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: Lesson and Seminar

In order to make our learning experience as effective as possible, this course combines synchronous teaching (online lectures during which we interact in real time) with asynchronous teaching (reading assignments, short reading responses, forums and activities that you complete independently before class). The whole range of activities is reflected in the final grade for the course, as detailed on the Moodle site.

The course will be given on Zoom for the duration of the first semester.

Announcements regarding the second semester will be given during the semester break, in accordance with the state of the Covid virus and its impact.

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First Semester

Lesson 1
Denis Hirson The Long Distance South African(Handout on Moodle)

Lesson 2
Cusp Time
Nadine Gordimer The Moment Before the Gun Went Off and A Lion on the Freeway [Moodle]

Lesson 3 Faultlines
Mark Behr _The Smell of Apples_

Lesson 4
Childhood and Complicity
Mark Behr _The Smell of Apples_

Lesson 5
Double Agency
Mark Behr _The Smell of Apples_

Lesson 6
Adamastors Daughters
J.M. Coetzee _Disgrace_

Lesson 7
Disgrace Effects
J.M. Coetzee _Disgrace_

Lesson 8
Gendering Disgrace
J.M. Coetzee _Disgrace_

Lesson 9
Steve Jacobs _Disgrace_ Film version

Lesson 10
Beyond _Disgrace_: Controversies and Contestations. Class debate.

Lesson 11
In Saartjies Shadow
Zoë Wicomb _Davids Story_

Lesson 12
Shame and Identity
Zoë Wicomb _Davids Story_

Lesson 13
Declensions of the Truth
Zoë Wicomb _Davids Story_

Lesson 14
Film Screening Mark Kaplan
_Between Joyce and Remembrance_


Lesson 15: Literature and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
Antjie Krog "The Shepherd's Tale"

Lesson 16
Peer-Learning Session: Annotated Bibliography
Mark Sanders
Sanders, Mark. "Truth, Telling, Questioning: The Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Antjie Krog's Country of My Skull, and Literature after Apartheid." MFS Modern Fiction Studies, vol. 46 no. 1, 2000, p. 13-41. Project MUSE, doi:10.1353/mfs.2000.0011.

Lesson 17
Grievable Lives
Zakes Mda
_Ways of Dying_

Lesson 18
Magic Realism
Zakes Mda
_Ways of Dying_

Lesson 19
Art and/as Redemption
Zakes Mda
_Ways of Dying_

Lesson 20
Margie Orford
_Gallows Hill_

Lesson 21
Margie Orford
_Gallows Hill_

Lesson 22
Guest Forum on Genre Fiction: What does the detective novel teach us about gender and race/ethnicity

Lesson 23
After the Magic is Gone
Masande Ntshanga
_The Reactive_

Lesson 24
Masande Ntshanga
_The Reactive_

Lesson 25
Qualified Futures
Masande Ntshanga
_The Reactive_

Lesson 26
J(erusalem) Review of Books
Class Presentations

Lesson 27
Summary and Guidelines for Final Paper

Primary Texts

Given the special conditions we face this year, the course aims to go *deep* rather than to go *broad*. We will thus be covering only six novels over the semester, together with additional short stories and works of poetry provided on Moodle. One additional novel must be read independently for book review purposes.

Kindle editions of all novels may be used. I recommend buying selected paperback editions of the works on which you plan to submit written work, or to borrow these from our library. Students from previous years may have books to sell.


Behr, Mark. 1995. _The Smell of Apples_. (New York: St. Martins).

Coetzee, J.M. 1998. _Disgrace_. (Harmondsworth: Penguin).

Mda, Zakes. 1995. _Ways of Dying_. (Cape Town: Oxford University Press).

Ntshanga, Masande. 2016. _The Reactive_ Colombus, 0H: Two Dollar Radio.

Orford, Margie.
2011 _Gallows Hill_. UK: Atlantic Books.

Wicomb, Zoë. 2001. _Davids Story_. (New York: The Feminist Press).


Beukes, Lauren. 2010. _Zoo City_ (Johannesburg: Jacana).

Coetzee, J.M. 2002. _Youth: Scenes from Provincial Life II_. (London: Secker and Warburg).

Duiker, K. Sello. 2013 (2000). _Thirteen Cents._ (Athens, OH: Ohio University Press).

Mpe, Phaswane. 2001. _Welcome to Our Hillbrow_. Pietermaritzberg: University of KwaZulu Natal.

