UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

White Eve in the "petrified garden" : the colonial African heroine in the writing of Olive Schreiner,… Visel, Robin Ellen 1987

Your browser doesn't seem to have a PDF viewer, please download the PDF to view this item.

Item Metadata

Download

Media
831-UBC_1988_A1 V57.pdf [ 12.7MB ]
Metadata
JSON: 831-1.0058367.json
JSON-LD: 831-1.0058367-ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): 831-1.0058367-rdf.xml
RDF/JSON: 831-1.0058367-rdf.json
Turtle: 831-1.0058367-turtle.txt
N-Triples: 831-1.0058367-rdf-ntriples.txt
Original Record: 831-1.0058367-source.json
Full Text
831-1.0058367-fulltext.txt
Citation
831-1.0058367.ris

Full Text

WHITE EVE IN THE "PETRIFIED GARDEN": THE COLONIAL AFRICAN HEROINE IN THE WRITING OF OLIVE SCHREINER, ISAK DINESEN, DORIS LESSING AND NADINE GORDIMER By ROBIN ELLEN VISEL B.A. The C i t y C o l l e g e of the C i t y U n i v e r s i t y of New York, 197 M.A. The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , 1977 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES Department o f E n g l i s h We a c c e p t t h i s t h e s i s as c o n f o r m i n g t o the r e q u i r e d s t a n d a r d THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA November 1987 © R o b i n E l l e n V i s e l , 1987 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department The University of British Columbia 1956 Main Mall Vancouver, Canada V6T 1Y3 DE-6(3/81) i i ABSTRACT O l i v e S c h r e i n e r , w r i t i n g i n the t r a d i t i o n of George E l i o t and the B r o n t e s , was an i s o l a t e d y e t o r i g i n a l f i g u r e who opened up new d i r e c t i o n s i n women's f i c t i o n . I n her n o v e l s , The S t o r y  of an A f r i c a n Farm (1883) and From Man t o Man (1926) she develo p e d a f e m i n i s t c r i t i q u e of c o l o n i a l i s m t h a t was based on her own coming-of-age as a w r i t e r i n South A f r i c a . S c h r e i n e r ' s work i n s p i r e d and i n f l u e n c e d Isak D i n e s e n , D o r i s L e s s i n g and Nadine Gordimer, who have pursued t h e i r v i s i o n s of the c o l o n i a l A f r i c a n h e r o i n e i n changing forms which n e v e r t h e l e s s c o n s c i o u s l y hark back t o the "mother n o v e l . " Dinesen's Out o f A f r i c a ( 1 937), L e s s i n g ' s Martha Quest (1952) and Gordimer's The L y i n g Days (1953) a r e i n a sense r e v i s i o n s o f S c h r e i n e r ' s S t o r y of an  A f r i c a n Farm. These t e x t s , t o g e t h e r w i t h l a t e r n o v e l s by L e s s i n g and Gordimer (such as S h i k a s t a and B u r g e r ' s Daughter, 1979) and key s h o r t s t o r i e s by t h e f o u r w r i t e r s , form a body of w r i t i n g I c a l l t he " A f r i c a n Farm" t e x t s . W r i t t e n i n d i f f e r e n t c o l o n i a l c o u n t r i e s — S o u t h A f r i c a , Kenya and R h o d e s i a — i n response t o d i f f e r e n t h i s t o r i c a l c i r c u m s t a n c e s , from d i f f e r e n t i d e o l o g i c a l and a e s t h e t i c s t a n c e s , t h e " A f r i c a n Farm" f i c t i o n s d e p i c t the p r o b l e m a t i c s i t u a t i o n o f the w h i t e A f r i c a n h e r o i n e who i s a l i e n a t e d both from w h i t e c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y and from b l a c k A f r i c a . Through her own r e b e l l i o n a g a i n s t p a t r i a r c h a l mores as she s t r u g g l e s t o d e f i n e h e r s e l f as an a r t i s t i c , i n t e l l e c t u a l woman i n a h o s t i l e e n v i r o n m e n t , she uncovers t h e c o n n e c t i o n s between p a t r i a r c h y and r a c i s m under c o l o n i a l i s m . She b e g i n s t o i d e n t i f y w i t h the b l a c k A f r i c a n s i n t h e i r o p p r e s s i o n and t h e i r i i i i n c i p i e n t s t r u g g l e f o r independence; however she cannot shed her w h i t e i n h e r i t a n c e o f p r i v i l e g e and g u i l t . J u s t as c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y ( t h e w h i t e " A f r i c a n Farm") becomes f o r her a d e s e r t , a cemetery, a f a l s e , b a r r e n , " p e t r i f i e d garden," so b l a c k A f r i c a becomes i t s i d e a l i z e d c o u n t e r p a r t : a f e r t i l e r e a lm o f harmony and p o s s i b i l i t y , t h e t r u e Garden o f Eden from which she, as White Eve, i s e x i l e d . I t r a c e the " A f r i c a n Farm" theme and imagery t h r o u g h t h e work of o t h e r w h i t e Southern A f r i c a n w r i t e r s , such as J.M. C o e t z e e , whose s t a r k , p o e t i c , p o s t -m o d e r n i s t n o v e l s can be read as a coda t o t h e r e a l i s t i c f i c t i o n of the f o u r women w r i t e r s . F i n a l l y , I lo o k a t the p o s t - " A f r i c a n Farm" t e x t s of such t r a n s i t i o n a l w r i t e r s as B e s s i e Head, whose n o v e l s of b l a c k A f r i c a p r e s e r v e a s u g g e s t i v e l i n k w i t h S c h r e i n e r . i v T a b l e of C o n t e n t s Page A b s t r a c t i i T a b l e of C o n t e n t s i v Acknowledgements v i Chapter One - I n t r o d u c t i o n : S t o r i e s of an A f r i c a n Farm .... 1 A Mother Novel and I t s Daughters 1 The C o l o n i a l H e r o i n e i n the C o n t e x t of the Female Bildungsroman 12 The C o l o n i a l H e r o i n e i n the C o n t e x t of White A f r i c a n L i t e r a t u r e 19 Chapter Two - O l i v e S c h r e i n e r : Eve D i v i d e d 37 The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm 37 From Man t o Man 53 Chapter Three - Isak D i n e s e n : Eve as Adam 69 Out of A f r i c a 69 Shadows on the G r a s s 79 Dinesen and S c h r e i n e r 81 Chapter Four - L e s s i n g and Gordimer: Two C o n t e m p o r a r i e s and a P r o b l e m a t i c I n h e r i t a n c e 90 Chapter F i v e - D o r i s L e s s i n g : Eve i n E x i l e 97 L e s s i n g and Her P r e c u r s o r s 97 The Grass i s S i n g i n g 106 Martha Quest 110 To S h i k a s t a and Beyond 126 The Problem of " E x i l e " i n L e s s i n g ' s F i c t i o n 136 V Chapter S i x - Nadine Gordimer: Eve Bears W i t n e s s 146 The L y i n g Days 153 The C o n s e r v a t i o n i s t 169 B u r g e r ' s Daughter 179 Chapter Seven - C o n c l u s i o n : From the " A f r i c a n Farm" t o A z a n i a 205 "Dream L i f e and R e a l L i f e " 207 " K i t o s c h ' s S t o r y " 210 L e s s i n g and Gordimer 212 "The Old C h i e f Mshlanga" and The Myth o f White Eve 214 " I s t h e r e Nowhere E l s e Where We Can Meet?" 223 On the B l a c k A f r i c a n Farm: J u l y ' s P e o p l e 226 A S p o r t of N a t u r e : A z a n i a U n f u r l e d 236 R e p l a n t i n g the " P e t r i f i e d Garden": Recent Developments i n S o u t h e r n A f r i c a n F i c t i o n 240 Works C i t e d and S e l e c t e d L i s t o f Works C o n s u l t e d 251 Acknowledgements I would l i k e thank P r o f e s s o r P a t r i c i a M e r i v a l e f o r her c o n t i n u e d a d v i c e and s u p p o r t , w i t h o u t which I c o u l d not have s u c c e s s f u l l y completed t h i s p r o j e c t . I am a l s o i n d e b t e d t o P r o f e s s o r s Diana Brydon and C r a i g Tapping whose p e r c e p t i v e comments improved the f i n a l v e r s i o n . T h i s t h e s i s i s d e d i c a t e d t o my p a r e n t s , J onathan and E l s i e V i s e l , and my husband, Yorgos Papatheodorou. 1 Chapter One I n t r o d u c t i o n : S t o r i e s of an A f r i c a n Farm A Mother Nov e l and i t s Daughters O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm has shaped the w h i t e c o l o n i a l l i t e r a r y v i s i o n o f A f r i c a . S c h r e i n e r ' s A f r i c a n farm i s a s e t t i n g f o r human b r u t a l i t y amid h a r s h n a t u r a l b e auty, a s e t t i n g o f open v i s t a s which oppress the s p i r i t and i m p r i s o n the body. I t i s a d e s p o i l e d P a r a d i s e which s y m b o l i c a l l y r e j e c t s i t s c o l o n i s t s . Through her a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l h e r o i n e s S c h r e i n e r c h a l l e n g e s the i n e q u i t i e s of c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y from a f e m i n i s t s t a n c e , becoming c o n s c i o u s i n her l a t e r work of the r a c i a l s u b t e x t of the " A f r i c a n Farm" s t o r y . Her s u c c e s s o r s , i s a k D i n e s e n , D o r i s L e s s i n g , and Nadine Gordimer, d e v e l o p the p r o b l e m a t i c of the w h i t e woman i n b l a c k A f r i c a : the h e r o i n e who r e j e c t s the p a t r i a r c h a l and r a c i s t p r e m i s e s of c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y o n l y t o f i n d h e r s e l f d o u b l y e x i l e d , from what she p e r c e i v e s as the f a l s e P a r a d i s e of the w h i t e s and the t r u e Eden of the b l a c k s . S c h r e i n e r , D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g and Gordimer d e s c r i b e d i f f e r e n t c o l o n i a l s o c i e t i e s from the p e r s p e c t i v e of t h e i r d i f f e r e n t n a t i o n a l i t i e s , g e n e r a t i o n s , c l a s s e s , p o l i t i c a l views and l i t e r a r y s t y l e s . S c h r e i n e r , L e s s i n g and Gordimer, who grew up i n what were, r e s p e c t i v e l y , the Cape C o l o n y , the C olony of S outhern R h o d e s i a , and the Union of South A f r i c a , can be c l a s s i f i e d as w h i t e A f r i c a n w r i t e r s . D i n e s e n , who spent 2 s e v e n t e e n y e a r s i n the P r o t e c t o r a t e / l a t e r the c o l o n y , of B r i t i s h E a s t A f r i c a or Kenya, i s an e x p a t r i a t e w r i t e r whose v i s i o n of A f r i c a r e f l e c t s her European o r i g i n s . The c o n n e c t i o n among t h e s e f o u r w r i t e r s i s t h e r e l a t i o n of Dinesen's Out o f A f r i c a (1937), L e s s i n g ' s Martha Quest (1952), and Gordimer's The L y i n g Days (1953) t o S c h r e i n e r ' s a u t o -b i o g r a p h i c a l m a s t e r p i e c e , The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm (1883). S c h r e i n e r , D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g and Gordimer s h a r e a g e o g r a p h i c a l , h i s t o r i c a l , and l i t e r a r y c o n n e c t i o n w h i c h , I hope t o p r o v e , i s more s i g n i f i c a n t than t h e i r d i f f e r e n c e s . Each of them i s w h i t e and f e m a l e , and l i v e d i n a B r i t i s h c o l o n y or t e r r i t o r y i n A f r i c a , o r — i n t h e case of Nadine G o r d i m e r — c o n t i n u e s t o l i v e i n the R e p u b l i c of South A f r i c a , a c o u n t r y s t i l l s t r u g g l i n g t o emerge from i t s c o l o n i a l p a s t . Each of them began t o w r i t e i n g e o g r a p h i c a l i s o l a t i o n and i n some degree o f c u l t u r a l i s o l a t i o n from the mainstream of E n g l i s h l i t e r a t u r e ; each s t r o v e t o d e s c r i b e a l a n d s c a p e and a s o c i e t y f i r s t d e s c r i b e d by O l i v e S c h r e i n e r i n A f r i c a n Farm, from a female p o i n t of view f i r s t e x e m p l i f i e d i n S c h r e i n e r ' s h e r o i n e , L y n d a l l . I t i s g e n e r a l l y a c c e p t e d i n f e m i n i s t l i t e r a r y c r i t i c i s m t h a t the r e l a t i o n s h i p between female w r i t e r s o f d i f f e r e n t g e n e r a t i o n s i s l e s s f r a u g h t w i t h j e a l o u s y and h o s t i l i t y than i s the r e l a t i o n between male w r i t e r s . Whereas th e male w r i t e r s u p p o s e d l y b a t t l e s t o o v e r t h r o w h i s p r e d e c e s s o r i n o r d e r t o a s s e r t h i s i d e n t i t y and t o c r e a t e something new, the female w r i t e r i s more l i k e l y t o f i n d i n her p r e d e c e s s o r a mentor whose work i n s p i r e s and encourages her own e f f o r t s . ! R a t h e r than 3 f e e l i n g o ppressed by the weight of the l i t e r a r y t r a d i t i o n from which she s p r i n g s , she f e e l s h e a r t e n e d by t h e example of t h a t s m a l l body o f women who have stepped o u t s i d e t h e i r a l l o t t e d r o l e s t o become c r e a t i v e a r t i s t s . Thus the emphasis i n women's l i t e r a r y h i s t o r y i s l e s s on d i s r u p t i o n than on c o n t i n u i t y , l e s s on n e g a t i v e than on p o s i t i v e i n f l u e n c e . 2 T h i s emphasis on the c o n t i n u i t y of women's l i t e r a t u r e i s a l l t he more a p p r o p r i a t e when we a r e d e a l i n g w i t h a s m a l l group of r e l a t e d a u t h o r s who have i n common a m o t h e r - n o v e l , a p r o t o t y p e f o r t h e i r w r i t i n g about A f r i c a . Each of the e a r l y a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l n o v e l s and t h e memoir w i t h which t h i s t h e s i s i s c h i e f l y concerned b e a r s a d i r e c t r e l a t i o n t o t h a t f i r s t s t o r y of an A f r i c a n farm; each of the l a t e r w r i t e r s pays t r i b u t e t o and acknowledges the i n f l u e n c e of S c h r e i n e r ' s p i o n e e r i n g t e x t , which i s both a c o r n e r s t o n e of f e m i n i s t f i c t i o n ^ and the f o u n d i n g t e x t of S o u t h e r n A f r i c a n f i c t i o n i n E n g l i s h . 4 The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n  Farm has had such a p o w e r f u l i n f l u e n c e on o t h e r w r i t e r s because i t i s an o r i g i n a l and courageous work o f a r t p o i g n a n t l y f l a w e d by t h e young a r t i s t ' s unashamed p a s s i o n and h e r — o n l y p a r t l y d e l i b e r a t e — i g n o r a n c e o f the f i c t i o n a l c o n v e n t i o n s . V i r g i n i a Woolf d e s c r i b e d S c h r e i n e r as "one h a l f of a g r e a t w r i t e r ; a diamond marred by a f l a w " ( " O l i v e S c h r e i n e r " ) . 5 A f r i c a n Farm i s a n e a r - g r e a t n o v e l , w h i c h , f a r from b e i n g a d a u n t i n g p r e c e d e n t , i n v i t e s improvement, e m b e l l i s h m e n t , r e w r i t i n g . I s a k D i n e s e n , i n d e s c r i b i n g i t s a t t r a c t i o n , q uotes from t h e n o v e l i t s e l f : " t h e whole o f the s t o r y i s not w r i t t e n h e r e , but i t i s sug g e s t e d " ( I n t r o d u c t i o n v - v i ) . She, L e s s i n g and Gordimer have t a k e n up 4 t h a t s u g g e s t i o n , and have w r i t t e n t h e i r own s t o r i e s , f o r which S c h r e i n e r ' s S t o r y o f an A f r i c a n Farm i s t h e germ. S c h r e i n e r ' s n o v e l i s the s t o r y of the i n t e l l e c t u a l awakening of two c h i l d r e n — t h e i r s e a r c h f o r knowledge, work, and f r e e d o m — a n d the b r u t a l e x t i n g u i s h i n g of t h e i r i d e a l s , indeed of t h e i r v e r y l i v e s . I n a p a t t e r n s i m i l a r t o t h a t of Wuthering  H e i g h t s (which t h e r e i s no p r o o f t h a t the b o o k - s t a r v e d young au t h o r had read) th e r o l e of t h e h e r o i n e i s s p l i t between the female main c h a r a c t e r , L y n d a l l , and her male a l t e r ego, Waldo. Whereas L y n d a l l ' s f a i l e d quest i s f e m i n i s t , Waldo's i s a r t i s t i c ; t o g e t h e r t h e y enact the t o r t u o u s death of the young female a r t i s t i n c o l o n i a l South A f r i c a , k i l l e d by human c r u e l t y and i g n o r a n c e , p h y s i c a l i s o l a t i o n , c u l t u r a l s t a r v a t i o n , and f i n a l l y , by t h e h a r s h d e s e r t s e t t i n g which p r o v e s i n i m i c a l t o t h e i r f l o w e r i n g . U l t i m a t e l y , i m p l i e s S c h r e i n e r , i t i s the s o i l of a n c i e n t A f r i c a i t s e l f which r e f u s e s t o s u p p o r t t h e s e t r a n s -p l a n t e d f l o w e r s of an a l i e n , European c u l t u r e . I t i s a n o v e l f u l l of s u g g e s t i o n about the r o l e of t h e female a r t i s t - i n t e l l e c t u a l a t odds w i t h the n a t i v e l a n d and c u l t u r e . However, I s a k Dinesen i n her memoir Out of A f r i c a chooses not t o e x p l o r e t h e s e c o n f l i c t s suggested by S c h r e i n e r , but r a t h e r t o t r a n s f o r m them i n t o myth. Out of A f r i c a i s as e s s e n t i a l l y n o v e l i s t i c as A f r i c a n Farm i t s e l f ; f o r A f r i c a n Farm i s a n o v e l i n which f i c t i o n i s j o s t l e d by p o l e m i c , a l l e g o r y and a u t o b i o g r a p h y . D inesen's i s the s t o r y of the t r a n s f o r m a t i o n o f t h e D a n i s h b r i d e Karen B l i x e n i n t o t h e world-renowned 5 s t o r y - t e l l e r I s a k D i n e s e n . I n t h e p r o c e s s , she t r a n s f o r m s her o f t e n l o n e l y , b i t t e r , and f r u s t r a t i n g e x p e r i e n c e i n t o a t r i u m p h a n t p a s t o r a l i d y l l , i n I s a k Dinesen's A f r i c a , "Ralph I r o n ' s " t i n y , s t u n t e d p l a n t s of beauty and p o s s i b i l i t y f l o u r i s h l u x u r i a n t l y . D inesen d i s c o v e r s , i n her g l o r i o u s l y imagined s e t t i n g , the freedom and power t o r e c r e a t e h e r s e l f as h e r o i n e and a r t i s t . By t h e same t o k e n , however, she r e c r e a t e s , t h a t i s , d i s t o r t s , her s e t t i n g and i t s i n h a b i t a n t s t o f i t her m y t h i c s e l f - c o n c e p t i o n . S c h r e i n e r ' s t r a g i c d e l i n e a t i o n o f c o n f l i c t and Dinesen's m y t h i c r e s o l u t i o n , S c h r e i n e r ' s awkward r e a l i s m and Dinesen's w e l l - w r o u g h t romance, S c h r e i n e r ' s r a d i c a l i d e o l o g y and Dinesen's c o n s e r v a t i s m , p r o v i d e d i f f e r e n t models f o r D o r i s L e s s i n g . We w i l l see t h a t she has been i n f l u e n c e d by both of them, but p r i m a r i l y , i n t h e e a r l y p a r t of her c a r e e r , by S c h r e i n e r . Her d e s c r i p t i o n o f t h e i n f l u e n c e of The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm upon her own c a r e e r echoes Isak D i n e s e n ' s . I t was " t h e f i r s t ' r e a l ' book t h a t I'd met w i t h t h a t had A f r i c a f o r a s e t t i n g " ; "the book became p a r t of me", a c t i n g "on t h e rawest and most workaday l e v e l , l i k e earthworms making new s o i l where t h i n g s can grow" ("Afterword t o The S t o r y o f an A f r i c a n Farm" 98-99). L e s s i n g ' s second n o v e l , Martha Quest, i s e s s e n t i a l l y a r e w r i t i n g of L y n d a l l ' s s t o r y , t o l d from th e more i r o n i c , s e l f -c o n s c i o u s p o i n t of view of a c h i l d of the n i n e t e e n - t h i r t i e s . Martha b o l d l y embraces Freud and Marx, p s y c h o l o g i c a l a n a l y s i s and s o c i a l i s m . However, her i n t e l l e c t u a l and moral r e b e l l i o n a g a i n s t t h e mores of her e l d e r s ends more o r d i n a r i l y than does 6 S c h r e i n e r ' s uncompromising t r a g e d y . U n l i k e L y n d a l l , Martha compromises her i d e a l s by t e m p o r a r i l y c o n f o r m i n g t o c o l o n i a l s o c i a l norms. U n l i k e L y n d a l l , she s u r v i v e s — t o f i l l f o u r more volumes of the C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e s e r i e s . W hile Martha's s t o r y was c l e a r l y i n s p i r e d by S c h r e i n e r ' s S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm, we can a l s o note c l e a r p a r a l l e l s w i t h Dinesen's Out of A f r i c a . F i r s t of a l l , L e s s i n g ' s r u r a l R h o desia i s v e r y s i m i l a r t o Dinesen's East A f r i c a : i t i s p o r t r a y e d as a m a g n i f i c e n t p h y s i c a l s e t t i n g i n which European e c c e n t r i c i t y , g e n i u s and n o b i l i t y of s p i r i t can f i n d a home, i n c o n t r a s t t o the cramped s o c i e t y of the c o l o n i a l towns. I t i s a l s o s i g n i f i -c a n t t h a t Martha Quest and a l l of L e s s i n g ' s subsequent f i c t i o n was w r i t t e n , l i k e I s a k D i n e s e n ' s , " i n e x i l e " from A f r i c a . So i t i s not s u r p r i s i n g t h a t d e s p i t e her r a d i c a l p o l i t i c s we can t r a c e a movement i n her work towards the d i s t i l l e d , i d e a l i z e d , n o s t a l g i c A f r i c a of D i n e s e n . Nor, i n l i g h t of L e s s i n g ' s move-ment toward Dinesen's v i s i o n , i s i t c o m p l e t e l y s u r p r i s i n g t h a t i n her r e c e n t "space f i c t i o n " v e r s i o n of the A f r i c a of her y outh she embraces a h i e r a r c h i c a l i d e o l o g y t h a t resembles D i n e s e n ' s . There i s no such movement toward a m y t h i c a l or m e t a p h o r i c a l European v i s i o n of A f r i c a , nor toward a c o n s e r v a t i v e i d e o l o g y , i n the f i c t i o n of D o r i s L e s s i n g ' s contemporary, Nadine Gordimer. Gordimer, whose f i r s t n o v e l The L y i n g Days i s a t e n t a t i v e , r a t h e r t i m i d v e r s i o n of The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm and Martha  Quest, has developed a complex, s o p h i s t i c a t e d r e a l i s m which extends the p r e m i s e s of S c h r e i n e r ' s , L e s s i n g ' s , and her own e a r l y f i c t i o n . A l t h o u g h her o b v i o u s h i s t o r i c a l and t h e m a t i c 7 l i n k s a r e t o O l i v e S c h r e i n e r r a t h e r than t o Isak D i n e s e n , t h e r e a r e some i n t e r e s t i n g p a r a l l e l s between her w r i t i n g and D i n e s e n ' s , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n t h e redemptive r o l e t h a t b l a c k c h a r a c t e r s p l a y f o r the w h i t e p r o t a g o n i s t s . For Nadine Gordimer's f i c t i o n has a r o m a n t i c s t r e a k as w e l l , which i s m a n i f e s t e d i n a deep s e n s u a l a t t r a c t i o n t o A f r i c a and A f r i c a n s , much l i k e D i n e s e n ' s . For Gordimer's f i c t i o n , t h e n , as w e l l as f o r L e s s i n g ' s , we can f i n d models i n S c h r e i n e r and D i n e s e n . And y e t , j u s t as L e s s i n g ' s l a t e r f i c t i o n has grown beyond the b o u n d a r i e s of the e a r l i e r w r i t e r s , so has G o r d i m e r ' s , except t h a t whereas L e s s i n g has g r a d u a l l y become an E n g l i s h w r i t e r , i n whose f i c t i o n A f r i c a i s i n c r e a s i n g l y s y m b o l i c , Gordimer c o n t i n u e s t o p o r t r a y contemporary South A f r i c a n s o c i e t y . When she does use myth and metaphor (as i n The C o n s e r v a t i o n i s t , 1974) her r e f e r e n c e s a r e i n c r e a s i n g l y A f r i c a n r a t h e r than European. Thus we can see i n her major n o v e l s of the s e v e n t i e s , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n B u r g e r ' s  Daughter ( 1 9 7 9 ) , b o t h t h e c u l m i n a t i o n of t h e e s s e n t i a l l y European themes and forms of t h e o t h e r t h r e e w r i t e r s and t h e f i l t e r i n g of t h e s e themes and forms through her i n c r e a s e d awareness of the b l a c k p o l i t i c a l and l i t e r a r y p e r s p e c t i v e . I n summary, t h e n , S c h r e i n e r ' s S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm i s the o r i g i n a l of t h e s e subsequent f i c t i o n a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n s of A f r i c a by D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g and Gordimer, w h i l e Dinesen's Out of  A f r i c a has p r o v i d e d a second model f o r L e s s i n g and Gordimer. S c h r e i n e r o f f e r s s u r r e a l i s t i c t r a g e d y a g a i n s t a r e a l i s t i c background and s e t t i n g w i t h i n a l o o s e , i n c l u s i v e s t r u c t u r e ; her 8 n o v e l , a p a s s i o n a t e argument f o r freedom, l o o k s toward t h e f u t u r e . I n c o n t r a s t , Dinesen o f f e r s an a r t f u l l y e d i t e d f a i r y t a l e o f A f r i c a which l o o k s backward t o an i d e a l i z e d f e u d a l Europe o f brave n o b l e s , l o y a l s e r v a n t s and consummate s t o r y t e l l e r s . For a l l of her c o n s e r v a t i s m , however, Dinesen i s more r e c e p t i v e than S c h r e i n e r t o the A f r i c a around h e r ; i t s s m e l l s , i t s s k y , and above a l l , i t s p e o p l e — w h o f o r S c h r e i n e r a re obscured by her own i n n e r drama. Dinesen m y t h o l o g i z e s but a l s o i d e n t i f i e s w i t h her A f r i c a n s e r v a n t s who had so r e c e n t l y been d i s l o d g e d from t h e i r s o v e r e i g n t y over "her" l a n d . T h i s i n t u i t i v e empathy e n r i c h e s her work, as Gordimer's empathy f o r A f r i c a n s e n r i c h e s h e r s a g e n e r a t i o n l a t e r . The A f r i c a n n o v e l s of L e s s i n g and Gordimer which f o l l o w t h e a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l p a t t e r n of the growth and e d u c a t i o n of an i n t e l l e c t u a l and a r t i s t i c h e r o i n e make e x p l i c i t a theme which i s f o r the most p a r t i m p l i c i t i n S c h r e i n e r and Di n e s e n . T h e i r s u b j e c t i s t h e h e r o i n e ' s predicament as a w h i t e g i r l or woman who r e j e c t s her g i v e n p l a c e i n c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y , and who, i n her r e b e l l i o n a g a i n s t her l i m i t e d r o l e as daughter and w i f e , i d e n t i f i e s w i t h t h a t mass o f d i s l o c a t e d , oppressed p e o p l e among whom she l i v e s : t h e b l a c k A f r i c a n s . Of c o u r s e , her empathy w i t h the A f r i c a n s and her l o v e f o r t h e i r s p a c i o u s and b e a u t i f u l l a n d s c a p e i s p r o b l e m a t i c , because by v i r t u e of her w h i t e s k i n she i s an a l i e n , and i n D o r i s L e s s i n g ' s words "a d e s t r o y e r " i n A f r i c a . I n t h e books which form a s e t w i t h The S t o r y of an  A f r i c a n F a r m — O u t o f A f r i c a , Martha Quest ( a l o n g w i t h the C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e s e r i e s ) and The L y i n g D a y s — t h e w h i t e 9 h e r o i n e i s e x i l e d i n some way from her A f r i c a n "home". I t i s o n l y i n Nadine Gordimer's B u r g e r ' s Daughter t h a t the h e r o i n e s o l v e s t h e c o n t r a d i c t i o n s of her a l l e g i a n c e and r e t u r n s t o South A f r i c a t o t a k e up a r o l e i n the b l a c k s t r u g g l e . Even B u r g e r ' s  Daughter, however, i s , as we s h a l l see, a r e c o g n i z a b l e v e r s i o n — a g r a n d d a u g h t e r — o f The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm. Not o n l y a r e the f o u r p r i m a r y works so s t r o n g l y c o n n e c t e d , but so a r e l a t e r t e x t s by S c h r e i n e r , D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g and Gordimer. O l i v e S c h r e i n e r , f o r i n s t a n c e , f o l l o w e d The S t o r y of  an A f r i c a n Farm w i t h From Man t o Man (1926). Begun b e f o r e A f r i c a n Farm and c o n t i n u e d l o n g a f t e r w a r d s , From Man t o Man was l e f t u n f i n i s h e d and p u b l i s h e d posthumously. D i s m i s s e d as an u n s u c c e s s f u l work o f f i c t i o n , a c u r i o s i t y , i t was l o n g out of p r i n t and p r o b a b l y had l i t t l e or no i n f l u e n c e on l a t e r a u t h o r s . A l t h o u g h t h i s a m b i t i o u s l i f e - w o r k o f a n o v e l i s uneven and a t time s t e d i o u s , i t n e v e r t h e l e s s c o n t a i n s passages of b r i l l i a n c e and i s of g r e a t importance as a companion and, i n e f f e c t , a s e q u e l t o S c h r e i n e r ' s e a r l y m a s t e r p i e c e . I n p a r t i c u l a r , t h i s n o v e l of i d e a s c l a r i f i e s and d e v e l o p s the c o n n e c t i o n s between fem i n i s m and c o l o n i a l i s m which the auth o r began t o e x p l o r e i n The S t o r y o f an A f r i c a n Farm. I s a k D i n e s e n f o l l o w e d Out of A f r i c a w i t h a second A f r i c a n memoir, Shadows on the Gra s s (1961), which u n l i k e S c h r e i n e r ' s second major n o v e l adds l i t t l e t o the f i r s t work. Dinesen's A f r i c a remains p e r f e c t , f i x e d f o r e v e r i n the g l o w i n g a r c h e t y p e s and luminous p r o s e of Out of A f r i c a . The s t o r i e s which form the main body of her f i c t i o n a r e not about A f r i c a . They a r e g o t h i c 10 t a l e s s e t i n an i m a g i n a r y Europe of t h e p a s t . Some of the s t o r i e s i n her f i r s t volume, Seven G o t h i c T a l e s ( 1 9 3 4 ) , had been o u t l i n e d i n A f r i c a , but t h e main c o n n e c t i o n between A f r i c a and her s t o r i e s i s t h a t her e x p e r i e n c e i n K e n y a — r i c h , t r a u m a t i c , f a n t a s t i c as i t w a s — e n a b l e d , even c o m p e l l e d , her t o w r i t e ; i t made Karen B l i x e n i n t o I s a k D i n e s e n . Or, t o put i t another way, Karen B l i x e n became a c h a r a c t e r i n I s a k Dinesen's f i c t i o n . D o r i s L e s s i n g l e f t R h o desia i n 1949, r e t u r n e d f o r a v i s i t i n 1956 ( t h e j o u r n a l of her t r i p was p u b l i s h e d as Going Home, 1957), then because of her p o l i t i c a l a f f i l i a t i o n s was banned from r e - e n t e r i n g e i t h e r R h o d e s i a or South A f r i c a . D u r i n g t h e f i f t i e s and s i x t i e s she p u b l i s h e d n o v e l s and s t o r i e s based on her c h i l d h o o d and yo u t h as t h e daughter of w h i t e s e t t l e r s i n the t h i r t i e s and f o r t i e s . D o r i s L e s s i n g , l i k e I s a k Dinesen w r i t i n g i n the t h i r t i e s about t h e t e n s and t w e n t i e s , p r e s e n t s a p i c t u r e of an e a r l i e r t i m e . However, her v i s i o n o f c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y , u n l i k e D i n e s e n ' s , i s not s t a t i c , but r a t h e r r e f l e c t s her M a r x i s t a n a l y s i s t h a t w h i t e s e t t l e r d o m must g i v e way t o A f r i c a n s o c i a l i s m . She c o n c l u d e s i n Going Home t h a t w h i t e s c o u l d have no permanent home i n what she c o r r e c t l y p r e d i c t e d would be the s h o r t - l i v e d F e d e r a t i o n of C e n t r a l A f r i c a . I n c o n t r a s t , Nadine Gordimer, who has remained i n her n a t i v e South A f r i c a , has a r r i v e d more g r a d u a l l y a t a r a d i c a l c r i t i q u e of w h i t e hegemony, i n i m a g i n a t i v e response t o the p o l i t i c a l changes i n her s o c i e t y from t h e f o r t i e s t o the e i g h t i e s . 