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Colonization, Violence, and Narration in White South African Writing: André Brink, Breyten Breytenbach, and J. M. Coetzee
by Rosemary Jane Jolly
Ohio University Press, 1995
eISBN: 978-0-8214-4710-9 | Cloth: 978-0-8214-1130-8 | Paper: 978-0-8214-1131-5
Library of Congress Classification PT6525.J65 1996
Dewey Decimal Classification 839.363509355


The representation of pain and suffering in narrative form is an ongoing ethical issue in contemporary South African literature. Can violence be represented without sensationalistic effects, or, alternatively, without effects that tend to be conservative because they place the reader in a position of superiority over the victim or the perpetrator?

Jolly looks at three primary South African authors—André Brink, Breyten Breytenbach, and J. M. Coetzee—to consider violence in the context of apartheid and colonialism and their inherent patriarchies.

Jolly also discusses the violence attendant upon the act of narration in the broader context of critiques of Kafka, Freud, Hegel, the postcolonial critics Jan Mohamed and Bhabha, and feminists such as Susan Suleiman.

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