BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment January 2023
Q 1. What do you broadly understand by South African Literature? Is it different in any way from African Literature?
Ans. South African literature refers to literary works produced in the region known as South Africa, which includes writers from different ethnic and linguistic backgrounds, such as English, Afrikaans, Xhosa, Zulu, and Sotho.
The literature of South Africa reflects the diversity of its society, with themes that explore race, gender, class, identity, and the country’s complex history.
South African literature is distinct from African literature as a whole, although it shares some common themes and concerns with other African countries.
One of the defining features of South African literature is its engagement with issues of race and ethnicity. The legacy of apartheid and the country’s history of racial segregation and inequality has provided a rich source of material for writers.
Many South African writers have used their work to explore the impact of apartheid on individuals and communities, and to reflect on the ongoing struggles for social justice and reconciliation in the post-apartheid era.
South African literature also often grapples with issues of gender and sexuality. Women writers have been particularly active in exploring the experiences of women in South African society, with works that examine the intersection of race, gender, and class. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
LGBTQ writers have also made important contributions to South African literature, reflecting on the challenges of being queer in a society that has been slow to embrace LGBTQ rights.
The South African literary tradition is also characterized by a strong sense of place and a connection to the land.
Many writers have drawn inspiration from the country’s rich natural landscape, while others have explored the complexities of life in urban areas.
The work of South African writers is often marked by a deep sense of rootedness and a commitment to exploring the complexities of their own cultural and historical contexts.
In terms of language, South African literature is notable for its diversity. While English has been an important literary language in South Africa since the colonial period, there is a rich tradition of writing in other languages, including Afrikaans, Zulu, Xhosa, and Sotho.
Many writers have also used a mixture of languages, creating a unique and hybrid literary form that reflects the complexity of South African society.
Despite the diversity of South African literature, there are some common themes and concerns that unite many writers. One of these is a focus on social justice and human rights. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Many South African writers have used their work to challenge oppression and inequality, and to advocate for a more just and equal society.
Another important theme is the search for identity and belonging, particularly in the wake of the country’s complex and often traumatic history.
Overall, South African literature is a rich and complex tradition that reflects the diversity and complexity of South African society.
While it shares some common themes and concerns with other African countries, it is also marked by its unique history, language, and cultural context.
South African writers have made important contributions to the global literary canon, providing powerful insights into the human condition and the complexities of life in a rapidly changing world.
Additionally, South African literature is characterized by its engagement with social and political issues, particularly the legacy of apartheid and the struggle for democracy. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Many South African writers, such as Nadine Gordimer and J.M. Coetzee, use their works to explore the complex and often painful experiences of living under apartheid and the challenges of building a new, more just society after its collapse.
These works often grapple with themes of identity, memory, trauma, and reconciliation.
While South African literature is distinct from African literature as a whole, it is also shaped by broader African literary traditions and the continent’s rich cultural heritage.
Many South African writers draw on oral storytelling traditions, as well as the rich diversity of African languages, to create a uniquely African literary voice.
Moreover, South African literature is part of a wider African literary tradition that is characterized by a commitment to addressing social and political issues and celebrating the richness and diversity of African cultures.
In conclusion, South African literature is a vibrant and diverse literary tradition that is deeply rooted in the country’s unique history and cultural heritage.
While it is distinct from African literature as a whole, it is also shaped by broader African literary traditions and the continent’s rich cultural heritage.
South African writers have used their works to explore a wide range of themes, from the legacy of apartheid to the challenges of building a new, more just society.
Through their writing, South African writers have made an important contribution to African literature and to the global literary landscape.
Q 2. Who are some of the pioneers of postcolonial short story? Write about any two representative short stories.
Ans. Postcolonial literature refers to works written by authors from countries that were once colonized by European powers. Postcolonial short stories explore themes such as identity, culture, and power in the aftermath of colonialism.
Two pioneers of postcolonial short story writing are Chinua Achebe and Salman Rushdie, and two representative short stories from each writer are “Civil Peace” and “The Free Radio,” respectively. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Chinua Achebe’s “Civil Peace” is set in Nigeria, in the aftermath of the Nigerian Civil War. The story follows the character Jonathan, who has survived the war and has returned home to find that his house is still standing.
