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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Try these: tackling representations of rugby in recent South African novels
Author:Reef, AnneISNI
Year:2010
Periodical:The English Academy Review (ISSN 1753-5360)
Volume:27
Issue:2
Pages:71-80
Language:English
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:novels
nationalism
Afrikaners
rugby
apartheid
About persons:Alan Stewart Paton (1903-1988)ISNI
Mark Behr (1963-)ISNI
Damon Galgut (1963-)ISNI
Link:https://doi.org/10.1080/10131752.2010.514987
Abstract:Using the novels' representations of rugby as a kick-off point, this article compares Alan Paton's 'Too late the phalarope' (1953, New York) to Damon Galgut's 'The beautiful screaming of pigs' (1991, London) and Mark Behr's 'Embrace' (2000, London). It explores the ways in which the books depict the complex intersections between rugby, masculinity, and Afrikaner nationalism. As represented in these texts, a male protagonist's devotion to the ruggedly masculine game of rugby is one of a constellation of markers that indicates his commitment to apartheid ideology and his concomitant ability and willingness to perpetuate the Afrikaner patriarchy; as a corollary, affectiveness in the male protagonist's character, read as threateningly female and thus weak by his father, predicts the boy's defection from apartheid. The article holds that there is a pattern that begins with Paton: in these novels, the protagonists, all somehow sensitive, betray apartheid ideology and the creeds of their families, communities, and country. Paton's text, then, may be seen as an important thematic forbearer to the work of two young South African contemporary writers. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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