11 Both w r i t e r s have had l o n g , p r o l i f i c , and s u c c e s s f u l c a r e e r s , d e v e l o p i n g — a s d a u g h t e r s o f O l i v e S c h r e i n e r — i n v e r y d i f f e r e n t d i r e c t i o n s a f t e r Martha Quest and The L y i n g Days. One barometer o f the changes i n L e s s i n g ' s use of her a u t o b i o -g r a p h i c a l A f r i c a n m a t e r i a l i s t h e development of t h e C h i l d r e n o f  V i o l e n c e s e r i e s (Martha Quest, A P r o p e r M a r r i a g e , 1954; A R i p p l e  from the Storm, 1958; L a n d l o c k e d , 1965; The Four-Gated C i t y , 1969). The n o n f i c t i o n Going Home p r e s e n t s a p o i n t of comparison w i t h Dinesen's memoirs, w h i l e The Golden Notebook (1962) i s a d i s t i l l e d v e r s i o n o f the m i d d l e volumes of C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e i n the complex f i c t i o n a l , p o l i t i c a l and p s y c h o l o g i c a l c o n t e x t of Anna's notebooks. The young Martha f i g u r e appears a g a i n i n The  Memoirs of a S u r v i v o r ( 1 974), w h i l e S h i k a s t a (1979) and o t h e r Canopus i n A r g o s : A r c h i v e s n o v e l s demonstrate how the themes of L e s s i n g ' s c o l o n i a l A f r i c a n g i r l h o o d have c o n t i n u e d t o appear i n her space f i c t i o n . G o rdimer's remarkable development from The L y i n g Days t o B u r g e r ' s Daughter can be t r a c e d t h rough her c o l l e c t i o n s of s t o r i e s and her n o v e l s , i n c l u d i n g O c c a s i o n f o r L o v i n g ( 1 9 6 3 ) , A Guest of Honour (1970), and The C o n s e r v a t i o n i s t . The f u t u r i s t i c r e a l i s m of J u l y ' s P e o p l e (1981) as compared w i t h L e s s i n g ' s f u t u r i s t i c a l l e g o r y , demonstrates t h e d i f f e r e n t agendas of t h e s e two w r i t e r s , who are such c l o s e c o n t e m p o r a r i e s and whose p o i n t s o f o r i g i n a re so s i m i l a r . J u l y ' s P e o p l e , which i s s e t i n the t h r o e s of a b l a c k r e v o l u t i o n i n South A f r i c a , can be seen as a p o s t s c r i p t t o t h e " A f r i c a n Farm" s t o r i e s , w h i c h , d e s p i t e b e i n g c r i t i c a l of the c o l o n i a l system, a r e based on the 12 assumption of w h i t e dominance. With A S p o r t of Nature (1987), which i s p r e d i c a t e d on the t r i u m p h o f the n a t i o n a l l i b e r a t i o n movement, Gordimer has embarked on a new i m a g i n a t i v e c o u r s e ; i n H i l l e l a Kgomani she has c r e a t e d a w h i t e h e r o i n e who i s " a t home" i n , r a t h e r than a l i e n a t e d from, b l a c k A f r i c a . However, i n t r y i n g t o t r a n s c e n d the p o l i t i c s o f an i n c r e a s i n g l y p o l a r i z e d South A f r i c a , Gordimer compromises her v e r i s i m i l i t u d e ; one hundred y e a r s a f t e r S c h r e i n e r i t i s s t i l l i m p o s s i b l e f o r a w h i t e South A f r i c a n w r i t e r t o escape her a l i e n a t e d p o s i t i o n . The C o l o n i a l H e r o i n e i n the Co n t e x t of the Female Bildungsroman The c o l o n i a l women's v i s i o n embodied i n t h e A f r i c a n f i c t i o n o f S c h r e i n e r , D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g and Gordimer has i t s c l o s e s t p a r a l l e l i n E n g l i s h l i t e r a t u r e i n f i c t i o n by w h i t e women s e t i n such c o l o n i a l or p o s t - c o l o n i a l o u t p o s t s as B r i t i s h I n d i a and the C a r i b b e a n . Two n o t a b l e examples a r e Ruth Prawer J h a b v a l a ' s Heat and Dust ( 1 9 7 5 ) 6 and Jean Rhys' Wide S a r g a s s o Sea (1966). But we can a l s o t r a c e a wider c o n n e c t i o n between a l l of t h e s e c o l o n i a l Bildungsromane and t h a t key t e x t of female r a g e , a l i e n a t i o n and e v e n t u a l s e l f - a c t u a l i z a t i o n , C h a r l o t t e B r o n t e ' s Jane E y r e . Rhys' r e v i s i o n o f Jane E y r e , Wide Sarg a s s o Sea, which b e a r s s t r i k i n g s i m i l a r i t i e s t o t h e " A f r i c a n Farm" t e x t s , o f f e r s a c l e a r l i n k between the w h i t e A f r i c a n women w r i t e r s and B r o n t e . Rhys t e l l s t h e u n t o l d s t o r y of A n t o i n e t t e Cosway ( B e r t h a Mason), the C a r i b b e a n g i r l whom R o c h e s t e r m a r r i e d and brought t o En g l a n d , where she was n e g l e c t e d , d e c l a r e d i n s a n e , and f i n a l l y 13 consumed i n the f i r e of her murderous r a g e — w h i c h m i r r o r s the' f i r e s s e t by the r e b e l l i o u s s l a v e s on her n a t i v e i s l a n d . i n f a c t , G a y a t r i S p ivak d e s c r i b e s B e r t h a as a v e r s i o n of A n t o i n e t t e ' s b l a c k s e l f . Thus, "Rhys makes A n t o i n e t t e see her s e l f as her o t h e r , B r o n t e ' s B e r t h a " ("Three Women's T e x t s and a C r i t i q u e of I m p e r i a l i s m " 2 69). I t i s s u r e l y s i g n i f i c a n t t h a t "the madwoman i n the a t t i c " who, as G i l b e r t and Gubar have shown, i s such a c e n t r a l f i g u r e i n t he women's l i t e r a r y t r a d i t i o n , i s a w h i t e c o l o n i a l . Her p a r t i c u l a r agony, and i t s m a n i f e s t a t i o n i n an o v e r t , v i o l e n t form d e n i e d t o the good h e r o i n e s of the n i n e t e e n t h - c e n t u r y n o v e l , i s t h a t of an o u t s i d e r i n England who has no s t a k e i n the s t a t u s quo, no p l a c e i n p o l i t e s o c i e t y , no reason f o r good b e h a v i o r . A n t o i n e t t e / B e r t h a i s a l o s t s o u l , caught between two c u l t u r e s , s c o r n e d both by the e x - s l a v e s who have ta k e n c o n t r o l of her i s l a n d and the E n g l i s h t o whose r e l u c t a n t bosom she has r e t u r n e d . Her s i t u a t i o n resembles t h a t of Baby B e r t i e i n From  Man t o Man; she a l s o becomes a p r i s o n e r i n a d a r k , d r e a r y house i n a l i e n E n g l a n d . A n t o i n e t t e / B e r t h a ' s r e b e l l i o n i s a k i n t o L y n d a l l ' s , and t o Magda's i n J.M. Coetzee's I n the Heart of the  Countr y (1977). She appears t o Martha Quest as her t e a c h e r and soulmate i n the form of Lynda C o l d r i d g e , the madwoman i n the basement i n The Four-Gated C i t y . I t i s , t h e n , t h rough t h e i r a s s o c i a t i o n w i t h A n t o i n e t t e / B e r t h a , which may be suggested i n S c h r e i n e r ' s use of the name " B e r t i e " and c l e a r l y i s i n t e n d e d i n L e s s i n g ' s Lynda C o l d r i d g e , t h a t t h e s e " A f r i c a n Farm" t e x t s connect most s t r i k i n g l y t o the t r a d i t i o n o f the female Bildungsroman i n the E n g l i s h n o v e l . 14 T h i s t r a d i t i o n i s d i s c u s s e d i n The Voyage i n : F i c t i o n s of  Female Development, a c o l l e c t i o n o f e s s a y s on the female B i l d u n g s r o m a n , i n which t h e a u t h o r s d e s c r i b e a c h a r a c t e r i s t i c p a t t e r n of t h e "awakening t o l i m i t a t i o n s . " T h i s i s t h e h e r o i n e ' s r e a l i z a t i o n t h a t her i n n e r development w i l l not be met by the complementary development i n the s o c i a l w o r l d t h a t i s a v a i l a b l e t o her male c o u n t e r p a r t . In t h e s e n o v e l s of female development, the h e r o i n e c r e a t e s a r i c h i n n e r l i f e which has l i t t l e c o r r e s p o n d e n c e w i t h t h e c h o i c e s o f f e r e d her by her f a m i l y and s o c i e t y , and thus i m p l i c i t l y c h a l l e n g e s e s t a b l i s h e d v a l u e s . Marianne H i r s c h sees A n t i g o n e as a p r o t o t y p e f o r such h e r o i n e s as Maggie T u l l i v e r i n The M i l l on the F l o s s , Edna P o n t e l l i e r i n The Awakening, and R a c h e l V i n r a c e i n The Voyage Out. H i r s c h argues t h a t , "Maggie's v a l u e s , l i k e A n t i g o n e ' s , p r o f o u n d l y c h a l -l e n g e t h e v a l u e s of her c u l t u r e " as w e l l as " t h e v e r y v a l u e s of B i l d u n g i t s e l f , as i t has t r a d i t i o n a l l y been und e r s t o o d . . ." (27) . However, i n s e t t i n g up a c o n t r a s t between the female Bildungsroman and t h e t r a d i t i o n a l male Bildungsroman (as d e s c r i b e d i n i t s o r i g i n a l German form by M a r t i n Swales and i n i t s E n g l i s h form by Jerome B u c k l e y ) , ? A b e l , H i r s c h and Lan g l a n d o v e r s i m p l i f y t h e v a r i e d p a t t e r n s of both t h e male and female s t o r i e s . They c o n t r a s t the p r o b l e m a t i c m a t u r a t i o n o f the h e r o i n e w i t h t h e hero's r e l a t i v e l y smooth accommodation t o h i s s o c i e t y ; when h i s v a l u e s d i f f e r p r o f o u n d l y from h i s s o c i e t y ' s , he can a v a i l h i m s e l f of t h e K i i n s t l e r r o m a n p a t t e r n , i n which h i s f r u s t r a t i o n s a r e c h a n n e l l e d i n t o a r t i s t i c accomplishment. I n 15 f a c t , f o r Swa l e s , "The g r e a t Bildungsromane i n h a b i t the awkward m i d d l e ground between p o s s i b i l i t y and a c t u a l i t y " ( 1 5 7 ) , and, "Over and over a g a i n , the n o v e l s . . . pose the q u e s t i o n o f whether the hero has a c h i e v e d any k i n d o f w o r t h w h i l e g o a l or i n s i g h t " ( 3 0 ) . C e r t a i n l y L e s s i n g and Gordimer have c o n s c i o u s l y p l a c e d themselves i n the l a r g e r t r a d i t i o n of n i n e t e e n t h - c e n t u r y r e a l i s m , h a v i n g s i m i l a r l y d e s c r i b e d t h e themes o f C h i l d r e n of  V i o l e n c e and B u r g e r ' s Daughter as the r e l a t i o n between p r i v a t e and p u b l i c l i f e , and as an e x p l o r a t i o n of what t h e i n d i v i d u a l owes t o the c o l l e c t i v e . 8 Both w r i t e r s have downplayed and a t ti m e s even d e n i e d t h e f e m i n i s t a s p e c t of t h e i r f i c t i o n . ( I d i s c u s s t h e i r v i e w s on fe m i n i s m i n Chapter Four.) Y et t h e i r s u b j e c t s , themes, c h a r a c t e r s and imagery a re t o a l a r g e e x t e n t gender-based. The problems o f development f a c e d by t h e i r h e r o i n e s a re s p e c i f i c t o t h e i r i d e n t i t y as c o l o n i a l d a u g h t e r s : r e l u c t a n t or r e b e l l i o u s i n h e r i t o r s who cannot e a s i l y disavow t h e i r p i o n e e r f a t h e r s and homeward-looking mothers. These h e r o i n e s r e l a t e s p e c i f i c a l l y as females t o A f r i c a n s and A f r i c a : t h ey a re a t t r a c t e d t o and t h r e a t e n e d by b l a c k s and b l a c k n e s s i n terms t h a t a r e e x p l i c i t l y or i m p l i c i t l y s e x u a l . T h i s i s o b v i o u s i n L e s s i n g ' s f i r s t n o v e l , The Gra s s i s S i n g i n g , as w e l l as i n Gordimer's most r e c e n t n o v e l , A S p o r t of N a t u r e . I s a k Dinesen wants t o be bound by t h e c a t e g o r y of women's l i t e r a t u r e no more than do L e s s i n g and Gordimer. N e v e r t h e l e s s , w h i l e she i s not o v e r t l y i n S c h r e i n e r ' s s t r o n g f e m i n i s t t r a d i -t i o n , she w r i t e s as a woman, r e l a t e s t o A f r i c a as a woman. Her r e v o l t a g a i n s t n i n e t e e n t h - c e n t u r y m i d d l e - c l a s s European v a l u e s 16 i s p h y s i c a l and s e x u a l as w e l l as i n t e l l e c t u a l . 9 She p l a c e s g r e a t v a l u e on t h e freedom she d i s c o v e r s i n A f r i c a (which i s of c o u r s e s p e c i f i c t o her s i t u a t i o n as a w h i t e s e t t l e r ) , i n c l u d i n g t h e freedom t o t a k e on male r o l e s w h i l e not r e l i n q u i s h i n g her woman's i d e n t i t y . The " A f r i c a n Farm" t e x t s , a l o n g w i t h Wide S a r g a s s o Sea, e x p l o i t t h e r e v o l u t i o n a r y p o t e n t i a l of t h e female Bildungsroman by b u i l d i n g upon the angry madwoman-in-the-attic s u b t e x t of Jane  E y r e as w e l l as t h e e x p l i c i t m i s e r y , i s o l a t i o n , p a s s i o n and p r i d e of B r o n t e ' s h e r o i n e . Yet t h e s e c o l o n i a l t e x t s a l s o e n r i c h t h e female Bildungsroman by s t r e t c h i n g i t s b o u n d a r i e s from th e p r i m a r i l y domestic and p e r s o n a l domain of the voyage inward t o the wider h i s t o r i c a l and p o l i t i c a l domain of t h e voyage outward. S c h r e i n e r ' s s o c i a l and i n t e l l e c t u a l i s o l a t i o n i n South A f r i c a e n a b l e d her t o r e t h i n k r e l i g i o n , male-female r o l e s and s e x u a l mores. Whereas L y n d a l l and Waldo's m i s e r a b l e l i v e s and e a r l y d e a ths are a d e v a s t a t i n g commentary on t h e p o s s i b i l i t y of female B i l d u n g i n her s o c i e t y , Rebekah's q u a l i f i e d s u c c e s s i n From Man  t o Man i s an example of how t h e inward j o u r n e y of s e l f - d i s c o v e r y and the outward j o u r n e y of s e l f - a c t u a l i z a t i o n can mesh. Rebekah succeeds at both w r i t i n g and m o t h e r i n g . She a l s o succeeds i n i n t e g r a t i n g what i s European w i t h what i s d i s t i n c t i v e l y A f r i c a n i n h e r s e l f . S i g n i f i c a n t l y , i t i s her budding i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h t h e w o r l d of the A f r i c a n s t h a t f r e e s her from her husband and the o p p r e s s i v e — j o i n t l y p a t r i a r c h a l and i m p e r i a l i s t — m o r e s t h a t he r e p r e s e n t s . For I s a k D i n e s e n , A f r i c a o f f e r s a s e t t i n g i n which i t i s p o s s i b l e t o r e a l i z e the w o r l d of her i m a g i n a t i o n , t o t r a n s f o r m 17 i n n e r v i s i o n i n t o f l e s h and e a r t h . Her voyage inward blossoms i n t o a voyage outward: a b r i e f d e l i c a t e harmony between f a n t a s y and r e a l i t y i n which she too r e w r i t e s the female r o l e , g i v i n g h e r s e l f a freedom and power u n a t t a i n a b l e i n Europe. However, i n s o f a r as Dinesen's f a n t a s y of autonomy becomes f l e s h i t i s a t the expense of the i n d i g e n o u s men and women whose autonomy she has usurped. She t r a n s c e n d s t h e European s e x u a l h i e r a r c h y o n l y by assuming the p r e r o g a t i v e s of the w h i t e male s e t t l e r , and t h u s becoming i m p l i c a t e d i n the c o l o n i a l system of e x p l o i t a t i o n . Dinesen becomes an a p o l o g i s t f o r the f e u d a l s t r u c t u r e based on r a c i s m which b u t t r e s s e s the w h i t e - s e t t l e r o r d e r . Her r o l e as a p o l o g i s t f o r and r o m a n t i c i z e r of t h i s n e o - f e u d a l s o c i e t y i s congruent w i t h her c l a s s background and c o n s e r v a t i v e p r e d i l e c t i o n s , but i t i s a l s o c l e a r t h a t n e a r -a b s o l u t e power over her b l a c k s e r f s and t h e i r l a n d i s an e s s e n t i a l element of Karen B l i x e n ' s "freedom." S c h r e i n e r l a r g e l y a v o i d s t h i s c o n f l i c t by c r e a t i n g c h a r a c t e r s who are oppressed as opposed t o f r e e d by the p a t r i a r c h a l c o l o n i a l o r d e r , c h a r a c t e r s who d i s c o v e r t h e m s e l v e s , and i n a sense f r e e t h e m s e l v e s , t h r o u g h an i n c i p i e n t r e v o l u t i o n a r y c o n s c i o u s n e s s which i n c l u d e s an awakening i f h e s i t a n t i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h the mass of oppressed A f r i c a n s . For L e s s i n g and Gordimer, the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c inward move-ment of the female Bildungsroman i s e x p l i c i t l y l i n k e d t o a c o r r e s p o n d i n g outward movement from the c o n s t r i c t i n g w h i t e e n c l a v e i n t o the l a r g e r w o r l d of b l a c k n e s s . By e x p l o r i n g and coming t o i d e n t i f y w i t h the r i c h e r , more a n c i e n t w o r l d of the 18 A f r i c a n s , t h e h e r o i n e ' s p e r c e p t i o n of h e r s e l f and her own c u l t u r e i s deepened. Her c e n t r a l awakening i s t o an awareness of t h e A f r i c a n O t h e r . How t o d e a l w i t h t h e consequences of t h i s awakening i s the p r o t a g o n i s t ' s c e n t r a l problem, which o f t e n l e a d s t o a second awakening: a r e v e l a t i o n o f her own o t h e r n e s s , her a l i e n a t i o n from the w h i t e c o l o n i a l and b l a c k A f r i c a n w o r l d s as w e l l as from t h e European c u l t u r e of her p a r e n t s . For some of the h e r o i n e s , f o r Mary Turner i n The Gra s s i s S i n g i n g and p o s s i b l y f o r Maureen Smales i n J u l y ' s P e o p l e , t h i s n e g a t i v e awakening l e a d s t o d e a t h , as i t had f o r L y n d a l l . But most of them, l i k e Martha Quest, Rosa Burger and H i l l e l a Kgomani, f i n d i n t h e i r sense of d i f f e r e n c e Rebekah's freedom t o t h i n k o r i g i n a l l y , t o e n v i s i o n a new s o c i e t y — a n d t o t a k e t h e f i r s t s t e p s i n a c h i e v i n g i t . Thus, d e s p i t e the imagery of c l a u s t r o p h o b i a and s t e r i l i t y t h a t s u r r o u n d t h e " A f r i c a n Farm" t e x t s o f S c h r e i n e r , L e s s i n g and Gordimer, t h e i r p r o t a g o n i s t s , l i k e Karen B l i x e n , p a r a d o x i c a l l y f i n d g r e a t e r f u l f i l l m e n t , more scope f o r c r e a t i v e work and mean-i n g f u l a c t i o n , i n A f r i c a than i n England or Europe. For them, t h e j o u r n e y "home" i s an e x i l e , a d e f e a t , a c l o s i n g r a t h e r than an o p e n i n g . Her p r o b l e m a t i c p o s i t i o n i n A f r i c a , as White Eve t r e s p a s s i n g i n t h e B l a c k Garden, f o s t e r s s t r e n g t h , achievement and moral growth. The h e r o i n e ' s i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h the A f r i c a n s i n t h e i r o p p r e s s i o n and i n t h e i r l a t e n t power e n r i c h e s her tre m e n d o u s l y ; the e x p l o r a t i o n of b l a c k n e s s e n a b l e s her t o expand p h y s i c a l l y beyond t h e narrow b o u n d a r i e s of w h i t e s o c i e t y , as w e l l as t o expand m e n t a l l y beyond a narrow f o c u s on her own ego. 19 The C o l o n i a l H e r o i n e i n the Co n t e x t of White A f r i c a n L i t e r a t u r e The A f r i c a n s e t t i n g i n thes e t e x t s i s n o t , t h e n , s i m p l y a background, but r a t h e r a key element of the h e r o i n e ' s d e v e l o p -ment. A c c o r d i n g l y , the " A f r i c a n Farm" l i t e r a t u r e o f S c h r e i n e r , D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g and Gordimer s h o u l d be seen w i t h i n the wider c o n t e x t of c o l o n i a l A f r i c a n f i c t i o n . O l i v e S c h r e i n e r p r o v i d e d t h e model and s e t the agenda f o r v i r t u a l l y a l l s e r i o u s w h i t e Southern A f r i c a n w r i t e r s , who have c o n t i n u e d t o employ her i r o n i c n a t u r a l imagery and t o update her tormented p r o t a g o n i s t s . An i m p o r t a n t l i n k i n the c h a i n from S c h r e i n e r t o L e s s i n g i s W i l l i a m Plomer, whose T u r b o t t Wolfe (1926) was as f a r ahead of i t s time as were The S t o r y o f an A f r i c a n Farm and From Man t o  Man i n t h e d e p i c t i o n of r a c i a l and s e x u a l r e l a t i o n s , which Plomer too saw as i n t e r c o n n e c t e d . T u r b o t t Wolfe i s an a t t a c k on the most d e e p l y - h e l d views and c h e r i s h e d v a l u e s of "wh i t e c i v i l i z a t i o n " i n A f r i c a . The p r o t a g o n i s t - n a r r a t o r i s i n t e n s e l y a t t r a c t e d t o b l a c k c u l t u r e and goes so f a r as t o f a l l h o p e l e s s l y i n l o v e w i t h a Z u l u woman, whom he i d e a l i z e s as the embodiment of beauty and " h o l i n e s s . " I n t h e end, Wolfe l e a v e s A f r i c a , d e f e a t e d by t h e " o b s c e n i t y , " the decadence and s t e r i l i t y , of w h i t e c u l t u r e t h e r e , w i t h which he f e e l s h i m s e l f t o be t a i n t e d . W h i l e the w h i t e hero i s d e n i e d h i s b l a c k w i f e , however, Plomer ends h i s n o v e l w i t h the m a r r i a g e o f a European woman t o a Z u l u man. A c c o r d i n g t o Plomer, t h e n , the s e x u a l c o n n e c t i o n t h a t i n the c o n t e x t of w h i t e m a l e / b l a c k female would be a symbol o f c o l o n i a l e x p l o i t a t i o n i s i n the c o n t e x t of w h i t e f e m a l e / b l a c k 20 male based on a more e q u a l power r e l a t i o n s h i p , and thus o f f e r s some hope of r e g e n e r a t i o n f o r a s t e r i l e , r a c i s t s o c i a l o r d e r . I n t e r r a c i a l m a r r i a g e i s r a r e i n Southern A f r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e , i n c l u d i n g the " A f r i c a n Farm" t e x t s . W h i l e i n t e r -r a c i a l sex i s acknowledged t o o c c u r , i t i s p r e s e n t e d as the rape or p r o s t i t u t i o n of b l a c k women by w h i t e men, and a l t e r n a t e l y as a v e n g e f u l a s s a u l t on w h i t e women by b l a c k men. S i n c e Plomer, o n l y Gordimer has e x p l o r e d the d e s i r e f o r and p o s s i b l i t y of l o v e between the r a c e s . For Gordimer, l i k e Plomer, the o n l y s e x u a l - r a c i a l combina-t i o n t h a t can approach the e q u a l r e l a t i o n s h i p r e q u i r e d by l o v e i s t h a t of the b l a c k man and w h i t e woman. The i m p l i c a t i o n i s t h a t they have a common enemy i n w h i t e , male-dominated c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y , y e t Gordimer's pessimism about the outcome of t h e i r bonding r e c o g n i z e s the i n h e r e n t c o n f l i c t s i n t h e i r a l l i a n c e . The w h i t e woman may be v i c t i m i z e d by her sex, but she i s p r i v i l e g e d by her s k i n c o l o r — a n d c o l o r i s the c r u c i a l d i v i s i o n i n South A f r i c a . Thus the a f f a i r between Ann and Gideon i n Oc c a s i o n f o r L o v i n g i s foredoomed, w h i l e the o p t i m i s t i c m a r r i a g e of H i l l e l a t o W h a i l a i n A Sp o r t of N a t u r e , which does not c o m p l e t e l y r i n g t r u e i n terms of the p r e s e n t s t a t e of war i n Southern A f r i c a , ends w i t h an a s s a s s i n ' s b u l l e t . Plomer's f o c u s on the m a l a i s e of the w h i t e o u t s i d e r , the n o n c o n f o r m i s t whose knowledge and p e r c e p t i o n s d i v i d e him a g a i n s t h i m s e l f , has c l e a r p a r a l l e l s w i t h the d i v i d e d , s e l f - d e s t r u c t i v e p r o t a g o n i s t s of the t h r e e women w r i t e r s , who, l i k e T u r b o t t W o l f e , choose some form of e x i l e . H Isak D i n e s e n , i n the more benign 21 g e o g r a p h i c a l and s o c i a l c l i m a t e of E a s t A f r i c a , i s l e s s haunted by the o b s e s s i o n s of the Southern A f r i c a n w r i t e r s . Yet under-l y i n g her c e l e b r a t o r y p r o s e a r e the d a r k e r t o n e s of p e r s o n a l l o s s and of v i o l e n c e a g a i n s t n a t u r e . And she too i s aware of th e p a r a l l e l s between sex and r a c e under c o l o n i a l i s m , n o t i n g t h a t , "The r e l a t i o n between the w h i t e and b l a c k r a c e s i n A f r i c a i n many ways resembles the r e l a t i o n between the two sexes" (Out of A f r i c a 264). C h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y she does not pursue t h i s p o i n t , b e i n g u n w i l l i n g t o expose the c o n f l i c t s between her g u e s t f o r s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n i n Kenya and the p a r a l l e l d e s i r e f o r s e l f - d e t e r m i n a t i o n of the Kenyan p e o p l e . However, the c e l e b r a t o r y p r o s e o f her memoir i s undercut by d a r k e r s t r a i n s of l o s s and v i o l e n c e which r e v e a l her s i t u a t i o n more t r u t h f u l l y . Another major f i g u r e ' w h o s e work seems c l e a r l y t o descend from S c h r e i n e r and t o connect w i t h Dinesen as w e l l as w i t h L e s s i n g and Gordimer i s J.M. C o e t z e e . Whereas Gordimer has worked outward from her w h i t e , E n g l i s h - s p e a k i n g m i l i e u , Coetzee has reached out from h i s A f r i k a n e r r o o t s . O l i v e S c h r e i n e r , who had i n t i m a t e knowledge of and a g r e a t sympathy f o r the A f r i k a n e r p e o p l e , n e v e r t h e l e s s w r i t e s about them from the p e r s p e c t i v e of an o u t s i d e r . D o r i s L e s s i n g ' s A f r i k a n e r s , a l t h o u g h prominent i n Martha Quest, are the o t h e r w h i t e s : "them" as opposed t o "us." Nadine Gordimer, however, w r i t e s from the more heterogeneous p e r s p e c t i v e o f modern Johannesburg; i n her urban s e t t i n g s , the d i f f e r e n c e s among w h i t e s a r e n e g l i g i b l e compared t o t h e i r shared s i t u a t i o n as w h i t e s under a p a r t h e i d . In B u r g e r ' s Daughter she p u r p o s e l y 22 m i n g l e s th e two w h i t e t r i b e s i n her main c h a r a c t e r , whose f a t h e r i s an A f r i k a n e r r e v o l u t i o n a r y c h a l l e n g i n g the M a n i f e s t D e s t i n y of h i s p e o p l e . Coetzee w r i t e s m a i n l y i n E n g l i s h i n a p o e t i c , non-r e a l i s t i c , f a b u l i s t , p o s t - m o d e r n i s t i d i o m . H i s s t a r k , m y t h i c work b r i n g s i n t o s h a r p e r r e l i e f themes of power, v i o l e n c e , g u i l t , d e s i r e and a l i e n a t i o n t h a t a r e u s u a l l y d e a l t w i t h l e s s d i r e c t l y i n S c h r e i n e r , D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g and Gordimer, and so s e r v e s as a k i n d of coda f o r t h e i r " s t o r i e s of an A f r i c a n farm." In I n the Heart of the C o u n t r y and "The N a r r a t i v e of Jacobus C o e t z e e " ( i n D u s k l a n d s , 1974) he d e s c r i b e s the i n n e r v i s i o n s o f A f r i k a n e r s . However, by j u x t a p o s i n g "The N a r r a t i v e of Jacobus C o e t z e e " w i t h "The V ietnam P r o j e c t , " the n a r r a t i v e of an American m i l i t a r y s t r a t e g i s t , he shows t h a t h i s c o n c e r n i s w i t h the a r c h e t y p a l i n t r u s i o n of a s t r o n g , t e c h n o l o g i c a l l y advanced c u l t u r e i n t o a weaker, l e s s t e c h n o l o g i c a l l y d e v e l o p e d c u l t u r e . That h i s s u b j e c t i s t h e White H u n t e r , the C o l o n i s t , the I m p e r i a l i s t , i s r e i n f o r c e d by W a i t i n g f o r t h e B a r b a r i a n s ( 1 9 80), a f a b l e o f a c r u m b l i n g and t h r e a t e n e d empire w i t h no r e c o g n i z a b l e h i s t o r i c a l s e t t i n g . T h i s n o v e l d e a l s p o w e r f u l l y w i t h the r e l a t i o n between c o l o n i z e r and c o l o n i z e d , master and s e r v a n t — t o r t u r e r and t o r t u r e d . Foe (1986) p u r s u e s t h i s theme i n more a b s t r a c t and l i t e r a r y terms. I n D u s k l a n d s , W a i t i n g f o r t h e B a r b a r i a n s and Foe the c o l o n i z e r , h u n t e r , d e s t r o y e r , i s male. In Jacobus Coetzee's words: 23 I am an e x p l o r e r . My essence i s t o open what i s c l o s e d , t o b r i n g l i g h t t o what i s d a r k . I move th r o u g h t h e w i l d e r n e s s w i t h my gun a t the s h o u l d e r of my eye. . . . Savages do not have guns. T h i s i s the e f f e c t i v e meaning of s a v a g e r y , which we may d e f i n e as enslavement t o space, as one speaks o b v e r s e l y of the e x p l o r e r ' s mastery of space. ("The N a r r a t i v e of Jacobus Coetzee" 106; 79.) The e x p l o r e r i s o f c o u r s e v u l n e r a b l e t o i l l n e s s and d e a t h ; madness i s endemic, an o c c u p a t i o n a l h a z a r d . So i t i s t o o f o r Magda, l i v i n g " i n the h e a r t of the c o u n t r y , " but as female r a t h e r than male, as daughter r a t h e r than f a t h e r , housekeeper r a t h e r than h u n t e r , she i s l e s s p o w e r f u l and l e s s obsessed w i t h "mastery" of her environment. Her medium of communication w i t h "the brown p e o p l e " who s u r r o u n d her i s not the gun but the pen: A l o n e i n my room w i t h my d u t i e s b e h i n d me and t h e lamp s t e a d i l y b u r n i n g , I c r e a k i n t o rhythms t h a t are my own, stumble over t h e r o c k s of words t h a t I have never heard on another tongue. I c r e a t e m y s e l f i n the words t h a t c r e a t e me, I who l i v i n g among the downcast have  never b e h e l d m y s e l f i n t h e e q u a l r e g a r d of a n o t h e r ' s  eye, have never h e l d another i n the e q u a l r e g a r d of  mine ( I n the H e a r t of t h e C o u n t r y 8; emphasis added). Magda i s t r a p p e d between her s u b j e c t i o n t o her f a t h e r and the s u b j e c t i o n of the s e r v a n t s t o h e r . Her pen c r i e s o u t : The medium, the m e d i a n — t h a t i s what I wanted t o be! N e i t h e r master nor s l a v e , n e i t h e r p a r e n t nor c h i l d but the b r i d g e between, so t h a t i n me the c o n t r a r i e s s h o u l d be r e c o n c i l e d ! ( 1 3 3 ) . As Coetzee r e c o g n i z e s , the w h i t e woman—the female c o l o n i s t , s e t t l e r , h u n t e r — i s "a b r i d g e between" th e a b s o l u t e power of the w h i t e man and the a b s o l u t e p o w e r l e s s n e s s of the b l a c k s . I n t h e f i c t i o n o f C o e t z e e , Gordimer, L e s s i n g , Dinesen and S c h r e i n e r she i s p o r t r a y e d as a v i c t i m of t h e deep 24 d i c h o t o m i e s i n her s o c i e t y . For t h e d i v i d i n g l i n e t h a t t h e male c o l o n i s t draws between b l a c k and w h i t e becomes i n h i s i m a g i n a -t i o n a g u l f between c i v i l i z e d and u n c i v i l i z e d , f a t h e r and c h i l d , l a n d e d and l a n d l e s s , g u n - c a r r i e r and g u n l e s s , a c t o r and a c t e d - u p o n — i m a g i n a t i v e c a t e g o r i e s which echo and a r e i n a sense modeled upon h i s p r i m a r y d i v i s i o n of power between male and fe m a l e . He p e n e t r a t e s t h e w i l d e r n e s s w i t h h i s gun, m a s t e r i n g the n a t i v e p e o p l e as he p e n e t r a t e s h i s w i f e and r u l e s h i s d a u g h t e r s . But i n t h e i n t e r e s t s of " p u r i t y " he f o r b i d s any human c o n t a c t between h i s w h i t e women and t h e i r n a t u r a l a l l i e s , " h i s " b l a c k s , t h u s f o s t e r i n g f e a r but a l s o a t t r a c t i o n between the two p a r t i e s . We see t h i s theme of h e s i t a n t , f r a u g h t rapprochement of b l a c k and w h i t e t h r o u g h the ambiguous f i g u r e of the c o l o n i a l woman i n each o f the f o u r women w r i t e r s . I n S c h r e i n e r i t i s a t f i r s t b u r i e d i n her c h r o n i c l e of t h e o p p r e s s i o n of w h i t e women and c h i l d r e n . But i t emerges i n From Man t o Man, when Rebekah f i n a l l y makes common cause w i t h t h e A f r i c a n s . Dinesen's memoir i s a p l a t o n i c , but s e n s u a l l o v e a f f a i r w i t h the K i k u y u , M a s a i , and Somali t r i b e s p e o p l e , i n which c o n f l i c t s of a l l e g i a n c e a r e g r a c e f u l l y g l o s s e d o v e r . Even her d e s c r i p t i o n s of l i o n h u n t i n g i n which t h e l i o n m y s t i c a l l y i n v i t e s t h e h u n t e r ' s b u l l e t , t r a n s f o r m the k i l l i n g i n t o a communion between hun t e r and a n i m a l — a n d i n a l a r g e r sense between t h e European and A f r i c a . W h i l e D inesen's mystique of h u n t i n g can be t r a c e d t o her u p b r i n g i n g i n Denmark and t h e u p p e r - c l a s s p a s s i o n f o r h u n t i n g , i t i s i n A f r i c a an i m p e r i a l i s t g e s t u r e . Karen B l i x e n ' s h u n t i n g 25 as an a c t o f l o v e ( d e s c r i b e d u n c r i t i c a l l y by Dinesen) f i n d s an e e r i e echo i n Jacobus Coetzee's s h o o t i n g of A f r i c a n s ( d e s c r i b e d i r o n i c a l l y ) as m y s t i c a l communication/ when he p r o c l a i m s t h a t , "The gun i s our mediator w i t h the w o r l d . . ." ( 7 9 ) . Thus Co e t z e e ' s f i c t i o n exposes t h e v i o l e n t , i m p e r i a l i s t and m a s c u l i n -i s t a s p e c t of Dinesen's e t h i c . There i s a l s o a s i m i l a r i t y i n the r e l a t i o n between I s a k Dinesen and Karen B l i x e n , J.M. Coetzee and "Jacobus Coetzee," whose name s u g g e s t s he i s a t l e a s t an a n c e s t o r , i f not an a l t e r ego of h i s a u t h o r . However, Coetzee's d e p i c t i o n of h i s a n c e s t o r / a l t e r ego i s more c r i t i c a l and s e l f - a w a r e than i s Dinesen's of her f i c t i o n a l i z e d s e l f . There i s l e s s double meaning