He believes that he is lucky to have survived and still have a home, and so he begins to rebuild his life. However, Jonathan’s experience is not universal, and many others in his community are struggling to rebuild their lives after the war.
The story explores themes such as resilience and the power of hope in the face of adversity, as well as the impact of war on individuals and communities.
Salman Rushdie’s “The Free Radio” is set in India and explores themes such as identity and cultural appropriation. The story follows the character Ramani, who is poor and uneducated, as he becomes obsessed with the idea of owning a radio.
He finally acquires one, but he is unable to listen to it because he cannot afford to buy batteries. One day, he hears a radio broadcast in English, and he becomes convinced that the radio is communicating directly with him.
Ramani becomes obsessed with the idea that he is being sent a message from the radio and begins to spread the word.
However, the message that he spreads is not the message that the radio is actually broadcasting. The story is a commentary on the power of media and the way that it can be used to manipulate and control people.
Both “Civil Peace” and “The Free Radio” are representative of the postcolonial short story genre. They explore themes such as identity, culture, and power in the aftermath of colonialism. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
In “Civil Peace,” Achebe explores the impact of war on individuals and communities, as well as the power of resilience and hope in the face of adversity.
The story highlights the importance of rebuilding and moving forward, even in the face of great hardship. In “The Free Radio,” Rushdie explores the power of media and the way that it can be used to manipulate and control people.
The story is a commentary on the impact of cultural appropriation and the way that it can be used to erase or distort cultural identities.
Another important pioneer of postcolonial short story is Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, a Nigerian author who gained worldwide recognition for her works, including her collection of short stories titled “The Thing Around Your Neck.”
Adichie’s short stories explore the experiences of Nigerians, both at home and abroad, in the aftermath of colonialism and the challenges they face in a rapidly changing world.
In “The Thing Around Your Neck,” Adichie presents a collection of twelve stories that highlight the struggles of her characters in navigating issues of identity, cultural displacement, and gender inequality.
One of the standout stories in the collection is “Imitation,” which follows the story of Nkem, a Nigerian woman who moves to the United States with her American husband. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Nkem struggles to adjust to life in a new country, where she is faced with racial discrimination and isolation.
Her husband’s family, who are predominantly white, do not accept her, and she is forced to confront her own insecurities about her identity as an African woman.
The story ultimately explores the complexities of intercultural relationships and the challenges of bridging cultural divides.
Another notable story in the collection is “The Headstrong Historian,” which is set in colonial-era Nigeria and tells the story of Nwamgba, a young girl who defies traditional gender roles and pursues an education.
Despite facing opposition from her father and the wider community, Nwamgba goes on to become a respected historian and writer, documenting the history of her people and challenging the narrative of colonialism.
Adichie’s story offers a powerful critique of colonialism and the role of women in traditional African societies, highlighting the importance of education and the need for African voices to be heard in the telling of history.
Overall, Adichie’s short stories, as well as the works of other postcolonial short story pioneers, serve as a powerful reminder of the enduring legacy of colonialism and the ongoing struggles of formerly colonized peoples to assert their identities and navigate the complexities of a rapidly changing world.
Through their works, these writers offer a voice to those who have been marginalized and silenced, challenging dominant narratives and shedding light on the unique experiences of postcolonial societies.
Q 3. Make a critical appraisal of the poetic devices used in the poem, “Tonight I can Write”.
Ans. Pablo Neruda’s “Tonight I Can Write” is a poignant and deeply emotional poem that explores themes of love, loss, and heartbreak. The poem is written in the form of a retrospective narration, where the speaker reflects upon a past love and the emotions it evokes. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Through a range of poetic devices, Neruda creates a powerful and evocative piece of literature that resonates with readers on a deeply personal level.
In this critical appraisal, we will examine the use of poetic devices in the poem and their significance.
One of the most striking aspects of the poem is its use of imagery. Throughout the poem, Neruda employs vivid and evocative images to convey the emotions and experiences of the speaker.
For example, in the first stanza, the speaker describes how “the night is shattered / and the blue stars shiver in the distance” as he contemplates his lost love.
