Femininity, Identity and Memory: An Analysis of Andre Brink's Imaginings of Sand Based on Narrative Therapy

Document Type : Research Paper


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South Africa, known as "Rainbow Nation" because of its different ethnicities, has faced several political, cultural and national challenges in the past three decades since the onset of the post-apartheid era. This situation is pervasive in contemporary South African literature and has become a controversial topic for most of the writers of this period, especially Andre Brink. In The Imaginings of Sand, the identity crisis of Afrikaner women is portrayed and a complex network of narratives of nationality, identity and femininity has formed. Being founded upon narrative therapy, the present study explores how the reviewing of memories is entangled with the mental defects of characters in the Imaginings of Sand. Narrative therapy, particularly from the viewpoint of Michael White (1948-2008), is an interdisciplinary method in medical humanities that deals with the pathology of mind and the role of narrative in the revival of memory and identity. Accordingly, the contradictions and identity crises in the broken narratives of three generations of women narrators in this novel have been discussed and analyzed.


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