i n L e s s i n g ' s and Gordimer's e x p l i c a t i o n of t h e themes of communication and c o n n e c t i o n . For L e s s i n g ' s w h i t e c h a r a c t e r s the b l a c k s a r e i n s c r u t a b l e and u n r e a c h a b l e . Gordimer's w h i t e main c h a r a c t e r s l o n g and s t r a i n f o r s o r o r i t y or f r a t e r n i t y ; t h ey are b l o c k e d not so much by t h e i r mental and e m o t i o n a l l i m i t a t i o n s as by t h e p o l i t i c s of South A f r i c a . Thus, more and more, p o l i t i c s , l e g i s l a t i o n and h i s t o r y become the f o c u s of her f i c t i o n . The ambiguous, s e l f - d i v i d e d p o s i t i o n o f the w h i t e g i r l or woman i n c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y i s , t h e n , t h e i m p l i c i t theme of t h e women's w r i t i n g and w r i t i n g about women t h a t began w i t h O l i v e S c h r e i n e r . The female c h a r a c t e r s i n t h e s e books a r e i n t e r n a l b a t t l e g r o u n d s i n which the c o n f l i c t s of A f r i c a n c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y a re p l a y e d o u t , and a l s o meeting p l a c e s where i l l i c i t r e l a t i o n -s h i p s between the r a c e s can d e v e l o p . " I wanted t o be . . . the b r i d g e between," w r i t e s Magda i n her d i a r y . " I am the p l a c e 26 where something has o c c u r r e d , " i s Rosa B u r g e r ' s e p i g r a p h . In t h e i r s e a r c h f o r the female s e l f , t h e s e w r i t e r s d i s c o v e r the v i o l e n t h i s t o r y of t h e i r c o u n t r i e s . That t h e s e i d e n t i t y g u e s t s a r e not o n l y s t o r i e s of the s e l f , but s t o r i e s of n a t i o n a l and g e o g r a p h i c a l i d e n t i t y or the l a c k t h e r e o f i s shown by the t i t l e s : The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm, Out of A f r i c a , The  C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e , I n the Heart o f the C o u n t r y . The t i t l e B u r g e r ' s D a u g h t e r — t h a t i s , the daughter o f L i o n e l B u r g e r , but a l s o t h e daughter of t h e b u r g e r , t h e c i t i z e n — i n d i c a t e s Gordimer's c o n c e r n w i t h the l a r g e r i n h e r i t a n c e o f the South e r n A f r i c a n g i r l - c h i l d , a c o n c e r n which O l i v e S c h r e i n e r f i r s t embodied i n her orphaned, l a n d l e s s L y n d a l l . L y n d a l l and the c h a r a c t e r s who come a f t e r her do not p a r t a k e of t h e power and r i c h e s , the mastery of the male c o l o n i s t . They are c u r i o u s l y u n i m p l i c a t e d i n t h e v i o l e n c e of c o l o n i a l i s m : L y n d a l l i s f a t h e r l e s s ; Waldo i s the son o f a k i n d l y , v i c t i m i z e d worker; Martha Quest's f a t h e r i s dreamy and incompetent; Rosa's f a t h e r i s an i d e a l i z e d r e v o l u t i o n a r y , an enemy of the s t a t e . Karen B l i x e n i s a generous and e n t h u s i a s t i c but f a i l e d farmer who may r u l e and hunt as a k i n d of ho n o r a r y male, but who i d e n t i f i e s w i t h the r u l e d and hunted t h r o u g h her female v u l n e r a b i l i t y . As Stephen Gray s u g g e s t s i n Southern A f r i c a n L i t e r a t u r e : An  I n t r o d u c t i o n , t h e s e w r i t e r s i n t h e l i b e r a l t r a d i t i o n p o r t r a y the w h i t e f a i l u r e t o connect w i t h b l a c k A f r i c a n s and t o t a k e r o o t i n A f r i c a n s o i l . But t h e y go beyond a p o r t r a i t of a l i e n a t i o n ; t h e i r female c h a r a c t e r s a r e s y m b o l i c a l l y f r e e d o f the psycho-l o g i c a l l i m i t a t i o n s of the d o m i n a t i n g male, f r e e d of the 27 b a r r i e r s t h a t a gun, a l a n d deed, and a s a f e f u l l of g o l d pose to l o v e , u n d e r s t a n d i n g and e q u a l i t y . These c h a r a c t e r s g e n e r a l l y f a i l i n t h e i r q u e s t t o b u i l d a modest b r i d g e between the w h i t e and b l a c k w o r l d s , which i s not s u r p r i s i n g g i v e n t h e i r ambiguous p o s i t i o n i n t h e w h i t e w o r l d and t h e i r e q u i v o c a l p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the b l a c k w o r l d . Nor i s i t s u r p r i s i n g t h a t t hey g e n e r a l l y f a i l t o l i v e f r e e and f r u i t f u l l i v e s as t h e y v e n t u r e — a c t u a l l y or s y m b o l i c a l l y — f r o m the o p p r e s s i v e p r o t e c t i o n of t h e w h i t e f o r t r e s s i n t o t h e i n d i f f e r e n t or a c t i v e l y h o s t i l e t e r r i t o r y of the A f r i c a n s . L y n d a l l ' s q u e s t f o r p e r s o n a l freedom i s s u i c i d a l ; Waldo r e t u r n s t o t h e farm t o d i e of sorrow. Rebekah, i n one of the most o p t i m i s t i c e n d i n g s of any of t h e s e books, adopts a h a l f - c a s t e c h i l d and b e g i n s her own farm. But t h e economic r e a l i t i e s of f a r m i n g doom Karen B l i x e n ' s r u r a l p a r a d i s e . Mary Turner w i l l s her own death a t t h e hands of Moses, her b l a c k s e r v a n t and v i r t u a l l o v e r . Martha Quest c o n s t r u c t s an i m a g i n a r y c i t y of harmony on t h e v e l d , which she i s f o r e v e r unable t o r e c r e a t e i n S a l i s b u r y or London. Helen Shaw escapes on a s h i p t o Europe. Rosa f i n d s a form of j o y i n p r i s o n . Maureen Smales runs b l i n d l y toward a h e l i c o p t e r , no l o n g e r c a r i n g whether i t b e l o n g s t o t h e w h i t e or b l a c k a r m i e s . And Magda withdraws i n t o her farm house, c h o o s i n g t o d i e "here i n the p e t r i f i e d garden, b e h i n d l o c k e d g a t e s , near my f a t h e r ' s bones" ( I n t h e Heart of  the C o u n t r y 138). As Stephen Gray and o t h e r c r i t i c s have p o i n t e d o u t , s e t t i n g i n w h i t e S o u t h e r n A f r i c a n f i c t i o n s y m b o l i z e s the a l i e n a t i o n of the c h a r a c t e r s . The A f r i c a n l a n d r e j e c t s i t s c o l o n i s t s ; drought 28 i s a p r e v a l e n t metaphor, whereas r a i n — w h i c h i n A f r i c a means growth and l i f e — i s used i r o n i c a l l y t o emphasize the s t e r i l i t y of t h e w h i t e s . When the l o n g drought i n A f r i c a n Farm b r e a k s , r a i n and greenness h e r a l d d e a t h . I n The C o n s e r v a t i o n i s t , r a i n comes i n a f l o o d which sweeps away symbols of w h i t e power as i t g i v e s s y m b o l i c r e b i r t h t o b l a c k A f r i c a . The t i t l e s of two n o v e l s by Andre B r i n k , a South A f r i c a n whose work i s v e r y s i m i l a r t o G o r d i m e r ' s , show how g e n e r a l i s the imagery of drought and storm i n w h i t e Southern A f r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e : A Dry White Season ( 1 9 7 8 ) and Rumours of R a i n ( 1 9 7 9 ) . 1 1 S h e i l a Fugard's A R e v o l u t i o n a r y Woman (1983), t h e s t o r y of an a c t i v i s t t e a c h e r i n the time of Gandhi , s e t i n S c h r e i n e r ' s Karoo, i n v o k e s S c h r e i n e r ' s imagery and even S c h r e i n e r h e r s e l f , upon whom the h e r o i n e seems t o be modeled. Fugard's n o v e l , a l t h o u g h f l a w e d by o v e r w r i t i n g and r e p e t i t i o n , r e i n f o r c e s the " A f r i c a n Farm" themes and imagery, o f f e r i n g f u r t h e r p r o o f o f S c h r e i n e r ' s c o n t i n u i n g i n f l u e n c e . 1 2 As w h i t e South A f r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e becomes more p o l i t i c a l l y r a d i c a l , i n s t e p w i t h the r e s i s t a n c e movement and i t s v i o l e n t s u p p r e s s i o n by t h e government, the w r i t e r s d i s c o v e r i n t h e p a t t e r n of imagery i n h e r i t e d from S c h r e i n e r (who o n l y gave form t o the dreams and f e a r s a l r e a d y p r e s e n t i n t h e w h i t e - s e t t l e r psyche) the symbols of r e v o l u t i o n . T h i s symbolism, apparent i n B r i n k , Coetzee and L e s s i n g , i s most developed i n Gordimer. Throughout her f i c t i o n she has pursued the image o f w h i t e South A f r i c a as a g r a v e y a r d , c o n n e c t i n g d r y n e s s and s t e r i l i t y w i t h decadence and d e a t h . B l a c k South A f r i c a , o p p r e s s e d and 29 r e p r e s s e d , i s the b u r i e d body t h a t t h r e a t e n s , or p r o m i s e s , t o r i s e u p — t o i n u n d a t e and d e s t r o y , or t o r e v i v e and f e r t i l i z e — t he c o u n t r y of t h e w h i t e s . A r e l a t e d s y m b o l i c p a t t e r n emerging i n t h i s l i t e r a t u r e i s t h a t of the h e r o i n e as Eve, who, t a i n t e d by her w h i t e b l o o d , by her i n h e r i t e d p o s i t i o n of p r i v i l e g e , i s b a r r e d from the b l a c k A f r i c a n p a r a d i s e . The Eve metaphor, which i s developed most c l e a r l y i n L e s s i n g , but r e v e r b e r a t e s i n the work of the o t h e r w r i t e r s , i s a f i g u r a t i v e v e r s i o n of a p a r t h e i d , t h a t b a r r i e r a g a i n s t the b l a c k s which becomes, f i n a l l y , a t r a p i n which the w h i t e s are c a ught. What i s f o r L e s s i n g t h e p s y c h i c w a l l of a p a r t h e i d becomes f o r Gordimer a s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l w a l l i n a South A f r i c a i n which i t i s o f f i c i a l l y f o r b i d d e n t o e n t e r the b l a c k Townships and L o c a t i o n s , or t o have i n t i m a t e r e l a t i o n s h i p s on e q u a l terms w i t h non-white p e o p l e . We can t r a c e a g r a d u a l s h i f t i n f o c u s i n the " A f r i c a n Farm" l i t e r a t u r e from S c h r e i n e r t o Gordimer. S c h r e i n e r ' s almost e x c l u s i v e l y w h i t e w o r l d , i n which c o l o n i a l v i o l e n c e i s d i r e c t e d a t w h i t e women and c h i l d r e n , and o n l y i m p l i c i t l y at b l a c k s , i s t r a n s f o r m e d i n Gordimer's f i c t i o n i n t o a d i v i d e d w o r l d which the a l i e n a t e d , g u i l t y w h i t e s l o n g t o r e u n i t e : t h r o u g h l o v e and u n d e r s t a n d i n g (The L y i n g Days, A World of S t r a n g e r s , 1958) or v i o l e n t r e v o l u t i o n (The C o n s e r v a t i o n i s t , J u l y ' s P e o p l e ) or both ( B u r g e r ' s Daughter and A S p o r t o f N a t u r e ) . As South A f r i c a n h i s t o r y b o i l s t o what may be i t s f i n a l c r i s i s , t h e metaphors of drought and f l o o d , the b u r i e d body, and w h i t e Eve, which i n S c h r e i n e r and even i n L e s s i n g are symbols of vague unease and 30 u n f o c u s e d g u i l t , t a k e on c o n c r e t e p o l i t i c a l meaning. B l a c k c h a r a c t e r s , who a r e l a r g e l y absent i n S c h r e i n e r and two-d i m e n s i o n a l i n L e s s i n g , more f u l l y developed i n Dinesen but s t i l l a backdrop f o r the w h i t e h e r o i n e , become more c e n t r a l i n G ordimer, B r i n k and C o e t z e e . B l a c k h i s t o r y and c u l t u r e , which were p r e s e n t t o some e x t e n t i n the work of the e a r l i e r w r i t e r s , but o n l y i n terms of t h e w h i t e c h a r a c t e r s ' development, become major themes. Yet the attempt t o break down a p a r t h e i d i n w h i t e f i c t i o n o f the n i n e t e e n - s e v e n t i e s and e i g h t i e s has o c c u r r e d at a time when the p h y s i c a l and i d e o l o g i c a l g u l f between the r a c e s has i n c r e a s e d because of p o l i t i c a l and m i l i t a r y r e p r e s s i o n on the p a r t of the government, and movements toward autonomy w i t h i n the b l a c k community, such as B l a c k C o n s c i o u s n e s s . Thus w h i l e p r o g r e s s i v e w h i t e South A f r i c a n w r i t e r s may be f a r ahead of t h e i r government i n e n v i s i o n i n g the s h i f t of power from w h i t e m i n o r i t y t o b l a c k m a j o r i t y , they can do no more than f o l l o w b e h i n d the b l a c k community. I t i s i m p o s s i b l e f o r w h i t e w r i t e r s t o speak f o r or guide t h e i r countrymen; they remain i m p a s s i o n e d and endangered o b s e r v e r s . In h i s work on Gordimer, Stephen Clingman has c h r o n i c l e d her attempt t o surmount the growing b a r r i e r s between the r a c e s by means of i n c r e a s i n g l y r a d i c a l i m a g i n a t i v e s t r a t e g i e s . However the s u b t e x t of her r e c e n t w o r k — t h e theme which she cannot a l l o w h e r s e l f t o be f u l l y c o n s c i o u s o f i f she i s t o c o n t i n u e t o w r i t e — i s the i m p o s s i b i l i t y of t r a n s c e n d i n g r a c i a l i d e n t i t y . 31 I n my c o n c l u s i o n I examine changing r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s of b l a c k n e s s i n t h e " A f r i c a n Farm" w r i t e r s , u s i n g t h e i r s h o r t s t o r i e s , w h i c h , because t h e y do not f o c u s so e x c l u s i v e l y on t h e growth of the w h i t e h e r o i n e as the Bildungsromane do, c o n t a i n f u l l e r d e s c r i p t i o n s of b l a c k - w h i t e r e l a t i o n s h i p s . I a l s o l o o k b r i e f l y a t two non-white women w r i t e r s , B e s s i e Head (Maru, 1972) whose work c o n t a i n s i n t e r e s t i n g r e f e r e n c e s t o S c h r e i n e r , and M i r i a m T l a l i (Amandla, 1980), who i g n o r e s w h i t e c h a r a c t e r s and w h i t e l i t e r a r y r e f e r e n c e s t o f o c u s on contemporary b l a c k urban l i f e and the s t r u g g l e f o r freedom. Except f o r t h e mention of Head and T l a l i , whose f i c t i o n p r e s e n t s p o i n t s of comparison and c o n t r a s t w i t h the work o f S c h r e i n e r , D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g and Gordimer, I have e x c l u d e d b l a c k A f r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e from t h i s t h e s i s . 1 3 The l i t e r a t u r e t h a t began w i t h O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s A f r i c a n Farm e x p l o r e s t h e w h i t e A f r i c a n psyche. The l a n d s c a p e and n a t i v e i n h a b i t a n t s a r e d e p i c t e d from t h e p e r s p e c t i v e of the European s e t t l e r as e s s e n t i a l l y a l i e n . The w r i t e r s o f t h i s l i t e r a t u r e have l i t t l e i n common w i t h t h e i r b l a c k A f r i c a n c o u n t e r p a r t s , whose p o i n t of view, c u l t u r e , h i s t o r y and co n c e r n s a r e q u i t e d i f f e r e n t . Rowland S m i t h , who c h a r a c t e r i z e s v i o l e n c e as endemic t o South A f r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e as i t i s t o South A f r i c a n h i s t o r y , emphasizes the d i f f e r e n t t r e a t m e n t of v i o l e n c e i n b l a c k and w h i t e f i c t i o n . Whereas i n b l a c k f i c t i o n p o l i c e b r u t a l i t y i s "a c o n s t a n t , d a i l y r e a l i t y , " most w h i t e w r i t e r s "have remained o b s e r v e r s " ( " A l l a n Q u a r t e r m a i n t o Rosa B u r g e r : V i o l e n c e i n South A f r i c a n F i c t i o n " 177-178). 32 The g u l f between b l a c k and w h i t e South A f r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e i s e v i d e n c e of the power of a p a r t h e i d t o c r e a t e what are f o r the most p a r t s e p a r a t e c u l t u r e s . B l a c k South A f r i c a n w r i t e r s t e l l an u r g e n t , angry t a l e of o p p r e s s i o n and r e s i s t a n c e , f o r which they have most o f t e n employed the genres of a u t o b i o g r a p h y , the s h o r t s t o r y and p o e t r y . They have had l i t t l e a c c e s s t o main-stream p u b l i s h e r s , not t o mention the e d u c a t i o n a l system or the c u l t u r a l e s t a b l i s h m e n t . In the c u r r e n t p o l i t i c a l c l i m a t e they r e l y i n c r e a s i n g l y on o r a l performance. Because of. t h e i r p o t e n t i a l mass audie n c e w i t h i n the c o u n t r y t h e y a r e p e r c e i v e d by the a u t h o r i t i e s as more dangerous than w h i t e l i b e r a l w r i t e r s i n E n g l i s h , who have a much s m a l l e r and l e s s p o l i t i c a l l y e x p l o s i v e r e a d e r s h i p . S e r i o u s b l a c k w r i t e r s , t h e r e f o r e , have u s u a l l y been s u p p r e s s e d : c e n s o r e d , i m p r i s o n e d , e x i l e d or k i l l e d ; s e v e r a l have t a k e n t h e i r own l i v e s . 1 4 There i s , t h e n , no c o u n t e r p a r t i n b l a c k South A f r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e t o the l e i s u r e l y , i n t r o s p e c t i v e n o v e l s of the s a f e , p r i v i l e g e d and i s o l a t e d w h i t e m i n o r i t y . And the post-independence l i t e r a t u r e of b l a c k A f r i c a i n g e n e r a l has a d i f f e r e n t agenda, d i f f e r e n t models, s t y l e s and p r e o c c u p a t i o n s than t h a t of w h i t e c o l o n i a l A f r i c a . To t a k e one example, the Kenyan n o v e l i s t Ngugi wa Thiong'o u n d e r s c o r e s the g u l f between h i s A f r i c a n e x p e r i e n c e and v i s i o n of h i s c o u n t r y and Dinesen's e x p a t r i a t e , c o l o n i a l v i s i o n when i n Homecoming he c r i t i c i z e s her r a c i s t a t t i t u d e s . 33 Of the f o u r women w r i t e r s , Gordimer comes c l o s e s t t o b r e a k i n g through the b a r r i e r s of l i t e r a r y a p a r t h e i d , a l t h o u g h she cannot f u l l y escape her a l i e n a t e d s t a t u s as a w h i t e South A f r i c a n . I n f l u e n c e d by b l a c k w r i t e r s and t h e o r i s t s (such as Chinua Achebe and F r a n t z Fanon) she i s now a t t e m p t i n g t o b r i d g e the gap between w h i t e c o l o n i a l and A f r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e , as S c h r e i n e r , D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g , and Gordimer h e r s e l f , have b r i d g e d the gap between c o l o n i a l and m e t r o p o l i t a n l i t e r a t u r e by b r i n g i n g A f r i c a n c o l o n i a l e x p e r i e n c e i n t o the mainstream of A n g l o -American f i c t i o n . Gordimer's f i c t i o n , t h e n , i s e x t e n d i n g , and perhaps c o n c l u d i n g ( f o r she w i l l p r o b a b l y be one of the l a s t w h i t e South A f r i c a n , as opposed t o A z a n i a n , w r i t e r s ) the work t h a t S c h r e i n e r began i n The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm. I t i s n o t a b l e t h a t even the more r a d i c a l w h i t e f i c t i o n of the s e v e n t i e s and e i g h t i e s c o n t i n u e s t o r e f e r t o and r e i n t e r p r e t S c h r e i n e r . Gordimer's C o n s e r v a t i o n i s t and J u l y ' s P e o p l e , C oetzee's I n the Heart of the C o u n t r y and L i f e and Times of  M i c h a e l K, B r i n k ' s Rumours of R a i n and A Chain of V o i c e s , and S h e i l a Fugard's A R e v o l u t i o n a r y Woman r e t u r n t o the " A f r i c a n Farm" as t h e microcosm of c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y i n which v i o l e n c e c h a r a c t e r i z e s the r e l a t i o n s between s e t t l e r and l a n d , master and s e r v a n t , man and w i f e , p a r e n t and c h i l d . In t h e s e n o v e l s as i n S c h r e i n e r ' s the c o l o n i z e d l a n d t a k e s revenge on the s e t t l e r , s y m b o l i z i n g the l a t e n t power of the oppressed A f r i c a n s who r i s e up t o r e c l a i m t h e i r farm, t h e i r c o u n t r y . 34 Notes - I n t r o d u c t i o n I s a n d r a M. G i l b e r t and Susan Gubar pursue t h i s l i n e o f thought i n The Madwoman i n the A t t i c : The Woman W r i t e r and the  N i n e t e e n t h C e n t u r y L i t e r a r y I m a g i n a t i o n , t h e i r p o i n t of depar-t u r e b e i n g H a r o l d Bloom's t h e o r y of "the a n x i e t y of i n f l u e n c e . " They argue t h a t i n women's l i t e r a t u r e i n f l u e n c e i s b e n i g n r a t h e r t h a n f r a u g h t w i t h j e a l o u s y a g a i n s t t h e f a t h e r - f i g u r e , as Bloom c l a i m s f o r male w r i t e r s . ( G i l b e r t and Guber 46-53; Bloom, The  A n x i e t y o f I n f l u e n c e : A Theory of P o e t r y ) . 2The i d e a s of a c o n t i n u o u s women's t r a d i t i o n i s pursued i n G i l b e r t and Gubar, as w e l l as i n E l a i n e S h o w a l t e r , A L i t e r a t u r e  of t h e i r Own: B r i t i s h Women N o v e l i s t s from B r o n t e t o L e s s i n g , P a t r i c i a Meyer S p a c k s , The Female I m a g i n a t i o n ; and E l l e n Moers, L i t e r a r y Women. ^ s h o w a l t e r sees S c h r e i n e r as an exemplar of e a r l y B r i t i s h f e m i n i s t l i t e r a t u r e . 4 S e e Stephen Gray. S o u t h e r n A f r i c a n L i t e r a t u r e : An I n t r o -d u c t i o n , O l i v e S c h r e i n e r and A f t e r , ed. Ma l v e r n Van Wyk Smith and Don Maclennan, and Stephen Clingman, The N o v e l s of Nadine  Gordimer: H i s t o r y from the I n s i d e . 5 A f r i c a n Farm, wrote Woolf, has the " a s t o u n d i n g v i v i d n e s s " of t he B r o n t e n o v e l s , but " i t has the l i m i t a t i o n s of t h o s e e g o t i s t i c a l m a s t e r p i e c e s w i t h o u t a f u l l measure of t h e i r s t r e n g t h . " 6 R u t h Prawer J h a b v a l a ' s Heat and Dust, s e t i n I n d i a , i s an i n t e r e s t i n g companion p i e c e t o the n o v e l s of L e s s i n g and Gordimer, f o r i t i s about the r e l a t i o n o f the p o s t - c o l o n i a l daughter ( l i t e r a l l y t he s t e p - g r a n d d a u g h t e r ) t o her c o l o n i a l f o r e - m o t h e r , as w e l l as about the d i f f i c u l t p o s i t i o n o f the r e b e l l i o u s woman s e t t l e r caught between her a l l e g i a n c e t o her own c u l t u r e and r a c e and her a t t r a c t i o n t o the o t h e r . The contemporary n a r r a t o r of J h a b v a l a ' s n o v e l i s a w r i t e r who g a i n s a c c e s s t o t h e c o l o n i a l I n d i a of her g r e a t - a u n t through her g r e a t - a u n t ' s w r i t i n g (her l e t t e r s ) w h i l e she r e c o r d s i n her j o u r n a l her own l o v e a f f a i r w i t h I n d i a — a n d f o l l o w i n g her a n c e s t r e s s , w i t h an I n d i a n . Her ques t p a r a l l e l s L e s s i n g ' s and Gordimer's r e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s o f S c h r e i n e r and Dine s e n through t h e i r a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l c h a r a c t e r s . The t i t l e of J h a b v a l a ' s s e l e c t e d s t o r i e s , Out of I n d i a ( 1 9 8 6 ) , i s f u r t h e r e v i d e n c e o f the p a r a l l e l s between her work and t h a t of t h e A f r i c a n w r i t e r s . ^ M a r t i n S wales, The German Bildungsroman from W i e l a n d t o  Hesse; Jerome H. B u c k l e y , Season of Youth: the Bildungsroman  from D i c k e n s t o G o l d i n g . 35 ^ i n "The S m a l l P e r s o n a l V o i c e " L e s s i n g d e s c r i b e s C h i l d r e n  of V i o l e n c e as i n the n i n e t e e n t h - c e n t u r y r e a l i s t t r a d i t i o n . In the "Author's Notes" t o the Four-Gated C i t y she d e s c r i b e s the n o v e l as a B ildungsroman i n the German t r a d i t i o n ( 6 5 5 ) . I n What  Happened t o B u r g e r ' s Daughter Gordimer d i s c u s s e s B u r g e r ' s  Daughter i n terms s i m i l a r t o L e s s i n g ' s d i s c u s s i o n of The Four- Gated C i t y i n "The S m a l l P e r s o n a l V o i c e . " V a r i o u s r e v i e w e r s and c r i t i c s have a n a l y z e d C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e , The L y i n g Days, and B u r g e r ' s Daughter as Bildungsromane. ^Marianne J u h l and Bo Haken J ^ r g e n s e n , i n Diana's Revenge:  Two L i n e s i n I s a k Dinesen's A u t h o r s h i p , see the theme of woman's freedom as c e n t r a l i n her work, c i t i n g the p o w e r f u l A r t e m i s / Diana imagery i n Out of A f r i c a . -*- uGordimer, f o r one, has e x p r e s s e d her a d m i r a t i o n f o r T u r b o t t Wolfe ( i n " L i v i n g i n the Interregnum" 2 4 ) . Clingman p o i n t s out t h a t Gordimer i s fond of q u o t i n g Plomer's statement i n T u r b o t t Wolfe t h a t the s o - c a l l e d n a t i v e q u e s t i o n , " i s n ' t a q u e s t i o n . I t ' s an answer" (The N o v e l s of Nadine Gordimer 6 ) . He sees Plomer as the second major i n f l u e n c e on her work a f t e r S c h r e i n e r . ^ B r i n k ' s Rumours of R a i n , about an A f r i k a n e r i n d u s t r i a l i s t whose s e c u r e w o r l d i s g r a d u a l l y d e s t r o y e d by the d e f e c t i o n of h i s m i s t r e s s and son t o the o p p o s i t i o n , has s t r o n g s i m i l a r i t i e s t o the p l o t of Gordimer's The C o n s e r v a t i o n i s t . B r i n k , from the p e r s p e c t i v e of a male and an A f r i k a n e r , i s e s s e n t i a l l y w r i t i n g the same book as Gordimer, f o l l o w i n g the l e a d of her e a r l y work, and of such anglophone p r e d e c e s s o r s as S c h r e i n e r , Plomer and L e s s i n g . 12T have e x c l u d e d the E a s t A f r i c a n E l s p e t h H u x l e y , whose Flame Trees of T h i k a (1959) i s t o my mind a r e l a t i v e l y minor c o n t r i b u t i o n t o the s t o r i e s of an A f r i c a n farm. A r e c e n t n o v e l s e t i n w h i t e - s e t t l e r Kenya, L o u i s a Dawkins' N a t i v e s and  S t r a n g e r s (1985), a more p r o g r e s s i v e update of H u x l e y , echoes the themes of i d e n t i f i c a t i o n and e x i l e i n the " A f r i c a n Farm" t e x t s , but does not add t o t h e s e t e x t s . I have a l s o e x c l u d e d the South A f r i c a n s P a u l i n e Smith and Sarah G e r t r u d e M i l l i n . Smith's c o l l e c t i o n of s t o r i e s The L i t t l e Karoo (1925) and n o v e l The Beadle (1926) do not go beyond an a p p r e c i a t i v e p o r t r a i t of Boer f o l k l i f e . M i l l i n , b e s t known f o r God's S t e p c h i l d r e n (1924) was a p r o l i f i c and i n f l u e n t i a l minor n o v e l i s t who was an a p o l o g i s t f o r r a c i s m . The work of t h e s e w r i t e r s , c o n t r i b u t e s l i t t l e t o the p o r t r a i t of c o l o n i a l A f r i c a from a women's p e r s p e c t i v e p a i n t e d by S c h r e i n e r , D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g and Gordimer. I have a l s o e x c l u d e d A l a n P a t o n ; w h i l e h i s Cry the B e l o v e d  C o u n t r y (1948) awakened an i n t e r n a t i o n a l r e a d i n g p u b l i c t o the p l i g h t of South A f r i c a ' s b l a c k s , i t now reads as o v e r l y s e n t i m e n t a l , p a t r o n i z i n g and i r r e l e v a n t , w i t h i t s message of C h r i s t i a n c h a r i t y and r e s i g n a t i o n . In c o n t r a s t t o Gordimer's 3 6 l i t e r a r y e v o l u t i o n , which i s l i n k e d t o c o n s c i o u s p o l i t i c a l e v o l u t i o n , P a ton's o u t d a t e d l i b e r a l i s m has l o s t t o u c h w i t h the c u r r e n t p o l i t i c a l r e a l i t i e s ; as a r e s u l t he has not developed as f u l l y as a w r i t e r . I ^ A S t o the q u e s t i o n o f why I have not i n c l u d e d o t h e r w r i t e r s , o t h e r t e x t s , I have l i m i t e d m y s e l f t o w r i t e r s of s i g n i f i c a n c e and i n t e r n a t i o n a l s t a t u r e who t r e a t t h e i r s u b j e c t s e r i o u s l y , c r i t i c a l l y , and from p e r s o n a l knowledge. I e x c l u d e w r i t i n g about A f r i c a by eminent s t r a n g e r s , t r a v e l e r s , and so-j o u r n e r s , such as Joseph Conrad, whose Heart of Darkness ( 1 9 0 2 ) of c o u r s e haunts a l l w h i t e w r i t i n g about A f r i c a ; Graham Greene (The H e a r t of the M a t t e r ) ; Margaret Laurence (The Tomorrow Tamer); V.S. N a i p a u l (A Bend i n t h e R i v e r ) , and many o t h e r European, American and Commonwealth n o v e l s and s t o r i e s . 1 4 T o t a k e one example of a well-known non-white South A f r i c a n n o v e l i s t , A l e x La Guma, who was born i n 1 9 2 5 i n a " c o l o u r e d " s e c t i o n o f Capetown, s u f f e r e d imprisonment, house a r r e s t and banning u n t i l h i s escape from South A f r i c a i n 1 9 6 6 . A l l of h i s n o v e l s , from A Walk i n t h e N i g h t ( 1 9 6 2 ) t o The Time  of t h e B u t c h e r b i r d ( 1 9 8 1 ) have been p u b l i s h e d o u t s i d e South A f r i c a ; the p e o p l e about whom and f o r whom he wrote cannot read him. (See " A l e x La Guma, The G e n e r a t i o n of M a r g i n a l F i c t i o n " i n JanMohamed, Manichean A e s t h e t i c s . ) Other w r i t e r s who were e x i l e d and banned i n the p o s t - S h a r p e v i l l e e r a were Can Themba, Nat Nakasa, L e w i s N k o s i and E z e k i e l M p h a h l e l e ; Nakasa committed s u i c i d e abroad w h i l e Themba and La Guma have d i e d . 37 Chapter Two O l i v e S c h r e i n e r : Eve D i v i d e d The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s A f r i c a n farm i s i n i m i c a l t o the p e r s o n a l and c r e a t i v e f l o w e r i n g of her a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l h e r o i n e and hero. H o s t i l i t y i s embodied i n the c r u e l d e s e r t l a n d of the Karoo, as w e l l as i n the farm's Boer m i s t r e s s , Tant' S a n n i e , and i t s B r i t i s h e x p l o i t e r , Bonaparte B l e n k i n s . Cunning and d e c e i t , e n f o r c e d by the whip and the p r o p e r t y deed, p r e v a i l over f a i r n e s s and t r u s t . S c h r e i n e r does not d e a l d i r e c t l y w i t h the v i o l e n c e of the w h i t e i n v a d e r a g a i n s t the A f r i c a n p e o p l e , as her s u c c e s s o r s have done. I n s t e a d she f o c u s e s on the v i o l e n c e of the s e t t l e r c u l t u r e a g a i n s t i t s own c h i l d r e n , i n p a r t i c u l a r i t s female c h i l d r e n . Both L y n d a l l and Waldo a r e , e s s e n t i a l l y , female c h a r a c t e r s whose v i c t i m i z a t i o n , r e b e l l i o n , and f i n a l punishment a r e based on t h e i r gender. T h e i r orphaned, p r o p e r t y -l e s s s t a t u s removes them from a d u l t p r o t e c t i o n and r e n d e r s them e x p l o i t a b l e . Waldo's a r t i s t i c s e n s i t i v i t y and L y n d a l l ' s i c o n o c l a s m t h r e a t e n the c o n v e n t i o n a l o r d e r , and c o n s e q u e n t l y the two are r u t h l e s s l y s u p p r e s s e d . C l e a r l y t h e s e c h a r a c t e r s a r e v e r s i o n s of the young author h e r s e l f ; S c h r e i n e r i n d i c t s c o l o n i a l South A f r i c a by p o r t r a y i n g i t s d e s t r u c t i v e e f f e c t s upon her own growth and t a l e n t . S c h r e i n e r ' s s t a r t i n g p o i n t i n The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm was her own c h i l d h o o d . She was o p p r e s s e d by her E n g l i s h mother's narrow C a l v i n i s m , which her German f a t h e r , g e n t l e but 38 weak, d i d not oppose. O l i v e E m i l y A l b e r t i n a ( g r i m l y named f o r her t h r e e dead b r o t h e r s ) was a s t r o n g - w i l l e d and i m a g i n a t i v e c h i l d who v e r y e a r l y f o r m u l a t e d her own i d e a s i n o p p o s i t i o n t o her p a r e n t s , e s p e c i a l l y t o her c o l d , t y r a n n i c a l mother. Her at h e i s m and sympathy f o r t h e A f r i k a n e r s were t o some e x t e n t a r e a c t i o n a g a i n s t her mother's m i l i t a n t Nonconformism and h a r d l y l e s s m i l i t a n t assumption of E n g l i s h s u p e r i o r i t y . One of the worst e p i s o d e s i n O l i v e ' s c h i l d h o o d was her b e i n g s e v e r e l y beaten f o r u t t e r i n g t he A f r i k a a n s e x c l a m a t i o n , "Ach!" ( F i r s t and S c o t t 4 8 ) . Her fe m i n i s m , as e v i d e n c e d i n the c h a r a c t e r of L y n d a l l , was a complex response t o her mother and t o both the p e r s o n a l and p o l i t i c a l c i r c u m s t a n c e s of her c h i l d h o o d i n the c o l o n i e s t h a t B r i t a i n was c o n s o l i d a t i n g by f o r c e i n Southern A f r i c a . Born i n 1855, O l i v e was t h e n i n t h o f t w e l v e c h i l d r e n , seven of whom s u r v i v e d ; her e a r l y c h i l d h o o d was spent on remote m i s s i o n s t a t i o n s on the f r o n t i e r s of the c o l o n y . When O l i v e was tw e l v e her f a m i l y was d i s p e r s e d as a r e s u l t of her f a t h e r ' s d i s m i s s a l from h i s m i s s i o n a r y p o s t f o r c o r r u p t i o n and incom-p e t e n c e . O l i v e l i v e d w i t h her o l d e r s i s t e r s and b r o t h e r s , one of whom took her t o the r e c e n t l y opened Diamond F i e l d s , and she worked i n t e r m i t t e n t l y as a governess on Boer farms i n the Karoo and o t h e r p a r t s o f the Cape Co l o n y . The S t o r y o f an A f r i c a n  Farm, O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s f i r s t p u b l i s h e d n o v e l , was begun i n 1875 and f i n i s h e d i n 1881 when she l e f t South A f r i c a f o r the f i r s t of s e v e r a l s o j o u r n s i n Engla n d . 