Stifled by the torpor of colonial South Africa, and trapped in a web of reciprocal oppression, a lonely sheep farmer seeks comfort in the arms of a black concubine. But when his embittered spinster daughter Magda feels shamed, this lurch across the racial divide marks the end of a tenuous feudal peace. As she dreams madly of bloody revenge, Magda's consciousness starts to drift and the line between fact and the workings of her excited imagination becomes blurred. What follows is the fable of a woman's passionate, obsessed and violent response to an Africa that will not heed her.
The Nobel Prize-winning author's brilliant trilogy of fictionalized memoirs--now available in one volume for the first time
Few writers have won as much critical acclaim and as many admirers in the literary world as J. M. Coetzee. Yet the celebrated author rarely spoke of himself until the 1997 arrival of "Boyhood," a masterly and evocative tale of a young writer's beginnings. Continuing with the fiercely tender "Youth" and the innovative "Summertime," "Scenes from Provincial Life" is a heartbreaking and often very funny portrait of the artist by one of the world's greatest writers.
For decades the Magistrate has been a loyal servant of the Empire, running the affairs of a tiny frontier settlement and ignoring the impending war with the barbarians. When interrogation experts arrive, however, he witnesses the Empire's cruel and unjust treatment of prisoners of war. Jolted into sympathy for their victims, he commits a quixotic act of rebellion that brands him an enemy of the state.J. M. Coetzee's prize-winning novel is a startling allegory of the war between opressor and opressed. The Magistrate is not simply a man living through a crisis of conscience in an obscure place in remote times; his situation is that of all men living in unbearable complicity with regimes that ignore justice and decency.
Stranger Shores, a collection of J.M. Coetzee’s essays from 1986 to 1999 was followed by Inner Workings, which contained those from 2000 to 2005. Late Essays gathers together Coetzee’s literary essays since 2006.
The subjects covered range from Daniel Defoe in the early eighteenth century to Coetzee’s contemporary Philip Roth. Coetzee has had a long-standing interest in German literature and here he engages with the work of Goethe, Hölderlin, Kleist and Walser. There are four fascinating essays on fellow Nobel laureate Samuel Beckett and he looks at the work of three Australian writers: Patrick White, Les Murray and Gerald Murnane. There are essays too on Tolstoy’s great novella The Death of Ivan Ilyich, on Flaubert’s masterpiece Madame Bovary, and on the Argentine modernist Antonio Di Benedetto.
J.M. Coetzee, a great novelist himself, is a wise and insightful guide to these works of international literature that span three centuries.
Paul Rayment is on the threshold of a comfortable old age when a calamitous cycling accident results in the amputation of a leg. Humiliated, his body truncated, his life circumscribed, he turns away from his friends.
He hires a nurse named Marijana, with whom he has a European childhood in common: hers in Croatia, his in France. Tactfully and efficiently she ministers to his needs. But his feelings for her, and for her handsome teenage son, are complicated by the sudden arrival on his doorstep of the celebrated Australian novelist Elizabeth Costello, who threatens to take over the direction of his life and the affairs of his heart.
In a South Africa torn by civil war, Michael K sets out to take his mother back to her rural home. On the way there she dies, leaving him alone in an anarchic world of brutal roving armies. Imprisoned, Michael is unable to bear confinement and escapes, determined to live with dignity. Life and Times of Michael K goes to the centre of human experience - the need for an interior, spiritual life, for some connections to the world in which we live, and for purity of vision.
Dusklands (1974) is the first novel by J. M. Coetzee, winner of the 2003 Nobel Prize in Literature. It is a presentation and critique of the violence inherent in the colonialist and imperialist mentality of the Western world.
The novel actually consists of two separate stories. The first one, "The Vietnam Project", relates the gradual descent into insanity of its protagonist Eugene Dawn. Eugene works for a U.S. government agency responsible for the psychological warfare in the Vietnam War.
The second story, "The Narrative of Jacobus Coetzee", which takes place in the 18th century, is an account of a hunting expedition into the then "unexplored" interior of South Africa. After crossing the Orange River, Jacobus meets with a Namaqua tribe to trade, but suddenly falls ill. He is attended to by the tribe and gradually recovers, only to get into a fight for which he is expelled from the village.
In the fall of 1869 Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky, lately a resident of Germany, is summoned back to St. Petersburg by the sudden death of his stepson, Pavel. Half crazed with grief, stricken by epileptic seizures, and erotically obsessed with his stepson's landlady, Dostoevsky is nevertheless intent on unraveling the enigma of Pavel's life. Was the boy a suicide or a murder victim? Did he love his stepfather or despise him? Was he a disciple of the revolutionary Nechaev, who even now is somewhere in St. Petersburg pursuing a dream of apocalyptic violence? As he follows his stepson's ghost—and becomes enmeshed in the same demonic conspiracies that claimed the boy—Dostoevsky emerges as a figure of unfathomable contradictions: naive and calculating, compassionate and cruel, pious and unspeakably perverse.
J. M. Coetzee is, without question, one of the world's greatest novelists. This volume gathers together for the first time in book form twenty-nine pieces on books, writing, photography and the 1995 Rugby World Cup in South Africa. Stranger Shores opens with 'What is a Classic?' in which Coetzee explores the answer to his own question - 'What does it mean in living terms to say that the classic is what survives?' - by way of TS Eliot, JS Bach and Zbigniew Herbert.
