Original Research

Membraan, dialoog, Ians - Bakhtin/Venter

H. Viljoen
Literator | Vol 19, No 3 | a563 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v19i3.563 | © 1998 H. Viljoen | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 30 April 1998 | Published: 30 April 1998

About the author(s)

H. Viljoen, Skool vir Tale en Kunste, Potchefstroomse Universiteit vir CHO, South Africa

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Abstract

Membrane, dialogue, lance – Bakhtin/Venter
In this article the short story “Die enigste” ("The only one") from the collection Oop toe (Open closed) (1990) by De Waal Venter is read in dialogue with Mikhail Bakhtin’s essay "From the prehistory of novelistic discourse" (1981). The citation of another’s discourse is very obvious in the story, especially in the way Leichtfinger’s theory of membranes is cited. Citing this (fictive) theory has a strong seductive appeal, and forms but part of the way the male discourse of penetration is dialogized here - i.a. in the courtly discourse the story adopts. The story in the end shows up the essence of dialogism - that is, exposing lofty discourse to the corrective of the fullness of life. The confrontation of the story with Bakhtin’s ideas, taking theory not very seriously but seriously enough, is also a plea for more space for literary-theoretical work in South Africa.

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