39 Rodney Davenport, d e s c r i b i n g the p o l i t i c a l c o n t e x t of the n o v e l , w r i t e s : I t would have been hard f o r O l i v e S c h r e i n e r , a f t e r a c h i l d h o o d spent i n m i s s i o n s t a t i o n s , not t o be aware of the emerging r a c i a l t e n s i o n s o f South e r n A f r i c a n s o c i e t y , e s p e c i a l l y d u r i n g the 1870s, t h a t p e r i o d of major c o n f r o n t a t i o n and f r o n t i e r war. She had t o move from t h e farm a t R a t e l Hoek d u r i n g t h e war of 1877 (" O l i v e S c h r e i n e r and South A f r i c a n P o l i t i c s " 1 03). I t was a p e r i o d of w h i t e e x p a n s i o n i n t o b l a c k t e r r i t o r i e s , v i o l e n t c o n f r o n t a t i o n between A f r i c a n s and Europeans, and t e r r i t o r i a l c o n f l i c t between the B r i t i s h and the A f r i k a n e r s . A f r i c a n Farm does not d e a l d i r e c t l y w i t h t h e s e r a c i a l and e t h n i c t e n s i o n s ; i t i s an a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l n o v e l which f o c u s e s on the i n n e r l i v e s of the two main c h a r a c t e r s , but t h e r e i s an under-c u r r e n t of v i o l e n c e and r e b e l l i o n which i s perhaps one o f t h e reaso n s why South A f r i c a n c r i t i c s c o n t i n u e t o see i t as a c e n t r a l t e x t , even the c e n t r a l t e x t i n t h e i r l i t e r a t u r e . 1 S c h r e i n e r ' s b e s t r e c e n t b i o g r a p h e r s , Ruth F i r s t and Ann S c o t t , 2 i n t e r p r e t p o l i t i c s i n the n o v e l t h u s : The European f r o n t i e r s o c i e t y i n s u l a t e d i t s e l f from the i n d i g e n o u s s o c i e t y but i n t e r n a l i z e d the v i o l e n c e i t used a g a i n s t i t ; hence the v i o l e n c e o f Bonaparte and Tant' S a n n i e ' s b e h a v i o u r . . . . O l i v e was w r i t i n g . . . about what c o l o n i a l i s m d i d t o w h i t e s , and i n her n o v e l the c h i l d r e n a r e both symbol and e x p r e s s i o n of t h a t system and i t s consequences ( 9 7 ) . L y n d a l l (as w e l l as Rebekah, the h e r o i n e o f From Man t o Man) t a k e s her name from O l i v e ' s mother, Rebecca L y n d a l l . She i s an i d e a l i z e d v e r s i o n o f the young a u t h o r , but a l s o o f her unhappy mother. As t h e c l e v e r and a m b i t i o u s Rebecca L y n d a l l c o u l d not escape her f a t e as a domesti c t y r a n t w i t h t o o many 40 c h i l d r e n , i n an a l i e n and h o s t i l e l a n d , so L y n d a l l , f o r a l l her f i r e and b r i l l i a n c e , cannot escape her woman's f a t e , and so O l i v e S c h r e i n e r f e a r e d t h a t she would not escape h e r s . The orphan L y n d a l l ' s o r i g i n s a r e m y s t e r i o u s ; she i s d e s c r i b e d as a s p i r i t of the m o o n l i g h t , " g o l d e n , " " e t h e r e a l , " and " e l f i n , " as a b e w i t c h e d p r i n c e s s t r a p p e d on the s u r r e a l -i s t i c a l l y h o r r i f i c o s t r i c h farm and as an Undine: p a r t human, p a r t f a i r y . Her h e r o i n e ' s m a g i c a l o r i g i n r e f l e c t s S c h r e i n e r ' s view of h e r s e l f as a c h i l d : she was an a l i e n spark of i m a g i n a -t i o n and i n t e l l e c t f a l l e n among s a d i s t i c " p h i l i s t i n e s , " as she c a l l e d her countrymen.3 S c h r e i n e r ' s f i r s t n o v e l , an immature a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l work p u b l i s h e d posthumously, was c a l l e d U n d i n e . 4 L y n d a l l , l i k e i t s h e r o i n e , Undine, i s d e s c r i b e d m e t a p h o r i c a l l y as a s u p e r n a t u r a l c r e a t u r e out of her element, but bound t o the n a t u r a l w o r l d by her human s o u l , which i s r e p r e s e n t e d by Waldo, her male c o u n t e r -p a r t , companion, a l t e r ego. Whereas she i s o f the a i r , he i s o f the e a r t h ; he r e p r e s e n t s her bond t o the s o i l , r o c k s and a n i m a l s of the farm she t r i e s t o l e a v e b e h i n d . A c t u a l l y i t i s the d a r k , s t o c k y , w i l d - l o o k i n g Waldo r a t h e r than the d e l i c a t e , e t h e r e a l L y n d a l l who more resembles the young O l i v e ; i t i s t h rough Waldo's r e a d i n g and t h i n k i n g t h a t S c h r e i n e r t r a c e s her own p a i n f u l , l a b o r i o u s s t r u g g l e t o educate h e r s e l f . The use of the Undine metaphor, the name Waldo, and the pseudonym "Ralph I r o n " under which O l i v e S c h r e i n e r f i r s t p u b l i s h e d A f r i c a n Farm i n d i c a t e her r e a d i n g up t o t h a t p o i n t . She was i n f l u e n c e d by German and E n g l i s h Romanticism and 41 American T r a n s c e n d e n t a l i s m (Ralph Waldo Emerson) as w e l l as H e r b e r t Spencer, C h a r l e s Darwin, and John S t u a r t M i l l , w h i c h — through W a l d o — e n t e r the p l o t of A f r i c a n Farm. Waldo d i s c o v e r s a box of books and r e v e r e n t l y b e g i n s t o read M i l l ' s P o l i t i c a l  Economy. The book i s a door which opens onto a new w o r l d , and which i s then shut f o r e v e r when Tant' Sannie e x c o r i a t e s the " d e v i l ' s book" and Bonaparte B l e n k i n s c e r e m o n i a l l y burns i t (113-14). S c h r e i n e r ' s c r i t i c s have r e c o g n i z e d the i m p o r t a n c e of books i n her n o v e l . For Stephen Gray, M i l l , Darwin, Emerson and Spencer " s e t up such a n t i p a t h i e s w i t h i n t h e f a b r i c of the n o v e l t h a t p a r t of i t s l i v e l i n e s s i s d e r i v e d from her a t t e m p t s t o r e s o l v e them i n t o a t o t a l whole" (Southern A f r i c a n L i t e r a t u r e 149). For F i r s t and S c o t t , t h i s attempt a t r e s o l u t i o n t h r ough Spencer's i d e a o f the u n i t y of Nature l e a d s t o L y n d a l l and Waldo's d i s t u r b i n g and u n c o n v i n c i n g embrace of death (59-60). These comments i n d i c a t e the c e n t r a l r o l e of books i n A f r i c a n  Farm, which i n t u r n r e f l e c t s t h e i r i mportance t o the a u t h o r : as a s u b s t i t u t e f o r s c h o o l , c o n v e r s a t i o n , even f r i e n d s . Because S c h r e i n e r read so few books, we can see the i n f l u e n c e of t h o s e she d i d r e a d . For i n s t a n c e , the B i b l e i n f l u e n c e d her p r o s e s t y l e , which i s sonorous, r h y t h m i c , and tends t o r e p e a t r e f r a i n s , as i n t h i s passage from A f r i c a n Farm: At l a s t came the year of the g r e a t d r o u g h t , t h e year of 1862. From end t o end of the l a n d the e a r t h c r i e d f o r w a t e r . Man and b e a s t t u r n e d t h e i r eyes t o the p i t i l e s s s k y , t h a t l i k e the r o o f of some b r a z e n oven a r c h e d overhead. On t h e farm, day a f t e r day, month a f t e r month, the water i n the dams f e l l lower and l o w e r , the sheep d i e d i n the f i e l d s . . . ( 4 4 ) . 42 We a l s o know t h a t she read D i c k e n s ; c e r t a i n l y t h e r e a re D i c k e n s i a n c a r i c a t u r e s , such as Bonaparte B l e n k i n s , and S c h r e i n e r ' s use of the c h i l d ' s p o i n t of view i s a l s o D i c k e n s i a n (as w e l l as R o m a n t i c ) . The i n f l u e n c e of D i c k e n s i s apparent i n her s e n t i m e n t a l i z a t i o n of L y n d a l l ' s d e a t h . There are a l s o s t r o n g s i m i l a r i t i e s between A f r i c a n Farm and Wuthering H e i g h t s ( e s p e c i a l l y t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p between L y n d a l l and Waldo), as w e l l as The M i l l on the F l o s s (Waldo's r e l i g i o u s c r i s i s , t he c h a r a c t e r of L y n d a l l ) and Jane E y r e ( L y n d a l l a g a i n , but more p a r t i c u l a r l y the c r u e l t r e a t m e n t of the orphan c h i l d r e n ) , a l t h o u g h t h e r e i s no e v i d e n c e t h a t S c h r e i n e r had read the B r o n t e s or George E l i o t . 5 O l i v e S c h r e i n e r , l i k e Waldo, escaped from the b r u t a l , s t i f l i n g atmosphere of her h o u s e h o l d i n t o s c i e n t i f i c s t u d y and m y s t i c a l c o n t e m p l a t i o n o f her n a t u r a l s u r r o u n d i n g s . I n the n o m i n a l l y m a s c u l i n e , but e s s e n t i a l l y s e x l e s s c h a r a c t e r of Waldo, S c h r e i n e r r e p r e s e n t s t h a t a s p e c t of i n t e l l e c t u a l and a r t i s t i c development which she p r e f e r s t o see as androgynous, whereas i n L y n d a l l she r e p r e s e n t s the s p e c i f i c problems o f the r e b e l l i o u s and a m b i t i o u s f e m a l e . The l i n k e d d e v e l o p m e n t — a n d shared f a t e — of the two c h a r a c t e r s form a t r a g i c p o r t r a i t of the s e l f - d i v i d e d female a r t i s t . L y n d a l l i s b e a u t i f u l , e l o q u e n t , and courageous; Waldo i s an o r i g i n a l t h i n k e r and n a t u r a l a r t i s t who i s g r a n t e d the g r e a t e r freedom and o p p o r t u n i t y of the male. Yet d i v i d e d as they a re i n t o two c h a r a c t e r s , they a r e both i n c o m p l e t e , and both too weak t o s u r v i v e the w o r l d ' s c r u e l t y . L y n d a l l i s r e s t l e s s and d i s c o n t e n t e d ; her f e m i n i s t anger i s unf o c u s e d . She cannot r e a l i z e her a m b i t i o n s because she i s f e m a l e , and so l o o k s t o her 43 male c o u n t e r p a r t Waldo t o c r e a t e , t o a c t , t o a c h i e v e what she c annot. Waldo mediates between L y n d a l l and the w o r l d , between the i d e a l and the r e a l . He i s l i k e Undine's human s o u l , o n l y S c h r e i n e r has t r a n s l a t e d the Undine myth i n t o f e m i n i s t terms: L y n d a l l i s a woman who t r i e s t o e n t e r the male-dominated p a t r i a r c h a l w o r l d . L i k e Undine, both she and her male " s o u l " Waldo are doomed. L y n d a l l and Waldo's r e l a t i o n s h i p i n t e r e s t i n g l y p r e f i g u r e s the p l a t o n i c r e l a t i o n s h i p t h a t S c h r e i n e r was t o have w i t h Havelock E l l i s . L y n d a l l says t o Waldo: When I am w i t h you I never know t h a t I am a woman and you a r e a man; I o n l y know t h a t we are both t h i n g s t h a t t h i n k . Other men . . . are mere b o d i e s t o me; but you a r e a s p i r i t . . . ( 2 1 0 ) . Waldo i s a p e r s e c u t e d earthbound s p i r i t , a s c i e n t i s t , i n v e n t o r , p h i l o s o p h e r , and a r t i s t , whose crude wood c a r v i n g s e x p r e s s h i s y e a r n i n g v i s i o n s . However, he i s a d i s c o n c e r t i n g l y weak c h a r a c t e r who i s e x p l o i t e d , even t o r t u r e d by the v i l l a i n s of the n o v e l . H i s s u r v i v i n g work of a r t i s , f i t t i n g l y , a g r a v e p o s t f o r h i s f a t h e r (a k i n d l y German who resembles O l i v e ' s f a t h e r ) . A l t h o u g h he, i n c o n t r a s t t o L y n d a l l , has the o p p o r t u n i t y t o make h i s own way i n t h e w o r l d o u t s i d e t h e farm, i n t h e end he r e t u r n s c r u s h e d and d i s i l l u s i o n e d by the w o r l d ' s c r u e l t y . When L y n d a l l i s r e a b s o r b e d , U n d i n e - l i k e , i n t o the s u p e r n a t u r a l element, Waldo too l e t s go h i s tenuous h o l d on l i f e and f o l l o w s h e r . The a u t h o r t r i e s t o c omfort the r e a d e r , and h e r s e l f , w i t h the ( S p e n c e r i a n ) s u g g e s t i o n t h a t out of the death and s u f f e r i n g of t h e s e i n d i v i d u a l s grows the c o l l e c t i v e l i f e of n a t u r e . But even t h i s i s u ndercut by the c o u n t e r - s u g g e s t i o n t h a t the b e l i e f i n a 44 s p i r i t t h a t l i v e s on i n n a t u r e i s but another p i p e dream t h a t h e l p s t o d u l l the p a i n o f l i v i n g i n "the cankered l i t t l e kingdom of the t a n g i b l e " (291). The c h a r a c t e r of L y n d a l l c a r r i e s S c h r e i n e r ' s f e m i n i s t message, Waldo her a r t i s t i c message. Together they embody the i n g r e d i e n t s t h a t S c h r e i n e r f e l t had formed her own p e r s o n a l i t y . I n L y n d a l l she t r i e s t o g i v e shape t o her s t r o n g mother's p r o t o -f e m i n i s m . Waldo has the weakness, the p a s s i v i t y t h a t she f e a r e d she might have i n h e r i t e d from her f a t h e r ; t h r o u g h him she a l s o r e p r e s e n t s the i n t e l l e c t u a l hunger t h a t found l i t t l e sympathy i n her f a m i l y , and t h a t , l o g i c a l l y f o r her time and p l a c e , she o b j e c t i f i e d as male. But the a r t i s t - i n t e l l e c t u a l i s bound t o a woman's body, as Waldo i s p o r t r a y e d as bound t o , dependent upon L y n d a l l , and so unable t o s u r v i v e i n male-dominated s o c i e t y . I n the " L y n d a l l " c h a p t e r , the t h e m a t i c c e n t e r of the n o v e l , t h i s female dilemma i s expounded upon a t l e n g t h , w i t h g r e a t w i t as w e l l as anger. The s i x t e e n - y e a r - o l d has r e t u r n e d t o the farm r a d i c a l i z e d by her e x p e r i e n c e of a g i r l s ' s c h o o l . In a much-quoted monologue t h a t i s f r e s h s t i l l , she damns female e d u c a t i o n . They a r e c a l l e d f i n i s h i n g s c h o o l s and the name t e l l s a c c u r a t e l y what t h e y a r e . They f i n i s h e v e r y t h i n g but i m b e c i l i t y and weakness, and t h a t t h e y c u l t i v a t e . They are n i c e l y adapted machines f o r e x p e r i m e n t i n g on the q u e s t i o n , ' I n t o how l i t t l e space a human s o u l can be c r u s h e d ? ' ( s i c , 185). She c o n c l u d e s t h a t women w i l l not p r o g r e s s u n t i l t h ey a r e g i v e n e d u c a t i o n and work w i t h which t o a c h i e v e independence from men, t h a t l o v e w i l l be i m p o s s i b l e u n t i l sex i s f r e e d from the market-p l a c e . She a n a l y z e s the d i s a s t r o u s e f f e c t of t h e damming of 45 women's power w i t h i n the f a m i l y . I n f a c t t h e c o r e of S c h r e i n e r ' s i n f u e n t i a l n o n f i c t i o n work, Woman and Labour (1 9 1 1 ) , i n c l u d i n g i t s r h e t o r i c a l s t y l e , i s here i n the " L y n d a l l " monologue, an i n d i c a t i o n of how l i t t l e S c h r e i n e r ' s i d e a s or r h e t o r i c d e v e l o p e d — a n d of how A f r i c a n Farm a n t i c i p a t e d t h e f e m i n i s t a e s t h e t i c and i d e o l o g y of the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h and e a r l y t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r i e s . For a l l i t s e l o q u e n c e , L y n d a l l ' s speech i s b i t t e r : e m a n c i p a t i o n i s a concept f o r the f u t u r e : she has been born too e a r l y t o b e n e f i t from her own v i s i o n . Her melodramatic end i s an e x p r e s s i o n of S c h r e i n e r ' s p e s s i m i s m about her own f u t u r e as an a m b i t i o u s but p s y c h o l o g i c a l l y shaky "New Woman" of the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h c e n t u r y . ^ L y n d a l l e n t e r s i n t o an i l l i c i t a f f a i r , l e s s out of d e s i r e , i t would seem, than t o make a p o i n t of d e f y i n g s o c i e t y ' s s t r i c t u r e s . C h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y , when she f i n d s t h a t she i s p r e g n a n t , she r e f u s e s t o marry t h e man, because she does not l o v e him and does not want t o compromise what remains of her freedom. She bea r s her c h i l d a l o n e , and a f t e r a v a g u e l y d e f i n e d but o b v i o u s l y w i l l e d i l l n e s s ( r e m i n i s c e n t of C a t h e r i n e ' s i n Wuthering H e i g h t s ) , she f o l l o w s her baby i n t o d e a t h . To pursue the Undine metaphor, one c o u l d say t h a t L y n d a l l i s a woman w i t h a male s o u l , who i s c l a i m e d by her s e x u a l d e s t i n y and thus d e s t r o y e d . S i g n i f i c a n t l y , L y n d a l l ' s c h i l d h o o d i d o l i s Napoleon. With c o n s c i o u s i r o n y she compares her own dim p r o s p e c t s t o h i s i l l u s t r i o u s i f t r a g i c c a r e e r , c i t i n g t he s t o r y of h i s d e f e a t and e x i l e w i t h b i t t e r r e l i s h : 46 I t i s a t e r r i b l e , h a t e f u l e n d i n g . . . and t h e w orst i s , i t i s t r u e . I have n o t i c e d . . . t h a t i t i s o n l y the made-up s t o r i e s t h a t end n i c e l y ; the t r u e ones a l l end so (48 ) . We a r e meant t o see her as a f a i l e d Napoleon. Not o n l y i s she orphaned, p e n n i l e s s , p o o r l y e d u c a t e d , and t r a p p e d i n an obscure c o r n e r of the w o r l d , but she i s a l s o a woman, who w i l l be d e f e a t e d by her own body. Another metaphor t h a t S c h r e i n e r uses f o r L y n d a l l ' s p l i g h t i s the s t o r y of S l e e p i n g Beauty. D e s c r i b e d as a " p r i n c e s s " when she r e t u r n s t o the farm, she c o m p l a i n s : "There i s not room t o b r e a t h e h e r e ; one s u f f o c a t e s " ( 1 8 3 ) . She f e e l s i m p r i s o n e d i n the m a l e v o l e n t Tant' S a n n i e ' s c l a u s t r o p h o b i c house on the s l e e p y farm i n an empty, b a r r e n l a n d . She c r i e s out t o be "awakened," " d e l i v e r e d , " by the p r i n c e i n whom she does not b e l i e v e : I w i l l do n o t h i n g good f o r m y s e l f n o t h i n g f o r the w o r l d , t i l l someone wakes me. I am a s l e e p , swathed, shut up i n s e l f ; t i l l I have been d e l i v e r e d I w i l l d e l i v e r no one (196).8 But when her l o v e r comes t o t a k e her away i t i s o n l y an i r o n i c r e s c u e . And t h e f a r m — h e r b e w i t c h e d k i n g d o m — d o e s not awake. As i n the f a i r y - t a l e metaphor, a p a t t e r n of s l e e p and dream imagery i s used i r o n i c a l l y t o u n d e r l i n e t h e c o n t r a s t between f a n t a s y and r e a l i t y , dream and waking l i f e . ^ The n o v e l ' s f i r s t p a ragraph d e s c r i b e s t h e farm i n the m o o n l i g h t . The moon t r a n s f o r m s the u g l y house and s t u n t e d garden i n t o a p l a c e of p o s s i b i l i t y : " i t g u i t e e t h e r e a l i z e d t h e low b r i c k w a l l t h a t r a n b e f o r e the house and which e n c l o s e d a bare p a t c h of sand and two s t r a g g l i n g s u n f l o w e r s " ( 3 5 ) . L y n d a l l , "who belonged of r i g h t t o the m o o n l i g h t , " (36) i s awakened by the 47 w o n d e r f u l f l o o d of w h i t e l i g h t , which has f a n t a s t i c a l l y t r a n s f o r m e d her s e t t i n g , u n t i l t he p u n i s h i n g S o u t h e r n sun a g a i n r e v e a l s i t s b l e a k n e s s . For Waldo the d e s e r t i s not b l e a k and b a r r e n but p o p u l a t e d w i t h dreams and v i s i o n s , the l o n g e s t of which i s "The A l l e g o r y of the Hunter," a l o n g m e d i t a t i o n on the quest f o r the u n a t t a i n -a b l e s e t i n t h e b l u e mountains which are h i s h o r i z o n : h i s l a n d of i m a g i n a t i o n . The image o f c l a u s t r o p h o b i a which i s so s t r o n g l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h L y n d a l l does not a p p l y t o Waldo, who f e e l s a t one w i t h the n a t u r a l w o r l d and h i s own body. C l a u s t r o -p h o b i a and confinement are f o r S c h r e i n e r d e s c r i p t i v e of the female c o n d i t i o n , which her a r t i s t , Waldo, i s not bound by. He i s , however, s y m b o l i c a l l y bound t o h i s female c o u n t e r p a r t , L y n d a l l . The o p p o s i t i o n between what S c h r e i n e r ' s c h a r a c t e r s can imagine and t h e c i r c u m s t a n c e s which b i n d them i s p o w e r f u l l y c a r r i e d by the i r o n i c use of n a t u r e . The farm s u f f e r s under a g r e a t d r o u g h t , which i s f i n a l l y b roken by a storm which marks L y n d a l l ' s d e a t h . The l i f e o f the farm i s s y m b o l i c a l l y connected t o h e r s , i t s l o n g drought end i n g o n l y w i t h her d e a t h . As the w o r l d f l o w e r s and greens i n the wake of the r a i n s , Waldo l i e s down t o s l e e p , and t o d i e . T h i s savage use of the images of f e r t i l i t y , j o i n e d now w i t h the images of s l e e p and dreams, r e i n f o r c e s t h e message t h a t the l a n d — t h e farm, t h e c o l o n y , A f r i c a , perhaps the w o r l d — i s a n t i p a t h e t i c a l t o her young c h a r a c t e r s ' f l o w e r i n g . The symbols of c o n t i n u i t y : green c r o p s , c h i l d r e n , and p r o p e r t y , e x c l u d e L y n d a l l and Waldo. 48 Stephen Gray t r a c e s the n e g a t i v e use of n a t u r a l imagery from S c h r e i n e r t o L e s s i n g and Gordimer, and t o w h i t e Southern A f r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e i n g e n e r a l . He argues c o n v i n c i n g l y t h a t , . . . the l i t e r a t u r e of t h i s k i n d has as a b a s i c t e n e t the theme t h a t i t s c h a r a c t e r s do n o t — c a n n o t — b e l o n g . We a r e c o n f r o n t e d w i t h a co h e r e n t and c o n t i n u o u s stream of f i c t i o n t h a t i s about permanently a l i e n a t e d b e i n g s . . . who are not p a r t o f , and can never be p a r t o f , a l a n d which o f f e r s them no harmonious, s y m p a t h e t i c growth (151). In a d d i t i o n t o n a t u r a l imagery, S c h r e i n e r uses the secondary c h a r a c t e r s i n A f r i c a n Farm t o emphasize the i s o l a t i o n of L y n d a l l and Waldo. There are few c h a r a c t e r s i n the n o v e l , which u n d e r l i n e s our sense of the h e r o i n e ' s and hero's p o s s i b i l i t i e s as s t r i c t l y , d e f e a t i n g l y l i m i t e d . I n p a r t i c u l a r , S c h r e i n e r uses t h e o t h e r two women c h a r a c t e r s t o e x e m p l i f y the c h o i c e s open t o L y n d a l l . Her c o u s i n Em embodies a l l t h a t S c h r e i n e r ' s h e r o i n e r e j e c t s of c o n v e n t i o n a l womanhood; k i n d -h e a r t e d , but p l a i n , d u l l and u n i m a g i n a t i v e , she u n c o m p l a i n i n g l y a c c e p t s her l o t . A l t h o u g h she t o o i s c r u e l l y used and d i s a p p o i n t e d i n l o v e , she s u r v i v e s t o i n h e r i t both L y n d a l l ' s c a s t - o f f a d m i r e r , Gregory Rose, and the farm i t s e l f . I t i s Em's l i n e r a t h e r than L y n d a l l ' s which w i l l c o n t i n u e . S c h r e i n e r ' s o t h e r female c h a r a c t e r , Tant' S a n n i e , i s a c a r i c a t u r e of the e v i l s tep-mother. She i s a bundle of g r o s s a p p e t i t e s , a devourer of men, a g r o t e s q u e e a r t h g o d d e s s — a n argument, i n f a c t , f o r L y n d a l l ' s c o n t e n t i o n t h a t women's power w i l l be p e r v e r t e d i f w h o l l y d i r e c t e d toward the domestic sphere. N e v e r t h e l e s s , as an embodiment of t r a d i t i o n a l female power over c h i l d r e n , husband and home, she t h r i v e s . S i g n i f i c a n t l y , S c h r e i n e r g i v e s her a s t r o n g , c o l o r f u l v o i c e . She e x c l a i m s : 49 There's n o t h i n g l i k e b e i n g m a r r i e d . . . . I f a woman's got a baby and a husband she's got the b e s t t h i n g s the L o r d can g i v e h e r ; i f o n l y the baby doesn't have c o n v u l s i o n s . As f o r a husband i t ' s v e r y much the same who one has. Some men a r e f a t and some men are t h i n ; some men d r i n k brandy, and some men d r i n k g i n ; but i t a l l comes t o the same t h i n g i n the end (2 9 3 ) . I n t e r e s t i n g l y t h e n , S c h r e i n e r does not d i s m i s s Sannie as a loathsome v i l l a i n e s s , but r a t h e r admires her and uses her t o s a t i r i z e t he o t h e r , weaker c h a r a c t e r s . For the r e a d e r , her b r u t a l common sense i s a r e f r e s h i n g a n t i d o t e t o the melodra-m a t i c a l l y r endered L y n d a l l and the o f t e n p a t h e t i c Waldo. Tant' Sa n n i e ' s comic v o i c e i s s t r o n g l y r e a s s e r t e d a t t h e end of t h e n o v e l (as i n her speech t o Em, quoted a b o v e ) , w h i l e the s t o r y of L y n d a l l and Waldo t e e t e r s toward b a t h o s . I n Tant' S a n n i e , S c h r e i n e r p r e s e n t s an a l t e r n a t e v i s i o n o f f e m i n i n e power which i s not e n t i r e l y n e g a t i v e , but which e x c l u d e s t h e h e r o i n e . The d e f e a t of L y n d a l l i s c o n t r a s t e d w i t h the g u a l i f i e d s u c c e s s of the o t h e r c h a r a c t e r s , through whom S c h r e i n e r o f f e r s the a l t e r n a -t i v e v i s i o n o f the rewards o f c o n f o r m i t y . Em and Tant' Sannie a r e s t r o n g e r , more e n d u r i n g , and even more a d m i r a b l e i n t h e i r f a s h i o n than L y n d a l l . They r e p r e s e n t p r a c t i c a l i t y and c o n t i n u i t y : t h e homely q u a l i t i e s t h a t S c h r e i n e r admires i n the l i f e o f the farm. The male c h a r a c t e r s s e r v e s i m i l a r l y as c o l o n i a l t y p e s and r o l e models, m o s t l y n e g a t i v e , f o r Waldo. The v i l l a i n , named Bonaparte i n a parody of L y n d a l l ' s i d o l i z a t i o n o f Napoleon, i s an u n s c r u p u l o u s B r i t i s h c o l o n i s t come t o South A f r i c a t o make money by t h e e a s i e s t , t h a t i s , the most d i s h o n e s t and e x p l o i t a t i v e means. Old O t t o , Waldo's German f a t h e r , i s an a n a c h r o n i s t i c peasant whom B l e n k i n s d e s t r o y s . Gregory Rose i s a 50 n a i v e , f r e s h - f a c e d Englishman who c a l l o u s l y b r e a k s Em's h e a r t , but whom S c h r e i n e r educates and reforms through h i s s e l f -s a c r i f i c i n g l o v e f o r L y n d a l l . The b i z a r r e d e v i c e of h i s a d o p t i n g a woman's d i s g u i s e t o nurse L y n d a l l t h r o u g h her l a s t days has a f e m i n i s t message: he must be f e m i n i z e d t o become a complete person.10 G r e g o r y ' s androgyny a l s o r e i n f o r c e s the androgynous c o n n e c t i o n between L y n d a l l and Waldo. F i n a l l y , Waldo's S t r a n g e r , a m y s t e r i o u s European e x i l e , both l u r e s Waldo toward and warns him a g a i n s t t he c u l t u r e of the m e t r o p o l i s , r e f l e c t i n g S c h r e i n e r ' s a m b i v a l e n c e about g o i n g a b r o a d , and p r e f i g u r i n g her own i n t e r c o n t i n e n t a l wandering. Through the predicament of L y n d a l l , t he r e b e l l i o u s c o l o n i a l woman, and Waldo, t h e c o l o n i a l a r t i s t , S c h r e i n e r d e p i c t s her own s i t u a t i o n as a r e j e c t e d and a l i e n a t e d daughter of c o l o n i a l A f r i c a . Her own l a n d l e s s n e s s , t he break-up of her f a m i l y , and her s i t u a t i o n as a governess and housekeeper f o r o t h e r s f u e l e d her f e m i n i s t anger and spa r k e d her sympathy f o r t h e l e s s p o w e r f u l , t h a t i s , non-white and n o n - B r i t i s h segments of South A f r i c a n s o c i e t y . Her work e x p e r i e n c e gave her f i r s t - h a n d knowledge of A f r i k a n e r s , whom her mother had d e n i g r a t e d — b u t O l i v e l i v e d among them as an o u t s i d e r , a s t r a n g e r . I n A f r i c a n  Farm, she d e s c r i b e s Boer farm l i f e w i t h detachment, through L y n d a l l ' s E n g l i s h eyes. For example, the d e s c r i p t i o n of a t r a d i t i o n a l wedding, from L y n d a l l ' s p o i n t of vi e w , i s a p p r e c i -a t i v e but u n i n v o l v e d ; L y n d a l l watches her n e i g h b o r s c a v o r t but d e c l i n e s t o p a r t i c i p a t e . Her a t t i t u d e toward everyone e x c e p t Waldo i s of one who has c u t her bonds t o s o c i e t y , who ha s , i n 51 her mind, a l r e a d y l e f t . (We w i l l see t h i s a t t i t u d e a g a i n i n the e a r l y h e r o i n e s of L e s s i n g and Gordimer.) Her s e a r c h f o r freedom has d r i v e n her from o t h e r p e o p l e ; p r e o c c u p i e d w i t h her own f a t e she cannot c o n s i d e r the r e l a t e d f a t e s of o t h e r s . I n a sense, f i n a l l y , her death i s a f a t a l w i t h d r a w a l i n t o s e l f : " I am a s l e e p , swathed, shut up i n s e l f ; t i l l I have been d e l i v e r e d I w i l l d e l i v e r no one." L y n d a l l r e j e c t s the t r a d i t i o n a l f e m i n i n e r o l e s r e p r e s e n t e d by Em and Tant' S a n n i e , but i s l e f t w i t h the time-honored r o l e of the f a l l e n woman, the o u t c a s t and v i c t i m . R e j e c t e d , she a l s o r e j e c t s : the B r i t i s h c o l o n i s t s , the Boer s e t t l e r s , and the n a t i v e A f r i c a n s as w e l l . For the h e r o i n e ' s and hero's detachment from the w h i t e communities i s a l s o e v i d e n t i n the r e f e r e n c e s t o b l a c k s i n the n o v e l . L y n d a l l and Waldo view the b l a c k p e o p l e among whom they l i v e as s t r a n g e , sometimes r e p u l s i v e , d o m e s t i c a t e d a n i m a l s . L y n d a l l argues p a s s i o n a t e l y f o r women's e m a n c i p a t i o n w i t h no thought f o r the r i g h t s of the A f r i c a n men and women who l i v e i n s e m i - s l a v e r y on the farm. Waldo makes no c o n n e c t i o n between h i s own s u f f e r i n g and h u m i l i -a t i o n as a h i r e d worker and t h a t of the A f r i c a n l a b o r e r s , except i n s o f a r as he i d e n t i f i e s w i t h a l l dumb s u f f e r i n g c r e a t u r e s . The i m p o r t a n t e x c e p t i o n i s Waldo's f a s c i n a t i o n w i t h the San, or Bushmen p a i n t i n g s which s u r v i v e on the r o c k s o f the farm, l o n g a f t e r the a r t i s t s t h emselves have been hunted down. Compare h i s i m a g i n a t i v e empathy f o r the San w i t h a t y p i c a l d e s c r i p t i o n of a " K a f f i r " s e r v a n t . Here i s Waldo s p e a k i n g about the Bushmen: 52 I t was . . . one of t h e s e o l d w i l d Bushmen, t h a t p a i n t e d t h o s e p i c t u r e s t h e r e . He d i d not know why he p a i n t e d but he wanted t o make something so he made t h e s e . He worked h a r d , v e r y h a r d , t o f i n d the j u i c e t o make the p a i n t ; and then he found t h i s p l a c e where the r o c k s hang o v e r , and he p a i n t e d them. To us they a r e o n l y s t r a n g e t h i n g s , t h a t make us l a u g h ; but t o him they were v e r y b e a u t i f u l . . . . He used t o k n e e l here naked, p a i n t i n g , p a i n t -i n g , p a i n t i n g ; and he wondered at the t h i n g s he made h i m s e l f . . . . Now t h e Boers have shot them a l l , so t h a t we never see a y e l l o w f a c e p e e p i n g out among the s t o n e s (49-50). T h i s i s a d e s c r i p t i o n of a b l a c k woman: She was a s u l l e n , i l l - l o o k i n g woman, w i t h l i p s h i d e o u s l y p r o t r u d i n g . . . . She m uttered i n broken Dutch . . . shook her head s u l l e n l y . . . g r u n t e d a n e g a t i v e , and fanned the f l i e s from her baby ( 8 7 ) . Of c o u r s e Waldo's a d m i r a t i o n f o r the dead Bushman c o n t r a s t s u n f a v o r a b l y w i t h the a u t h o r ' s marked l a c k of sympathy f o r l i v i n g b l a c k p e o p l e , and i s r e m i n i s c e n t of more r e c e n t South A f r i c a n paeans t o the Bushmen, who no l o n g e r pose a t h r e a t t o w h i t e s e t t l e m e n t . i l However, i t shows t h a t Waldo the a r t i s t can t r a n s c e n d the r a c i a l i s m of h i s s o c i e t y , as S c h r e i n e r h e r s e l f was a b l e t o do i n l a t e r l i f e , as we s h a l l see i n the d i s c u s s i o n of From Man t o Man. At t h i s p o i n t , she does not make e x p l i c i t the l i n k between the c o l o n y ' s a n t i p a t h y t o f e m i n i s m and c r e a t i v i t y on the one hand, and i t s o p p r e s s i v e r a c i a l p o l i c i e s on the o t h e r . But i t i s q u i t e s t r i k i n g t h a t the o n l y a r t i s t Waldo i d e n t i f i e s w i t h was i n d i g e n o u s , non-white, and was hunted almost t o e x t i n c t i o n by w h i t e s e t t l e r s . I t i s o n l y i n the w r i t i n g of D o r i s L e s s i n g and Nadine Gordimer t h a t the d i s c o n t e n t of L y n d a l l and Waldo i s named and d e f i n e d as s p e c i f i c t o t h e i r a l i e n a t i o n as Europeans i n A f r i c a , v i c t i m s of the v e r y c o l o n i a l system t h a t o s t e n s i b l y e x i s t s t o 53 p r o t e c t t h e i r p r i v i l e g e s as w h i t e s . N e v e r t h e l e s s , i n S c h r e i n e r we can f i n d s t r o n g i m p l i c a t i o n s of the c r i t i q u e of w h i t e s e t t l e r s o c i e t y made by her s u c c e s s o r s . S c h r e i n e r ' s South A f r i c a i s P h i l i s t i n e , m a t e r i a l i s t i c , and v i r u l e n t l y a n t i - i n t e l l e c t u a l , w i t h the s t r o n g u n d e r c u r r e n t of v i o l e n c e which pervades a l l unequal r e l a t i o n s h i p s . C h i l d r e n as w e l l as n a t i v e s e r v a n t s a r e beaten i n t o obedience and kept i g n o r a n t . They have no p r o t e c -t i o n from s a d i s t i c t y r a n t s l i k e Bonaparte B l e n k i n s who r u l e them i n t he g u i s e of l o v i n g r e l a t i v e s or k i n d m a s t e r s . I n t h i s c o n t e x t , L y n d a l l ' s f i e r c e f e m i n i s m and Waldo's a t h e i s m and e v o l u t i o n i s m a r e a t t a c k s on the d i v i n e l y o r d a i n e d i n e q u a l i t y of r a c e s , sexes and c u l t u r e s which j u s t i f i e s t he w h i t e c o l o n i a l system. As L y n d a l l a s s e r t s i n her monologue, s p e a k i n g f o r women, but a l s o by i m p l i c a t i o n f o r c h i l d r e n , f o r g o v e r n e s s e s , f o r h o u s ehold s e r v a n t s , farm l a b o r e r s — a n d San a r t i s t s : "We bear the w o r l d and we make i t " ( 1 9 3 ) . From Man t o Man An e a r l y t i t l e f o r The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm, a c c o r d i n g t o E l a i n e S h o w a l t e r , was "Mi r a g e : A S e r i e s of A b o r t i o n s , " a t i t l e which s u c c i n c t l y e x p r e s s e s the pessi m i s m o f the n o v e l . 