n English in Africa - Readers and writers in colonial Natal (1843-1910)

Volume 39, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0376-8902



The purpose of this essay is to present a broad outline of ways in which literary or imaginative texts were circulated and consumed in Natal Colony in the years 1843-1910. It shows how, at least initially, the majority of these texts originated abroad, but how increasingly colonials began to supply their own literary marketplace. While recognising that the thematic preoccupations of Natalian writers potentially offer a fruitful field for further research, these are not my immediate concern. My essay will be concerned instead with reading practices within the colony and those writing practices that aimed to satisfy a local appetite for imaginative texts.

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