day-to-day operations as a geographical system of control, exerting its power through

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Overview

Apartheid and Beyond offers trenchant, historically sensitive readings of writings by Coetzee, Gordimer, Fugard, Tlali, Dike, Magona, and Mda, focusing on the intimate relationship between place, subjectivity, and literary form. It also explores the way apartheid functioned in its day-to-day operations as a geographical system of control, exerting its power through such spatial mechanisms as residential segregation, bantustans, passes, and prisons. Throughout the study, Rita Barnard provides historical context by highlighting key events such as colonial occupation, the creation of black townships, migration, forced removals, the emergence of informal settlements, and the gradual integration of white cities. Apartheid and Beyond is both an innovative account of an important body of politically inflected literature and an imaginative reflection on the socio-spatial aspects of the transition from apartheid to democracy.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A timely and compelling study."—Contemporary Literature

"Apartheid and Beyond stands as the most ambitious, authoritative, and theoretically astute study of South African literature to date. Barnard's wonderfully interdisciplinary approach makes this book essential reading for anyone in the humanities and social sciences interested in the politics and theory of space."—Rob Nixon, author of Slow Violence and the Environmentalism of the Poor

"In this wide-ranging study of South African literature, Barnard focuses on the importance of place as an issue of real concern to all those living in, or writing about, the country. The choice of this governing term is one of those brilliant clarificatory moves that seem obvious once someone has made them. Apartheid was, after all, a doctrine of place, and questions of place were, and still are, central to South African culture and politics. This is an elegant and engaging survey by an outstanding and original critic."—Derek Attridge, author of J.M. Coetzee and the Ethics of Reading

"Written with affection and rigour, Apartheid and Beyond is the most trenchant account of place in South African literature since J.M. Coetzee's White Writing."—David Attwell, Professor of Modern Literataure, University of York

"Apartheid and Beyond creates its own innovative critical space, combining exploratory close readings of salient passages with radically interdisciplinary conceptualizations. Bernard has both drawn on and drawn out the traditions of canonical literary history and interpretation in order to delineate the exemplary 'politics of place,' so unflaggingly elaborated by these 'South African writers' then and there, for here and now."—Modern Fiction Studies

"Apartheid and Beyond provides a fruitful way of reading both literature and the material situations in which different members of our society find themselves. Combine that with the notion of imaginary (or 'imagined,' in a positive sense) geographies, and we have a good set of analytic tools for asking questions about ourselves and our societies; about who and how we are."—Mail and Guardian

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780199791163
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Publication date:
08/01/2012
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
234
Product dimensions:
9.10(w) x 6.10(h) x 0.40(d)

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