Ndebele, Njabulo. 2003. _The Cry of Winnie Mandela_. (Cape Town: David Philip).

Rose-Innes, Henrietta. 2011. _Nineveh_. (Cape Town: Umuzi).

Other postapartheid texts are possible but will need Professor Bethlehem's approval.


De Kok, _Ingrid Seasonal Fire_s (New York: Seven Stories Press). [Extracts, Moodle]
Gordimer, Nadine. 1976. A Lion on the Freeway. In _Quarry_ 76, edited by Lionel Abrahams and
Walter Saunders, 185-188. (Johannesburg: Ad. Donker). [Moodle]

Gordimer, Nadine. 2013. The Moment Before the Gun Went Off. In _Norton Anthology of English
Literature_, Volume 2, edited by Stephen Greenblatt. (New York: Norton). [Moodle]

Krog, Antjie. 2000. _Country of My Skull_ (New York: Random House). [Extracts, Moodle]
Themba, Can. 1994 (1963). The Suit. In The Heinemann Book of South African Short Stories, edited by Denis Hirson and Martin Trump, 14352. Oxford: Oxford/UNESCO Publishing.

Wanner, Zukiswa. 2011. The Dress that Fed the Suit. In African Delights.
(Johannesburg: Jacana). [Moodle]

Xaba, Makhosazana. 2013. Behind The Suit and The Suit Continued: The Other Side. In Running and
Other Stories. (Cape Town: Modjaji Books).

