Original Research

Uitbeelding van skuld en boetedoening deur die gebruik van terugkerende kodes in Die buiteveld (John Miles)

S. Harper
Literator | Vol 30, No 3 | a90 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v30i3.90 | © 2009 S. Harper | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 16 July 2009 | Published: 16 July 2009

About the author(s)

S. Harper, Departement Toegepaste Tale, Tshwane Universiteit van Tegnologie, South Africa

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Expressions of guilt and remorse through the use of recurring codes in Die buiteveld by John Miles
The novel “Die Buiteveld” by John Miles is an unusual novel. The main character is an enigma as from the start the reader has doubts about him and is in doubt of the truth. The aim of this article is to determine how recurring codes are used to express guilt and remorse. The analysis shows how suspense gradually increases through the repetitive use of certain codes. Through most of the story the reader is in doubt about the true identity of the main character and in this way further suspense is created. Guilt and admission of guilt are suggested by the repetion of different codes. The reader remains ignorant of the true identity of the main character until the end of the story. This causes suspense. Guilt and reconciliation are intensified by recurring codes. These codes are pillories, paintings by Goya, references to different wars, photos, physical scars and a knife. Through the woman Isabel the main character is guided to disclose his past gradually. As the case in the layers of the Goya portrait more and more of his past is gradually disclosed. His admission of guilt leads to the possibility of returning to his home country and of living a new life there with his beloved Isabel. The reader becomes not only a consumer but also a producer of the text.


Goya; Guilt Motive; John Miles; Recurring Elements In A Novel


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