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Event – A childhood in South Africa (De Balie)
5 October 2015 at 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm€10
The 1970s. Apartheid South Africa. A situation of profound division, both in the country at large, and in many homes, as children turn against the values of their parents. For many writers, early memories powerfully shape their fiction. But what if the world of childhood is a house divided? What if the surrounding politics pose seemingly insurmountable questions — about power, freedom, love, survival from day to day?
Elleke Boehmer, novelist and critic, confronts these questions in her new novel, Op de Veranda (English title: The Shouting in the Dark’). For main character Ella and her family these divisions are further complicated by the Second World War nightmares of her Netherlands father Har. Elleke Boehmer explores the effect of political change on an immigrant family and asks about growing up during apartheid, in the dying days of a colonial system. How is a child impacted by racism? How does she throw off the dead hand of her father’s control?
The writer Karin Amatmoekrim and the writer and public intellectual Naomi Wolf will join the conversation about memory, family, resisting oppression and writing fiction.
Wim Manuhutu, historian and heritage professional, will moderate the programme.