Anker, Elizabeth. 2008. "Human Rights, Social Justice and J.M. Coetzee's Disgrace." Modern Fiction
Studies 54(2): 233-267. DOI 10.1353/mfs.0.0020.
Attridge, Derek. 2005. Zoë Wicombs Home Truths, Journal of Postcolonial Writing
41(2): 156-65. DOI: 10.1080/17449850500252292
Barnard, Rita. 2000. The Smell of Apples, Moby-Dick, and Apartheid Ideology. Modern Fiction
Studies, 46(1): 207-226. DOI: 10.1353/mfs.2000.0001.
Barnard, Rita. 2004. On Laughter, the Grotesque, and the South African Transition: Zakes Mda's
Ways of Dying. NOVEL: A Forum on Fiction, 37(3): 277302. www.jstor.org/stable/40267596.
Barnard, Rita. 2012. Rewriting the Nation. In The Cambridge History of South African Literature
edited by David Attwell and Derek Attridge, 652675. Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 2012.
Barris, Ken. 2010. The Necessary Silence of Realism in Zöe Wicomb's David's Story, Scrutiny2,
15(2): 31-39, DOI: 10.1080/18125441.2010.537091
Bethlehem, Louise. 2018. Continuity and Change in Postapartheid Fiction. Oxford Research
Encyclopedia. DOI: 10.1093/acrefore/9780190201098.013.193.
Chew, Dalglish. 2012. Accounting for Language: Narrative Ethics and Economic Reparations in Antjie
Krog's Country of My Skull. Safundi, 13 (1-2): 91-114, DOI: 10.1080/17533171.2011.642592.
Cornwell, Gareth. 2002. Realism, Rape, and J.M. Coetzees Disgrace. Critique: Studies in
Contemporary Fiction, 43(2): 307-322.
Cornwell, Gareth. 2003. Disgraceland: History and the Humanities in Frontier Country. English in
Africa 30(2): 43-68.
Dass, Minesh. 2009. Narrative Miscegenation in Zoë Wicomb's David's Story. Scrutiny2,
14(2: 72-86, DOI: 10.1080/18125440903461820.
Davis, Emily S. New Directions in Post-Apartheid South African Fiction and Scholarship. Literature
Compass 10, no. /10 (2013): 797804. DOI: 10.1111/lic3.12098.
Durrant, Sam. 2005. The Invention of Mourning in Post-Apartheid Literature. Third World
Quarterly, 26:3,441-450, DOI: 10.1080/01436590500033701
Farred, Grant. "Mourning the Postapartheid State Already? The Poetics of Loss in Zakes Mda's Ways of
Dying." MFS Modern Fiction Studies, 46(1): 183-206. Doi:10.1353/mfs.2000.0004.
Fenwick, Mac. 1996. Tough guy, eh?: The gangster‐figure in Drum. Journal of Southern African
Studies, 22 (4): 617-632, DOI: 10.1080/03057079608708515.
Graham, Lucy. 2003. Reading the Unspeakable: Rape in J.M. Coetzees Disgrace. Journal of Southern
African Studies, 29(2): 433-444.
Graham, Shane. 2003. The Truth Commission and Post-Apartheid Literature in South Africa,
Research in African Literatures, 34 (1): 11-30.
Krog, Antjie. 2007. Fact Bordering Fiction and the Honesty of I River Teeth, 8(2): 34-43.
Macmillan, Hugh William & Lucy Valerie Graham. 2011. The Great Coloured Question and the
Cosmopolitan: Fiction, History and Politics in David's Story, Safundi, 12 (3-4): 331-347,
DOI: 10.1080/17533171.2011.586833.
Marais, Michael. 2001. Very morbid phenomena: Liberal Funk, the Lucy-syndrome and J.M.
Coetzee's Disgrace.Scrutiny2, 6(1): 32-28.
Marais, Mike. 2006. "J.M. Coetzee's Disgrace and the Task of the Imagination," Journal of Modern
Literature, 29(2): 75-93.
Mardorossian, Carine M. Rape and the Violence of Representation in J. M. Coetzee's Disgrace.
Research in African Literatures 42(4): 72-83. DOI: 10.1353/ral.2011.0069.
Mbembe, Achille. 2004. Aesthetics of Superfluity. Public Culture, 16(3): 373405.
Moss, Laura. 2006. "'Nice Audible Crying': Editions, Testimonies, and Country of my Skull," Research in
African Literatures, 39(4): 85-104.
Samuelson, Meg. 2003. Cracked vases and Untidy Seams: Narrative Structure
and Closure in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and South African Fiction,
Current Writing: Text and Reception in Southern Africa, 15(2): 63-76. DOI: 10.1080/1013929X.2003.9678159.
Samuelson, Meg. 2008. The Urban Palimpsest: Re‐Presenting Sophiatown, Journal of Postcolonial
Writing, 44 (1):63-75, DOI: 10.1080/17449850701820764.
Saunders, Rebecca. 2005. "Disgrace in the Time of a Truth Commission." Parallax 11(3): 99-106.
Spain, Andrea. 2016. Transitional Encounters: Practices of Queer Futurity in K. Sello Duikers Thirteen
Cents, Safundi, 17:4, 416-433, DOI: 10.1080/17533171.2016.1233622
Spearey, Susan. 2008. May the Unfixable Broken Bone/ [] Give Us New Bearings: Ethics, Affect
and Irresolution in Ingrid de Kok's A Room Full of Questions Postcolonial Text, 4(1): 2-24.
Stobie, Cheryl. 2008. Fissures in Apartheid's Eden: Representations of Bisexuality in The Smell of
Apples by Mark Behr. Research in African Literatures, 39(1): 70-86.
DOI: 10.1353/ral.2008.0001.
Stobie, Cheryl. 2009. Postcolonial Pomosexuality: Queer/Alternative fiction after Disgrace. Current
Writing: Text and Reception in Southern Africa 21(1-2): 320-341.
DOI: 10.1080/1013929X.2009.9678324.
Stobie, Cheryl. 2017. Re-tailoring Can Thembas The Suit: Queer Temporalities in Two Stories
by Makhosazana Xaba, Current Writing: Text and Reception in Southern Africa,
29(2): 79-88, DOI: 10.1080/1013929X.2017.1347421
Van der Vlies, Andrew. 2011. An Interview with Mark Behr, Safundi: The Journal of South African
and American Studies, 12:1, 1-26.

Optional Further Reading
Barnard, Rita. 2007. Apartheid and Beyond: South African Writers and the Politics of Place. Oxford:
Oxford University Press, 2007.
Bystrom, Kerry. 2016. Democracy at Home in South Africa: Family Fictions and Transitional Culture.
Basingstoke, U.K.: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016.
Chapman, Michael. 2009. Introduction: Conjectures on South African Literature. Current Writing: Text
and Reception in Southern Africa 21 (12) (2009): 123.
Munro, Brenna M. 2012. South Africa and the Dream of Love to Come: Queer Sexuality and the Struggle
for Freedom. Minneapolis and London: University of Minnesota Press.
Nuttall, Sarah. Entanglement: Literary and Cultural Reflections on Post-Apartheid.
Johannesburg: Wits University Press, 2009.
Samuelson, Meg. Remembering the Nation, Dismembering Women? Stories of the South African
Transition. Pietermaritzburg, South Africa: University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, 2007.

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