1 2 S c h r e i n e r ' s South A f r i c a i s a s t e r i l e p l a c e i n which y o u t h f u l dreams and p r o g r e s s i v e a s p i r a t i o n s d i e an u n n a t u r a l d e a t h . F i t t i n g as i t might have been, S c h r e i n e r h e r s e l f d i d not f o l l o w her h e r o i n e and hero i n t o an e a r l y g r a v e . She l i v e d u n t i l 1920, p r o d u c i n g s e v e r a l works of n o n f i c t i o n , s t o r i e s , and one more major n o v e l , From Man t o Man, wh i c h , uncompleted, remained u n p u b l i s h e d u n t i l 1926. 54 From Man t o Man i s a l i t t l e - r e a d work, g e n e r a l l y c o n s i d e r e d i n f e r i o r t o A f r i c a n Farm.13 Begun a t about the same time as A f r i c a n Farm i t was added t o and r e v i s e d over S c h r e i n e r ' s l i f e t i m e . I 4 The r e s u l t i s a patchwork of a u t o b i o g r a p h y , melo-drama, s c i e n t i f i c and p h i l o s o p h i c a l s p e c u l a t i o n and f e m i n i s m . The r e a d e r w i l l p r o b a b l y f i n d t e d i o u s such s e c t i o n s as the a u t h o r ' s f i f t y - p a g e v e r s i o n of the e v o l u t i o n of c i v i l i z a t i o n . N e v e r t h e l e s s , From Man t o Man i s an u n d e r r a t e d n o v e l which i s saved by i t s w o n d e r f u l h e r o i n e R e b e k a h . I 5 Rebekah i s a much rounder and more complete c h a r a c t e r than L y n d a l l or Waldo. Whereas L y n d a l l and Waldo a r e i d e a l i z e d and s c h e m a t i c r e p r e s e n -t a t i o n s of d i f f e r e n t a s p e c t s of S c h r e i n e r ' s young s e l f , Rebekah i s an a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l c h a r a c t e r who grows and changes a l o n g w i t h her c r e a t o r . S p e c i f i c a l l y , Rebekah shows us how S c h r e i n e r h e r s e l f became c o n s c i o u s of the c o n n e c t i o n s between s e x u a l and r a c i a l i n j u s t i c e i n South A f r i c a . In o r d e r t o u n d e r s t a n d the changes i n S c h r e i n e r ' s i d e a s l e t us f i r s t l o o k b r i e f l y a t her c a r e e r f o l l o w i n g the p u b l i c a t i o n of her c e l e b r a t e d f i r s t n o v e l i n England i n 1883, when she was t w e n t y - e i g h t . For a s h o r t p e r i o d , u n t i l her r e t u r n t o South A f r i c a i n 1889, she became p a r t of a l o o s e l y o r g a n i z e d i n t e l l e c -t u a l group and p o l i t i c a l movement whose i d e a s were t o remain an i n f l u e n c e upon h e r . W i l l i a m M o r r i s , E l e a n o r Marx, Havelock E l l i s and Edward C a r p e n t e r espoused a r o m a n t i c s o c i a l i s m based more on s p i r i t u a l and c u l t u r a l change than economic t r a n s f o r m a -t i o n . They c o n s i d e r e d s e x u a l freedom and freedom f o r women p a r t i c u l a r l y i m p o r t a n t avenues t o s o c i a l change. T h i s c l i m a t e 55 of o p i n i o n r e i n f o r c e d S c h r e i n e r ' s a l r e a d y s t r o n g i n t e r e s t i n fem i n i s m and s e x u a l i t y . 1 6 S c h r e i n e r s e t s out her f e m i n i s t i d e o l o g y i n the i n f l u e n t i a l Woman and Labour (1911). The two main arguments of t h i s non-f i c t i o n work a r e , one, t h a t women cannot be men's i n t e l l e c t u a l and c r e a t i v e e q u a l s as l o n g as they a r e d e n i e d p r o d u c t i v e work; and two, t h a t the f e m i n i n e q u a l i t i e s o f a l t r u i s t i c l o v e and ma t e r n a l s a c r i f i c e can redeem b r u t a l and e x p l o i t a t i v e p a t r i a r c h a l s o c i e t y . The n o t a b l e f e a t u r e of From Man t o Man, which i s i n d i r e c t c o n t r a s t t o the a l i e n a t i o n a t the h e a r t of A f r i c a n Farm, i s Rebekah's i n n e r power t o blossom w i t h i n the s o c i a l c o n f i n e s which b i n d h e r . Her i n t e l l e c t u a l and s p i r i t u a l growth embrace those around h e r , s t a r t i n g w i t h her f a m i l y . Most i m p o r t a n t l y , Rebekah's p l i g h t as a woman g i v e s her em p a t h e t i c i n s i g h t i n t o the p l i g h t of the o t h e r oppressed group i n her s o c i e t y : the b l a c k A f r i c a n s . And her p e r s o n a l r e a l i z a t i o n i s shown t o have r a m i f i c a t i o n s o u t s i d e h e r s e l f , t o have, i n f a c t , i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r change i n South A f r i c a . The w i d e n i n g of Rebekah's v i s i o n i s a r e s u l t of the widen-i n g of her a u t h o r ' s p o l i t i c a l e x p e r i e n c e . A f t e r her r e t u r n t o South A f r i c a S c h r e i n e r became an a c t i v e opponent of e t h n i c and r a c i a l i n e q u a l i t y . F i r s t she launched an a t t a c k on C e c i l Rhodes f o r h i s a n n e x a t i o n of "Rhodesia."17 D u r i n g the Anglo-Boer War she a l l i e d h e r s e l f w i t h the A f r i k a n e r s a g a i n s t the B r i t i s h . As a consequence, she was o s t r a c i z e d and f o r a p e r i o d i n t e r n e d . S u b s e q u e n t l y , she took up the cause of r a c i a l i n e q u a l i t y , 56 a t t a c k i n g the i n c r e a s i n g l y d i s c r i m i n a t o r y p o l i c i e s of the s e l f -g o v e r n i n g South A f r i c a n c o l o n i e s , which i n 1910 became the Union of South A f r i c a . ! 8 Thus i n her l a t e r l i f e , spent m o s t l y i n South A f r i c a , S c h r e i n e r extended her f e m i n i s t c r i t i q u e t o o t h e r forms of s o c i a l e x p l o i t a t i o n . In the n i n e t e e n - t e n s i n England she took up a l a s t unpopular cause, t h a t of p a c i f i s m d u r i n g the F i r s t World War. U n t i l her death she e x e r c i s e d her e l o q u e n t v o i c e and pen i n the s e r v i c e of her w i d e n i n g s y m p a t h i e s . She seems t o have t r i e d i n her ever-uncompleted l a s t n o v e l t o s y n t h e s i z e her d i v e r s e i d e a s , t o weld them i n t o a moving a r t i s t i c u n i t y . " T h i s book i s g o i n g t o be a w f u l l y outspoken;" she wrote t o Havelock E l l i s i n 1884, "An A f r i c a n Farm was n o t h i n g t o i t . . . ." ( L e t t e r s 3 3 ) . But i n s p i t e o f her s u c c e s s as an o r a t o r and e s s a y i s t she was s i m p l y not a b l e t o a c h i e v e a u n i f i e d n o v e l i s t i c v i s i o n . Her c o n s i d e r a b l e p e r s o n a l problems, i n p a r t i c u l a r her c o n f l i c t s about her own r o l e as a woman, her s i m u l t a n e o u s a t t r a c t i o n t o and f e a r of s e x u a l i t y and motherhood, c o n f u s e and unbalance her f i c t i o n . I n From Man t o Man as i n A f r i c a n Farm t h e r e i s g r e a t t e n s i o n between i d e a l and r e a l womanhood, t e n s i o n w h i c h , i f i t were b e t t e r c o n t r o l l e d , would deepen and e n r i c h the n o v e l . As i t i s , the a u t h o r ' s s e l f - d i v i s i o n and c o n f u s i o n g l a r e d t h r o u g h her t e x t , damaging the r e a l i s m of i t s p l o t and c h a r a c t e r s . The b e s t example of t h i s p r o c e s s i n From Man t o Man i s Rebekah's i d e a l i z e d p l a t o n i c attachment t o Mr. Drummond, which t a k e s p l a c e on an i m p o s s i b l y s p i r i t u a l p l a n e , i n c o n t r a s t t o her unhappy m a r r i a g e , which i s p o r t r a y e d w i t h p o w e r f u l r e a l i s m . 57 Rebekah's need f o r a Mr. Drummond r e f l e c t s S c h r e i n e r ' s own entrapment i n i d e a l i z e d , d i s t a n t , s e x u a l l y f r u s t r a t e d r e l a t i o n -s h i p s w i t h Havelock E l l i s and the man whom she m a r r i e d a t t h i r t y - n i n e , Samuel C r o n w r i g h t - S c h r e i n e r . 1 9 S c h r e i n e r a l s o w r i t e s her ambivalence about motherhood i n t o the n o v e l . Her l i f e l o n g f e a r of and d e s i r e f o r a c h i l d were e n c a p s u l a t e d i n the b i r t h of a daughter when she was f o r t y , who d i e d w i t h i n a day. From t h i s e x p e r i e n c e , added t o the memory of the death of her baby s i s t e r E l l i e , s p r i n g s the both morbid and g l o r i f i e d view of m a t e r n i t y t h a t i s so prominent an element i n From Man t o Man. T h i s i s t o o f f e r an e x p l a n a t i o n as t o why O l i v e S c h r e i n e r was unable t o e x t r i c a t e h e r s e l f from t h i s n o v e l , and was unable t o w r i t e a n o t h e r . I t i s not t o say, however, t h a t From Man t o  Man i s w i t h o u t m e r i t or i n t e r e s t i n s p i t e of i t s unevenness. I n i t s worst p a r t s i t i s an a m b i t i o u s f a i l u r e whose v i s i b l e s c a f f o l d i n g i s a f a s c i n a t i n g and p o i g n a n t s u b t e x t . i n i t s b e s t p a r t s , c h i e f among them "The P r e l u d e — T h e C h i l d ' s Day" (which s i g n i f i c a n t l y was w r i t t e n i n one p i e c e as a s e l f c o n t a i n e d s t o r y ) 2 0 the au t h o r succeeds i n t w i s t i n g the s t r a n d s of aut o -b i o g r a p h y and s o c i a l message i n t o the t h r e a d of p o e t i c r e a l i s m . "The P r e l u d e " b e g i n s w i t h t h i s s e n t e n c e : "The l i t t l e mother l a y i n the agony of c h i l d b i r t h . " The " l i t t l e mother" of the s t o r y i s Rebekah's mother, but c l e a r l y she a l s o r e p r e s e n t s the grown-up Rebekah (who w i l l have f o u r sons and s e v e r a l mis-c a r r i a g e s ) , O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s mother, Rebecca L y n d a l l , and O l i v e h e r s e l f . The book i s j o i n t l y d e d i c a t e d t o O l i v e ' s dead baby s i s t e r and t o her dead d a u g h t e r . Thus the auth o r a t t a c h e s t o 58 t h e c h a r a c t e r of Rebekah a m o u r n f u l web of a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l meanings. The l i t t l e mother of the n o v e l g i v e s b i r t h t o t w i n s , one dead, one l i v e . The f i v e - y e a r - o l d Rebekah a p p r o p r i a t e s the s t i l l b o r n t w i n as a f a n t a s y d a u g h t e r - s e l f . Here i n s t a r k e r symbols i s t h e A f r i c a n Farm theme of t h e f e r t i l e dream w o r l d of the c h i l d f i g h t i n g t o f l o u r i s h i n the s t e r i l e a c t u a l w o r l d of the a d u l t s . Through a s e r i e s of dreams, games and s t o r i e s i n v o l v i n g the s t i l l b o r n baby, Rebekah s k e t c h e s her own i d e n t i t y as a South A f r i c a n c h i l d of the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h c e n t u r y . The symbols of t h i s d i v i d e d i d e n t i t y a r e the t r e a s u r e d p o s s e s s i o n s she a r r a n g e s around the baby. These i n c l u d e an a l p h a b e t book, t a l i s m a n of i n t e l l e c t u a l l i b e r a t i o n , which i s opposed t o the s i l v e r t h i m b l e and paper of n e e d l e s , s i g n i f y i n g t r a d i t i o n a l f e m i n i t y . The bushman s t o n e , symbol of the a n c i e n t A f r i c a n c u l t u r e which haunts the h e r o i n e and author (as i t haunted Waldo i n A f r i c a n Farm), i s s e t a g a i n s t a c u t - o u t of Queen V i c t o r i a from a c i g a r box, symbol of t h e c o n q u e r i n g B r i t i s h empire. The n o v e l d e v e l o p s d i r e c t l y from t h i s image of Rebekah l i n i n g up her s y m b o l i c t r e a s u r e s around the baby's c o r p s e . From  Man t o Man i s the s t o r y of Rebekah's attempt t o p r e s e r v e each a s p e c t of h e r s e l f w i t h o u t b e i n g d e s t r o y e d by i t s o p p o s i n g q u a l i t y : i n t e l l e c t u a l a m b i t i o n v e r s u s womanliness, and A f r i c a v e r s u s E n g l a n d . The t h e m a t i c o p p o s i t i o n s i n A f r i c a n Farm are here d e p i c t e d w i t h g r e a t e r c l a r i t y . L y n d a l l ' s female dilemma: the c h o i c e between Sannie and Em or t h e f a l l e n woman; Waldo's a r t i s t i c dilemma: the c h o i c e between the p h i l i s t i n e c u l t u r e of the c o l o n y or the n e a r - e x t i n c t c u l t u r e of the hunted-down San. 59 Rebekah's f i r s t v e h i c l e s of s e l f - e x p r e s s i o n a r e dreams and o r a l s t o r i e s ; l a t e r she t u r n s t o s c i e n t i f i c t h e o r i e s and w r i t t e n f i c t i o n . I n her f i r s t dream she i s "the l i t t l e Queen V i c t o r i a o f South A f r i c a " : s t i l l a c h i l d , a female and a c o l o n i a l , she i s now a f i g u r e of power. In t h i s f a n t a s y she l i v e s on a l u s h B r i t i s h i s l e i n a c h i l d - s i z e house equipped w i t h l i b r a r y , m i c r o -scope, and mud f o r b u i l d i n g — a l l the r e q u i s i t e s of i n t e l l e c t u a l i n q u i r y and c r e a t i v i t y . As a reader of A f r i c a n Farm might p r e d i c t , she wakes t o the d r y , h o t , d e a t h l i k e r e a l w o r l d of South A f r i c a : " A l l about l a y the parched y e l l o w g r a s s , and the l i t t l e d r i e d peach t r e e s , w i t h t h e i r s h r i v e l l e d l e a v e s . . ." ( 5 8 ) . I t i s i m p o r t a n t , however, t h a t d r o u g h t , t h a t dominant image of A f r i c a n Farm, i s o n l y the s t a r t i n g p o i n t of From Man t o Man. The death of her dreams w i l l not be the death of Rebekah. Her r e v e r y over the dead baby i s broken by the w a i l of the l i v e t w i n , Rebekah's s i s t e r B e r t i e , whom she w i l l c o n t i n u e t o mother and p r o t e c t throughout the n o v e l . The grown-up Rebekah m a i n t a i n s her s e c r e t i n n e r l i f e w i t h i n t h e c o n f i n e s of her o u t e r l i f e as an e x p l o i t e d w i f e and h a r a s s e d mother. The m e l odramatic saga of the s e d u c t i o n and f a l l o f B e r t i e , and the s t e r o t y p i c a l t r a g e d y of Rebekah's m a r r i a g e — p u n c t u a t e d by the m i s c a r r i a g e s of her d a u g h t e r s — s u r r o u n d but do not obscure the o t h e r s t o r y of Rebekah's mental l i f e . The r a t h e r p r e p o s t e r o u s f i c t i o n a l e v e n t s of the n o v e l a c t as a c o u n t e r p o i n t t o the h e r o i n e ' s mental development. By means of t h e i n t e r a c t i o n between the i n n e r and o u t e r s t o r i e s S c h r e i n e r d e v e l o p s and a t l e a s t p a r t i a l l y r e s o l v e s the s y m b o l i c o p p o s i t i o n s s e t out e x p l i c i t l y a t the b e g i n n i n g of the n o v e l i n 60 book and t h i m b l e , stone and Queen V i c t o r i a c u t - o u t . The a d u l t Rebekah's s e c r e t l i f e t a k e s p l a c e i n a t i n y s tudy p a r t i t i o n e d o f f from her c h i l d r e n ' s bedroom i n her house i n Capetown. L i k e the t r e a s u r e s i n her c h i l d h o o d f a n t a s y , i t s s p a r s e f u r n i s h i n g s a r e m a i n l y t a l i s m a n i c : a m i c r o s c o p e , f o s s i l specimens, her o l d s c h o o l b o o k s , t r a n s l a t i o n s from t h e c l a s s i c s , an e d i t i o n of Darwin, an a t l a s , a s t a t u e t t e of H e r c u l e s , a p r i n t of the Madonna, and some notebooks i n which she w r i t e s s p o r a d i c a l l y . These are o b j e c t s from her c h i l d h o o d and woman-hood, from A f r i c a and from Europe. The i d e a l i z e d Mother i s e n s h r i n e d a l o n g w i t h the Greek h e r o , perhaps t o s y m b o l i z e the H e r c u l e a n t a s k of a l o n e female t h i n k e r . There i s a path worn i n t o the c a r p e t where she paces round and round as she t h i n k s . Her s i t u a t i o n i s d e l i n e a t e d w i t h r e a l i s t i c d e t a i l : T o n i g h t she drew the book towards h e r . I t was f o u r months s i n c e she had opened i t . . . . When l a s t she wrote she had been s i t t i n g up f o r a n i g h t , t o make p o u l t i c e s f o r her boy who had bad e a r a c h e , and, between w h i l e s as he s l e p t , she had w r i t t e n ( 1 7 7 ) . Rebekah's m o t h e r l y c o n c e r n s — c h e c k i n g on the s l e e p i n g c h i l d r e n , d a r n i n g s o c k s — w e a v e i n and out of her p h i l o s o p h i c a l s p e c u l a t i o n s . Nor are t h e s e p r a c t i c a l concerns p u r e l y d i s t r a c -t i o n s from her mental a c t i v i t y ; r a t h e r her p h i l o s o p h y seems t o be shaped by her e x p e r i e n c e as a w i f e and mother. The i n t e r i o r monologue begun above w i t h the p o u l t i c e making, f o r example, b u i l d s t o t h i s condemnation of s o c i a l Darwinism: You say t h a t , w i t h your guns s h o o t i n g so many s h o t s a minute, you can d e s t r o y any r a c e of men armed o n l y w i t h s p e a r s ; but how does t h a t prove your s u p e r i o r i t y , e x c ept as the s u p e r i o r i t y of the c r o c o d i l e i s proved when i t e a t s a human baby, because i t has l o n g t e e t h and baby has none? ( 2 2 2 ) . 61 T h o u g h t f u l l y , Rebekah r e j e c t s the " s c i e n t i f i c " j u s t i f i c a t i o n f o r i m p e r i a l might w i t h an argument based upon her p r o t e c t i v e f e e l i n g s toward her c h i l d r e n . S i g n i f i c a n t l y , t h i s i s her f i r s t a n t i - c o l o n i a l statement.21 The h e r o i n e ' s m a t e r n a l i s m (whose p a t r o n i z i n g tone we s h o u l d see i n the c o n t e x t of r a c i a l views of her t i m e , and thus make some a l l o w a n c e f o r ) reaches i t s c l i m a x near the end of the n o v e l when she adopts the daughter of her husband and the b l a c k s e r v a n t g i r l . T h i s s e c t i o n of From Man t o Man r e f e r s t o the n o v e l ' s b e g i n n i n g , when the c h i l d Rebekah imagined t h a t she adopted her baby s i s t e r . Rebekah t e l l s her c h i l d r e n a s t o r y i n which she d e s c r i b e s her s u p e r i o r a t t i t u d e toward the A f r i c a n s when she was a c h i l d , h a r k i n g back t o her e a r l y f a n t a s y of b e i n g " l i t t l e Queen V i c t o r i a of South A f r i c a " : I always p l a y e d t h a t , I was Queen V i c t o r i a and t h a t a l l A f r i c a belonged t o me, and I c o u l d do whatever I l i k e d . i t always p u z z l e d me when I walked up and down t h i n k i n g what I s h o u l d do w i t h the b l a c k p e o p l e ; I d i d not l i k e t o k i l l them . . . and y e t I c o u l d not have them near me. At l a s t I made a p l a n . I made b e l i e v e I b u i l t a h i g h w a l l r i g h t a c r o s s A f r i c a and put a l l the b l a c k p e o p l e on the o t h e r s i d e , and I s a i d , 'Stay t h e r e , and, the day you put one f o o t o v e r , your heads w i l l be c u t o f f . ' I was v e r y p l e a s e d when I made t h i s p l a n , I used t o walk up and down and make b e l i e v e t h e r e were no b l a c k people i n South A f r i c a ; I had i t a l l t o m y s e l f ( 4 3 5 ) . But g r a d u a l l y , she t e l l s t he c h i l d r e n , she came t o i d e n t i f y w i t h b l a c k women, who impressed her w i t h t h e i r b r a v e r y and depth of emotion, so t h a t "they were mine and I was t h e i r s , and the w a l l I had b u i l t a c r o s s A f r i c a had s l o w l y t o f a l l down" (438). S c h r e i n e r ' s image of b u i l d i n g and t e a r i n g down an i m a g i n a r y w a l l o f a p a r t h e i d i s a p o w e r f u l and p r e s c i e n t one, which emerges 62 r e a l i s t i c a l l y from her h e r o i n e ' s i n t e l l e c t u a l and e m o t i o n a l development. I t i s a t t h i s p o i n t where R e b e k a h / S c h r e i n e r ' s f e m i n i s m widens t o embrace s o c i a l and r a c i a l e q u a l i t y . Rebekah's a d o p t i o n of S a r t j e i s an acknowledgement of the f u r t i v e but wi d e s p r e a d s e x u a l e x p l o i t a t i o n of b l a c k women by t h e i r w h i t e m a s t e r s . Furthermore/ by t a k i n g r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r S a r t j e as the c h i l d of her husband and by l o v i n g her as a dau g h t e r , Rebekah undermines the r a c i a l s e p a r a t i o n upon which the A f r i c a n c o l o n i a l system i s based. I t i s i m p o r t a n t here t h a t she r e j e c t s the Queen V i c t o r i a r o l e t h a t had a t t r a c t e d her as a c h i l d . As she has matured, t h a t female symbol of i m p e r i a l might has l o s t i t s p otency f o r h e r . I t has been r e p l a c e d , by an a l l e g o r i c a l f i g u r e of s t r u g g l i n g Humanity as a p o w e r f u l woman whose f e e t a r e f e t t e r e d and b u r i e d i n the d e s e r t sand. When Humanity l e a r n s t o use her s t r o n g arms and hands t o f r e e her f e e t , she w i l l be a b l e t o walk t o the green mountains f o r which she y e a r n s . (We s h o u l d be reminded here of t h e " A l l e g o r y of t h e Hunter" i n A f r i c a n Farm, s e t i n a s i m i l a r l a n d s c a p e o f d e s e r t and d i s t a n t peaks, but much more r a r e f i e d and a b s t r a c t , and more n e g a t i v e i n i t s v i s i o n . ) The a l l e g o r i c a l f i g u r e i s a b o l d f e m i n i s t answer t o the complacent, m o t h e r l y w h i t e gueen whose s t a t u e s and p o r t r a i t s adorned each c o r n e r of her empire. The f i v e - y e a r - o l d who i n the b e g i n n i n g of t h e n o v e l h e l d f o u r b e l o v e d s y m b o l i c o b j e c t s which she c o u l d not r e c o n c i l e has f i n a l l y chosen between Queen V i c t o r i a and the Bushman s t o n e . I n terms of the second o p p o s i t i o n , t h a t between the t h i m b l e and the b o o k — t r a d i t i o n a l f e m i n i t y and t h e m a s c u l i n e p r o v i n c e of l e a r n i n g — s h e has found 63 her own, female and m a t e r n a l , i n t e l l e c t u a l p a t h . I n an o f t e n s e n t i m e n t a l and " m a t r o n i z i n g " tone and at too g r e a t a l e n g t h , O l i v e S c h r e i n e r , l i k e Rebekah b r e a k i n g down the w a l l between the r a c e s , b reaks down some of the i m a g i n a t i v e w a l l s of her t i m e : m a s c u l i n e s u p e r i o r i t y , r a c i a l s u p e r i o r i t y , t h e p a t r i a r c h a l f a m i l y , and the i d e a of empire. Employing the d e v i c e o f s t o r y - t e l l i n g , Rebekah completes her i m a g i n a t i v e i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h t h e c o l o n i z e d A f r i c a n s . She asks her c h i l d r e n t o imagine the i n v a s i o n of e a r t h by a techno-l o g i c a l l y s u p e r i o r s p e c i e s who s y s t e m a t i c a l l y d e s t r o y the c o m p a r a t i v e l y "savage," " p r i m i t i v e " human c i v i l i z a t i o n and k i l l o r e n s l a v e t h e " i n f e r i o r " human r a c e . But t h e humans s u r v i v e d , " l e a r n t a l l t h e t e r r i b l e w h i t e - f a c e d s t r a n g e r s had t o t e a c h , and we worked f o r them. We worked . . . and we w a i t e d . . .11 ( 4 2 3 ) . C l e a r l y S c h r e i n e r i s on the b r i n k o f s u g g e s t i n g an o r g a n i z e d r e v o l t of t h e c o l o n i z e d humans a g a i n s t the " w h i t e - f a c e d s t r a n g e r s , " a s t e p w h i c h , however, she was not h i s t o r i c a l l y p l a c e d t o do more than i m p l y . As she t e l l s her c h i l d r e n , "The dream ends t h e r e . " I n any c a s e , her a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l h e r o i n e has i m a g i n a t i v e l y t r a v e l e d i n another d i r e c t i o n from t h e dead-end reached by the c o l o n i a l c h i l d r e n i n A f r i c a n Farm. C e r t a i n l y much of t h e d i s i l l u s i o n m e n t i n A f r i c a n Farm i s r e p e a t e d i n From  Man t o Man, as a r e i t s images o f s t e r i l i t y and c l a u s t r o p h o b i a . However, most of i t s t r a g e d y — n o t t o say m e l o d r a m a — i s g i v e n t o Rebekah's s i s t e r B e r t i e ; the uncompleted p l a n o f the n o v e l has her a p r o s t i t u t e i n Cape Town d y i n g of v e n e r e a l d i s e a s e , l o v i n g l y nursed through her l a s t days by Rebekah.22 64 Rebekah h e r s e l f , on the o t h e r hand, almost f l o u r i s h e s i n the t i n y room-of-her-own where she s t u d i e s , dreams and most i m p o r t a n t , w r i t e s . Her p o w e r f u l v i s i o n c o u n t e r s t h e images of s t e r i l i t y and e n c l o s u r e , and on a s m a l l s c a l e she manages t o b r i n g her dreams t o f r u i t i o n . She ends her s e x u a l r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h her husband, f i n d s an i n t e l l e c t u a l soul-mate i n Mr. Drummond, b r e a k s her t i e s t o w h i t e s o c i e t y by a d o p t i n g S a r t j e , and b e g i n s t o t e a c h her c h i l d r e n r a d i c a l l y new v a l u e s . A c c o r d -i n g t o S c h r e i n e r ' s husband, the e n d i n g o f the n o v e l would have Rebekah l i v i n g a l o n e w i t h her c h i l d r e n on her own farm ( 5 0 6 ) . O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s u n f i n i s h e d n o v e l , From Man t o Man, i s f o r m a l l y i n f e r i o r t o her acknowledged m a s t e r p i e c e , The S t o r y of  an A f r i c a n Farm. However i t s r a t h e r m e l odramatic p l o t and l e n g t h y p h i l o s o p h i c a l e x c u r s i o n s do connect on the t h e m a t i c l e v e l . Through th e outward drama and i n t e r i o r debate t h a t c h a r a c t e r i z e her h e r o i n e ' s l i f e , S c h r e i n e r was a b l e t o d i s s o l v e the s e e m i n g l y i n s o l u b l e c o n t r a d i c t i o n s t h a t d e f e a t e d L y n d a l l and Waldo i n A f r i c a n Farm, and so hampered her own development as a woman and w r i t e r . T h i s i s apparent even i n the d i f f e r e n t use of metaphor i n the two n o v e l s . L y n d a l l i s d e p i c t e d i n r a t h e r s t r a i n e d terms as S l e e p i n g Beauty, Napoleon, and Undine, who i s so emblematic of her s e l f - d i v i s i o n . Rebekah i s d e p i c t e d , more r e a l i s t i c a l l y f o r an a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l h e r o i n e , as a s t o r y - t e l l e r and w r i t e r . Most i m p o r t a n t of a l l , whereas i n A f r i c a n Farm the a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l h e r o i n e i s i n e f f e c t s p l i t i n t o f e m a l e , L y n d a l l , and male, Waldo, Rebekah i n t e g r a t e s male s t r e n g t h i n t o her image of h e r s e l f ( H e r c u l e s and the Madonna). She f a n t a s i z e s 65 about b e i n g a man who p r o t e c t s and c a r e s f o r her pregnant female s e l f : She f e l t t he g r e a t freedom opened t o h e r , no p l a c e shut o f f from h e r , the l o n g c h a i n b r o k e n , a l l work p o s s i b l e f o r h e r , no law t o say t h i s and t h i s i s f o r woman, you are woman; she drew a l o n g b r e a t h and s m i l e d an e x p a n s i v e s m i l e ( 2 2 6 ) . From Man t o Man i s a v i s i o n a r y n o v e l which i m a g i n a t i v e l y b r e a k s down the w a l l s which i n r e a l l i f e l i m i t e d i t s a u t h o r . Rebekah b r i n g s down the w a l l which the " l i t t l e Queen V i c t o r i a of South A f r i c a " b u i l t t o keep t h e A f r i c a n s out of "her" c o u n t r y . She even b r i n g s down the symbol of Queen V i c t o r i a by r e p l a c i n g her w i t h the h a l f - f r e e , h a l f - f e t t e r e d female f i g u r e of Humanity. By championing both her f a l l e n s i s t e r B e r t i e (whose a b n o r m a l l y s m a l l f e e t echo Humanity's u s e l e s s l i m b s ) and S a r t j e , the h a l f -c a s t e daughter o f a w h i t e master and a b l a c k s e r v a n t , she f i g h t s f o r both s e x u a l and r a c i a l e q u a l i t y i n t h e c o l o n y . L y n d a l l ' s s u c c e s s o r Rebekah does not s o l v e a l l of her c o n f l i c t s ; n o t a b l y she i s not a l l o w e d a s e x u a l r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h Mr. Drummond, because, presumably, she r e s p e c t s the m a r r i a g e vows which her husband has r e p e a t e d l y b r o k e n . She s e t t l e s f o r a l i f e of c e l i b a c y and i n t e l l e c t u a l communion. S c h r e i n e r g r a n t s Rebekah c h i l d r e n , and a p l a c e t o w r i t e ; e v e n t u a l l y the room of her own becomes a farm of her o w n — t h e A f r i c a n farm, the p i e c e of A f r i c a which L y n d a l l and Waldo were d e n i e d . 