July's People

July's People

by Nadine Gordimer
3.3 14


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July's People by Nadine Gordimer

For years, it had been what is called a "deteriorating situation." Now all over South Africa the cities are battlegrounds. The members of the Smales family - liberal whites - are rescued from the terror by their servant, July, who leads them to refuge in his village. What happens to the Smaleses and to July - the shifts in character and relationships - gives us an unforgettable look into the terrifying, tacit understandings and misunderstandings between blacks and whites.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780670410484
Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
Publication date: 06/01/1981
Pages: 192
Product dimensions: 1.00(w) x 1.00(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Nadine Gordimer is the author of eleven previous novels, as well as collections of stories and essays. She has received many awards, including the Booker Prize (for The Conservationist in 1974) and the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1991. She lives in Johannesburg, South Africa.

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July's People 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
istubbornlysupportbn More than 1 year ago
The uneven writing style and jumps between current and past events take some getting used to, but I finished the book feeling fulfilled. I have only given it four stars because the ending was, to me, uninspired. I am, however, not someone who should be trusted with book reviews. One last note is that this book was banned (at least for a time) in South African schools. The government's reasoning was that the grammar set a bad example for younger students, but if you read the book you'll quickly understand the real politics behind the controversy. I'd recommend this book to anyone interested in the deep and bewildering complexities of modern South Africa.
Guest More than 1 year ago
'july's people' is a stunning work of turning the tables on the positions of power in south africa. july, the dutiful and loyal servant to a white family in the suburbs of johannesburg becomes the instrument of escape from the roaming gangs of blacks who have finally realized their power in numbers and have thrown off the earlier restrictions of the 'gandi-like' non-violent approach of the older generation of mendela, biko, etc. the white family becomes completely dependent on july and his surly young friend who have the keys to the bakki, once owned by the white man for hunting. it is the bakki, driven by july that takes them to the safty of his village. the keys and who has posession of them becomes the symbol of power. the sense of utter selflessness and powerlessness that once was july's experience, now becomes the the experience of the family. the ambiguous ending is truly brilliant.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
A challenging work on race relationship in Apartheid South Africa from the colour-blind angle that allowed light to settle on the sweet energy of a progressive South Africa . The dream of a rainbow nation must have cannot be dissociated from this book. Gordimer joined the ranks of Achebe, Tisi and Patton in contributing to the jolting nature of Africa' s jolting literature. In different ways, JULY'S PEOPLE also reminded me of DISCIPLES OF FORTUNE, A BLADE OF GRASS, which are African novels with wake up call story lines.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a book that explores human relationships of all kinds and on all levels ;betwen blacks and whites, between blacks and blacks and whites and whites; between men and women, husbands and wives (both between and within both races). Her complicated syntax and puncuation sometimes make it difficult to determine who's talking and to whom. I found I had to re-read many passages to figure it out, and was not always successful. However,the sheer brilliance of this book make it well worth the effort.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book not only sheds light on the affairs in South Africa and what sort of struggles its inhabitants suffer, it does so in such an elegantly descriptive manner, Gordimer seems to put you right along side the family. I have loved this book since I first read it in high school, and to this day it is one of my favorites.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Whenever an oppressive or racist government tries to suppress a book, I make a point of buying it. I bought 'Satanic Verses' and never read it. I do not regret the purchase. The racist government of the 'new' South Africa is trying to suppress this book. The more things change, the more they stay the same.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i personally think that this book has to be in the ``must`` for any english literature. it`s a kind of eye opener for every culture race and people.
Anonymous 8 months ago
This novel was very hard to follow. I appreciated the story and the cultural themes but found it so confusing. The ending was very disappointing .
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book has an excellent point to make. Too bad it can't explain to you what it is! This book was assigned to the Cumberland County English II Honors students as a summer assignment. It took me all summer to read and wrap my mind around this book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book is extremly hard to enderstand the lack of consistance makes it difficult to understand this book is confusing and badly written. not suitable for high school students
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am 15, and the first page I read I put it down. It really discouraged me. The book has a really good point, it's just very difficult too understand. I think more people should read it, but the author should rewrite it because half of it makes no sense. This book DOES NOT APPEAL TO TEENAGERS, I DISCOURAGE PEOPLE FROM READING IT!!!!!