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Title:Overtaken by history? Obsolescence-anxiety in André Brink's 'An act of terror' and Etienne Van Heerden's 'Casspirs en campari's'
Author:Heyns, MichielISNI
Periodical:The English Academy Review
Geographic term:South Africa
About persons:André Philippus Brink (1935-2015)ISNI
Etienne Van Heerden (1954-)ISNI
Abstract:This article compares two South African novels: 'An act of terror' (1991), by André Brink, and 'Casspirs en campari's' (1991), by Etienne Van Heerden. Both works are heavily dependent on the apartheid State for their subject matter, and both end on the release of Mandela. The author argues that both writers are experiencing a certain obsolescence-anxiety - understandably, given that the two novels, though published in 1991, are explicitly placed in the South Africa immediately preceding the unbanning of the ANC on 2 February 1990. He analyses the novels using Bakhtin's distinction between the epic and the novel, arguing that 'Casspirs en campari's' is novelistic in a Bakhtinian sense, where 'An act of terror' is more epic. Bibliogr., notes, ref.