n English in Africa - The pastoral, the primal and the post-apartheid sublime in Justin Cartwright's

Volume 41, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0376-8902



Country is a familiar topos in South African literature, featuring in travel writing and the farm novel, in imperial romance and postcolonial narratives, as pastoral and as anti-pastoral, an uncanny presence in the landscape of modernity. A surprising number of recent South African novels present what may be called post-apartheid country narratives. I am particularly interested in the return to country in J. M. Coetzee's , Justin Cartwright's , and Damon Galgut's . Given the history of settler occupation of the land, and the literary deployment of the idea of the land both to posit and to problematize white settler identity, why these stories of a white man's return to the land in the post-apartheid period? What is the impulse behind retracing of contested ground?

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