Original Research

Tales of transition

H. Viljoen, E. Hentschel
Literator | Vol 18, No 3 | a546 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v18i3.546 | © 1997 H. Viljoen, E. Hentschel | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 30 April 1997 | Published: 30 April 1997

About the author(s)

H. Viljoen, Department of Afrikaans and Dutch, Potchefstroom University for CHE, Potchefstroom, South Africa
E. Hentschel, Department of English Language & Literature with German, French and Translation Studies, Potchefstroom University for CHE, Potchefstroom, South Africa

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In this article the rationale of this special issue is provided and the different contributions are introduced. The assumption is that there are strong similarities between the recent political and social transitions in South Africa and Germany and the reactions, both emotional and literary, of the people involved. Broadly, the transitions are described as a movement from external (or violent) to internal (or ideological) social control, though this must be modified by the various constructions the contributors put on the transition. The main themes and questions of the transitions are synthesized, highlighting the marked similarities the different contributions reveal. The most important of these are the relation to the past, problems of identity, projections of the new and the internal contradictions of nationalist discourse (which informs the process of transition). In conclusion, the similarities and differences between the two transitions indicated by this special issue, are discussed. The assumption of strong similarities between the two seems to hold, it is argued, but much more research into the matter is needed.


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Crossref Citations

1. South Africa
Dorothy Driver
The Journal of Commonwealth Literature  vol: 33  issue: 3  first page: 155  year: 1998  
doi: 10.1177/002200949803300307