This image of shattered night and shivering stars conveys the speaker’s sense of deep sorrow and grief.
Similarly, in the second stanza, the speaker describes how he “loved her, and sometimes she loved me too.” Here, the use of the word “sometimes” is significant as it conveys the fleeting and fragile nature of the speaker’s love.
The image of a love that is only occasionally reciprocated is both poignant and heart-wrenching.
Another important poetic device used in the poem is repetition. Throughout the poem, Neruda repeats key phrases and ideas to create a sense of rhythm and structure. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
For example, the phrase “Tonight I can write” is repeated four times throughout the poem, creating a refrain that emphasizes the speaker’s sense of loss and longing.
Similarly, the use of repetition in the lines “In this part of the story, I am the one who dies / the only one, and I will die of love because I love you” is particularly effective.
The repetition of the phrase “I will die of love” underscores the intensity and all-consuming nature of the speaker’s emotions.
Another important poetic device used in the poem is a metaphor. Neruda employs a range of metaphors to explore the complex emotions of the speaker.
For example, in the third stanza, the speaker describes how “my voice tried to find the wind to touch her hearing.” This metaphorical language conveys the speaker’s desire to connect with his lost love, even though she is no longer present.
Similarly, in the final stanza, the speaker compares his love to a “little doll” that he can put away and forget.
This metaphorical language is both powerful and deeply tragic, as it suggests that the speaker’s love has become something that can be easily discarded and forgotten.
The use of symbolism is also significant in the poem. Neruda employs a range of symbols to convey the themes of love and loss.
For example, the image of the “yellow leaves” in the first stanza suggests the passing of time and the inevitability of change.
Similarly, the image of the “silent, starry night” in the final stanza symbolizes the speaker’s sense of loneliness and isolation.
The use of this symbol underscores the poem’s central themes of love, loss, and the fleeting nature of human relationships.
Finally, the use of language and sound in the poem is also worth considering. Neruda employs a range of poetic devices, such as alliteration, assonance, and consonance, to create a sense of musicality and rhythm in the poem.
For example, in the final stanza, the repetition of the “s” sound in the phrase “the saddest lines” creates a sense of melancholy and sadness.
Another important aspect of the poem that deserves mention is the use of structure. The poem is composed of four stanzas of varying length, with each stanza focusing on a different aspect of the speaker’s emotions.
The first stanza sets the scene and establishes the speaker’s sense of loss and longing. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
The second stanza describes the speaker’s love and its eventual end, while the third stanza explores the speaker’s attempts to hold onto his memories of his lost love.
The final stanza provides a sense of closure, as the speaker reflects on his love and acknowledges that it is now in the past.
The structure of the poem reflects the speaker’s emotional journey, as he moves from a sense of longing and despair to a place of acceptance and closure.
This structure also reinforces the poem’s themes of time and change, as the speaker reflects on the passing of time and the inevitability of loss and change.
Finally, it is worth noting the cultural and historical context in which Neruda wrote the poem. Neruda was a Chilean poet who was deeply involved in the political and social struggles of his time.
His poetry often reflected his commitment to social justice and his belief in the power of poetry to effect change in the world.
In “Tonight I Can Write”, Neruda’s exploration of love and loss is also a reflection of the tumultuous political and social climate of his time.
“Tonight I Can Write” is a masterful example of the use of poetic devices to convey complex emotions and experiences.
Through the use of imagery, repetition, metaphor, symbolism, sound, and structure, Neruda creates a powerful and evocative piece of literature that explores themes of love, loss, and heartbreak. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Q 4. Tendulkar has made use of song, dance, music, mime, dialogue and narration in the play Ghashiram Kotwal. Illustrate the extent to which these elements contribute to the total effect of the play.
Ans. Ghashiram Kotwal is a play written by Vijay Tendulkar that was first performed in 1972. The play is set in the city of Pune during the 18th century and tells the story of Ghashiram, a corrupt and manipulative Kotwal (police chief) who rises to power through deceit and violence.
Tendulkar makes use of a variety of dramatic techniques, including song, dance, music, mime, dialogue, and narration, to create a powerful and memorable theatrical experience.
