Original Research

Looking backward to the ‘new South Africa’ - J.M. Coetzee’s exploration of the protocols of travel writing

M. Marais
Literator | Vol 15, No 1 | a649 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v15i1.649 | © 1994 M. Marais | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 02 May 1994 | Published: 02 May 1994

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M. Marais, Potchefstroom University (Vaal Triangle Campus), South Africa

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Abstract

This paper discusses J M Coetzee's deconstruction of the discourse of travel writing in "The Narrative of Jacobus Coetzee". It contends that the novella foregrounds this colonialist g en re ’s ethnographic inscription of the contact between coloniser and colonised in order to expose its role in the implication of Africa in the European plot of history. The paper also argues that the novella reveals the manner in which this mediation of the colonial encounter by western language and narrative systems prospectively determined the course of South African history. In the process, it relates this work’s understanding of history to the contemporary South African reader’s times.

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