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n Literator : Journal of Literary Criticism, Comparative Linguistics and Literary Studies - The diary of Bertha Marks as a heterotopia, as articulated in the artwork, : original research

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Abstract

This article explored the conception, historical context and theoretical underpinnings of Leora Farber's 2010 artwork entitled , which forms an extension of the work on her exhibition entitled falls within 's thematics, but focuses on one aspect thereof, namely, how Jewish colonial women who were immigrants to southern Africa, as exemplified in the persona of Bertha Marks (1862-1934), experienced nineteenth-century Victorian gender ideologies. Their life experiences often entailed resistance to their positions as subjects of a patriarchal social system; yet, as women, they were simultaneously complicit in upholding discriminatory colonial ideologies and in maintaining the racial, social and cultural prejudices and forms of subjugation that underpinned them. Bertha Marks is shown to have occupied a personalised heterotopia: whilst operating from within, and maintaining the racial and social prejudices of the colonial era, she was simultaneously constrained by her positioning within it. This heterotopic life experience is reflected in the diary extracts which comprise , which reveal that she occupied the conflicting positions of victim, witness, bystander, collaborator and beneficiary of colonial injustices and exploitation, and assumes varying degrees of co-responsibility and co-liability for her roles and actions.


Hierdie artikel ondersoek die konsepsie, historiese konteks en teoretiese raamwerk van Leora Farber se 2010 kunswerk wat 'n voortsetting is van haar uitstalling val binne die tematiek van , maar beklemtoon één aspek van laasgenoemde, naamlik hoe Joodse koloniale immigrante vrouens in Suiderlike-Afrika - soos versinnebeeld in die persona van Bertha Marks (1862-1934) - negentiende-eeuse, Viktoriaanse genderideologieë ervaar het. Hierdie vrouens se lewenservarings het dikwels verset teenoor hul posisies as subjekte van 'n patriargale sosiale sisteem behels, tog, as vrouens, was hul tegelykertyd medepligtig aan die onderskraging van diskriminerende koloniale ideologieë, en aan die handhawing van die rasse, sosiale en kulturele vooroordele, asook vorms van onderdrukking, wat hierdie ideologieë ingelig het. Daar word geargumenteer dat Bertha Marks 'n verpersoonlikte heterotopia bewoon het; terwyl sy haar plek binne die struktuur van die rasse- en sosiale vooroordele van die koloniale tydperk ten volle ingeneem het, was sy terselfdertyd beperk deur haar posisionering binne dié raamwerk. Hierdie heterotopiese lewenservaring word weerspieël in die dagboekuittreksels waaruit bestaan. Daarin word haar teenstrydige posisies as slagoffer, getuie, bystander, meeloper en begunstigde van koloniale onreg en uitbuiting geopenbaar, en aanvaar sy in wisselende mate mede-verantwoordelikheid en mede-aanspreeklikheid vir haar rol en optrede.

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/content/literat/33/1/EJC127719
2012-01-01
2016-12-03
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