Tag Archives: South African literature

Should local writers always set their books in South Africa?

Along with spending too much time on Facebook and perusing the sidebar of shame on the Daily Mail website, deciding where to set one’s novel provokes feelings of intense guilt in South African writers. When writers get together, either socially or on formal discussion panels, they often confess to feeling conflicted about where to set…

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White writers writing black characters – a form of literary blackface?

White South African writers who create black characters are often challenged about the authenticity of their writing. If their main protagonist is black, this challenge intensifies, and if they write in the first person, it intensifies further. There is something particularly intimate about first-person narrative. It gets under the skin of the character in a…

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