66 Notes - O l i v e S c h r e i n e r 1-For Stephen Gray i n South e r n A f r i c a n L i t e r a t u r e : An  I n t r o d u c t i o n , The S t o r y o f an A f r i c a n Farm i s "a s o l e common o r i g i n " of the l i b e r a l South A f r i c a n n o v e l i n E n g l i s h ( 1 3 3 ) . For D a v i d R a b k i n , " I n [ S c h r e i n e r ' s ] work, r e a l i s m s t r u c k i t s f i r s t , t e n t a t i v e r o o t s i n South A f r i c a n s o i l " ("Ways of L o o k i n g : O r i g i n s of t h e N o v e l i n South A f r i c a " 4 3 ) . Kenneth P a r k e r i n The South A f r i c a n N o v e l i n E n g l i s h , E s s ays i n C r i t i c i s m and  S o c i e t y echoes t h e s e v i e w s . The c o n t i n u i n g i n t e r e s t i n S c h r e i n e r by c r i t i c s of South A f r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e i s apparent i n both the t i t l e and c o n t e n t s o f O l i v e S c h r e i n e r and A f t e r : E s s ays  on Southern A f r i c a n L i t e r a t u r e i n Honour of Guy B u t l e r . 2Ruth F i r s t and Ann S c o t t i n O l i v e S c h r e i n e r combine a f e m i n i s t and M a r x i s t - o r i e n t e d approach t o the w r i t e r , thus s y n t h e s i z i n g the two main a t t i t u d e s toward S c h r e i n e r : one, t h a t she i s a woman's w r i t e r , two, t h a t she i s a South A f r i c a n w r i t e r . T h e i r main s o u r c e s a r e S c h r e i n e r ' s L e t t e r s , Samuel C r o n w r i g h t - S c h r e i n e r ' s b i o g r a p h y , which a l t h o u g h b i a s e d made use of s o u r c e s t o which o n l y he had a c c e s s , and Ma r i o n Friedman's p s y c h o a n a l y t i c b i o g r a p h y . 3 i n a l e t t e r t o Havelock E l l i s , S c h r e i n e r c a l l e d South A f r i c a "a whole n a t i o n of lower m i d d l e - c l a s s P h i l i s t i n e s , w i t h o u t an a r i s t o c r a c y of b l o o d or i n t e l l e c t or muscular l a b o u r e r s t o save them!" (1890, L e t t e r s 183). The phrase was p i c k e d up by D o r i s L e s s i n g t o c h a r a c t e r i z e w h i t e R h o d e s i a n s . 4 S c h r e i n e r must have come a c r o s s e i t h e r La Motte Fouque's Undine or a r e f e r e n c e t o t h e German t a l e . 5The young S c h r e i n e r i s known t o have read few n o v e l s and I have not been a b l e t o f i n d any r e f e r e n c e t o Wuthering H e i g h t s or Jane Eyre i n her l e t t e r s , or any i n d i c a t i o n by her b i o g r a p h e r s t h a t she had read t h e s e n o v e l s . However the p a r a l l e l s , p a r t i c u l a r l y w i t h E m i l y B r o n t e ' s n o v e l , a re so s t r i k i n g as t o f a l l j u s t s h o r t of p r o v a b l e e v i d e n c e . There a re s e v e r a l a d m i r i n g r e f e r e n c e s t o George E l i o t ( e . g . M i l l on The F l o s s , 1885; L e t t e r s 8 2 ) , but none t h a t suggest t h a t she had read E l i o t b e f o r e w r i t i n g A f r i c a n Farm. ^For a h i s t o r i c a l view o f O l i v e S c h r e i n e r as an e a r l y f e m i n i s t n o v e l i s t see E l a i n e S h o w a l t e r , "The F e m i n i s t N o v e l i s t s , " i n A L i t e r a t u r e o f t h e i r Own: B r i t i s h Women  N o v e l i s t s from B r o n t e t o L e s s i n g . She w r i t e s t h a t , "The con f u s e d a s p i r a t i o n s and dreams and the c l a u s t r o p h o b i c f e m aleness of t h e f e m i n i s t a e s t h e t i c are most s u g g e s t i v e l y embodied i n the l i f e and works o f O l i v e S c h r e i n e r . . . . In her a m b i v a l e n c e , her s e l f - d e c e p t i o n , her p s y c h o s o m a t i c i l l -n e s s e s , we can read the d i s t r e s s s i g n a l s of a t r a n s i t i o n a l g e n e r a t i o n " (194-95). G r o u p i n g S c h r e i n e r w i t h B r i t i s h w r i t e r s , S h o w a l t e r does not c o n s i d e r the c o l o n i a l component, and t h i s i s a s e r i o u s l a c k i n her a n a l y s i s . 67 ' L y n d a l l i s a f o r e r u n n e r of the e d u c a t e d , f i n a n c i a l l y i n d e p e n d e n t , s e x u a l l y emancipated "New Woman" c e l e b r a t e d by ( m o s t l y male) w r i t e r s of the 1890s. But her attempt at emanci-p a t i o n p o i n t s up the gap between the model and the r e a l i t y ; S c h r e i n e r ' s own l i f e s i m i l a r l y r e v e a l s the s t r a i n s i n the New Woman i d e o l o g y . ^ T h i s q u o t a t i o n from an e a r l y l e t t e r of S c h r e i n e r ' s shows t h a t L y n d a l l ' s c o n f u s e d d e s i r e t o be " d e l i v e r e d " i s l i k e her a u t h o r ' s : "But no one w i l l ever absorb me and make me l o s e m y s e l f u t t e r l y , and u n l e s s someone d i d I s h o u l d never marry" ( L e t t e r t o Mrs. Cawood, 1 8 7 8 , L e t t e r s 4-5). ^ E l a i n e W i l s o n i n " P e r v a s i v e Symbolism i n The S t o r y of an  A f r i c a n Farm" d i s c u s s e s the p a t t e r n of s l e e p and waking imagery, c o n c l u d i n g too s i m p l i s t i c a l l y t h a t the farm i s the unawakened w o r l d of c h i l d h o o d and the w o r l d o u t s i d e s y m b o l i z e s the awakening of a d u l t h o o d . l°However L y n d a l l ' s contemptuous d e s c r i p t i o n of Gregory Rose as "a man-woman" (197) i s i n d i c a t i v e o f the contempt t h a t S c h r e i n e r o f t e n showed f o r women, another s i g n of her own c o n f l i c t about sex r o l e s . She wrote t o E l l i s : " p l e a s e see t h a t they bury me i n a p l a c e where t h e r e are no women. I've not been a woman r e a l l y . . ." (1888, L e t t e r s 142). l ^ F o r i n s t a n c e , Laurens van der P o s t , The L o s t World of the  K a l a h a r i and o t h e r books, whom D o r i s L e s s i n g has memorably c r i t i c i z e d f o r p r o j e c t i n g the w h i t e man's f a n t a s i e s onto A f r i c a n s . 1 2 S h o w a l t e r 199. I have not been a b l e t o c o n f i r m t h i s e l s e w h e r e . l^The n o v e l has been w i d e l y d i s m i s s e d and n e g l e c t e d . Even i n F i r s t and S c o t t ' s e x c e l l e n t b i o g r a p h y i t i s b a r e l y mentioned. I t was out of p r i n t from the 1920s u n t i l 1982, when V i r a g o P r e s s r e p u b l i s h e d i t . D o r i s L e s s i n g d i s m i s s e s the n o v e l ("Afterword t o The S t o r y o f an A f r i c a n Farm" 112). Dinesen and Gordimer do not d i s c u s s i t . 1 4 S c h r e i n e r began From Man t o Man i n 1873, took a manu-s c r i p t of the n o v e l w i t h her t o England i n 1881, and, as her l e t t e r s show, worked and w o r r i e d over i t f o r the r e s t of her l i f e . A c c o r d i n g t o her husband the t i t l e comes from a sentence of John (Lord) M o r l e y : "From man t o man n o t h i n g m a t t e r s but . . . c h a r i t y " ( I n t r o d u c t i o n by S.C. C r o n w r i g h t - S c h r e i n e r , From Man  t o Man 495). l 5 I n a s i g n t h a t the n o v e l has begun t o be r e a s s e s s e d , Laurence L e r n e r i n " O l i v e S c h r e i n e r and the F e m i n i s t s " d e s c r i b e s Rebekah as a unique h e r o i n e , who does "the t r u l y r a d i c a l t h i n g f o r a d e f i a n t woman," which i s t o s u r v i v e ( 7 5 ) . He w r i t e s : 68 "Rebekah i s a woman of s t r o n g s e x u a l f e e l i n g , and s t r o n g e m o t i o n a l dependence; a t the same t i m e , she i s competent, s e l f - r e l i a n t and c a p a b l e of l e a r n i n g independence. She i s Am e l i a and Becky combined, she i s Jane Eyre d e p r i v e d of the c o n v e n t i o n a l n o v e l p l o t — s h e i s e x a c t l y the k i n d of woman the f e m i n i s t n o v e l needed" ( 7 9 ) . l*>For a d e s c r i p t i o n o f thes e e a r l y B r i t i s h s o c i a l i s t s and S c h r e i n e r ' s p l a c e among them see S h e i l a Rowbotham, Women,  R e s i s t a n c e and R e v o l u t i o n . l ^ H a v i n g been an e a r l y admirer o f Rhodes, she became a f i e r c e opponent. The n o n f i c t i o n P o l i t i c a l S i t u a t i o n (1896), w r i t t e n w i t h her husband, and her n o v e l Trooper P e t e r H a l k e t (1897) were d i r e c t a t t a c k s on h i s p o l i c i e s i n R h o d e s i a . l^ s h e broke w i t h the South A f r i c a n women's s u f f r a g e movement because b l a c k and c o l o u r e d e n f r a n c h i s e m e n t was not p a r t of t h e i r program. She j o i n e d her b r o t h e r W.P. S c h r e i n e r , a l i b e r a l M.P., t o f i g h t u n s u c c e s s f u l l y f o r b l a c k r i g h t s i n the c o n s t i t u t i o n . r o n w r i g h t was a South A f r i c a n farmer and l a w y e r , younger than she, who, g o i n g so f a r as t o t a k e her name and s u b o r d i n a t e h i s c a r e e r t o h e r s , sympathized w i t h her p o l i t i c s and s u p p o r t e d her w r i t i n g . They d i d however spend l o n g p e r i o d s a p a r t , o s t e n s i b l y because of O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s h e a l t h . 2 0 S h e wrote "The P r e l u d e " i n I t a l y i n 1888. As she d e s c r i b e d i t , " . . . s u d d e n l y , i n an i n s t a n t , t he whole of t h i s l i t t l e P r e l u d e f l a s h e d on me. . . . i t ' s a p i c t u r e i n s m a l l , a k i n d of a l l e g o r y , of the l i f e o f the woman i n the book!!" ( L e t t e r t o Mrs. F r a n c i s S m i t h , 1909, L e t t e r s 291). 2 1 A s S h o w a l t e r p o i n t s o u t , contemporary f e m i n i s t s adapted th e t h e o r y of s o c i a l Darwinism t o c l a i m t h a t women were more h i g h l y e v o l v e d , s p i r i t u a l l y and m o r a l l y , than men (185-86). S c h r e i n e r d e v e l o p s t h i s v e r y argument i n her n o v e l , an example of c o n t r a d i c t i o n s i n her e v o l u t i o n a r y t h e o r y which echo o t h e r i d e o l o g i c a l c o n t r a d i c t i o n s i n her w r i t i n g . 2 2 A s w e l l as an i n t r o d u c t i o n t o the f i r s t e d i t i o n o f the n o v e l , C r o n w r i g h t - S c h r e i n e r wrote a p r e c i s of what he thought the i n t e n d e d e n d i n g was t o be, based on h i s w i f e ' s notes and o u t l i n e . T h i s p o s t s c r i p t i s r e p r i n t e d i n the V i r a g o P r e s s e d i t i o n (505-07). 69 Chapter Three Isak D i n e s e n : Eve as Adam Out of A f r i c a The young Danish b r i d e Karen B l i x e n d i s c o v e r s her persona i n the h i g h l a n d s of Kenya: b e n e v o l e n t m i s t r e s s , f e a r l e s s l i o n h u n t e r , and f i n a l l y , the consummate s t o r y - t e l l e r I s a k D i n e s e n . She approaches A f r i c a as a European, as a woman, and as a f u t u r e w r i t e r ; t h e s e t h r e e d e t e r m i n a n t s o f her memoir Out of A f r i c a combine i n a p a t t e r n q u i t e d i f f e r e n t from t h a t o f O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s n o v e l The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm. F i r s t of a l l , I s ak Dinesen u n d e n i a b l y w r i t e s as a European s e t t l e r ; she e m i g r a t e d i n 1913 a t the age of t w e n t y - e i g h t t o what was t h e n t h e P r o t e c t o r a t e of B r i t i s h E a s t A f r i c a t o manage a c o f f e e farm owned by her f a m i l y i n Denmark. Large t r a c t s o f f e r t i l e l a n d were b e i n g made a v a i l a b l e t o w h i t e s e t t l e r s , w h i l e the K i k u y u , Masai and o t h e r t r i b e s were b e i n g c o n f i n e d t o r e -s e r v e s and, t h r o u g h the i m p o s i t i o n of t a x e s , f o r c e d t o work f o r wages on the w h i t e farms. The s e t t l e r s o f the time were l a r g e l y w e a l t h y and u p p e r - c l a s s . The Karen Dinesen who e m i g r a t e d t o E a s t A f r i c a t o marry her Swedish c o u s i n , B r o r B l i x e n , came l e s s out of l o v e f o r her p r o f l i g a t e and l i b e r t i n e husband (she had been i n l o v e w i t h h i s b r o t h e r ) t h a n , one s u s p e c t s , f o r the o p p o r t u n i t y of becoming Baroness Von B l i x e n - F i n e c k e , and even more f o r t h e o p p o r t u n i t y of e s c a p i n g the narrow h o r i z o n s o f a woman of her c l a s s i n Denmark. Added t o t h e s e reasons was the f a c t t h a t her f a t h e r had e x p l o r e d America as a young man, and i t was t h i s r o m a n t i c image of him t h a t she p r e s e r v e d a f t e r h i s 70 s u i c i d e when she was a c h i l d . 1 For s e v e r a l r e a s o n s , t h e n , she was p r e p a r e d t o f a l l i n l o v e w i t h the b e a u t i f u l and not i n c o n s e q u e n t i a l chunk of the E a s t A f r i c a n h i g h l a n d s (6,000 a c r e s ) t h a t she soon became s o l e m i s t r e s s o f , when B r o r made i t c l e a r t h a t he was more i n t e r e s t e d i n h i s l o v e a f f a i r s i n town th a n i n t h e r u n n i n g of t h e farm. B e f o r e t h e y s e p a r a t e d and l a t e r d i v o r c e d he gave her s y p h i l i s , o f which she was never f u l l y c u r e d . She r a r e l y mentions her husband i n Out of A f r i c a . T h i s i n d i r e c t r e f e r e n c e i s one o f the few: "Our r e a l t r o u b l e was t h a t we were s h o r t of c a p i t a l , f o r i t had a l l been spent i n t h e o l d days b e f o r e I took over the r u n n i n g of the farm" ( 2 2 8 ) . The Baroness B l i x e n , as d e p i c t e d i n her memoir, e v i n c e s the c l a s s i c c o l o n i a l q u a l i t i e s of the b e l o v e d and r e v e r e d m i s t r e s s of s c o r e s of b l a c k s e r v a n t s and l a b o r e r s whose f a t e hangs upon h e r s . F u r t h e r m o r e , the b l a c k c h a r a c t e r s a r e i d e a l i z e d and d i s t o r t e d t o f i t the a u t h o r ' s f a n t a s y of h e r s e l f ; they a re d e s c r i b e d as b e a u t i f u l w i l d c r e a t u r e s a k i n t o the a n i m a l s and the l a n d s c a p e , and as nobl e savages or " t r u e a r i s t o c r a t s , " a c c o r d i n g t o Dinesen's i d e a l o f f e u d a l N o r t h e r n European s o c i e t y . However, her p o r t r a y a l of A f r i c a i s not q u i t e so schem a t i c or s i m p l e . The c o m p l e x i t y and i n t e r e s t come, i n my o p i n i o n , from her s t a t u s as a woman. L i v i n g i n A f r i c a f r e e d her from the r e s t r i c t i o n s of u p p e r - m i d d l e - c l a s s D a nish s o c i e t y , so t h a t she was a b l e t o c r e a t e the s e l f which matured i n t o one of the most admired w r i t e r s of our c e n t u r y . As d e p i c t e d i n her l e t t e r s and i n J u d i t h Thurman's d e f i n i t i v e b i o g r a p h y , the young Karen i s a p e r s o n a l i t y too l a r g e f o r t he s m a l l s t a g e of her l i f e i n Denmark. She i s b u r s t i n g 71 w i t h t a l e n t and i n t e n s i t y t h a t t h o s e around her f i n d u n n e r v i n g and u n n a t u r a l i n a young woman. She w r i t e s p l a y s f o r f a m i l y t h e a t r i c a l s and s k e t c h e s out g o t h i c t a l e s , most of which w i l l remain undeveloped u n t i l she r e t u r n s from A f r i c a t o become Is a k D i n e s e n . I n s h o r t she i s a f r u s t r a t e d female a r t i s t who goes t o A f r i c a i n s e a r c h o f the autonomy and power o f the male a r t i s t . I n E a s t A f r i c a her s t r o n g p e r s o n a l i t y comes i n t o i t s own. The p h y s i c a l , p s y c h o l o g i c a l and f i n a n c i a l d i f f i c u l t i e s of Karen B l i x e n ' s l i f e i n Kenya c a l l upon q u a l i t i e s which a r e t r a d i -t i o n a l l y male: p h y s i c a l courage, s k i l l i n h u n t i n g , e g o t i s m , s e l f - s u f f i c i e n c y , and a u t h o r i t y . As e v i d e n c e d i n her l e t t e r s the r e a l Karen B l i x e n was o f t e n i l l , l o n e l y , and p r o s t r a t e w i t h s o rrow, when, f o r i n s t a n c e , her l o v e r Denys F i n c h - H a t t o n would l e a v e a f t e r one of h i s b r i e f , i n t e r m i t t e n t v i s i t s . But her l i f e i n A f r i c a gave her t h e freedom t o imagine h e r s e l f as she would have l i k e d t o be, and t o l i v e up t o t h a t image t o a l a r g e e x t e n t . Thus t h e A f r i c a n c o l o n y o f f e r e d her something of what the " w i l d e r n e s s " has t r a d i t i o n a l l y o f f e r e d young men: an o p p o r t u n i t y t o r e c r e a t e her l i f e on her own terms, and an o p p o r t u n i t y f o r h e r o i s m . She w r i t e s i n the b e g i n n i n g of Out of  A f r i c a : "The views were immensely wide. E v e r y t h i n g t h a t you saw made f o r g r e a t n e s s and freedom, and u n e q u a l l e d n o b i l i t y " ( 1 5 ) . I n e v i t a b l y she m y t h o l o g i z e s her e x p e r i e n c e i n t h e t y p i c a l c o l o n i a l way i n which the f o c u s i s on the European hero or h e r o i n e f o r which A f r i c a i s a backdrop, and t h e A f r i c a n s a r e , at b e s t , a s u p p o r t i n g c a s t , a t w o r s t , p a r t of the f a u n a . Her book b e g i n s , " I had a farm i n A f r i c a . . .." Kenya i s d e s c r i b e d i n the p a s t t e n s e as i f now t h a t t h e w r i t e r has l e f t i t i t no 72 l o n g e r e x i s t s . Karen B l i x e n i s Adam, and A f r i c a was her Eden. I n a t y p i c a l example, she d e s c r i b e s a herd of b u f f a l o approach-i n g as i f t h e y "were b e i n g c r e a t e d b e f o r e my eyes and sent out as they were f i n i s h e d " ( 2 3 ) . However, the s e n s i t i v i t y w i t h which she p o r t r a y s the l a n d and p e o p l e m o d i f i e s — a l t h o u g h i t cannot r e d e e m — h e r r a c i s m and e t h n o c e n t r i s m . T h i s sympathy comes from her i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h t h e " p r i m i t i v e " w o r l d . What a t t r a c t s her t o t h e A f r i c a n s i s not her shared sense of o p p r e s s i o n — a s i n S c h r e i n e r — b u t her shared sense of t h e i r n o b i l i t y and of t h e f r a g i l i t y of t h e i r p o s i t i o n . As a memoir, Out of A f r i c a i s s u f f u s e d w i t h the t r a g e d y t h a t t h r e a t e n s from t h e b e g i n n i n g and f i n a l l y o v e r t a k e s the h e r o i n e when her farm f a i l s . The Baroness" doom i s seen as a k i n t o t h a t of t h e K i k u y u and M a s a i , whose s u p e r i o r but a n a c h r o n i s t i c way of l i f e i s doomed by modern s o c i e t y . She, l i k e them, does not f i t her t i m e , and s u b s i s t s , as she p o r t r a y s the A f r i c a n s s u b s i s t i n g , on the bread of her i d e a l s , her emotions, and above a l l , her i m a g i n a t i v e c o n c e p t i o n of h e r s e l f . So Dinesen's sense of the p r e c a r i o u s n e s s of her u n d e r t a k i n g i n A f r i c a , and of the persona t h a t she has c r e a t e d t h e r e , e n a b l e s her t o impart a sense of the p r e c a r i o u s n e s s of the n a t i v e c u l t u r e s , the w i l d c o u n t r y and a n i m a l s of E a s t A f r i c a d u r i n g t h e p r o c e s s of c o l o n i z a t i o n i n the n i n e t e e n - t e n s and t w e n t i e s . Dinesen i d e n t i f i e s w i t h the a n i m a l s she h u n t s , e v i n c i n g a p a r t i c u l a r a f f i n i t y f o r the l i o n s . S h o o t i n g l i o n s w i t h Denys F i n c h - H a t t o n was, she w r i t e s , "a d e c l a r a t i o n o f l o v e " ( 1 0 2 ) . She a t t r i b u t e s t o a n i m a l s , most o b v i o u s l y t h e fawn L u l u , but 73 even t o herds of e l e p h a n t s and e l a n d s , human m o t i v a t i o n s and c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . S i m i l a r l y she f o c u s e s upon human m i s f i t s and e c c e n t r i c s . Kamante, f o r i n s t a n c e (who s h a r e s a c h a p t e r w i t h L u l u ) , has "the a r r o g a n t g r e a t n e s s of s o u l o f the r e a l dwarf, who, when he f i n d s h i m s e l f a t a d i f f e r e n c e w i t h t h e whole w o r l d , h o l d s the w o r l d t o be c r o o k e d " (34). Kamante's a r r o g a n c e h e l p s t o i n s p i r e the p r o u d l y e c c e n t r i c c h a r a c t e r t h a t Karen B l i x e n was t o assume as I s a k D i n e s e n . She p l a c e s h e r s e l f and her f r i e n d s , such as B e r k e l e y C o l e and Denys—who, f o l l o w i n g the B a r o n e s s ' p r e d i l e c t i o n f o r the " n a t u r a l a r i s t o c r a c y , " are u p p e r - c l a s s E n g l i s h m e n — i n t h e c a t e g o r y of t h o s e who are a t a d i f f e r e n c e w i t h the modern w o r l d and h o l d the w o r l d t o be c r o o k e d . Her e x p a t r i a t e Englishmen are European v e r s i o n s of the Masai w a r r i o r and the K i k u y u c h i e f . She d i s m i s s e s the l a t e r , more m i d d l e -c l a s s immigrants as c r a s s money-grubbers who t u r n e d A f r i c a i n t o "a b u s i n e s s p r o p o s i t i o n . " The a u t h o r and her s e l e c t group of Europeans share a s p e c i a l a f f i n i t y w i t h the A f r i c a n s , which she e x p l a i n s by the n a t u r a l sympathy between "the t r u e a r i s t o c r a c y and the t r u e p r o l e t a r i a t of the w o r l d " (146). With t h i s paradox she a t t e m p t s t o e r a s e the c o n t r a d i c t i o n s of her own p o s i t i o n as d e f e n d e r of t h e A f r i c a n s w h i l e b e i n g , i n the words of her b i o g r a p h e r "one of the g r e a t e s t f e u d a l o v e r l o r d s o f the c o u n t r y " (Thurman 128). Dinesen i s aware of the i r o n y of her p o s i t i o n ; she p o i n t s out t h a t the s o - c a l l e d s q u a t t e r s , t h a t i s t h e o r i g i n a l i n h a b i t a n t s of "her" l a n d , p r o b a b l y r e g a r d her as "a s o r t of 74 s u p e r i o r s q u a t t e r on t h e i r e s t a t e s " ( 1 9 ) . She o f t e n conveys her a d m i r a t i o n f o r the A f r i c a n s , as i n t h i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s t a t e -ment: "The d i s c o v e r y of t h e dark r a c e s was t o me a m a g n i f i c e n t enlargement o f a l l my w o r l d " ( 2 4 ) . I n a s e n s i t i v e summary of the h i s t o r y o f E a s t A f r i c a , she s u g g e s t s t h a t the K i k u y u s o l d as s l a v e s d i s p l a y e d an i r o n i c r e s i g n a t i o n toward t h e i r t o r m e n t o r s . She imagines them s a y i n g , "You a r e here on our a c c o u n t . You e x i s t f o r our sa k e , not we f o r your sake" ( 1 1 1 ) . S i m i l a r l y she d e s c r i b e s how t h e Somali women make of t h e i r a b s o l u t e dependence on men a c e l e b r a t i o n of Amazon-like s t r e n g t h : These d a u g h t e r s of a f i g h t i n g r a c e went through t h e i r c e r e m o n i a l of primness as through a g r e a t g r a c e f u l war-dance; b u t t e r would not melt i n t h e i r mouth, n e i t h e r would they r e s t u n t i l t h ey had drunk t h e h e a r t ' s b l o o d of t h e i r a d v e r s a r y ; t h e y f i g u r e d l i k e t h r e e f e r o c i o u s young she-wolves i n seemly sheep's c l o t h i n g ( 1 3 9 ) . In t h i s passage she i m a g i n a t i v e l y s t r i p s away the assumed s u b m i s s i v e n e s s of t h e Somali women t o r e v e a l t h e i r i n n e r dynamism. She must s u r e l y have f e l t t h a t beneath her own "p r i m " e x t e r i o r was a s i m i l a r e l e m e n t a l s t r e n g t h , a s t r e n g t h , i n f a c t , t h a t A f r i c a r e v e a l e d t o her by o f f e r i n g a unique c h a l l e n g e t o her courage and s e l f - r e l i a n c e . I t i s a l s o s i g n i f i c a n t t h a t i n endin g her c h a p t e r s , Dinesen u s u a l l y g i v e s t h e A f r i c a n s t h e l a s t word, a d e v i c e which o f t e n r e f l e c t s i r o n i c a l l y on the e x p l o i t s o f her w h i t e c h a r a c t e r s . For example, a t t h e end of t h e " V i s i t o r s t o t h e Farm" s e c t i o n , an o l d man asks i f Denys and Karen can see God i n t h e i r a i r p l a n e . To t h e i r n o n - c o m m i t t a l answer he r e p l i e s , " I do not know a t a l l why you two go on f l y i n g " ( 1 7 2 ) . 75 Thus Dinesen i s a l i v e t o the i r o n i e s of w h i t e power i n A f r i c a t o a degree which was s t r i k i n g l y u n usual among the s e t t l e r s i n B r i t i s h E a s t A f r i c a i n the n i n e t e e n - t w e n t i e s , who f o u g h t s t r e n u o u s l y t o e n t r e n c h w h i t e supremacy. On one hand, the Baroness B l i x e n , w i t h c h a r a c t e r i s t i c n o b l e s s e , t a k e s her p r i v i l e g e d p o s i t i o n f o r g r a n t e d , which s a f e l y a l l o w s her t o sympathize w i t h her dependents. On the o t h e r hand, she knows t h a t she h e r s e l f i s hostage t o the p r e c a r i o u s f i n a n c i n g of her farm, her r a i s o n d ' e t r e i n A f r i c a . She was f r u s t r a t e d by her dependence on her f a m i l y ' s money, on the p r i c e of c o f f e e , and f i n a l l y , on the good w i l l of the banks. I t i s p a r t l y through her own s i t u a t i o n t h a t she empathizes w i t h the A f r i c a n s who have l o s t t h e i r own l a n d and must s e r v e i n f e r i o r m a s t e r s . As her own p l i g h t worsens, Karen B l i x e n becomes p a i n f u l l y aware t h a t her "male" r o l e of f a r m e r , l a w - g i v e r and hunter i s s e l f - c r e a t e d , has been w i l l e d i n t o b e i n g by her own power of a r t i f i c e . I n c r e a s -i n g l y her power of a r t i f i c e t a k e s over and t r a n s f o r m s the b i t t e r r e a l i t y ; i n t h i s p r o c e s s we w i t n e s s the emergence of the s t o r y t e l l e r I sak D i n e s e n , who i s i n a sense born out of Karen B l i x e n ' s d e b a c l e . Dinesen's c r i t i c s respond t o d i f f e r e n t elements of her remarkable s e l f - t r a n s f o r m a t i o n . Robert Langbaum's s e m i n a l s t u d y , The Gayety of V i s i o n , e s t a b l i s h e s Out of A f r i c a as a p a s t o r a l romance. P a t r i c i a Meyer Spacks i n The Female  I m a g i n a t i o n emphasizes t h a t Dinesen's a r c h e t y p e i s f e m a l e : the i d e a l s e l f image t h a t she g e n e r a t e s i s one based on c o n n e c t i o n , 76 r e l a t i o n s h i p / and l o v e . Her w r i t e r ' s i m a g i n a t i o n " p r e s e r v e s t h e female v o c a t i o n o f l o v i n g as p a r t of the a r t i s t ' s v o c a t i o n : t o s e e , t o r e c o g n i z e / t o shape" ( 3 8 9 ) . Abdul R. JanMohamed i n Manichean A e s t h e t i c s c o n c e n t r a t e s on Dinesen's e x p e r i e n c e as a " s t r a n g e r , " who l i v i n g among the A f r i c a n s was d i v e s t e d of her o r i g i n a l i d e n t i t y and f r e e d t o choose a new one: . . . d i s i n t e g r a t i o n becomes the b a s i s f o r a r e c o n -s t r u c t i o n of a more complex p e r s o n a l i t y and a more pr o f o u n d s o c i a l r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h the n a t i v e s . . . . D i nesen's e x p e r i e n c e as a s t r a n g e r i s a g e n u i n e l y l i b e r a t i n g one t h a t p r o f o u n d l y augments the su p e r -f i c i a l l i c e n s e p r o v i d e d by the p r i v i l e g e s of a c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y : the freedom not t o g i v e a damn f o r c o n v e n t i o n s p a l e s i n c o n t r a s t t o t h e freedom from a p r e f a b r i c a t e d s e l f ( 5 4 - 5 5 ) . The c e n t r a l metaphor i n Out of A f r i c a i s the B i b l i c a l C r e a t i o n . I s a k Dinesen l o v e s t h e A f r i c a n s , t h e mountains, the r a i n , the l i o n s and e l e p h a n t s as i f they were her c h i l d r e n , a s p e c t s of h e r s e l f . The a u t h o r i s not o n l y Adam but God as w e l l ; or perhaps Karen B l i x e n i s Adam and I s a k Dinesen i s God. When she and Denys f l y over the p l a i n s i n h i s a i r p l a n e she f e e l s toward the herds of a n i m a l s below "as God d i d when he had j u s t c r e a t e d them, and b e f o r e he commissioned Adam t o g i v e them names" ( 1 6 7 ) . When she w r i t e s an account of the l i f e of one of " h e r " K i k u y u , i t i s as i f she has c r e a t e d him anew by i m m o r t a l i z i n g him on paper. She d e s c r i b e s the man's wonder and g r a t i t u d e : Such a g l a n c e d i d Adam g i v e the L o r d when he formed him out of the d u s t , and b r e a t h e d i n t o h i s n o s t r i l s the b r e a t h of l i f e , and man became a l i v i n g s o u l . I had c r e a t e d him and shown him h i m s e l f : Jogona Kanyagga of l i f e e v e r l a s t i n g ( 9 2 ) . Jogona Kanyagga, e v i d e n c e of t h e power of t h e w r i t t e n word, becomes Is a k Dinesen's work of a r t . 77 I n JanMohamed 1s p e r c e p t i v e a n a l y s i s , whereas Dinesen t r a n s -forms the c o n s c i o u s n e s s o f the A f r i c a n s by i n t r o d u c i n g them t o the w r i t t e n word, she i s i n t u r n i n f l u e n c e d by the myt h i c c o n s c i o u s n e s s , the metonymic c o n n e c t i o n s , the o r a l t r a d i t i o n s , of t h e i r p r e l i t e r a t e s o c i e t y . 