Magic Realism in African Literature: A Study on Selected Works of Ben Okri and Nadine Gordimer
Keywords:Magic Realism, Afrikaans, Disillusionment, Apartheid, Postcolonialism
This article examines the evolution of magical realism as a narrative style used by African writers throughout the transition period, and how it became increasingly suited to African literary sensibilities at the time. At the same time, magical realism relies heavily on African oral traditions, serving as a site of convergence for black and white writing under apartheid, as well as exemplifying the synthesis of Eurocentric Western logic and African tradition. This article discusses the possible origins of the proliferation of African texts embracing this narrative mode in the immediate aftermath of apartheid's demise, as well as the possible reasons for the gradual abandonment of magical realist narrative strategy in the post-millennial era, while discussing magic realism in relation to Ben Okri's and Nadine Gordimer's post-apartheid novels. As a consequence of the short cohabitation of the two literary forms in African literary history, African magical realism works will be located at the intersection of celebration and disillusionment literature.
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