One of the most notable features of Ghashiram Kotwal is its use of song and music. Throughout the play, characters break into song and dance, often accompanied by traditional Indian instruments such as the tabla and the harmonium.
These musical interludes serve a number of purposes. First, they provide a break from the tension and drama of the main action, allowing the audience to relax and enjoy the music. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Second, they provide a means of expressing the characters’ emotions in a way that is more immediate and visceral than dialogue alone.
For example, in one scene, Ghashiram sings a song of triumph after successfully manipulating the other characters to his advantage.
The song serves to underscore Ghashiram’s psychopathic nature, as well as his ability to manipulate those around him.
Another key element of the play is its use of mime and physical theatre. The actors use their bodies to create powerful and evocative images, such as the scene where Ghashiram is publicly shamed by being forced to ride a donkey through the streets of Pune.
The use of physical theatre in this scene serves to heighten the sense of humiliation and degradation that Ghashiram experiences, and allows the audience to fully appreciate the severity of his punishment.
The play also makes use of dialogue and narration to convey its themes and ideas. Tendulkar’s dialogue is sharp and incisive, and his characters speak in a manner that is both naturalistic and poetic.
The narration, delivered by a chorus of actors, provides a commentary on the action and offers insights into the characters’ motivations and desires.
For example, in one scene, the chorus comments on Ghashiram’s corruption, saying “The man who would sell his mother for a profit, will sell his country for a larger sum”. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
This line serves to underscore the play’s critique of corruption and greed, and highlights the destructive impact that these forces can have on society.
The use of symbolism is another important element of the play. For example, the recurring image of the donkey, which is used to humiliate Ghashiram, serves as a symbol of his own bestial nature.
The donkey represents Ghashiram’s lack of humanity and his willingness to stoop to any level to achieve his goals.
Similarly, the use of the Kotwal as a symbol of authority and power serves to highlight the corrupt nature of the system in which the play is set.
Finally, the play’s use of narration and dialogue is also notable for its use of multiple voices and perspectives. Rather than presenting a single, unified view of the action, the play allows for a variety of different voices to be heard.
This serves to complicate the play’s themes and ideas, and allows for a more nuanced exploration of the issues at hand.
For example, while the play is highly critical of Ghashiram’s actions, it also acknowledges the complex social and political forces that have contributed to his rise to power.
Furthermore, the use of these various dramatic techniques allows Tendulkar to explore the themes of power, corruption, and societal decay in a way that is both nuanced and impactful. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
By using song and music to underscore the emotional states of the characters, he is able to create a sense of empathy and understanding that might be difficult to achieve through dialogue alone.
The use of physical theatre and mime, meanwhile, allows him to create striking visual images that speak to the play’s broader themes of oppression and humiliation.
Overall, Tendulkar’s use of these dramatic techniques serves to enrich and enliven the play, allowing it to achieve a level of complexity and depth that might not be possible otherwise.
By combining the power of music, dance, mime, dialogue, and narration, he is able to create a truly unique and unforgettable theatrical experience that speaks to audiences on a number of different levels.
Whether through its use of symbolism, its exploration of complex themes and ideas, or its evocative visual imagery, Ghashiram Kotwal is a testament to the power of theatre to move, inspire, and challenge its audiences.
Q 5. Name and briefly describe the communities whose correspondences and transactions are found in South African writings.
Ans. South Africa is a diverse country with many different communities, each with their own unique culture, language, and history. As a result, South African writings are rich with correspondences and transactions from a variety of communities.
Here are some of the communities whose correspondences and transactions are found in South African writings: BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Indigenous Communities: South Africa is home to various indigenous communities, including the Khoisan, Xhosa, Zulu, Sotho, and Tswana, among others.
These communities have a rich history and culture, and their correspondences and transactions are often found in South African writings.
For example, the isiXhosa language, spoken by the Xhosa community, is one of the official languages of South Africa and is used extensively in South African literature.
Similarly, the Khoisan community has a unique language and culture that is often the subject of anthropological research and writing.
Dutch and British Communities: South Africa was colonized by the Dutch in the 17th century and later by the British in the 19th century.
