2014年7月15日 星期二

Nadine Gordimer / Telling Times: Writing and Living, 1954-2008William Plomer





非諾貝爾文學獎得主 葛蒂瑪90高齡病逝

閻紀宇 2014年07月14日 23:30

南非偉大小說家、1991年諾貝爾文學獎得主葛蒂瑪(Nadine Gordimer),13日在約翰尼斯堡家中安詳辭世,享壽90歲。葛蒂瑪一生關注政治,作品經常涉及南非白人惡名昭彰的種族隔離(Apartheid)政策,批判不遺餘力。瑞典學院(Svenska Akademien)讚譽她:「透過精湛的史詩風格寫作,對人性做出偉大的貢獻。」

葛蒂瑪的雙親都是猶太人,父親從東歐移民到南非定居。她說自己原本並沒有刻意選擇種族隔離的題材,甚至在本質上並不熱中政治,然而她後來發現,如果要深入探討南非人的生活,就必然會觸及種族壓迫的議題,她不可能視而不見。

台灣出版的葛蒂瑪作品中譯本包括:《我兒子的故事》(My Son's Story)(九歌)、《朱利的子民》(July's People)(桂冠)、《偶遇者》(The Pickup)(九歌)、《最後一匹人頭馬是怎麼死的》(Telling Tales)(大塊)。





游常山 紐約時報墓誌銘破題前三段Nadine Gordimer, the South African writer whose literary ambitions led her into the heart of apartheid to create a body of fiction that brought her a Nobel Prize in 1991, died on Monday in Johannesburg. She was 90.

Her family announced her death in a statement.

Ms. Gordimer did not originally choose apartheid as her subject as a young writer, she said, but she found it impossible to dig deeply into South African life without striking repression. And once the Afrikaner nationalists came to power in 1948, the scaffolds of the apartheid system began to rise around her and could not be ignored.

“I am not a political person by nature,” Ms. Gordimer said years later. “I don’t suppose if I had lived elsewhere, my writing would have reflected politics much, if at all.”


Nadine Gordimer, Nobel laureate exposed toll of South Africa’s apartheid
 July 14 at 10:08 AM
Nadine Gordimer, the South African writer and Nobel laureate for literature whose intense, intimate prose helped expose apartheid to a global readership and who continued to illuminate the brutality and beauty of her country long after the demise of the racist government, died July 13 at her home in Johannesburg. She was 90.
Her family announced the death but did not disclose the cause.
Ms. Gordimer, who was white, was an early and active member of the African National Congress, but she did not craft political manifestos. Her role as an author, she said, was simply to “write in my own way as honestly as I can and go as deeply as I can into the life around me.” 
Her characters with lofty ideals were often personally flawed; the racists and apolitical businessmen had the same depth and complexity as the freedom fighters.
“The Conservationist,” which won the Man Booker Prize in 1974, presents one of Ms. Gordimer’s most well-formed characters, a white industrialist who has purchased a large farm outside Johannesburg, in part to be a rendezvous spot for him and his married, politically radical mistress.
Another acclaimed novel, “Burger’s Daughter,” published in 1979, follows the personal and political struggles of Rosa Burger, the daughter of a charismatic Afrikaner doctor and anti-apartheid activist who died in prison. In a country defined by its political intensity, Rosa explores whether “the real definition of loneliness” is to “live without social responsibility.”
Ms. Gordimer’s 1981 novel “July’s People” tells the story of a liberal white family fleeing an imagined, violent revolution against apartheid and ending up in the village of — and beholden to — their former servant, July.
From her 1958 novel, “A World of Strangers,” which details the futile attempts by of a young English businessman to maintain ties among whites and blacks in South Africa, to the 2012 “No Time Like the Present,” which follows an interracial couple struggling to navigate their troubled post-apartheid society, Ms. Gordimer wrote unsparingly of race, identity and place, and of how repressive political systems etched themselves onto the lives and relationships of individuals.
Exploring secrets
 “She makes visible the extremely complicated and utterly inhuman living conditions in the world of racial segregation,” Sture Allen, permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy, said while awarding Ms. Gordimer the Nobel Prize for literature in 1991. “In this way, artistry and morality fuse.” 
Ms. Gordimer noted that “politics is character” in South Africa, said Stephen Clingman, an English professor at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and an authority on the novelist’s work. “She knew that if you wanted to understand any character, black or white, you needed to understand the way politics entered into the very individual.”
The apartheid government, which imposed censorship laws capriciously, banned four of her novels — “A World of Strangers,” “The Late Bourgeois World,” “Burger’s Daughter” and “July’s People” — with various claims of subversiveness. 
“This aesthetic venture of ours becomes subversive when the shameful secrets of our times are explored deeply, with the artist’s rebellious integrity to the state of being manifest in life around her or him,” Ms. Gordimer said in her Nobel lecture. “Then the writer’s themes and characters inevitably are formed by the pressures and distortions of that society as the life of the fisherman is determined by the power of the sea.”
Ms. Gordimer was co-founder of the majority-black Congress of South African Writers and counted as her closest friends such intellectuals as Edward Said and Susan Sontag. Although a loyal friend and mentor to those whom she deemed worthy of her attention, she was known for her impatience with those she found pedantic. 

