Description : Nadine Gordimer is one of the most important writers to emerge in the twentieth century. Her anti-Apartheid novel July's People (1981) is a powerful example of resistance writing and continues even now to unsettle easy assumptions about issues of power, race, gender and identity. This guide to Gordimer's compelling novel offers: an accessible introduction to the text and contexts of July's People a critical history, surveying the many interpretations of the text from publication to the present a selection of new and reprinted critical essays on July's People, providing a range of perspectives on the novel and extending the coverage of key approaches identified in the critical survey cross-references between sections of the guide, in order to suggest links between texts, contexts and criticism suggestions for further reading. Part of the Routledge Guides to Literature series, this volume is essential reading for all those beginning detailed study of July's People and seeking not only a guide to the novel, but a way through the wealth of contextual and critical material that surrounds Gordimer's text.
Description : When South Africa is riven by war and the Smales, a white couple, take refuge in the village of their former servant July, their relationships are completely transformed
Description : Conversations with Nadine Gordimer edited by Nancy Topping Bazin and Marilyn Dallman Seymour Nadine Gordimer is one of the contemporary world's most admired writers of novels and short stories. This volume collects three decades of her interviews. In them she presents her attitudes toward her art and its interconnection with the oppressive, volatile politics in her native land. She has traveled extensively to other countries only to discover that no matter how white her skin she is indeed African and the only country she can call home is South Africa. "If you write honestly about life in South Africa, apartheid damns itself," she says. She is ruthlessly honest, and her fiction has played the vital role of communicating in detail to the rest of the world the effects of apartheid upon the daily lives of the South African people. To maintain her integrity, she writes as though she "were dead," without any thought of how anyone will react to what she has written. She remains heroically undaunted both by the banning of three of her novels by the white government and by the protests of radical blacks who assert that whites cannot write convincingly about blacks. She is concerned neither with the image of blacks nor with the image of whites, only with revealing the complexity, the full truth. This truth condemns the racism upon which apartheid is built. In her nine novels and eight volumes of short stories, Gordimer digs deeper and deeper until she has "thematic layers." These include "betrayal-political, sexual, every form" and "power, the way human beings use power in their relationships." Her accounts in these interviews of how she works and of which writers she admires will fascinate readers, scholars, teachers, and students alike. Co-editors Nancy Topping Bazin retired from the faculty of the English and women's studies departments at Old Dominion University, and Marilyn Dallman Seymour retired from the staff of the Government Publications Department of the Old Dominion University Library.
Description : With a foreword by Richard E. Vander Ross In recent years, dramatic increases in racial intermarriage have given birth to a generation who refuse to be shoehorned into neat, pre-existing racial categories. Energized by a refusal to allow mixed-race people to be rendered invisible, this movement lobbies aggressively to have the category multiracial added to official racial classifications. While applauding the self-awareness and activism at the root of this movement, Jon Michael Spencer questions its ultimate usefulness, deeply concerned that it will unintentionally weaken minority power. Focusing specifically on mixed-race blacks, Spencer argues that the mixed-race movement in the United States would benefit from consideration of how multiracial categories have evolved in South Africa. Americans, he shows us, are deeply uninformed about the tragic consequences of the former white South African government's classification of mixed-race people as Coloured. Spencer maintains that a multiracial category in the U.S. could be equally tragic, not only for blacks but formultiracials themselves. Further, splintering people of color into such classifications of race and mixed race aggravates race relations among society's oppressed. A group that can attain some privilege through a multiracial identity is unlikely to identify with the lesser status group, blacks. It may be that the undoing of racial classification will come not by initiating a new classification, but by our increased recognition that there are millions of people who simply defy easy classification.
Description : "It is the fate of South African literature to be political. For better or worse, South African writers, some of whom have now acquired international reputations, have been held hostage to apartheid, which has imposed its own brutal and limiting categories even on those who oppose it. Nevertheless, as Black/White Writing: Essays on South African Literature demonstrates, writers of talent have found extraordinarily diverse and creative ways of dealing with the constraints of their historical condition." "In the opening essay Nadine Gordimer attempts to answer the question "For whom do you write?" As a politically committed writer, Gordimer would no doubt like to be read by the oppressed people whose cause she has always championed, but she is forced to recognize that South African realities render illusory the cherished concept of the universality of literature." "Gordimer's novels are discussed in three of the articles that follow. Nancy Bazin shows how, in dealing with the theme of interracial sex, Gordimer has become increasingly aware of the silent and largely ignored black woman who forms the third point of the love triangle. Pauline Fletcher argues that behind the political stance of Gordimer's novels lies a distrust of the abstractions of even the most enlightened politics; her subtext celebrates the truth of the body. Nicholas Visser places Gordimer's July's People in its historical context and compares it with other novels of future projection by Karel Schoeman and J. M. Coetzee." "Visser's overtly political and historicist study is contrasted by Sarah Heider's essay on Coetzee's Life and Times of Michael K. It is perhaps fitting that Coetzee, who has expressed distaste for the fate of being a South African writer, should receive attention from a critic who, while ignoring the historical context of the novel, demonstrates K's rejection of all attempts to convert his story into the accepted currencies of the social system." "Many black women writers from South Africa have also attempted to resist the political imperatives imposed upon writers by apartheid. Their work has in consequence often been called apolitical, and it is only recently that it has been given the consideration it deserves. Elizabeth Taylor examines the often problematical relationship between tradition and the black writer in her discussion of the ways in which black women have had to negotiate between their desire to preserve cultural continuity and their need to resist much in their inherited culture that is oppressive for women. For writers of mixed race the relation to tradition is even more problematical, perhaps accounting for the fact that both Bessie Head and Zoe Wicomb went into voluntary exile. Their work does not fall into the category of anti-apartheid writing, but (as Carol Sicherman and Isabella Matsikidze show) it does have a political dimension and it points in the direction that fiction might take in a post-apartheid South Africa." "The volume closes with an essay by Gerald Monsman that takes the reader back to an earlier South Africa, examining Olive Schreiner's writing in the broader context of other stories from an imperialist past." "Two poems by Dennis Brutus open the volume. They speak eloquently of human suffering and the desire for peace."--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved
Description : A Study Guide for Nadine Gordimer's "July's People," excerpted from Gale's acclaimed Novels for Students. This concise study guide includes plot summary; character analysis; author biography; study questions; historical context; suggestions for further reading; and much more. For any literature project, trust Novels for Students for all of your research needs.