Diaspora and Identity in South African Fiction

By J.U. Jacobs

South African identities, as they are represented in the contemporary South African novel, are not homogeneous, but fractured and often conflicted: African, Afrikaner, 'colored,' English, and Indian. None can be regarded as rooted or pure, whatever essentialist claims the members of these various ethnic and cultural communities might want to make for them. All of them, this study argues, are deeply divided and have arisen, directly or indirectly, out of the experience of diasporic displacement, migration, and relocation, from the colonial, African, and Indian diasporas to present-day migrations into and out of South Africa, as well as diasporic dislocations within Africa. The book contains 20 works by 12 contemporary South African novelists - Breyten Breytenbach, J.M. Coetzee, Nadine Gordimer, Aziz Hassim, Michiel Heyns, Elsa Joubert, Zakes Mda, Njabulo S. Ndebele, Karel Schoeman, Patricia Schonstein Pinnock, Ivan Vladislavic, and Zoe Wicomb - and shows how diaspora is a dominant theme in contemporary South African fiction, and how the diasporic subject is a most recognizable figure. [Subject: Literary Criticism, African Studies, Migration Studies, Diaspora Studies]


Publication Date: 3/1/2016
Format: Paper
ISBN: 9781869143015