She scoffed at the cautious sensibilities of “liberal whites,” preferring to call herself a “radical,” and expressed frustration at the hand-wringing attention to the plight of whites in post-apartheid South Africa. 

She refused to move to a gated community in Johannesburg — even after she was stripped of her wedding ring given by her late husband and locked in a storeroom during a home invasion and burglary in 2006. 

After the incident, she acknowledged her city’s crime problem but also expressed sympathy toward the perpetrators.

“I think we must look at the reasons behind the crime,” she told the Guardian of London. “There are young people in poverty without opportunities. They need education, training and employment.”

Standing 5 feet 1 inch tall, Ms. Gordimer had what one observer described as “the carefully cultivated fierceness of the fragile.” Despite her tiny stature, she could still turn a piercing, intimidating eye on those who suggested her works were “about” some real life person or event. Her work was pure fiction, she insisted, although in her view that made the writing more “true” than nonfiction.
Stories, she said, gave clearer insight into policies and politics, and their lasting impact on human lives, than could any biographical or journalistic report. 
“She allowed us to see things about the political world that the political world could not really describe,” Clingman said.
A South African from birth
Nadine Gordimer was born Nov. 20, 1923, outside of Johannesburg in the mining town of Springs, a place of “burned veld round mine-dumps and coal-mine slag hills,” she said. 
“Not a romantic vision,” Ms. Gordimer said during a presentation to the University of Cape Town in 1977, titled “What Being a South African Means to Me.” “Not one that most Europeans would recognize as Africa. But Africa it is. Although I find it harsh and ugly, and Africa and her landscapes have come to mean many other things to me, it signifies to me a primary impact of being; all else that I have seen and know is built upon it.”
Her parents were Jewish immigrants — her mother from England, her father from Lithuania — but the family was secular and, Ms. Gordimer would say, excruciatingly middle class.
As a child she took dance lessons, attended a convent school and was warned that when she crossed the veld during her walk to school, she should steer clear of the compounds where black mineworkers lived.
When Ms. Gordimer was 11, she was diagnosed with what she later realized was a relatively minor heart ailment. Her mother — whom Ms. Gordimer described as energetic but bored in her “married off” life — withdrew her daughter from school, canceled the child’s beloved dance classes, hired a tutor and kept her “resting” for years. 
“This mysterious ailment is something that I can talk about now,” Ms. Gordimer told the BBC magazine the Listener in 1976. “I realized after I grew up that it was something to do with my mother’s attitude towards me, that she fostered what was probably quite a simple passing thing and made a very long-term illness out of it, in order to keep me at home, to keep me with her.”
It was in this strange, forced seclusion — taken along on adult outings, spending afternoons reading with her mother — that Ms. Gordimer began to write. She published stories in the children’s section of a local newspaper; she wrote her first piece for an adult journal when she was 15. 
Captivated by the idea of being a writer, Ms. Gordimer moved to Johannesburg. She attended university there for about a year but got more of an education delving into the electric, interracial arts scene of the famous Sophiatown township.
Anthony Sampson, editor of the black South African magazine Drum, became one of her closest and longest-lasting friends. 
A second birth
There is a second birth that can occur for the South African, Ms. Gordimer said at her University of Cape Town talk, a coming into consciousness when one realizes that apartheid is not, in fact, the god-given order of the world. 


She pointed to various moments that began to open her eyes to the depravity of apartheid society: the dehumanizing liquor raid of her black nanny’s small living quarters behind her parents’ home, during which her parents stood by silently; the realization that the black miners who patronized the shops run by men like her father were not allowed to touch items before they bought them; her growing friendships with black writers she saw as talented as herself, but far less able to pursue their craft.



Ms. Gordimer published her first short-story collection, “Face to Face,” in 1949, and she soon began contributing fiction to the New Yorker.

