n Literator : Journal of Literary Criticism, Comparative Linguistics and Literary Studies - Memory, history and oblivion in by Eben Venter : research article

Volume 29, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0258-2279
  • E-ISSN: 2219-8237



"Horrelpoot" by Eben Venter joins the ranks of other postapartheid Afrikaans literature that reflects different sides of memory, history and guilt. This article explores the different constructs of memory - laced with rich Jungian archetypal images - that are portrayed in "Horrelpoot". Drawing on Joseph Conrad's "Heart of Darkness", "Horrelpoot" sketches the protagonist, Marlouw's journey from the West (Australia) to the "dark" continent (Africa), and his ancestral farm, "Ouplaas" in South Africa. The article elaborates on Marlouw's journey, which, at a deeper level, is nothing but a Jungian journey towards individuation, a journey into the deepest and archaic level of his own psyche. In the final instance, "Horrelpoot" reminds us that in a century of forgetting, memory persists, and that Marlouw's journey could be a collective one which may guide white South Africans to face their own deep and dark past and the horror that lies at the bottom of their history.

"Horrelpoot" deur Eben Venter pas in die kategorie van Afrikaanse postapartheid letterkunde wat gemoeid is met die verskillende fasette van herinnering, geskiedenis en skuld. Hierdie artikel ondersoek die verskillende konstruksies van herinnering, nóú verweef met jungiaanse argetipiese beelde, wat in "Horrelpoot" vergestalt word. Die roman, sterk beïnvloed deur Joseph Conrad se "Heart of Darkness", skets die protagonis, Marlouw, se reis van die Weste (Australië) na die "donker" kontinent, Afrika, en spesifiek na sy voormalige familieplaas, "Ouplaas" in Suid-Afrika. Die artikel borduur voort op Marlouw se reis, wat op 'n dieper vlak, niks anders is nie as 'n jungiaanse reis gerig op individuasie, 'n reis wat reik tot in die diepste en mees argaiëse vlak van sy psige. "Horrelpoot" herinner ons dat in 'n eeu van vergeet, herinnering altyd sal deurbreek, en dat Marlouw se reis ook 'n kollektiewe een kan wees wat alle Suid-Afrikaners kan lei om hulle eie en donker verlede, die verskrikking wat agter hulle eie geskiedenis lê, te konfronteer.

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