Journal Article

TO REINSCRIBE REMORSE ON A LANDSCAPE

Johan Snyman

in Literature and Theology

Volume 13, issue 4, pages 284-298
Published in print December 1999 | ISSN: 0269-1205
Published online December 1999 | e-ISSN: 1477-4623 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/litthe/13.4.284
TO REINSCRIBE REMORSE ON A LANDSCAPE

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One aspect of apartheid was its politics of meaning, i.e to control the language of its supporters and its victims. This paper outlines the invention of a language of remorselessness, especially in Afrikaans culture, to this effect (II). Resistance to this ethos ot remorselessness was not long in coming, but the struggle to liberate (at least the Afrikaans) language to remorse through its literature (III) was an uphill path. Part of that struggle was to rediscover Afrikaans as the language of the suppressed bevond Afrikaans as the language of the oppressor. For the time being, writers reflect on this process itself, in order to invent ways to express remorse through a new language (IV) to assist a country to heal its scars and to reconcile it with its past and its inhabitants with one another. In this regard, Antjie Krog's Country of My Skull is an appropriate summation of a tendency that has been taking shape in Afrikaans over the last sixty or so years, i.e to reinscribe remorse on a landscape.

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Subjects: Literature ; Religion and Art, Literature, and Music

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