Her first novel, “The Lying Days,” was published in 1953 and follows Helen Shaw, the daughter of white, middle-class parents who live in a gold-mining town, as she begins to become aware of the black life around her. 
“I think the first novel is usually some kind of revenge against your background,” she said at the time of her Nobel win. “And, you know, you’ve got to get it off your chest.”
Her first marriage, to Gerald Gavronsky, ended in divorce. In 1954, she wed Reinhold Cassirer, an art dealer who had been a refugee from Nazi Germany and was a nephew of the philosopher Ernst Cassirer. 
Reinhold Cassirer died in 2001. Survivors include a daughter from her first marriage, Oriane; and son from her second marriage, Hugo.
Ms. Gordimer was a prolific, disciplined writer. While raising her family, she would shut herself in her office with her typewriter. Nobody was to disturb her unless, she said, to inform her that the house was burning down.
From that home office, Ms. Gordimer wrote more than a dozen novels, hundreds of short stories and essays, and collaborated on screenplays and edited collections of other works. She won a slew of literary awards. 
As her country stumbled into the post-apartheid 2000s, she was asked whether democracy would “take the zip out of South African fiction.” She responded, “On the contrary. We’ve got plenty of problems.” 
Those critics who suggested hers had been a privileged existence — that she was able to use as a muse the toils of her country from her leafy, white neighborhood without ever facing consequences — simply did not understand her job, she would say.
“The tension between standing apart and being fully involved,” she wrote in one of her introductions, “that is what makes a writer.”
Hanes is a freelance writer who covered South Africa for numerous U.S. publications.


Writing and Being
Gordimer, Nadine
In this deeply resonant book, Nadine Gordimer examines the tension for a writer between life’s experiences and narrative creations. She tries to unravel the mysterious process that breathes "real" life into fiction by exploring the writings of revolutionaries in South Africa and the works of Naguib Mahfouz, Chinua Achebe, and Amos Oz. Ending on a personal note, Gordimer reveals her own experience of "writing her way out of" the confines of a dying colonialism.



Nadine Gordimer: A life in quotes

The Nobel-prize-winning author and one of the literary world's most powerful voices against apartheid has died in Johannesburg. Here are some of her most memorable quotes on life, writing and Nelson Mandela - do add your favourites in the comment thread below
Nadine Gordimer
Gordimer at the Rome literature festival, in May 2006. Photograph: Tiziana Fabi/AFP/Getty Images
Censorship is never over for those who have experienced it. It is a brand on the imagination that affects the individual who has suffered it, forever.
There is no moral authority like that of sacrifice.
Writing is making sense of life. You work your whole life and perhaps you've made sense of one small area.
Nothing factual that I write or say will be as truthful as my fiction.
Your whole life you are really writing one book, which is an attempt to grasp the consciousness of your time and place – a single book written from different stages of your ability.
Time is change; we measure its passing by how much things alter.
Everyone ends up moving alone towards the self.
Power is something of which I am convinced there is no innocence this side of the womb.
The truth isn't always beauty, but the hunger for it is.
Books don't need batteries.
I cannot live with someone who can't live without me.
I don't cry. Unfortunately, I seem rather short of tears, so my sorrows have to stay inside me," to Rosanna Greenstreet in a 2012 Guardian Q&A.

On Nelson Mandela:

He is at the epicentre of our time, ours in South Africa, and yours, wherever you are.
Not a figure carved in stone but a tall man, of flesh and blood, whose suffering had made him not vengeful but still more human - even toward the people who had created the prison that was apartheid.









































我兒子的故事

我兒子的故事
娜汀葛蒂瑪Nadine Gordimer), 彭淮棟 - 九歌,1992-05-15 出版
這是南非女作家娜汀.葛蒂瑪榮獲一九九一年諾貝爾文學獎時最新長篇巨著,她以壯麗如史詩的筆觸,寫南非...


The Pickup

The Pickup 偶遇者

A love affair between Julie Summers, a wealthy South African woman, and an Arab illegal alien challenges both of their notions of race, class, and citizenship. 



偶遇者 The Pickup

  在南非,一個炎炎夏日的午後,祖麗的車子在半路拋錨,當她遇見躺在車腹底下的修車工阿布杜,一段戀情從此展開。然而,阿布杜非法移民的身份卻 使得這份愛幾乎難以為繼。祖麗不顧一切和阿布杜結了婚,隨著丈夫回到貧窮落後的阿拉伯沙漠。白人的血統、富家千金的身份形格勢拘,祖麗融入當地的生活遭遇 前所未有的衝擊,她放下身段親近當地文化,贏得夫家人的尊敬。正當她沈浸在追逐沙漠的喜悅時,阿布杜仍一心一意想要回到歧視他的西方社會,兩人爆發衝突。
◆諾貝爾文學得主娜汀‧葛蒂瑪2002年最新力作,以簡樸的文字及史詩般的筆法,藉著祖麗內心轉折,突顯、省思出種族、文化、宗教及身份認同等主題,展現宏偉的企圖;而強烈且直接描述周遭複雜的人際與社會關係,正視人性弱點,更深及人生價值與生命意義的多面向思考。

