n English in Africa - The missng 'i' : Corrigenda in Ivan Vladislavić's second edition of

Volume 36, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0376-8902



Aubrey Tearle, a retired proofreader and the narrator of Ivan Vladislavić's 2006 novel at one point comments as follows: ''Some say that an error of the right kind in the right place, something not too ugly, something truly devious, an error that demontrate [sic] by its elusiveness how easily we might all slip into error ourselves, might have a purpose, perhaps even a beauty, of its own'' (107). An error like the missing 's' in the word ''demontrates'' here would normally be seen as an anomaly, something that slipped past correction, an undesirable mistake that interrupts the perfect smoothness of a given thought. In fact, the occupation of proofreader exclusively functions to correct such expressions of human error. Vladislavić's novel, set in Tearle's neighbourhood in post-apartheid South Africa, is written entirely from his white, male, and often racist point of view.

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