Considering coloureds : detangling representations of coloured women in Post-Apartheid South Africa

Jeftha, Caryn (2020-03)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch University, 2020.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Coloured identity remains a contentious and complex topic in contemporary South African conversations. As an academic area of study, topics based on coloured identity and culture have been written since the 19th century, with historiographies and descriptions progressing from essentialist configurations to postcolonial explorations. Prior to the 1980s, ‘common knowledge’ posited coloured people primarily as products of miscegenation, and arguments for ‘coloured’ to be conceived of as a cultural identity is a recent framework of consideration. A surge in academic and public interests regarding coloured cultural history and identity has grown alongside South African literary traditions that focus on narrative modes linked to autobiography and confessive writing, with a market for ‘coloured’ stories having swelled in the last decade. Authors have provided a burst in texts that document, index and revise historical narratives attached to colouredness. This research sets out to explore the value of texts that pivot on coloured stories, with specific attention to coloured femininities and representations thereof, through reading the novels Eve and What Will People Say?, along with the film Ellen: The Story of Ellen Pakkies. Spurred on by the current social moment where bold retellings of painful pasts are encouraged, this study charts the intersections of intimacy that underpin hidden histories and repressed topics, notions of shame and dignity in coloured self-identification, as well as the value of memory studies in writing, reading and sharing stories entangled with living coloured.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Gekleurde identiteit bly 'n omstrede en ingewikkelde onderwerp in kontemporêre Suid-Afrikaanse gesprekke. As akademiese studieveld is onderwerpe gebaseer op gekleurde identiteit en kultuur sedert die 19de eeu van belang, met historiografieë en beskrywings wat van essensialistiese konfigurasies tot postkoloniale ondersoeke vorder. Voor die 1980s het 'algemene kennis' bruin mense hoofsaaklik as produkte van bloedvermenging geposisioneer, en argumente vir 'gekleurde' as 'n kulturele identiteit is 'n onlangse raamwerk van oorweging. Namate Suid-Afrikaanse literêre tradisies ontwikkel, maar steeds gefokus is op outobiografie en konfessionele skryfwerk, het die afgelope dekade die belangstelling in die uitsending van 'gekleurde' verhale geswel. Daar is nou ‘n aantal tekste wat hersiening doen oor historiese narratiewe wat op kleur gefokus is. Met hierdie navorsing word ondersoek ingestel na die waarde van tekste wat op gekleurde verhale draai. Daar is spesifieke aandag gegee aan gekleurde vroulikheid deur op te let hoe en waarom stereotipes groei en voortduur. Hier word die romans Eve en What Will People Say? saam met die film Ellen: Die verhaal van Ellen Pakkies gelees. Hierdie studie word aangespoor deur die huidige sosiale oomblik, waar gewaagde hervertellings van pynlike tydperke aangemoedig word. Die studie ondersoek die snypunte van intimiteit wat die versteekte geskiedenis en onderdrukte onderwerpe onderlê, asook idees van skaamte en waardigheid in gekleurde selfidentifikasie, sowel as die waarde van geheue-studies in die skryf, lees en deel van verhale van kleurling lewe.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/108073
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