Reza de Wet (1952-2012) : life and works

Stander, Daniel Botha (2019-12)

Thesis (PhD)--Stellenbosch University, 2019.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Reza Wet, one of South Africa’s most awarded playwrights, reputed, both locally and internationally, for her prodigious body of work, passed away in 2012 and yet her life as a writer, actress, director and scholar is sparsely documented and under researched. Apart from Erika Terblanche’s writer’s profile on the website Litnet, no serious attempt has been made to properly document De Wet’s upbringing, education and career as an actress, academic scholar, lecturer, and theatre professional and no study has been made at all of the thriving afterlife of her works abroad. This exemplifies J.C. Kannemeyer’s observation that biographies of South African authors are remarkably rare (83). This thesis aims to map De Wet’s intellectual and artistic development within the context of South African theatre and literary studies and history and to analyse her work’s unique position within these fields. It places a special emphasis on De Wet’s idiosyncratic Jungian psychoanalytic poetics and reads her oeuvre as an expression of a psyche in search of greater self-knowledge. To this end it relies on a combination of close reading and archival research to conduct an encompassing life-works analysis by which De Wet’s life history is the favoured source underpinning an interpretation of the works, while the work remains the central focus of the thesis at large. This project will hopefully contribute to the expansion of South African theatre and literary auto/biographical archives.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Reza de Wet, een van Suid-Afrika se mees bekroonde dramaturge, is in 2012 oorlede. Sy is plaaslik en internasionaal bekend vir die omvang van haar skrywersloopbaan, maar tog is haar lewe as skrywer, aktrise en navorser nog yl gedokumenteer. Buiten Erika Terblanche se skrywersprofiel op die webtuiste Litnet is daar nog geen noemenswaardige poging aangewend om De Wet se opbrengs, opvoeding en loopbaan as aktrise, akademikus, dosent en professionele teatermaker te boekstaaf nie en geen studie is al van haar werk se bloeiende nalewe in ander lande gemaak nie. Hierdie gegewe staaf J.C. Kannemeyer se opmerking dat Suid-Afrikaanse skrywersbiografieë besonders skaars is (83). Hierdie tesis poog om De Wet se intellektuele en artistieke ontwikkeling binne die konteks van Suid-Afrikaanse teater- en literêre studies en -geskiedenis te karteer as ook haar werk se unieke posisie binne die konteks van hierdie velde. Ek beklemtoon De Wet se eiesoortige Jungiaanse psigo-analitiese skrywersbenadering en ek interpreteer haar oeuvre as ’n uitdrukking van ’n psige opsoek na ’n verdiepte selfkennis. Met hierdie doel voor oë berus my navorsing op ’n kombinasie van stipleesgebaseerde en argiefnavorsing om ’n omvattende lewe-en-werke-analise te behartig waardeur De Wet se lewensgeskiedenis as die belangrikste voedbron dien, terwyl die werk self die sentrale fokus van die tesis in geheel bly. Hierdie projek sal hopelik ’n bydra lewer tot die uitbou van Suid-Afrikaanse teater- en literêre auto/biografiese argiewe.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/107162
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