n Stilet : Tydskrif van die Afrikaanse Letterkundevereniging - Verwerking van outobiografiese geheue in enkele gedigte uit Antjie Krog se Mede-wete

Volume 29 Number 1
  • ISSN : 1013-4573


Autobiographical memory in selected poems from Antjie Krog's Synapse

This article is a preliminary exploration of the implementation of autobiographical memory in the latest volume of poetry by Antjie Krog, a renowned South African literary voice. In Mede-wete (published simultaneously in English as Synapse, 2014) she highlights various socio-political, ecological and moral concerns. Notwithstanding the importance of these societal issues, the reader remains acutely aware of the substratum of autobiographically influenced poems prevalent in this collection. The autobiographical element in the oeuvre of Krog is well-documented. This article aims to elaborate on this topic through the use of autobiographical memory theory, by illustrating how various types of autobiographical memories relate to a number of Krog’s verses, specifically to “ek en my kleindogter bou sandkastele” (“my granddaughter and I build sand castles”). There are a multitude of dimensions to autobiographical memory, but only a few will be applied in this discussion of (seemingly) personally inspired poems. They are memories containing biographical facts, memories that appear to be copies or reconstructions, memories of specific or generic events and memories recollected from a field or observer viewpoint.

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