n English in Africa - D. H. Lawrence Around the World : South African Perspectives, (Eds.) Jim Phelps and Nigel Bell : book review

Volume 34, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0376-8902



The book as a whole provides a scholarly overview of the central position held by the works and ideas of the English writer D. H. Lawrence in the curricula, teaching philosophies and world views of South African university English Departments in the early latter half of the twentieth century. If this suggests something of a resurrectionary enterprise - the informing spirit of the collection, Christina van Heyningen, died some decades ago - it is also true that the names of contributors read like a roll call of those South African and immigrant British academics who from the 1950s to the 1970s made some of our English Departments notable leaders in their field. Essays, old and new, have been carefully chosen and juxtaposed to reveal how and why the teaching of internationally literature (in this case the writings of D. H. Lawrence) was in those years deemed to form an essential part of the training of a maturing critical faculty with which to confront not just English literature and cognate academic subjects, but the complex world of adult human experience itself.

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