深度推薦

當咖啡遇上牛奶

成長於約翰尼斯堡附近一座礦業小鎮,雙親皆為猶太裔,母親國籍則屬英國。自幼,葛蒂瑪就親眼目睹當地白人如何高高在上、黑人權利如何被踐踏。她的作品主要描述在種族隔離政策下生活的南非人所面對的道德和內心交戰。

《偶遇者》(PICKUP)是葛蒂瑪最新出版的長篇小說。在南非英語裡,PICKUP指一種輕型貨車;也是與人萍水相逢的意思。這樣的相遇,那個人或許會成為你生命中非常重要的人。

本書講述一個南非白人女孩和一名阿拉伯非法移民陷入熱戀。是什將這樣兩個文化背景完全不同的年輕人結合在一起?葛蒂瑪描寫了沙漠中狂野的性愛,也是超越種族的性愛。

故事在祖麗拋卻所有與阿布杜結了婚,隨著阿布杜回到地處沙漠的故鄉後急轉直下。隨著空間的轉移,祖麗嚐到了原先阿布杜在異鄉異地的孤獨,但她卻樂在其中, 還當作這是一個個冒險犯難的遊戲。每一項陌生的事物,都被祖麗當成是新的學習,她樂在其中。另一頭,阿布杜仍茲茲不倦地辦著各國的入境申請,不斷的遭受挫 敗,一心一意想移民另一個歧視移民的國家。阿布杜的夢想終於成真時,祖麗卻對自己的人生觀有強烈的轉變。

這本書以平實的筆調,寫強大的衝擊;非讀不可的大師級名作。


Telling Times: Writing and Living, 1954-2008

Telling Times: Writing and Living, 1954-2008

  • 作者:Gordimer, Nadine
  • 出版社:W W Norton & Co Inc
  • 出版日期:2010年
A staggering achievement, Telling Times reflects the true spirit of the writer as a literary beacon, moral activist, and political visionary. Few writers have been so much at the center of historic events as Nadine Gordimer. Telling Times, the first comprehensive collection of her nonfiction, bears insightful witness to the forces that have shaped the last half-century. It includes reports from Soweto during the 1976 uprising, Zimbabwe at the dawn of independence, and Africa at the start of the AIDS pandemic, as well as illuminating portraits of Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu, and many others. Committed first and foremost to art, Gordimer appraises the legacies of hallowed writers like Tolstoy, Proust, and Conrad, and engages vigorously with contemporaries like Achebe, Said, and Soyinka. No other writer has so consistently evoked the feel of Africa—its landscapes, cities, and people—through a remarkable range of travel writing, from Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire to Egypt and along the Congo River. With nearly one hundred pieces from six decades of work, Telling Times is an extraordinary summation from a writer whose enduring courage and commitment to human freedom has made her a moral compass of our time.
作者簡介
  Nadine Gordimer won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1991. Her nonfiction has appeared in The New Yorker, the New York Times, and publications all over the world. She lives in Johannesburg.







*****

When her guests were awash with champagne and with gin,
She was recklessly sober, as sharp as a pin.
An abstemious man would reel at her look,
As she rolled a bright eye and prais...
William Plomer (1903-1973), South African author, poet. "London Ballads and Poems," verse 7, Slightly Foxed, or The Widower of Bayswater, Collected Po... 


Biography of William Plomer

William Charles Franklyn Plomer (he pronounced the surname as ploomer) (10 December 1903 – 21 September 1973) was a South African and British author, known as a novelist, poet and literary editor. He was educated mostly in the United Kingdom, but described himself as a Anglo-African-Asian.

He became famous in South Africa with his first novel, Turbott Wolfe, which had inter-racial love and marriage as a theme. He was co-founder of the short-lived literary magazine Voorslag ("Whiplash") with two other South African rebels, Roy Campbell and Laurens van der Post; it promoted a racially equal South Africa.

He spent the period from October 1926 to March 1929 in Japan, where he was friendly with Sherard Vines. There, according to biographers, he was in a same-sex relationship with a Japanese man. He was never openly gay during his lifetime; at most he alluded to the subject.

He then moved to England, and through his friendship with his publisher Virginia Woolf, entered the London literary circles. He became an important literary editor, for Faber and Faber, and was a reader and literary adviser to Jonathan Cape, where he edited a number of Ian Fleming's James Bond series. Fleming dedicated Goldfinger to Plomer. He was active as a librettist, with Gloriana, Curlew River, The Burning Fiery Furnace and The Prodigal Son for Benjamin Britten.




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