Africa in the World
Edited by Gordon Collier, Marc Delrez, Anne Fuchs and Bénédicte Ledent
Contemporary African Drama and Greek Tragedy
Astrid Van Weyenberg
The opening chapters focus on plays that mobilize Greek tragedy to inspire political change, discussing how Sophocles’ heroine Antigone is reconfigured as a freedom fighter and how Euripides’ Dionysos is transformed into a revolutionary leader.
The later chapters shift the focus to plays that explore the costs and consequences of political change, examining how the cycle of violence dramatized in Aeschylus’ Oresteia trilogy acquires relevance in post-apartheid South Africa, and how the mourning of Euripides’ Trojan Women resonates in and beyond Nigeria.
Throughout, the emphasis is on how playwrights, through adaptation, perform a cultural politics directed at the Europe that has traditionally considered ancient Greece as its property, foundation, and legitimization. Van Weyenberg additionally discusses how contemporary African reworkings of Greek tragedies invite us to reconsider how we think about the genre of tragedy and about the cultural process of adaptation.
Against George Steiner’s famous claim that tragedy has died, this book demonstrates that Greek tragedy holds relevance today. But it also reveals that adaptations do more than simply keeping the texts they draw on alive: through adaptation, playwrights open up a space for politics. In this dynamic between adaptation and pre-text, the politics of adaptation is performed.
Edited by Ewald Mengel, Michela Borzaga and Karin Orantes
The authors André Brink, Maxine Case, Sindiwe Magona, Susan Mann, and Zoë Wicomb recount their personal experiences of writing about trauma, discussing its literary-aesthetic relevance and potential. The psychologists Don Foster, Ashraf Kagee, Pumla Gobodo–Madikizela, and Miriam Fredericks reflect on traditional Western conceptualizations of trauma and the need to extend and even re-write trauma theory from a postcolonial perspective. In the third part, Neville Alexander and Alex Boraine look back on the achievements and shortcomings of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, describe the state of the nation, and underscore the need to relocate trauma structurally and historically. Annie Gagiano, Helen Moffett, Tlhalo Raditlhalo, and Chris van der Merwe show how trauma theory can open new horizons and create a new vocabulary for literary criticism by tackling issues of gender, representation, and genre.
All in all, these interviews provide fascinating insights into the present state of the South African soul, its current hopes and anxieties. Rather than claiming final answers to a complex and controversial issue, this volume aims at opening up debate and making a contribution to the already existing discussion about trauma in the South African context.
Edited by Veronica Kelly
A Literary Directory
Edited by Gerhard Stilz
In this book, thirty-five scholars address and negotiate, in a spirit of learning and understanding, an exemplary variety of intercultural splits and fissures that have opened up in the English-speaking world. Their methodology can be seen to constitute a seminal field of intellectual signposts. They point out ways and means of responsibly assessing colonial predicaments and postcolonial developments in six regions shaped in the past by the British Empire and still associated today through their allegiance to the idea of a Commonwealth of Nations. They show how a new ethic of literary self-assertion, interpretative mediation and critical responsiveness can remove the deeply ingrained prejudices, silences and taboos established by discrimination against race, class and gender.
A Case for a TRC?
ahistorical thrust of the proclamation, former Biafrans lost their claim to victimhood (as the vanquished) and with it the opportunity to mourn their loss which could have started a journey of real reconciliation and reintegration. As I will argue, there was no return for these Biafrans to their prelapsarian
The Women’s Jail (Johannesburg) as a Site of Encounter
and hence a deliberate reflection of the country’s foundational myth “that debate, reason, interaction, negotiation, and reconciliation will make the future happen.” 17 That such negotiations often lead to controversial decisions became apparent during the early stages of the spatial reconstruction