The Dutch community, known as the Afrikaners, played a significant role in the history of South Africa and their correspondences and transactions are found in South African writings.
Similarly, the British community, which included English, Scottish, and Irish settlers, also left their mark on South African literature.
Indian Community: South Africa has a significant Indian population, which was brought over as indentured laborers during the colonial period.
The Indian community has a rich history and culture, and their correspondences and transactions are often found in South African writings.
For example, Mahatma Gandhi, who spent several years in South Africa, is often mentioned in South African literature. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
Coloured Community: The term “coloured” is used in South Africa to refer to people of mixed race. The coloured community has a complex history, and their correspondences and transactions are often found in South African writings.
For example, the novel “Karoo Boy” by Troy Blacklaws is set in the coloured community and explores issues such as identity and belonging.
Jewish Community: South Africa has a small but significant Jewish population, many of whom arrived in the country during the 19th and 20th centuries.
The Jewish community has a rich cultural and religious history, and their correspondences and transactions are often found in South African literature.
For example, the novel “The Conservationist” by Nadine Gordimer features a Jewish character who grapples with issues of identity and belonging.
LGBTQ+ Community: South Africa is known for being one of the most LGBTQ+ friendly countries in Africa, and the correspondences and transactions of the LGBTQ+ community are often found in South African writings.
For example, the novel “The Miseducation of Cameron Post” by Emily M. Danforth features a young lesbian protagonist who is sent to a conversion therapy camp.
White South Africans: While the term “white South Africans” encompasses a range of different ethnic and cultural backgrounds, it is often used to refer to the descendants of European settlers who arrived in South Africa during the colonial period.
The correspondences and transactions of white South Africans are often found in South African literature, which explores issues such as privilege, power, and race.
Chinese Community: South Africa has a small but significant Chinese population, many of whom arrived in the country during the 19th and 20th centuries.
The Chinese community has a rich cultural and historical background, and their correspondences and transactions are sometimes found in South African literature.
For example, the novel “The Chinaman” by Sheena Kamal features a Chinese Canadian protagonist who travels to South Africa to investigate a murder.
Muslim Community: South Africa has a significant Muslim population with a rich cultural and religious history. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
The Muslim community is diverse, with roots in different parts of the world, including India, Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Middle East.
Their correspondences and transactions are often found in South African literature, which explores issues such as faith, identity, and cultural heritage.
Refugee and Immigrant Communities: South Africa has become a destination for refugees and immigrants from other parts of Africa, as well as from other parts of the world.
These communities bring with them their own unique cultures, languages, and histories, and their correspondences and transactions are often found in South African literature.
For example, the novel “The Power of One” by Bryce Courtenay features a young English boy growing up in South Africa who befriends a young African boy from Zimbabwe.
South African literature has a long and complex history that is deeply intertwined with the country’s political and social struggles.
For many years, South Africa was governed under the system of apartheid, which was a policy of racial segregation and discrimination. During this time, South African writers played a critical role in exposing the injustices of apartheid and giving voice to those who had been silenced.
One of the most famous South African writers is Nelson Mandela, who wrote extensively about his experiences as a political prisoner and his struggle against apartheid. BEGC 114 Solved Free Assignment 2023
His memoir “Long Walk to Freedom” is a powerful testament to the resilience and determination of the human spirit in the face of oppression.
Other notable South African writers include Nadine Gordimer, who won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1991 for her novels and short stories that explore the complexities of apartheid and its impact on individuals and communities.
Her novel “Burger’s Daughter” is a powerful portrayal of a young woman grappling with the legacy of her anti-apartheid activist parents.
Athol Fugard is another prominent South African writer whose plays and novels have explored the human cost of apartheid.
His play “Master Harold…and the Boys” is a poignant portrayal of the relationship between a white boy and his black servant against the backdrop of apartheid-era South Africa.
More recently, South African literature has been marked by a growing diversity of voices and perspectives. Writers from a range of communities and backgrounds have emerged, each bringing their own unique perspective to the literary landscape.
Some notable contemporary writers include Zakes Mda, who writes about the complexities of post-apartheid South Africa, and Yewande Omotoso, whose novel “The Woman Next Door” explores issues of race, class, and aging.