2 A d o p t i n g the r o l e of the dreamer, she admits i n t o her t a l e t h e freedom of t h e m a g i c a l and m y t h i c a l . She w r i t e s : The t h i n g which i n the waking w o r l d comes n e a r e s t t o a dream i s n i g h t i n a b i g town, where nobody knows one or the A f r i c a n n i g h t . There too i s i n f i n i t e freedom: i t i s t h e r e t h a t t h i n g s a r e g o i n g on, d e s t i n i e s a r e made round you, t h e r e i s a c t i v i t y on a l l s i d e s , and i t i s none of your c o n c e r n ( 7 1 ) . As G o d - a r t i s t Dinesen i s dreaming the farm; a t one p o i n t she w r i t e s , " I must c a l l i n f r e s h f o r c e s , or t h e farm w i l l run i n t o a bad dream, a ni g h t m a r e " ( 1 0 5 ) . I n the end she l o s e s the farm but keeps t h e dream of t h e farm: her s t o r y . In Out o f A f r i c a t h e r e i s no s y p h i l i s , no m i s c a r r i a g e , no b i t t e r d i v o r c e from B r o r B l i x e n , no r u p t u r e w i t h Denys, no attempted s u i c i d e , none o f the d e s p a i r which J u d i t h Thurman d e s c r i b e s as s u r r o u n d i n g her l a s t weeks i n A f r i c a ( 2 4 6 ) . There i s v i o l e n c e and death but they a r e a e s t h e t i c a l l y t r a n s f o r m e d and i n t e g r a t e d i n t o t h e s t o r y which t h e author d e p i c t s as u n f o l d i n g b e f o r e her i n a connected s e r i e s of marvelous c h a r a c t e r s and e n t e r t a i n i n g a d v e n t u r e s . I t i s a c o l l e c t i o n of b e a u t i f u l v i g n e t t e s , remembered i n a s e e m i n g l y c a s u a l , random way, but which a re a c t u a l l y c a r e f u l l y c r a f t e d , f i x e d i n t i m e , made p e r f e c t . The v o i c e o f the n a r r a t o r - h e r o i n e i s c o n t r o l l e d and de t a c h e d . Karen B l i x e n ' s c o f f e e f a r m i n g was but t h e raw m a t e r i a l f o r I s a k Dinesen's r e f i n e d , c r y s t a l l i z e d s t o r y . I n 78 t h i s v e r s i o n , even Denys' death i n a p l a n e c r a s h f i g u r e s as a t r a g i c event which f i t t i n g l y marks the h e r o i n e ' s d e p a r t u r e from A f r i c a . I t i s w i t h a m a j e s t i c sense of an e n d i n g t h a t t h e l o s s of her farm i s marked by the deaths of her f r i e n d s C h i e f K i n a n j u i , Denys, and e a r l i e r , B e r k e l e y C o l e , about whom she w r i t e s : "An epoch i n the c o l o n y came t o an end w i t h him" ( 1 5 8 ) . These remarks t o g e t h e r w i t h o t h e r v i g n e t t e s , such as the s t o r y of Emmanuelson (141-46), the t r a g e d i a n who walks i n t o l i o n c o u n t r y , i l l u s t r a t e her sense of t r a g e d y s u f f u s i n g and e n n o b l i n g her l i f e ; Karen B l i x e n , l i k e Emmanuelson, i s an a c t o r , who c o n s c i o u s l y assumes her t r a g i c r o l e , and so r i s e s above her mundane problems. Dinesen uses the metaphor o f t h e t h e a t r e f o r a r t i s t i c metamorphosis, as i n t h i s d e s c r i p t i o n of a n i g h t - t i m e Ngoma or dance: "The f i r e made the d a n c i n g p l a c e a s t a g e o f the f i r s t o r d e r , i t c o l l e c t e d a l l t h e c o l o u r s and movements w i t h i n i t i n t o a u n i t y " ( 1 2 0 ) . I t i s t h i s a r t i f i c i a l u n i t y of the st a g e t h a t she borrows t o o r d e r and u n i f y her own s t o r y . To pursue the emphasis on a r t i f i c e , t h e r e a re s e v e r a l a l l u s i o n s t o The Thousand and One N i g h t s , which suggest t h a t Dinesen sees h e r s e l f as Scheherezade, who d e f e a t s e v i l and escapes death by means of her charm, w i t , a u d a c i o u s n e s s and a r t . She d e s c r i b e s how i n the e v e n i n g s she would s i t " c r o s s - l e g g e d l i k e Scheherezade h e r s e l f " ( 1 5 9 ) . Scheherezade r e p r e s e n t s here the woman a r t i s t who tr i u m p h s over her c i r c u m -s t a n c e s by sheer i m a g i n a t i v e power, who saves her l i f e by means of her s t o r i e s , as Dinesen by means of her s t o r i e s s a l v a g e d her l i f e from the wreck of her A f r i c a n farm. 79 Dinesen compares f l y i n g over A f r i c a i n Denys' p l a n e t o P r i n c e A l i b e i n g c a r r i e d by t h e D j i n n i n one of Scheherezade's t a l e s ; by v i e w i n g the w o r l d from a g r e a t h e i g h t , she a c h i e v e s " t h e f u l l freedom of t h r e e d i m e n s i o n s , " c o n c l u d i n g , c h a r a c t e r -i s t i c a l l y , t h a t "now I u n d e r s t a n d e v e r y t h i n g " ( 1 6 7 - 8 ) . That s u b l i m e p e r s p e c t i v e she a t t e m p t s t o impart i n Out of A f r i c a . Shadows on the G r a s s The view i n Shadows on t h e G r a s s i s s u b s t a n t i a l l y the same; o n l y some s e v e n t y pages l o n g , i t i s a k i n d of A f t e r w o r d t o Out  of A f r i c a i n which she t e l l s something of what happened t o "her" A f r i c a n s a f t e r she l e f t Kenya. The dream has dimmed, the r i c h c o l o r s grown f a i n t ; the d r a m a t i s personae have receded i n t o the d i s t a n c e and t h e farm i n t o the realm of f i c t i o n . Yet i n t h i s s e q u e l t o the Out o f A f r i c a myth c e r t a i n p e o p l e and i n c i d e n t s , c e r t a i n a s p e c t s of her l o s t l i f e i n A f r i c a s t a n d out i n the a u t h o r ' s memory, which g i v e s her second memoir d i f f e r e n t emphases. F i r s t , she f o c u s e s on her Somali head s e r v a n t , Farah Aden, who had r e c e n t l y d i e d , as a c e n t r a l f i g u r e . She b e g i n s the book w i t h a v i s i o n of F a r a h , c a l l i n g him " t h e doorkeeper t o a l l o f [my memories]," "a p a r t of m y s e l f , " her amputated r i g h t hand. She w r i t e s t h a t "Farah and I had a l l t h e d i s s i m i l a r i t i e s r e q u i r e d t o make up a u n i t y " (281-83). Farah emerges as her d o u b l e , her Waldo; he, not Denys or B r o r or B e r k e l e y , i s her male h a l f and a l t e r ego. Farah comes t o r e p r e s e n t f o r her A f r i c a i t s e l f , which she sees as h a v i n g complemented and completed her u n f i n i s h e d p e r s o n a l i t y . As we s h a l l see, 80 L e s s i n g ' s and Gordimer's female main c h a r a c t e r s a l s o have t h e i r Waldos, t h e i r p l a t o n i c f r i e n d s who i n s p i r e and complete them, and who r e p r e s e n t f o r "them some a s p e c t of A f r i c a . The o t h e r element of the o r i g i n a l memoir which s t a n d s out i n Shadows on the G r a s s i s her New Y e a r ' s l i o n hunt w i t h Denys, which e p i s o d e she l o v i n g l y r e t e l l s i n such m y s t i c a l language as t h i s : "a l i o n hunt . . . i s an a f f a i r of p e r f e c t harmony, of deep, b u r n i n g mutual d e s i r e and r e v e r e n c e between two t r u t h f u l , undaunted c r e a t u r e s , on the same wave l e n g t h " ( 3 0 5 ) . The g l o r i f i c a t i o n of h u n t i n g l i o n s who o f t e n pose no immediate t h r e a t t o h e r s e l f or the p e o p l e on her l a n d s i s a defense of her p r e d a t o r y r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h A f r i c a . The mystique of the hunt, brought by the u p p e r - c l a s s s e t t l e r s from Europe, took on g r a n d — even g r o t e s q u e — p r o p o r t i o n s i n a c o u n t r y t h a t abounded i n l a r g e game. H u n t i n g f o r t r o p h i e s , as Karen B l i x e n and her f r i e n d s d i d , was a q u i n t e s s e n t i a l l y c o l o n i a l a c t i v i t y , embodying the s e t t l e r s ' c a r e l e s s a g g r e s s i o n toward t h e l a n d . J.M. Coetzee d e s c r i b e s the gun as the i n s t r u m e n t of the c o l o n i s t ' s p e r v e r s e l o v e of A f r i c a ; t h i s i s borne out i n Isak Dinesen's l o v i n g d e s c r i p t i o n s o f l i o n k i l l i n g . However, w i t h t y p i c a l s e l f - c r i t i c i s m , D inesen f o l l o w s her paean t o l i o n - h u n t i n g w i t h a d i s c l a i m e r t h a t shows how s e n s i t i v e she i s t o the m o r a l , and f o r h e r , a e s t h e t i c , i s s u e s r a i s e d by b i g game h u n t i n g . She w r i t e s When I f i r s t came out t o A f r i c a I c o u l d not l i v e w i t h o u t g e t t i n g a f i n e specimen of each s i n g l e k i n d of A f r i c a n game. I n my l a s t t e n y e a r s out t h e r e I d i d not f i r e a shot except i n o r d e r t o get meat f o r my N a t i v e s . I t became t o me an u n r e a s o n a b l e t h i n g , 81 indeed i n i t s e l f u g l y or v u l g a r , f o r the sake of a few h o u r s ' e x c i t e m e n t t o put out a l i f e t h a t belonged i n the g r e a t l a n d s c a p e . . . . But l i o n - h u n t i n g was i r r e s i s t i b l e t o me; I shot my l a s t l i o n a s h o r t time b e f o r e I l e f t A f r i c a ( 3 0 6 ) . The c o n t r a d i c t i o n between, ". . . 1 d i d not f i r e a shot except . . ." and, " . . . l i o n h u n t i n g was i r r e s i s t i b l e t o me" i s a t e l l i n g example of what seem t o be c o n t r a d i c t o r y views of h e r s e l f as e c o l o g i s t and h u n t e r . T h i s passage can be e x p l a i n e d perhaps by D inesen's v i s i o n of h e r s e l f as a g o d l i k e f i g u r e , p o s s e s s e d of t h e complementary powers of c r e a t i o n and d e s t r u c t i o n , o f n u r t u r i n g and k i l l i n g . C e r t a i n l y D i nesen's s t a t e m e n t s about h u n t i n g e x e m p l i f y her complex a t t i t u d e toward her r o l e i n E a s t A f r i c a . W h i l e she defends the c o l o n i a l i d e o l o g y , t h e c i v i l i z i n g m i s s i o n , she remains s e n s i t i v e t o t h e problems i t c r e a t e s f o r the A f r i c a n s and t h e i r l a n d . T h i s p e r v a s i v e a m b i v a l e n c e , r a t h e r than weakening th e f a b r i c of her work, s t r e n g t h e n s i t , g i v e s i t depth and humanity. Din e s e n and S c h r e i n e r Out of A f r i c a was p a r t l y i n s p i r e d by The S t o r y of an  A f r i c a n Farm, as Dinesen w r i t e s i n her i n t r o d u c t i o n t o S c h r e i n e r ' s n o v e l , but A f r i c a n Farm does not seem t o have d i r e c t l y i n f l u e n c e d her i d e a s or s t y l e . She read the n o v e l i n Denmark b e f o r e g o i n g t o A f r i c a , u s i n g i t as a s p r i n g b o a r d f o r her r o m a n t i c i m a g i n a t i o n : "The w o r l d of the book had l i v e d on . . . i n the mind of the r e a d e r , and had grown and p r o p a g a t e d t h e r e " ( I n t r o d u c t i o n t o The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm v ) . The a s p e c t s of the n o v e l t h a t remained i m p o r t a n t t o her are the 82 d e s c r i p t i o n of l a n d s c a p e and the atmosphere, not t h e d e p r e s s i n g p l o t and d e s p a i r i n g c h a r a c t e r s , whom, i n f a c t , she sees i n the r o s i e r l i g h t of her own h e r o i c v i s i o n . D inesen's v e r s i o n of A f r i c a n Farm, t h e n , r e f l e c t s her own more p o s i t i v e view of a w h i t e woman's p o s s i b i l i t i e s i n c o l o n i a l A f r i c a . In s p i t e of Dinesen's homage t o S c h r e i n e r , the r e l a t i o n between them i s one of c o n t r a s t . Karen B l i x e n found i n A f r i c a the freedom t o r e c r e a t e h e r s e l f as Isak D i n e s e n . I n her memoir she a c h i e v e s a m a g n i f i c e n t d i s t a n c e from her own t r o u b l e s and t r a g e d i e s and the t r o u b l e s and t r a g e d i e s of " her" A f r i c a n s . Isak Dinesen t r i u m p h s over the raw m a t e r i a l o f Karen B l i x e n ' s s t o r y t o c r e a t e a b e a u t i f u l and r o m a n t i c t a l e of Eden i n which the a u t h o r - p r o t a g o n i s t i s both Adam and God. However, i t was the p l i g h t of Karen B l i x e n , the woman s e a r c h i n g f o r a r o l e and a v o i c e , t h a t s e n s i t i z e d her t o t h e p l i g h t of t h e c o l o n i z e d A f r i c a n s , and l e d i n t u r n t o her s t r o n g i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h them. -This g i v e s t h e memoir t h e i n s i g h t and depth t o make i t more than a European's r o m a n t i c f a n t a s y of A f r i c a . Thus she can d e s c r i b e h e r s e l f as "a s q u a t t e r " on t h e farm t h a t she acknowledges r e a l l y b e l o n g s t o her A f r i c a n l a b o r e r s , a l t h o u g h she cannot s u r r e n d e r her hard-won power and p r e s t i g e as l a d y of the manor. To escape t h i s dilemma she adopts a m a t e r n a l i s t i c s t a n c e : " t h e s e p e o p l e a r e my c h i l d r e n and I must h e l p and p r o t e c t them." T h i s c o l o n i a l m a t e r n a l i s m i s s i m i l a r t o the p o s i t i o n t h a t Rebekah t a k e s i n From Man t o Man; and i t i s a r e s u l t of much the same p r o c e s s : Karen B l i x e n l i k e Rebekah i s awakened and s e n s i t i z e d t o t h e problems of t h e A f r i c a n s by her r e l a t e d problems as a woman. 83 But t h e a e s t h e t i c p r o c e s s e s of t h e two w r i t e r s are q u i t e d i f f e r e n t . Karen B l i x e n ' s i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h o t h e r s t r a n s l a t e s i n t o the i d e a t h a t t h e farm, i t s p e o p l e and a n i m a l s are a w o r l d of the a u t h o r ' s c r e a t i o n , her dream, her f i c t i o n . Through a r t she p e r f e c t s her i m p e r f e c t r e a l i t y , c ompletes her i n c o m p l e t e s t o r y . Her medium i s the s h o r t s t o r y ; even Out of A f r i c a i s s t r u c t u r e d as a s e r i e s of o v e r l a p p i n g i n c i d e n t s and a n e c d o t e s , some ( i n "From an Immigrant's Notebook") no l o n g e r than a p a r a g r a p h . T h i s form g i v e s her c o n t r o l , a l l o w s her t o keep her d i s t a n c e , t o m a i n t a i n her g r a v e l y humorous, p h i l o s o p h i c a l , s l i g h t l y b l a s e t o n e : " T h i s i s j u s t a good t a l e , one t h a t might have e n t e r t a i n e d Denys by the f i r e , " she seems t o be s a y i n g . O l i v e S c h r e i n e r , i n c o n t r a s t , w r i t e s i n the P r e f a c e t o A f r i c a n Farm t h a t she r e f u s e s t o p e r f e c t her i m p e r f e c t r e a l i t y , t o complete her i n c o m p l e t e s t o r y . She s e t s out t o w r i t e as a r e a l i s t who " s a d l y . . . must squeeze the c o l o u r from h i s b r ushes and d i p i t i n t o the g r e y pigments around him. He must p a i n t what l i e s b e f o r e him" ( 2 8 ) . Of c o u r s e O l i v e S c h r e i n e r does not e x a c t l y p a i n t what l i e s b e f o r e h e r . L i k e Isak Dinesen she a l s o d i s t o r t s the r e a l i t y of A f r i c a t o t e l l her own s t o r y . The major d i f f e r e n c e between the two w r i t e r s , though, i s t h a t O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s n o v e l s e x p l o r e and i l l u m i n a t e t h e i r c o n t r a d i c t i o n s . I n her P r e f a c e S c h r e i n e r d e s c r i b e s two methods by which "human l i f e may be p a i n t e d " : "the s t a g e method" r e o r d e r s r e a l i t y i n t o a s a t i s f y i n g , but f a l s e , a r t i s t i c whole. The o t h e r method, 84 " t h e method of the l i f e we a l l l e a d , " r e f l e c t s the d i s o r d e r , the i l l o g i c , the i n c o m p l e t e n e s s of r e a l l i f e . S c h r e i n e r c o n c l u d e s t h a t , "The canons of c r i t i c i s m t h a t bear upon the one cut c r u e l l y upon the o t h e r " ( 2 7 ) . C l e a r l y , her method i s the l a t t e r , the " r e a l i s t i c " method, w h i l e Dinesen's might be c h a r a c t e r i z e d as the f o r m e r , "the st a g e method." And they s h o u l d be e v a l u a t e d , as S c h r e i n e r s a y s , by d i f f e r e n t c r i t e r i a . Out of A f r i c a and Shadows on the Grass r e f l e c t Dinesen's e d u c a t i o n and r e a d i n g ; the l i t e r a r y i n f l u e n c e s upon her w r i t i n g were d i f f e r e n t from the books which i n f l u e n c e d S c h r e i n e r . Dinesen was educated a t home by governesses and female r e l a t i o n s . She read w i d e l y , and her r e a l e d u c a t i o n , as she saw i t , came as d i d S c h r e i n e r ' s from books. A s t r o n g e a r l y i n f l u e n c e was the l i t e r a r y c r i t i c Georg Brandes, whose e s s a y s i n t r o d u c e d her t o Shakespeare, S h e l l e y , H e i n e — a n d N i e t z s c h e , f o r whose thought she f e l t an a f f i n i t y t h roughout her l i f e . 3 Her h e r o i c i d e a l of the pers o n who a c t i v e l y embraces h i s f a t e — seen i n Out of A f r i c a i n c h a r a c t e r s from Kamante t o Denys t o Karen B l i x e n — w a s c l e a r l y i n f l u e n c e d by N i e t z s c h e (from whom she took the e p i g r a p h t o Out of A f r i c a 4 ) . She a l s o r e t a i n e d her l o v e of Shakespeare, i d e n t i f y i n g w i t h h i s t r a g i c heroes as w e l l as w i t h the s t r o n g women i n the comedies who assume male r o l e s and male powers. A f r i c a f o r her was l i k e one of Shakespeare's enchanted woods i n which a woman can become a man, or more p r e c i s e l y , have the b e s t of both s e x e s . S c h r e i n e r ' s t h e a t r i c a l metaphor i s an apt d e s c r i p t i o n of Dinesen's a r t i s t i c s t a n c e . Her vantage p o i n t i s the g o d - l i k e 85 view from Denys' a i r p l a n e , from which the w o r l d i s a t i m e l e s s , c o m p r e h e n s i b l e , and v e r y l o v e l y p a t t e r n . Her v o i c e i s t h a t of t h e a n c i e n t , a l l - k n o w i n g t a l e s p i n n e r . O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s vantage p o i n t , on the o t h e r hand, i s t h a t of the ant who l i v e s out i t s l i f e on a mound of sandy Karoo s o i l , under the oppres-s i v e g l a r e of the South A f r i c a n sun. The n a r r a t o r ' s v o i c e i s d i f f i c u l t t o s e p a r a t e from t h a t of the a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l c h a r a c t e r s , who a r e d e p i c t e d as v a l i a n t l y but f r u i t l e s s l y l i v i n g out t h e i r i n s i g n i f i c a n t and o b s c u r e l i v e s i n an i n s i g n i f i c a n t and obscure c o r n e r o f God's c r e a t i o n . They are the b u t t of a c r u e l j o k e t h a t o n l y God might f i n d h u m o r o u s — i f he e x i s t s , which they i n c r e a s i n g l y doubt. Thus the p a i n , a l i e n a t i o n and t r a g e d y t h a t are unacknowledged i n Dinesen's s t o r y are the c e n t r a l f a c t s o f S c h r e i n e r ' s s t o r y . Whereas Dinesen's a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l h e r o i n e t r i e s t o i g n o r e the d i m l y s k e t c h e d h i s t o r i c a l and economic f o r c e s t h a t do i n f a c t d e f e a t h e r , S c h r e i n e r ' s c h a r a c t e r s , who view l i f e from the bottom, are a c u t e l y c o n s c i o u s t h a t they are v i c t i m s of h i s t o r y , economics and p o l i t i c s . They a n a l y z e , and a g o n i z e o v e r , the i d e o l o g i c a l c u r r e n t s t h a t even on t h e i r remote farm s w i r l over them. Dinesen d e p i c t s the b r u t a l i t y of the c o l o n i a l system, but d i s s o c i a t e s h e r s e l f from i t ; her farm i s f r e e from the e v i l s of c o l o n i a l i s m and she h e r s e l f has f l o u r i s h e d under the system which g i v e s her n e a r - a b s o l u t e power over thousands of a c r e s of l a n d and hundreds of l i v e s . I n c o n t r a s t , S c h r e i n e r ' s w h i t e p r o t a g o n i s t s a r e shown t o be s t u n t e d and u l t i m a t e l y d e s t r o y e d by the b r u t a l i t y of the c o l o n i a l system of which they are p a r t . 86 Her h e r o i n e and hero are a l i e n a t e d from b i r t h ; t hey are p a r e n t l e s s and l a n d l e s s i n a s o c i e t y based upon the i n h e r i t a n c e of t h e f a m i l y farm; they a r e i n t r o s p e c t i v e and i n t e l l e c t u a l , i m p r a c t i c a l and u n c o n v e n t i o n a l i n a narrow-minded, a n t i -i n t e l l e c t u a l , m a t e r i a l i s t i c and d o g m a t i c a l l y r e l i g i o u s s o c i e t y . I n s h o r t , whereas Dinesen's A f r i c a n farm i s P a r a d i s e , S c h r e i n e r ' s A f r i c a n farm i s P u r g a t o r y , and her heaven i s an i d e a l which i s u n a t t a i n a b l e even i n d r e a m s — o r f i c t i o n . Conse-q u e n t l y , w h i l e Dinesen i s c o n t e n t w i t h t h e view from heaven, S c h r e i n e r ' s a n t - l i k e c h a r a c t e r s s t r u g g l e t o escape t h e i r sandy p a t c h of s o i l . T h i s d i f f e r e n c e i s p a r t l y based on the d i f f e r e n t c i r c u m s t a n c e s t h a t p r e v a i l e d i n t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e s o c i e t i e s . S c h r e i n e r ' s Cape Colony of the e i g h t e e n - s i x t i e s and s e v e n t i e s , w i t h a much l o n g e r h i s t o r y of w h i t e s e t t l e m e n t , was a more r i g i d s o c i e t y , s t r o n g l y i n f l u e n c e d by the c o n s e r v a t i v e and r e l i g i o u s r u r a l A f r i k a n e r s whom she p o r t r a y s w i t h the mixed f e e l i n g s of an o u t s i d e r . D i nesen's E a s t A f r i c a , not even a c o l o n y when she f i r s t a r r i v e d , was a c o u n t r y of o u t s i d e r s , a l o o s e c o l l e c t i o n of i n d i v i d u a l s i n s e a r c h o f t h e i r unique v i s i o n s i n what they l i k e d t o t h i n k of as a v i r g i n l a n d , newly c r e a t e d f o r them. I t was f o r the w h i t e s e t t l e r a f r e e r , more open, and more p e a c e f u l l a n d than the South A f r i c a n c o l o n i e s w i t h t h e i r h i s t o r y of c o n f l i c t between Dutch and B r i t i s h , b l a c k s and w h i t e s . Even the l a n d -scape and c l i m a t e of the E a s t A f r i c a n h i g h l a n d s i s l e s s o p p r e s s i v e than the d e s e r t Karoo which S c h r e i n e r chose as her r e p r e s e n t a t i v e South A f r i c a n l a n d s c a p e . 87 Another cause of Dinesen's and S c h r e i n e r ' s d i f f e r e n t a e s t h e t i c r e s p o n s e s t o A f r i c a l i e s of cou r s e i n t h e i r b i o g r a p h i e s . Dinesen embraced A f r i c a as a f o r e i g n e r and as an a d u l t , s e e i n g i t as a p l a c e and s i t u a t i o n which o f f e r e d her a h e r o i c r o l e , a new, autonomous i d e n t i t y . I n l a t e m i d d l e age she l o o k e d back upon her y e a r s t h e r e as a l o s t , g o l d e n t i m e . S c h r e i n e r , h a v i n g been born i n i n a u s p i c i o u s c i r c u m s t a n c e s i n South A f r i c a , q u i t e n a t u r a l l y longed t o escape t o E n g l a n d , which might o f f e r her more o p p o r t u n i t i e s as a w r i t e r , an i n t e l l e c t u a l and an a c t i v i s t . I t i s not s u r p r i s i n g t h a t her view of A f r i c a i s more r e a l i s t i c , more c r i t i c a l than D i n e s e n ' s , and her i d e a s more r a d i c a l . T h i s c r i t i c a l , r a d i c a l bent was o n l y r e i n f o r c e d i n an England w h i c h , w h i l e i t was s t i m u l a t i n g , d i d not f u l f i l l a f a n t a s y , the way A f r i c a d i d f o r Di n e s e n . What S c h r e i n e r saw and d i d and read i n England r e i n f o r c e d her f e m i n i s m , developed her i n c i p i e n t s o c i a l i s m , and i n c r e a s e d her knowledge of p s y c h o l o g y . She d i r e c t e d her new awareness of s e l f and s o c i e t y back i n t o her n a t i v e South A f r i c a n m i l i e u , as we have seen i n From Man t o Man, i n which she advocated fundamental changes i n the o r g a n i z a t i o n of s o c i e t y as a s o l u t i o n t o the problems of women, and by e x t e n s i o n of o t h e r o p p r e s s e d groups. In c o n c l u s i o n , S c h r e i n e r i n The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm a d d r e s s e s the dilemma of the female a r t i s t much more e x p l i c i t l y than does Dinesen i n Out of A f r i c a . The female p r i d e t h a t i s apparent i n Dinesen's d e s c r i p t i o n of Somali women—and i n her own i n d e p e n d e n c e — i s i n S c h r e i n e r a p a s s i o n a t e c o n c e r n , e x p l i c a t e d and defended a t l e n g t h . I n c o n t r a s t t o Dinesen's 88 comparison of h e r s e l f t o Scheherezade, t h e c u n n i n g and v i c t o r i o u s female s t o r y t e l l e r , we have i n S c h r e i n e r a s h a t t e r i n g p o r t r a i t of t h e a r t i s t as v i c t i m . Whereas Dinesen's a r t i s t -h e r o i n e i d e n t i f i e s w i t h and t a k e s i n s p i r a t i o n from an A f r i c a o f n o b l e n a t i v e s and grand v i s t a s , S c h r e i n e r ' s c h a r a c t e r s i d e n t i f y w i t h an A f r i c a of dumb, s u f f e r i n g , and e x t i n c t c r e a t u r e s . The two w r i t e r s p r o v i d e a l t e r n a t i v e v i s i o n s — a n d a l t e r n a t i v e f i c t i o n s — f o r D o r i s L e s s i n g and Nadine Gordimer. 89 Isak Dinesen - Notes l l s a k D inesen i d e n t i f i e d s t r o n g l y w i t h her a r i s t o c r a t i c f a t h e r W i l h e l m , whose p a s t o r a l L e t t e r s from the Hunt (1889) was a model f o r her own work. Even h i s c o n t r a c t i o n o f s y p h i l i s , which was the presumed cause of h i s s u i c i d e when she was t e n , seemed t o p r e f i g u r e her own d e s t i n y . (See Thurman 27-29). 2 A l t h o u g h h i s p o i n t i s w e l l t a k e n t h a t D i n e s e n , u n l i k e most o t h e r w h i t e s e t t l e r s , absorbed much from A f r i c a n c u l t u r e , JanMohamed o v e r l o o k s the a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l component t h a t f a c i l i t a t e d t h i s exchange. Dinesen had a p r e d i s p o s i t i o n f o r the mythic over the e m p i r i c a l , the m e d i e v a l over the modern, e t c . Her r o m a n t i c i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h her a r i s t o c r a t i c f a t h e r as opposed t o her more b o u r g e o i s mother i s e v i d e n c e of t h i s . 3 F o r a d e s c r i p t i o n of Dinesen's e a r l y r e a d i n g see Thurman 50-51. ^ " E q u i t a r e , arcem t e n d e r e , v e r i t a t e m d i c e r e " : To r i d e , t o shoot w i t h a bow, t o t e l l t h e t r u t h ("On t h e Thousand and One G o a l s , " Thus Spake Z a r a t h u s t r a 171). Dinesen's c h o i c e of t h i s e p i g r a p h emphasizes the theme of h u n t i n g , and by e x t e n s i o n t h e p r e d a t o r y and d o m i n a t i n g a t t i t u d e of the s e t t l e r i n Out of A f r i c a . 90 Chapter Four L e s s i n g and Gordimer: Two C o n t e m p o r a r i e s and a P r o b l e m a t i c I n h e r i t a n c e D o r i s L e s s i n g has t r a v e l e d such a s u r p r i s i n g number of a e s t h e t i c and i d e o l o g i c a l r o u t e s t h a t i t i s easy t o f o r g e t how c l o s e her e a r l y work was t o Nadine G o r d i m e r ' s . I n a 1986 s t a t e -ment, L e s s i n g acknowledges t h a t , "our c a r e e r s have been v e r y t w i n e d t o g e t h e r . . . . I t h i n k we have a g r e a t d e a l i n common i n f a c t " ( i n t e r v i e w w i t h Eve B e r t e l s e n , J o u r n a l of Commonwealth  L i t e r a t u r e 135). Gordimer, i n a 1979 i n t e r v i e w , speaks a d m i r i n g l y of L e s s i n g ' s a b i l i t y t o change and grow, w h i l e n o t i n g the e a r l y l i n k s between t h e i r work. I n Gordimer's words: D o r i s L e s s i n g — a l w a y s s e a r c h i n g , always on her way t o something new and d i f f e r e n t , what a range of i n t e l l i g e n c e , her eve r y book a blow a t a r t i s t i c complacency. The Golden Notebook I c o n s i d e r her m a s t e r p i e c e . The f i r s t p a r t of C h i l d r e n o f V i o l e n c e , Martha  Quest, has some v e r y s t r i k i n g s i m i l a r i t i e s w i t h my f i r s t n o v e l , The L y i n g Days, which I wrote a t the same t i m e . Not because we i n f l u e n c e d each o t h e r — I don't suppose we'd heard of each o t h e r ; the s i m i l a r i t i e s had to a r i s e — t h e r e was such a s i m i l a r i t y of development and e x p e r i e n c e between us where and when we grew up. In another sense those e a r l y n o v e l s complement each o t h e r , I l i k e t he i d e a o f a l i t e r a r y patchwork, n o v e l by n o v e l , poem by poem, by d i f f e r e n t w r i t e r s , mapping out an e r a , 'a c o n t i n e n t ' more and more t h o r o u g h l y . No one w r i t e r can do i t . ( I n t e r v i e w w i t h Johannes R i i s , K u n a p i p i 2 5 ) . For Gordimer, t h e n , the two w r i t e r s a r e p r o d u c t s o f s i m i l a r S o u t h e r n A f r i c a n s o c i e t i e s i n the same e r a , who, t o g e t h e r w i t h o t h e r S o u t h e r n A f r i c a n w r i t e r s o f the time (she mentions Dan Jacobson) "[map] out an e r a , 'a c o n t i n e n t . ' " When she speaks of 91 "a s i m i l a r i t y of development and e x p e r i e n c e " she i m p l i e s the c l o s e r c o n n e c t i o n of shared sex and r a c e , and shared p o l i t i c a l s y mpathies f o r the l e f t and f o r b l a c k n a t i o n a l i s m which emerge i n t h e i r e a r l y a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l B ildungsromane , as w e l l as i n t h e i r s t o r i e s of the same p e r i o d . Gordimer does not acknowledge t h a t the c l o s e s t bond between them was t h e i r s h a r ed m a t e r i a l and a t t i t u d e s as women w r i t e r s . The c a t e g o r y of women w r i t e r s and the r e l a t e d i s s u e of femin i s m a r e a r e a s which both L e s s i n g and Gordimer have downplayed or t r i e d t o a v o i d . L e s s i n g made her most cogent statement on t h e matter i n her 1971 P r e f a c e t o The Golden Notebook, i n which she v o i c e s her d i s a p p o i n t m e n t t h a t the book was reduced t o "a u s e f u l weapon i n the sex war" ( 8 ) , t h a t i t s l a r g e r i s s u e s , i t s o v e r a l l p l a n were obscured i n the minds o f her r e a d e r s and c r i t i c s by t h a t a s p e c t which seemed t o be "a trumpet f o r Women's L i b e r a t i o n " ( 9 ) . As she w r i t e s i n the P r e f a c e , the n o v e l "was w r i t t e n as i f t h e a t t i t u d e s t h a t have been c r e a t e d by the Women's L i b e r a t i o n movements a l r e a d y e x i s t e d " ( 9 ) ; t h a t i s t o say, i t t a k e s f e m i n i s m f o r g r a n t e d . A g a i n , "Of c o u r s e t h i s attempt ["to g i v e the i d e o l o g i c a l ' f e e l ' of our m i d - c e n t u r y " ] assumed t h a t t h a t f i l t e r which i s a woman's way o f l o o k i n g a t l i f e has the same v a l i d i t y as the f i l t e r which i s a man's way . . ." ( 1 1 ) . In e f f e c t L e s s i n g does not want t o be c h a r a c t e r i z e d as a women's w r i t e r ( t h a t i s t o say, l i m i t e d , r e d u c e d ) ; she would l i k e the f a c t t h a t she w r i t e s as a woman t o be t a k e n f o r g r a n t e d , as i t i s f o r male w r i t e r s . Nadine Gordimer a l s o 92 r e f u s e s t o be l i m i t e d t o "women's i s s u e s . " I n the 1975 I n t r o -d u c t i o n t o her S e l e c t e d S t o r i e s , she w r i t e s t h a t she never f e l t d i s a d v a n t a g e d or i s o l a t e d because of her s e x , and t h a t i n any c a s e , " a l l w r i t e r s a r e androgynous b e i n g s " ( 1 1 ) . I n s e v e r a l i n t e r v i e w s , she has gone so f a r as t o d i s s o c i a t e h e r s e l f from the f e m i n i s t movement, which she c r i t i c i z e s as i r r e l e v a n t b o th t o her p e r s o n a l l y and t o the p r e s e n t South A f r i c a n s i t u a t i o n . I n 1974 she s t a t e d t h a t , " I n South A f r i c a Women's L i b e r a t i o n s c a r c e l y e x i s t s . . . the b a s i c i s s u e f o r p e o p l e concerned w i t h l i b e r a t i o n i s the l i b e r a t i o n o f b l a c k p e o p l e , male and female" ( l e t t e r , q uoted i n B e t t y M. F r a d k i n , " O l i v e S c h r e i n e r — A n O p p o s i t e P i c t u r e " 7 5 ) . I n 1981 she s a i d , " I f e e l t h a t i f the r e a l b a t t l e f o r human r i g h t s i s won the kingdom of . . . f e m i n i n e l i b e r a t i o n f o l l o w s " ( I n t e r v i e w w i t h Susan Ga r d n e r , K u n a p i p i 105). Gordimer pursues her c r i t i q u e of t h e women's l i b e r a t i o n movement i n B u r g e r ' s Daughter, i n which the w h i t e m i d d l e - c l a s s f e m i n i s t s a r e shown t o be out of t o u c h w i t h t h e problems f a c i n g non-white women; t h e i r g o a l of s i s t e r h o o d i s d e p i c t e d as a b s u r d i n a s o c i e t y i n which a l l b l a c k p e o p l e l a c k b a s i c human r i g h t s . D e s p i t e her c r i t i c i s m of b o u r g e o i s f e m i n i s m i n South A f r i c a , Gordimer i s not a n t i - f e m i n i s t ; the female c h a r a c t e r s i n her f i c t i o n l e a r n t o d e f i n e themselves i n d e p e n d e n t l y of men, p a r t l y t h r o u g h t h e i r commitment t o the b l a c k l i b e r a t i o n s t r u g g l e . Thus they f i n d t h e m s e l v e s , they become l i b e r a t e d i n the f e m i n i s t sense, through commitment t o what Gordimer sees as the l a r g e r cause. 