His subjects range from eighteenth and nineteenth century writers Daniel Defoe, Samuel Richardson and Ivan Turgenev, to the great German modernists Rilke, Kafka, and Musil, to the giants of late twentieth century literature, among them Harry Mulisch, Joseph Brodsky, Jorge Luis Borges, Salman Rushdie, Amos Oz, Naguib Mahfouz, Nadine Gordimer and Doris Lessing.
Summertime is an inventive and inspired work of fiction that allows J.M. Coetzee to imagine his own life with a critical and unsparing eye, revealing painful moral struggles and attempts to come to grips with what it means to care for another human being.
A young English biographer is researching a book about the late South African writer John Coetzee, focusing on Coetzee in his thirties, at a time when he was living in a rundown cottage in the Cape Town suburbs with his widowed father - a time, the biographer is convinced, when Coetzee was finding himself as a writer. Never having met the man himself, the biographer interviews five people who knew Coetzee well, including a married woman with whom he had an affair, his cousin Margot, and a Brazilian dancer whose daughter took English lessons with him. These accounts add up to an image of an awkward, reserved, and bookish young man who finds it hard to make meaningful connections with the people around him.
Summertime is an inventive and inspired work of fiction that allows J.M. Coetzee to imagine his own life with a critical and unsparing eye, revealing painful moral struggles and attempts to come to grips with what it means to care for another human being. Incisive, elegant, and often surprisingly funny, Summertime is a compelling work by one of today's most esteemed writers.
Since 1982, J. M. Coetzee has been dazzling the literary world. After eight novels that have won, among other awards, two Booker Prizes, and most recently, the Nobel Prize, Coetzee has once again crafted an unusual and deeply affecting tale. Told through an ingenious series of formal addresses, Elizabeth Costello is, on the surface, the story of a woman's life as mother, sister, lover, and writer. Yet it is also a profound and haunting meditation on the nature of storytelling.
Dava d is a small boy who comes by boat across the ocean to a new country. He has been separated from his parents, and has lost the piece of paper that would have explained everything. On the boat a stranger named Siman takes it upon himself to look after the boy. Simano s goal is to find the boyo s mother; he feels sure he will know her."
Set in post-apartheid South Africa, J. M. Coetzee’s searing novel tells the story of David Lurie, a twice divorced, 52-year-old professor of communications and Romantic Poetry at Cape Technical University. Lurie believes he has created a comfortable, if somewhat passionless, life for himself. He lives within his financial and emotional means. Though his position at the university has been reduced, he teaches his classes dutifully; and while age has diminished his attractiveness, weekly visits to a prostitute satisfy his sexual needs. He considers himself happy. But when Lurie seduces one of his students, he sets in motion a chain of events that will shatter his complacency and leave him utterly disgraced.
LONGLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE 2016
*When you travel across the ocean on a boat, all your memories are washed away and you start a completely new life. That is how it is. There is no before. There is no history. The boat docks at the harbour and we climb down the gangplank and we are plunged into the here and now. Time begins.*
Davíd is the small boy who is always asking questions. Simón and Inés take care of him in their new town Estrella. He is learning the language; he has begun to make friends. He has the big dog Bolívar to watch over him. But he'll be seven soon and he should be at school. And so, Davíd is enrolled in the Academy of Dance. It's here, in his new golden dancing slippers, that he learns how to call down the numbers from the sky. But it's here too that he will make troubling discoveries about what grown-ups are capable of.
In this mesmerising allegorical tale, Coetzee deftly grapples with the big questions of growing up, of what it means to be a parent, the constant battle between intellect and emotion, and how we choose to live our lives.
With the same electrical intensity of language and insight that he brought to * Waiting for the Barbarians *, J.M. Coetzee reinvents the story of Robinson Crusoe—and in so doing, directs our attention to the seduction and tyranny of storytelling itself
In 1720 the eminent man of letters Daniel Foe is approached by Susan Barton, lately a castaway on a desert island. She wants him to tell her story, and that of the enigmatic man who has become her rescuer, companion, master and sometimes lover: Cruso. Cruso is dead, and his manservant, Friday, is incapable of speech. As she tries to relate the truth about him, the ambitious Barton cannot help turning Cruso into her invention. For as narrated by Foe—as by Coetzee himself—the stories we thought we knew acquire depths that are at once treacherous, elegant, and unexpectedly moving.
~from the back cover
A man contemplates his deep connection to a house.
The unfathomable idea of threshing wheat points to a life lost.
And a writer ponders the creation of his narrator.
Three Stories—‘His Man and He’, written as Coetzee’s acceptance speech for the Nobel Prize for Literature, ‘A House in Spain’ and ‘Nietverloren’—is the work of a master at his peak. These are stories that embody the essence of our existence.
J.M. Coetzee was the first author to win the Booker Prize twice and was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2003. His work includes Waiting for the Barbarians, Life and Times of Michael K, The Master of Petersburg, Disgrace, Diary of a Bad Year and most recently, The Childhood of Jesus. He lives in Adelaide.
‘All [the stories are] impeccably crafted and a joy to read, with the book itself beautifully presented in duck egg blue and inlaid gold too.’ New Daily
‘For all the sharpness and sorrow...