Scenes From Provincial Life

Book - 1997
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Coetzee has been reluctant to talk about himself. Now, revisiting the South Africa of a half century ago, he writes about his childhood and his own interior life. Boyhood 's young narrator grew up in a new development north of Cape Town, tormented by guilt and fear. With a father he did not respect, and a mother he both adored and resented, he led a double life -- at school the brilliant and well-behaved student, at home the princely despot, always terrified of losing his mother's love. His first encounters with literature, the awakenings of sexual desire, and a growing awareness of apartheid left him with baffling questions; and only in his love of the veld ('farms are places of freedom, of life') could he find a sense of belonging. Bold and telling, this masterly evocation of a young boy's life is the book Coetzee's many admirers have been waiting for, but never could have expected.
Publisher: New York : Viking, 1997
ISBN: 9780670872206
Characteristics: 166 p


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Oct 03, 2017

Boring, stilted; I could hardly finish it, and didn't enjoy it or learn much from it.

Nov 29, 2014

A quick read memoir on the author's life in a provincial town in South Africa. Excellent prose with an endearing look at the foibles of life. Worth reading.

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