93 Dorothy D r i v e r , i n her s t u d y of "The P o l i t i c i s a t i o n of Women" i n Gordimer's f i c t i o n , argues f o r an i m p l i c i t l y f e m i n i s t r e a d i n g . S p e c i f i c a l l y , she s a y s , "Gordimer's c o n t i n u i n g c o n c e r n w i t h the p o s i t i o n o f w h i t e women i n a c o l o n i a l , r a c i s t s o c i e t y i s . . . e v i d e n t both i n the ways t h a t she e x p l o r e s women's s e x u a l i t y and . . . e x p l o i t s s e x u a l development i n her p r e s e n t a t i o n of p o l i t i c a l development" ( 3 5 ) . Gordimer s e t s up "a r e v e r b e r a t i n g m e t a p h o r i c a l r e l a t i o n between s e x i s m and r a c i s m " ( 3 7 ) . She e x p l o r e s the r e l a t i o n betwen sex and power, and by e x t e n s i o n , the p u b l i c and p r i v a t e spheres i n South A f r i c a . As D r i v e r shows, however, the e q u a t i o n of se x i s m and r a c i s m i s f a r from s i m p l e ; Gordimer r e f u s e s t o l e t the w h i t e woman o f f t h e hook as a f e l l o w v i c t i m ; she i n s i s t s not on women's p a s s i v i t y , but on t h e i r s h a red r e s p o n s i b i l i t y , t h e i r c o l l u s i o n i n r a c i s m . I t i s over t h i s i s s u e t h a t Gordimer c h a l l e n g e s O l i v e S c h r e i n e r , t h a t her r e l a t i o n s h i p t o the mother n o v e l , A f r i c a n Farm, becomes p r o b l e m a t i c . She c r i t i c i z e s S c h r e i n e r f o r her b l i n d n e s s , her l a c k of p r o p o r t i o n i n p u t t i n g women's e q u a l i t y b e f o r e r a c i a l e q u a l i t y . She g r u d g i n g l y a l l o w s her her fe m i n i s m i n t h e c o n t e x t of "her r e s t l e s s , s e l f - s e a r c h i n g y e a r s i n England and Europe," but goes on t o say t h a t : . . . i n t h e South A f r i c a n c o n t e x t where she always f e l t h e r s e l f t o b e l o n g , and t o which she always r e t u r n e d , t h e f e m i n i s t i s s u e w i t h e r s i n comparison w i t h the i s s u e of the v o t e r l e s s , p o w e r l e s s s t a t e of South A f r i c a n b l a c k s , i r r e s p e c t i v e of t h e i r sex. I t was as b i z a r r e then . . . as i t i s now . . . t o r e g a r d a campaign f o r women's r i g h t s — b l a c k or w h i t e — a s r e l e v a n t t o the South A f r i c a n s i t u a t i o n . O l i v e S c h r e i n e r seems not t o have seen t h a t her wronged sense of s e l f , as a woman, her l i b e r a t i o n , was a 94 s econdary matter w i t h i n her h i s t o r i c a l s i t u a t i o n . I r o n i c a l l y , here at l e a s t she s h a red the most p e r s i s t e n t c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of her f e l l o w c o l o n i a l s : t h a t of d i s c o u n t i n g the p r i o r i t i e s o f the r e a l e n t i t i e s of the l i f e around h e r , w h i l e b e l i e v i n g she was p e r f o r m i n g an a c t o f p r o t e s t a g a i n s t c o l o n i a l r a c i s t t h i n k i n g ("Review of O l i v e S c h r e i n e r : A  B i o g r a p h y by Ruth F i r s t and Ann S c o t t " 17-18). E s s e n t i a l l y Gordimer sees S c h r e i n e r ' s f e m i n i s m as n e u r o t i c , as b o th ego- and e t h n o - c e n t r i c . The vehemence of her language ( f o r i n s t a n c e the use of the word " b i z a r r e " t o d e s c r i b e S c h r e i n e r ' s p o s i t i o n ) s i g n a l s her i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h the e a r l i e r w r i t e r . She i m p a t i e n t l y and u n f a i r l y s c o l d s her f o r not r i s i n g above her problems as a woman, f o r not p r o v i d i n g a b e t t e r model. These comments were w r i t t e n i n 1980, a f t e r she had, presumably, r e t h o u g h t her a t t i t u d e s toward S c h r e i n e r as a r e s u l t of the F i r s t and S c o t t b i o g r a p h y . Her u r g e n t , e m o t i o n a l , and s p e c i f i c c r i t i c i s m of S c h r e i n e r i s q u i t e d i f f e r e n t from the r a t h e r vague a p p r e c i a t i o n she wrote i n 1961: "The S t o r y of an  A f r i c a n Farm i s . . . the s o r t of n o v e l we can hope i s t o come . . . i t t a k e s us away t o n o t h i n g more l i m i t e d than the mystery of l i f e i t s e l f " ("The N o v e l and the N a t i o n i n South A f r i c a , " 4 9 ) . Whereas i n 1961 she had been c o n t e n t t o o v e r l o o k the l e t t e r of S c h r e i n e r ' s work i n f a v o r of i t s s p i r i t , i n 1980 she judges i t more h a r s h l y . Her r e e v a l u a t i o n i s p a r t l y the r e s u l t of her p o l i t i c a l r a d i c a l i z a t i o n d u r i n g t h a t time span, but i t i s a l s o e v i d e n c e of the need t o r e d e f i n e her r e l a t i o n t o the m o t h e r - w r i t e r as she matures and changes. L e s s i n g too has r e c e n t l y m o d i f i e d her view of the mother-w r i t e r by d i s c o u n t i n g the f e m i n i s m i n S c h r e i n e r ' s n o v e l . In 1980 she s a i d t h a t , 95 . . . the l e a s t i m p o r t a n t p a r t , I t h i n k , i s t h e fem i n i s m which i s , as i t were, the i n t e l l e c t u a l m o t i v a t i o n . . . . She was b i t t e r l y c o n s c i o u s of the p o s i t i o n o f women i n the n i n e t e e n t h c e n t u r y . . . . Wh i l e she was f i g h t i n g t h i s p a r t i c u l a r b a t t l e a l l her l i f e , and f i g h t i n g i t w e l l , she was a l s o p r e o c c u p i e d a l l t he time w i t h o t h e r t h i n g s ( I n t e r v i e w w i t h M i c h a e l Thorpe, K u n a p i p i 9 9 ) . L e s s i n g ' s and Gordimer*s r e c e n t comments seem t o echo Dinesen's c l a i m t h a t w h i l e , " L y n d a l l i s t h e champion of woman's r i g h t s . . . no freedom and no e q u a l i t y of women c o u l d have h e l p e d her a g a i n s t t h e f a t a l f o r c e s w i t h i n her own n a t u r e which b r i n g her . . . t o her e a r l y , l o n e l y grave ( I n t r o d u c t i o n t o The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm i x ) . However, w h i l e Dinesen reads S c h r e i n e r ' s f e m i n i s m as a d i s t r a c t i o n from the t r a g i c t r u t h s a t the h e a r t of the n o v e l , L e s s i n g ' s and Gordimer's o b j e c t i o n s a re p o l i t i c a l . G ordimer's c r i t i c i s m and L e s s i n g ' s downplaying o f S c h r e i n e r ' s f e m i n i s m a r e i n p a r t a d e n i a l of t h e "women's" component t h a t r e a d e r s and c r i t i c s have been perhaps too eager t o f i n d i n t h e work of a l l f o u r w r i t e r s , most o b v i o u s l y i n L e s s i n g , but a l s o i n Gordimer and D i n e s e n . The p o i n t i s t h a t i n th e s e w r i t e r s gender and s e x u a l i t y i n t e r a c t w i t h n a t u r a l and s o c i a l s e t t i n g , w i t h p o l i t i c s , h i s t o r y and myth. The h e r o i n e draws the s t r e n g t h t o t h i n k i n d e p e n d e n t l y , t o r e b e l a g a i n s t c o n v e n t i o n , from her v e r y p o s i t i o n o f weakness, of i r r e l e v a n c e i n t he power s t r u c t u r e . She i s i n a sense o u t s i d e the b r u t a l p a c t between w h i t e male r u l e r and b l a c k male r u l e d . L y n d a l l c l a i m s i n n o c e n c e as a v i c t i m of t h i s arrangement; Karen B l i x e n c l a i m s i n n o c e n c e as one who can make her own, more b e n e f i c e n t p a c t . L e s s i n g ' s and Gordimer's h e r o i n e s a r e f o r c e d 96 by h i s t o r y t o r e c o g n i z e t h a t t h e y cannot p l e a d e i t h e r L y n d a l l ' s or Karen B l i x e n ' s v e r s i o n s of i n n o c e n c e . They are enmeshed i n a g u i l t y a t t r a c t i o n / r e p u l s i o n t o A f r i c a ; as w h i t e females they are v i c t i m s of the c o l o n i a l system who are not p e r m i t t e d t o i d e n t i f y , t o s u f f e r w i t h t h e i r f e l l o w v i c t i m s : the b l a c k s . They a r e s a f e g u a r d e d from the p h y s i c a l s u f f e r i n g o f S c h r e i n e r ' s c h a r a c t e r s , from hunger and the whip, but a t t h e same time c ut o f f from the l i f e around them. T h e i r p r i v i l e g e d s t a t u s a l i e n a t e s them, f o r c i n g them t o acknowledge a r e s p o n s i b i l i t y which the s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l c o n d i t i o n s of a p a r t h e i d i n c r e a s i n g l y p r e v e n t them from a c t i n g upon. L e s s i n g and Gordimer have employed q u i t e d i f f e r e n t p e r s o n a l and a r t i s t i c s t r a t e g i e s t o d e a l w i t h t h i s dilemma. One has o n l y t o compare B u r g e r ' s Daughter w i t h L e s s i n g ' s The Good T e r r o r i s t (1985) t o see t h a t i n r e c e n t y e a r s t h e two w r i t e r s have i n e f f e c t t r a d e d i d e o l o g i c a l p l a c e s . Whereas Gordimer's p o r t r a y a l of communist r e v o l u t i o n a r i e s i n South A f r i c a i s s y m p a t h e t i c , even i d e a l i z e d , L e s s i n g ' s p o r t r a y a l of the f a r l e f t i n B r i t a i n i s a v i t r i o l i c a t t a c k on m i s g u i d e d " t e r r o r i s t s . " N o n e t h e l e s s , as Gordimer has n o t e d , t h e i r e a r l y work has " s t r i k i n g s i m i l a r i t i e s " — w h i c h came not from temperament or i n t e l l e c t u a l a f f i n i t y , but r a t h e r from shared c i r c u m s t a n c e s as c o l o n i a l women w r i t e r s i n Southern A f r i c a at m i d - c e n t u r y . Both L e s s i n g and Gordimer r e c o g n i z e d t h a t the s i t u a t i o n — a n d t h e i r s i t u a t i o n — w e r e i n t o l e r a b l e , r e c o r d e d t h i s f a c t i n t h e i r f i c t i o n , and, l i k e S c h r e i n e r and D i n e s e n , e n v i s i o n e d new s o c i a l o r d e r s . 97 Chapter F i v e D o r i s L e s s i n g : Eve i n E x i l e L e s s i n g and Her P r e c u r s o r s D o r i s L e s s i n g ' s s i t u a t i o n as the daughter of E n g l i s h c o l o n i s t s i n the s t i l l w i l d , s p a r s e l y s e t t l e d S o u t h e r n Rhodesia of the n i n e t e e n - t h i r t i e s c l o s e l y resembles both t h a t of Karen B l i x e n i n E a s t A f r i c a two decades e a r l i e r and t h a t of O l i v e S c h r e i n e r i n South A f r i c a i n the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h c e n t u r y . ! The m a g n i f i c e n t h i g h v e l d s e t t i n g of L e s s i n g ' s A f r i c a n f i c t i o n has more i n common w i t h B l i x e n ' s s o a r i n g h i l l c o u n t r y than w i t h S c h r e i n e r ' s o p p r e s s i v e d e s e r t p l a i n . I n L e s s i n g as i n B l i x e n we f i n d t h a t c o l l e c t i o n o f e c c e n t r i c c h a r a c t e r s who come t o f u l l bloom i n t h e freedom and i s o l a t i o n of t h e c o l o n y . On the o t h e r hand, L e s s i n g f o l l o w s S c h r e i n e r ' s emphasis on s o c i a l c o n d i t i o n s and c o l o n i a l p o l i t i c s . I n the f o l l o w i n g passage i n which she d e s c r i b e s the c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y of her y o u t h , L e s s i n g f i r s t seems t o echo D i n e s e n , then quotes S c h r e i n e r , and f i n a l l y speaks f o r h e r s e l f as "a c h i l d of t h e i n v a d e r s " : . . . e v e r y one had l e f t a s a f e and narrow r u t of a l i f e out of a sense of adve n t u r e and a need t o widen h o r i z o n s , f o r a c o u n t r y t o them w i l d and o f t e n dangerous. I t cannot be s a i d t h a t t h e y were a c u l t i v a t e d or wide-minded p e o p l e , f o r most f i t t e d O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s d e f i n i t i o n of t h e South A f r i c a n s of her time as 'a n a t i o n o f p e t t y b o u r g e o i s P h i l i s t i n e s . ' . . . The c h i l d r e n and g r a n d c h i l d r e n of t h e s e i n v a d e r s condemn t h e i r p a r e n t s , wish they c o u l d r e p u d i a t e t h e i r own h i s t o r y . But t h a t i s not so easy (Forward t o Lawrence Vambe, An I l l - f a t e d P e o p l e : Zimbabwe B e f o r e  and A f t e r Rhodes x v i - x v i i ) . 98 T h i s l a s t s tatement about th e r e l u c t a n t i n h e r i t o r s of c o l o n i a l h i s t o r y and c o l o n i a l power (note t h a t the w h i t e s d i d not r e l i n q u i s h power i n Zimbabwe u n t i l 1980) i s a u s e f u l summary of the major theme i n D o r i s L e s s i n g ' s A f r i c a n f i c t i o n . F u r t h e r -more, as we s h a l l see, t h e theme of c o l o n i a l i n h e r i t a n c e and p e r s o n a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y c o n t i n u e s t o p l a y a p a r t i n her r e c e n t "space f i c t i o n . " L i k e S c h r e i n e r and D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g i s c o g n i z a n t of the p r e - s e t t l e r h i s t o r y of t h e c o r n e r o f A f r i c a which her w h i t e c h a r a c t e r s i n h a b i t . As i n the o t h e r two w r i t e r s , her w h i t e c h a r a c t e r s come t o see t h e m s e l v e s through t h e p r i s m of b l a c k h i s t o r y : as s q u a t t e r s on l a n d t h a t i s not t h e i r s by r i g h t — a s i n v a d e r s . I n Martha Quest, as i n A f r i c a n Farm and Out of  A f r i c a , the w h i t e h e r o i n e l i v e s on a v a s t t r a c t of l a n d worked by r e c e n t l y d i s p l a c e d b l a c k t r i b e s p e o p l e . I n her i s o l a t e d c o l o n y , the young h e r o i n e has the freedom t o d e v e l o p i d e a s and r o l e s which f a l l o u t s i d e t h e c o n v e n t i o n s of her mother s o c i e t y , be i t l o w e r - m i d d l e - c l a s s England or u p p e r - m i d d l e - c l a s s Denmark. She i s awed and i n s p i r e d by t h e a l i e n l a n d s c a p e , h i s t o r y and c u l t u r e which she d i s c o v e r s around h e r ; however she i s c o n f u s e d and g u i l t - r i d d e n about her p o s i t i o n as an i n v a d e r i n A f r i c a . L e s s i n g , who from her m i d - t w e n t i e t h - c e n t u r y vantage p o i n t i s p s y c h o l o g i c a l l y and p o l i t i c a l l y more s o p h i s t i c a t e d than her two f o r e b e a r s , d e v e l o p s th e s e c o n f l i c t s more f u l l y . Martha Quest, p o r t r a y e d w i t h c r i t i c a l i r o n y , i s h e r s e l f p a i n f u l l y s e l f - c o n s c i o u s and s e l f - c r i t i c a l , i r o n i c a l l y aware of t h e gap between her i d e a l v i s i o n of h e r s e l f and t h e muddled 99 r e a l i t y . The i m p o r t a n t f e a t u r e t h a t Martha s h a r e s w i t h the h e r o i n e s of Dinesen and S c h r e i n e r i s her s p e c i a l p o s i t i o n as w h i t e but fe m a l e : on the one hand, autonomous and p o w e r f u l , on the o t h e r , s u b j e c t t o men and male i n s t i t u t i o n s . Karen B l i x e n was the w h i t e f e u d a l m i s t r e s s of a b l a c k v i l l a g e . The Baroness' autonomy, n e v e r t h e l e s s , was undermined by f i n a n c i a l p r e s s u r e from her f a m i l y i n Denmark, her c o n t r a c t i n g s y p h i l i s from her husband, and her e m o t i o n a l dependence on the s p o r a d i c appearances of her l o v e r . I n s h o r t , she was undermined by her sex. F o r t u n a t e l y , however, the c o n s c i o u s n e s s o f her own p r e c a r i o u s n e s s gave her e m p a t h e t i c , i f " m a t r o n i z i n g , " i n s i g h t i n t o t he d i s p o s s e s s e d K i k u y u and Masai who would o t h e r w i s e form a mere backdrop t o t h e l a r g e r - t h a n - l i f e h e r o i n e . O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l h e r o i n e s a l s o c r e a t e t h e m s e l v e s , but i n o p p r e s s i v e r a t h e r than s p l e n d i d i s o l a t i o n . They a r e v i c t i m s of h a r s h p a r e n t a l f i g u r e s and of the more r i g i d and r e p r e s s i v e , l o n g e r - e s t a b l i s h e d South A f r i c a n s o c i e t y . C o n s e q u e n t l y , u n l i k e Karen B l i x e n , L y n d a l l l o o k s l o n g i n g l y t o Europe as the home of i n t e l l e c t u a l freedom. Her f e l t o p p r e s s i o n — a s young, f e m a l e , i n t e l l e c t u a l , and through Waldo, a r t i s t i c — f i r s t d r i v e s her t o become a f i e r c e f e m i n i s t and then by consequence a f i e r c e opponent of the e x i s t i n g s o c i a l o r d e r . Rebekah b e g i n s t o i d e n t i f y as a woman w i t h her b l a c k maid; she a c c e p t s r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r her husband's c h i l d and te a c h e s her sons and adopted daughter t o q u e s t i o n w h i t e supremacy. L y n d a l l ' s p e r s o n a l r e b e l l i o n e v o l v e s i n t o Rebekah's s t r o n g l y argued o p p o s i t i o n t o c o l o n i a l i d e o l o g y . Whereas Dinesen s i m p l y 100 d i s r e g a r d e d any elements of w h i t e Kenyan s o c i e t y t h a t might have cramped her e c c e n t r i c , a r i s t o c r a t i c s t y l e ( f o r i n s t a n c e the p o s t - W o r l d War I b u s i n e s s - o r i e n t e d m i d d l e - c l a s s s e t t l e r s ) , S c h r e i n e r s t r u g g l e d i n her l i f e and a r t t o i n f l u e n c e the f u t u r e of her n a t i v e South A f r i c a . D o r i s L e s s i n g ' s h e r o i n e , l i k e Karen B l i x e n , i magines h e r s e l f as Adam i n Eden, b u t , l i k e L y n d a l l and Rebekah, she a l s o f e e l s o p p r e s s e d by her f a m i l y and by the i n t e l l e c t u a l l i m i t a -t i o n s o f c o l o n i a l l i f e . L i k e S c h r e i n e r ' s h e r o i n e s she t u r n s her e x p e r i e n c e i n t o a c r i t i q u e of r a c i s m and i m p e r i a l i s m . For example, when Martha imagines a c i t y on the v e l d i n which w h i t e s and b l a c k s l i v e i n e q u a l i t y and harmony, she b a r s most of the w h i t e s of her a c q u a i n t a n c e from her U t o p i a because o f t h e i r r a c i s m and narrowmindedness. M a r t h a , l i k e S c h r e i n e r ' s a u t o -b i o g r a p h i c a l c h a r a c t e r s , i d e a l i z e s England and l o n g s t o l e a v e S outhern A f r i c a . Of c o u r s e , when f i n a l l y i n London, Martha y e a r n s f o r her A f r i c a n farm. I f L y n d a l l had escaped t o England as her au t h o r had, S c h r e i n e r would p r o b a b l y have p o r t r a y e d her as s i m i l a r l y l o s t and d i v i d e d . I t i s e v i d e n t from the n i g h t -m a r i s h p o r t r a i t of Rebekah's s i s t e r Baby B e r t i e as a kept woman i n London t h a t S c h r e i n e r had n e g a t i v e f e e l i n g s about England ("How the R a i n R a i n s i n London," Ch. XI of From Man t o Man). Martha, l i k e Karen B l i x e n and Rebekah, comes t o i d e n t i f y w i t h b l a c k A f r i c a n s and t o see h e r s e l f as t h e i r d e f e n d e r . Her i d e a l i s m i s d e f l a t e d , however, both by the author and by the s e l f - c o n s c i o u s , c y n i c a l h e r o i n e h e r s e l f (who i n t h i s r e s p e c t resembles S c h r e i n e r ' s L y n d a l l ) . 101 F o l l o w i n g q u i t e c o n s c i o u s l y i n O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s f o o t s t e p s , t h e n , D o r i s L e s s i n g p o r t r a y s her h e r o i n e from the p e r s p e c t i v e of her own e r a , and of her p a r t i c u l a r e x p e r i e n c e of pre-war and wartime A f r i c a and post-war E n g l a n d . Born D o r i s T a y l e r i n P e r s i a i n 1919, she was t h e daughter of a l o w e r - m i d d l e c l a s s E n g l i s h c o u p l e who, p h y s i c a l l y and s p i r i t u a l l y t r a u m a t i z e d by World War I , sought a new l i f e i n t h e B r i t i s h c o l o n y of Southern R h o d e s i a . 2 L e s s i n g has noted t h a t her r e l a t i o n s h i p t o her p a r e n t s was s i m i l a r t o O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s i n t h a t both w r i t e r s had i d e a l i s t i c , u n w o r l d l y f a t h e r s who were u n s u c c e s s f u l i n p r a c t i c a l terms, and c a p a b l e , a m b i t i o u s but d o m i n e e r i n g mothers ("Afterword t o The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm" 108). S i m i l a r too was t h e i r f a m i l i e s ' f i n a n c i a l i n s e c u r i t y ; from t h e time t h a t they a r r i v e d on t h e i r l a n d i n the d i s t r i c t of Banket i n 1925, t h e T a y l e r s were always about t o make t h e i r f o r t u n e i n maize, t o b a c c o or m i n e r a l s , and "get o f f the farm." I n f a c t , t h e i r farm was h e a v i l y mortgaged and u n p r o f i t a b l e , and t h e T a y l e r s remained f o r twenty y e a r s i n t h e p o l e and t h a t c h house t h a t had been b u i l t t o l a s t a few s e a s o n s — a house t h a t L e s s i n g l o v e d and has r e t u r n e d t o s e v e r a l t i m e s i n her w r i t i n g . L i k e O l i v e S c h r e i n e r , D o r i s L e s s i n g was a s o l i t a r y , c r e a t i v e c h i l d who spent her time roaming the l a r g e farm and w i l d v e l d . U n l i k e S c h r e i n e r , though, L e s s i n g was a b l e t o read w i d e l y i n E n g l i s h and European l i t e r a t u r e , h i s t o r y , p o l i t i c s , economics and p s y c h o l o g y . A l t h o u g h she was sent t o s c h o o l , she d e s c r i b e s i t as a n e g l i g i b l e p a r t of her e d u c a t i o n . She l e f t s c h o o l a t f o u r t e e n , worked as an au p a i r i n S a l i s b u r y , then 102 moved back t o her p a r e n t s ' farm t o w r i t e . At e i g h t e e n she took another j o b i n town, soon a f t e r made a h a s t y m a r r i a g e — l i k e M a r t h a ' s — a n d had two c h i l d r e n . D u r i n g the war, she, l i k e M a r tha, was a c t i v e i n a l o c a l communist group; she d i v o r c e d , r e m a r r i e d a German communist ( L e s s i n g ) , and had a son w i t h him. At the age of t w e n t y - n i n e she l e f t R h o desia w i t h her youngest son and her f i r s t n o v e l , The Gra s s i s S i n g i n g , which was p u b l i s h e d i n 1950. L e s s i n g ' s c h i l d h o o d and j o u r n e y from o b s c u r i t y i n Southern A f r i c a t o fame as a w r i t e r i n London f o l l o w t h e p a t t e r n of S c h r e i n e r ' s e a r l y c a r e e r : a r a t h e r w i l d c h i l d h o o d , an i d i o s y n -c r a t i c e d u c a t i o n , r e b e l l i o n a g a i n s t her mother, t h e achievement of a measure of independence t h r o u g h t r a d i t i o n a l l y female g o v e r n e s s - l i k e j o b s , becoming a w r i t e r i n i s o l a t i o n and then b u r s t i n g upon the B r i t i s h l i t e r a r y scene. However, u n l i k e S c h r e i n e r , L e s s i n g has been a b l e t o s u s t a i n her l i t e r a r y o u t p u t : by the end of 1986 she had p u b l i s h e d over twenty f i v e books: n o v e l s , s t o r i e s , n o n f i c t i o n , drama and p o e t r y . F u r t h e r m o r e , i n c o n t r a s t t o S c h r e i n e r ' s unhappy, i n d e c i s i v e s t a t e of not b e l o n g i n g i n e i t h e r England or South A f r i c a , L e s s i n g has l i v e d i n London s i n c e 1949. Her d e c i s i o n t o l i v e i n E n g l a n d , a l t h o u g h not c o m p l e t e l y v o l u n t a r y because she was banned from r e t u r n i n g t o R h o d e s i a or South A f r i c a , seems t o have been l e s s t r a u m a t i c and a m b i v a l e n t t h a n i t was f o r S c h r e i n e r . Her n i n e t e e n - f i f t i e s f i c t i o n and n o n f i c t i o n ( t h a t i s , Going Home and I n P u r s u i t of  the E n g l i s h , 1960, about her e x p e r i e n c e of post-war London) p a i n t a b i t t e r s w e e t e x i l e ' s p o r t r a i t , i n which the damp grey p o v e r t y of London i s c o n t r a s t e d w i t h t h e memory of A f r i c a n sky 103 and sun. But g r a d u a l l y the v i v i d p o r t r a y a l of her A f r i c a n y outh i n her e a r l y f i c t i o n i s r e p l a c e d by a n o s t a l g i c , i n c r e a s i n g l y s y m b o l i c use of t h e A f r i c a n s e t t i n g and theme i n her f i c t i o n of the s i x t i e s and s e v e n t i e s , which i s s e t m a i n l y i n Eng l a n d . I d e o l o g i c a l l y the e a r l y L e s s i n g has much i n common w i t h S c h r e i n e r . A l t h o u g h she has r e f u s e d t o be l a b e l e d as a f e m i n i s t or women's w r i t e r , her n o v e l s , l i k e S c h r e i n e r ' s , have been read e a g e r l y as f e m i n i s t documents. The c r i t i q u e of female e d u c a t i o n , m a r r i a g e and motherhood i s as s t r o n g an element of L e s s i n g ' s e a r l y w r i t i n g as i t i s of S c h r e i n e r ' s ; however L e s s i n g shows more s y s t e m a t i c a l l y how t h e p o s i t i o n of women r e l a t e s t o l a r g e r s o c i a l i s s u e s . S c h r e i n e r , i n kee p i n g w i t h her t i m e , was a champion of j u s t i c e and e q u a l i t y w i t h i n a r a t h e r vague s o c i a l i s t framework. L e s s i n g , who came of age i n the n i n e t e e n -t h i r t i e s , was i n f l u e n c e d by the b e t t e r d e f i n e d and more comprehensive i d e o l o g y of communism. By her own r e c k o n i n g , she was a communist, " e m o t i o n a l l y i f not o r g a n i z a t i o n a l l y , " from 1942, and a P a r t y member from 1945 t o 1956 ("The S m a l l P e r s o n a l V o i c e " 2 0 ) . A l o n g w i t h many o t h e r i n t e l l e c t u a l s she l e f t the P a r t y because she was d i s i l l u s i o n e d by S t a l i n i s m , but she remained l o y a l t o t h e communist i d e a l . I n her 1957 w r i t e r ' s m a n i f e s t o , "The S m a l l P e r s o n a l V o i c e , " she d e c l a r e s her commit-ment t o a M a r x i s t - h u m a n i s t w o r l d view and t o r e a l i s t i c f i c t i o n which s p r i n g s from t h a t w o r l d view. She t a k e s as her model t h e n i n e t e e n t h - c e n t u r y European n o v e l i n w h i c h , she s a y s , the w r i t e r speaks not o n l y i n h i s i n d i v i d u a l v o i c e , but a l s o as spokesman and i n t e r p r e t e r of h i s s o c i e t y . She d e c l a r e s her own theme t o 104 be the r e l a t i o n between t h e i n d i v i d u a l and t h e c o l l e c t i v e , g i v i n g as her example the C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e s e r i e s . The f i v e - v o l u m e seguence which b e g i n s w i t h Martha Quest i s an a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l s e r i e s i n which the e v e n t s o f Martha's l i f e — f r o m her c h i l d h o o d t o her m a r r i a g e s and p o l i t i c a l a c t i v i t y — a r e p o r t r a y e d as r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f her sex, n a t i o n -a l i t y and g e n e r a t i o n . L e s s i n g ' s problem i n t h e s e n o v e l s i s t o s t r i k e a b a l a n c e between t h r e e l e v e l s o f c h a r a c t e r and p l o t : the p e r s o n a l or i n d i v i d u a l , t h e t y p i c a l or r e p r e s e n t a t i v e , and the a r c h e t y p a l or m y t h i c . L e s s i n g c r e a t e s i n Martha Quest a humorous, c r i t i c a l h e r o i n e who i s bemused by t h e d i s c o v e r y t h a t her f e e l i n g s and a c t i o n s a r e l a r g e l y a f u n c t i o n of her p l a c e and t i m e , and f u r t h e r d etermined by t h e c o n s t r a i n t s of her female sex and human n a t u r e . T h i s l a s t a r c h e t y p a l l e v e l c o r r e s p o n d s t o L e s s i n g ' s i n t e r e s t i n p s y c h o a n a l y s i s , and p a r t i c u l a r l y i n Jung, which became i m p o r t a n t i n her f i c t i o n of the s i x t i e s , t o be r e p l a c e d i n the s e v e n t i e s by an i n t e r e s t i n t h e m i d d l e - e a s t e r n m y s t i c a l p h i l o s o p h y of S u f i s m , then by a more i d i o s y n c r a t i c v i s i o n of human e v o l u t i o n i n the s e t t i n g of t h e r i s e and f a l l of cosmic e m p i r e s . The t i p p i n g of the b a l a n c e i n L e s s i n g ' s f i c t i o n from t h e r e a l i s t i c — i n d i v i d u a l and s o c i a l — t o t h e a r c h e t y p a l l e v e l i s i l l u m i n a t e d i f not e x p l a i n e d by the co r r e s p o n d e n c e s between her A f r i c a n f i c t i o n and D i n e s e n ' s . L e s s i n g , l i k e D i n e s e n , imposes her v i s i o n on an A f r i c a n s e t t i n g t h a t , as she has moved away from i t i n time and space, has become more n o s t a l g i c and m y t h i c a l . I n a 1971 r e v i e w o f Dinesen's A f r i c a n memoirs, 105 L e s s i n g c r i t i c i z e s her f e u d a l n o t i o n s , but admires her d i s d a i n f o r f e m i n i n e c o n v e n t i o n s and her a b i l i t y t o c r e a t e a noble i f e s s e n t i a l l y m y t h i c a l w o r l d ("A Deep D a r k n e s s " ) . S i g n i f i c a n t l y , she s h a r e s D inesen's n o s t a l g i a f o r a l o s t w o r l d i n which w h i t e s e t t l e r s were few and t h e t r a d i t i o n a l n a t i v e way of l i f e had not yet been d e s t r o y e d . E s s e n t i a l l y she i s e n t h r a l l e d by the Dinesen myth, even though i t i s a r i s t o c r a t i c and r e a c t i o n a r y a c c o r d i n g t o her p o l i t i c a l v i e w s . C e r t a i n l y t he a f f i n i t y t h a t L e s s i n g f e e l s f o r Dinesen r e v e a l s an ambivalence i n t h e ex-communist aut h o r and her a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l h e r o i n e Martha Quest which has i n t e r e s t i n g r e p e r c u s s i o n s i n L e s s i n g ' s l a t e r f i c t i o n . I n r e s p e c t t o L e s s i n g ' s n o n f i c t i o n , Going Home has r e l e v a n t echoes of Out o f A f r i c a . I n t h e f o l l o w i n g passage L e s s i n g , l i k e D i n e s e n , r e g a r d s A f r i c a as the m a t e r i a l of f a n t a s y : " I t i s s t i l l u n c r e a t e d . . . . A m a g n i f i c e n t c o u n t r y , w i t h a l l i t s r i c h e s i n the f u t u r e . Because i t i s so empty we can dream. We can dream of c i t i e s and a c i v i l i z a t i o n more b e a u t i f u l than a n y t h i n g t h a t has been seen i n the w o r l d b e f o r e " ( 1 3 - 1 4 ) . L e s s i n g ' s book, l i k e D i n e s e n ' s , i s s t r u c t u r e d around a n e c d o t e s , d i a l o g u e s and memories, but whereas Dinesen's s e e m i n g l y c a s u a l o r d e r i n g o f ev e n t s i s a c t u a l l y an a r t f u l , p o e t i c r e c o n s t r u c t i o n , L e s s i n g ' s o r g a n i z a t i o n seems t o f o l l o w t h e a c t u a l j o u r n a l o f her t r i p home. I t i s an extended p i e c e of j o u r n a l i s m , f u l l of f a c t s and p o l i t i c a l commentary as w e l l as the a u t h o r ' s i m p r e s s i o n s and memories. L e s s i n g ' s Dinesenesque n o s t a l g i a i n Going Home i s tempered by her t r e n c h a n t c r i t i q u e of " P a r t n e r s h i p " i n the whit e - d o m i n a t e d F e d e r a t i o n . 106 A l t h o u g h i t i s not c l e a r i f L e s s i n g had read Out of A f r i c a b e f o r e she wrote Martha Quest, she c e r t a i n l y d i d read The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm as a young g i r l , and i t d e e p l y i n f l u e n c e d her e a r l y work. T h i s i s most apparent i n Martha Quest, which seems to have been i n s p i r e d by and even t o be modeled on A f r i c a n Farm, and c o n t a i n s s e v e r a l a l l u s i o n s t o S c h r e i n e r . In 1968, L e s s i n g p u b l i s h e d " A f t e r w o r d t o The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm," i n which she d i s c u s s e s the n o v e l ' s i n f l u e n c e on her i n terms which echo Dinesen's I n t r o d u c t i o n t o S c h r e i n e r ' s work: I read the n o v e l when I was f o u r t e e n or s o , under-s t a n d i n g v e r y w e l l t h e i s o l a t i o n d e s c r i b e d i n i t . . . . T h i s was the f i r s t ' r e a l ' book I'd met w i t h t h a t had A f r i c a f o r a s e t t i n g . