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oa Litnet Akademies : 'n Joernaal vir die Geesteswetenskappe, Natuurwetenskappe, Regte en Godsdienswetenskappe - Die marginale subjekposisie van die Afrikaanse skrywer - Etienne van Heerden se

Volume 8, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1995-5928

 

Abstract

In hierdie artikel word teoretiese kwessies rakende die letterkunde, soos die marginale subjekposisie van die romanskrywer/akademikus en van die Afrikaanse letterkunde in die eietydse sosiopolitieke sfeer, binne die fiksionele konteks van die eietydse Suid-Afrikaanse roman, in (2007) ondersoek. Aspekte soos die posisie van die Afrikaanse taal, Afrikaner-identiteit en ideologie kom aan bod. Die roman handel oor kwessies wat in die brandpunt van die eietydse Suid-Afrikaanse sosiopolitieke realiteit staan. Die implisiete ideologiese perspektief in die teks het veral te make met die ontnugtering van die hoofkarakter met die verdwyning van die bekende status quo in sy direkte sosiopolitieke omgewing. In , 'n komplekse roman met sterk ooreenkomste met die hedendaagse Suid-Afrikaanse samelewing gemeng met fantasie, skep Van Heerden vir homself die geleentheid om deur die metafiksionele besinnings van sy protagonis die huidige sosiopolitieke konteks en die globale ekonomiese landskap te verken en te bevraagteken. Die verval in die Afrikaanse samelewing, akademie en letterkunde word ondersoek. Die skrywer (Sebastiaan Graaff) se verset teen die populêre kultuur en die nuwe orde in 'n veranderende Suid-Afrika dui op die marginale subjek se verlange na 'n verlore verlede en wat dit vir sy identiteit, kulturele geheue en verhouding met die landskap beteken. Graaff as minderheidsintellektueel is dubbel-gemarginaliseerd deur die institusionele strukture waarbinne hy funksioneer. Sy ervaring van die sosiopolitieke realiteit word betrek in die roman, veral ten opsigte van die ras- en genderkwessies en die nuwe imperialisme waaronder die hedendaagse metropolitaanse universiteit gebuk gaan. Die minderheidsintellektueel word dikwels ook binne die instelling gemarginaliseer, deels op grond van voortdurende ras- en genderdiskriminasie, maar ook as gevolg van die sistematiese verskuiwing van minderheidsbelange na die periferie van akademiese werk. Die tekstualisering van die ontnugtering en die worsteling met die eie identiteit wat hierdie institusionele veranderinge en marginalisering teweegbring, word ondersoek.


Theoretical issues concerning the contemporary South African novel are examined in this article. Etienne van Heerden's novel ("Asbestos afternoon") (2007) is read from an intertextual as well as a socio-political framework. The focus is on the metatextual, ideological and linguistic aspects of the novel. The embedded socio-political discourse is interrogated and it is illustrated throughout how the novel contributes to the portrayal of a contemporary, 21st-century South African socio-political reality. Examples are the uncertain position of the novelist (and academic), the state and status of literature in the socio-political atmosphere, recurring motifs of language (Afrikaans as a minority language and English as the dominant language), and Afrikaner identity (the place of the white man in South Africa). The ideological perspective implicit in the text deals mainly with the disillusionment that the main character, the novelist and academic Sebastiaan Graaff, experiences due to the disappearance of the familiar status quo of system and order in his socio-political environment.
There are clearly traceable links in to the literary traditions of which it forms a part, through a high degree of intertextuality with literary predecessors. Pertinent are intertexts from Afrikaans and South African English literature, but also classical intertexts emanating from the larger field of world literature. The protagonist is in conflict with himself and with his changing environment. By implication, the of both the fictionalised author and Van Heerden are revealed. At the launch of his novel Van Heerden responded as follows to the question whether can be seen as encapsulating his literary theory: "I do not know, it might be. The best kind of is a protest against something" (Van Heerden 2007a). The intrinsic "protest" of the fictional text is causally linked to the extrinsic socio-political reality, but goes much wider than black-white race relations and conflict. It focuses, instead, on the inevitable change from one political phase, regime or era to the next, as well as on the search for artistic (read: creative writing and literature) and cultural (read: Afrikaner identity and language) survival in the text.

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2011-12-01
2016-12-10

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