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Die uitbeelding van Afrika-woestyne in Afrikaanse, Engelse, Duitse en Franse fiksie

Jordaan, Doret (2017-03)

Thesis (PhD)--Stellenbosch University, 2017

Thesis

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING : Die menslike verbeelding reduseer die aarde se verskeidenheid woestynlandskappe dikwels tot enkele, herhalende beelde wat een groot generiese woestyn vorm. Een doel van hierdie studie is om vas te stel hoe literêre uitbeeldings van woestynomgewings verband hou met die fisiese woestyne van Afrika – in die besonder wat fiksie geskryf in Afrikaans, Engels, Duits en Frans betref. Daarom word die uitbeelding van die Namib, Kalahari en Sahara bespreek binne die raamwerk van die ekokritiek, geokritiek en vergelykende letterkunde. Hierdie studie het verder ten doel om die gapings aan te spreek tussen die groot hoeveelheid literêre navorsing oor woestyne soos die Sahara aan die een kant en die Namib en die Kalahari aan die ander kant. Ook word gepoog om ʼn bydrae te maak wat die beperktheid van veeltalige navorsing binne die ekokritiek en geokritiek aanspreek – veral Afrikaans. ʼn Wye verskeidenheid tekste is by die ondersoek betrek. Benewens outobiografiese werke soos reisbeskrywings, behels die nie-fiksie ook werke uit die aardwetenskappe. Die fiksie behels romans, en tot ʼn mindere mate kortverhale, waarin die woestyn optree as woonplek, vestigingsplek en besoekplek. Die woestynuitbeeldings in die romans Anderkant die Stilte (2002) deur André P. Brink, Désert deur J.M.G. Le Clézio (1980), Der einzige Ort (2004) deur Thomas Stangl en The Sheltering Sky (1990 [1949]) deur Paul Bowles, word meer uitvoerig bespreek. Die groot verskeidenheid woestynbeelde, kan aan die hand van ʼn paar aspekte beskryf word, met die oog op die lees van die woestyn. Die woestynbeeld is eintlik ʼn opstapeling van uitbeeldings. Hierdie weergawes van die woestyn is beperk wat sintuiglike waarneming betref en is oorwegend visueel. Wanneer die woestynbeelde as ʼn versameling betrag word, blyk dit ʼn reeks paradokse wees. Hierdie kontrasterende beelde maak egter sin, indien die woestyn vanuit ʼn ekokritiese invalshoek bestudeer word. Wat Afrika se woestyne betref, kan duidelik onderskei word tussen uitbeeldings van die Sahara en uitbeeldings van die woestyne in Suidelike Afrika: die ekosisteme van die Namib en die Kalahari word met groter spesifiekheid uitgebeeld as dié van die Sahara. Die literêre woestynervaring kan dus verryk word deur die besonderse uitbeeldings van die Namib en die Kalahari saam met uitbeeldings van die Sahara te lees.

ENGLISH ABSTRACT : The human imagination often reduces the earth’s variety of desert landscapes to single, repetitive images that constitute one big generic desert. One aim of this study is to determine the extent of the relationship between the literary representations of the desert and the physical deserts of Africa – particularly with regard to fiction written in Afrikaans, English, German and French. Therefore representations of the Namib, Kalahari and the Sahara are discussed within the theoretical frameworks of ecocriticism, geocriticsim and comparative literature. A further aim of this study is to address the considerable gap between the amount of literary research on deserts like the Sahara on the one hand and the Namib and the Kalahari on the other. This investigation also attempts to contribute to the limited multilingual research done in the fields of ecocriticism and geocriticism – especially in Afrikaans. The study involves the reading of a wide variety of texts. Besides autobiographical works such as travel writing, the non-fiction texts also comprise works from the earth sciences. The fiction consists of novels, and to a lesser extent short stories, in which the desert acts as a place to live, a place to settle and a place to visit. The desert images in the novels Anderkant die Stilte (2002) by André P. Brink, Désert by J.M.G. Le Clézio (1980), Der einzige Ort (2004) by Thomas Stangl and The Sheltering Sky (1990 [1949]) by Paul Bowles, are discussed more extensively. The great variety of desert images can be described by means of a few aspects, with the reading of the desert in mind. The image of the desert is actually a stacked collection of images. These representations of the desert are limited regarding sensory observations and are mainly visual. When regarded as a collection of images, these images appear to be a series of paradoxes. However, these contrasting images make sense when the desert is regarded from an ecocritical perspective. Regarding the deserts of Africa, a clear distinction can be made between depictions of the Sahara and depictions of the deserts in Southern Africa. The ecosystems of the Namib and the Kalahari are depicted with greater specificity than the ecosystem of the Sahara. The literary desert experience can thus be enriched by reading the specific representations of the Namib and the Kalahari along with representations of the Sahara.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/101244
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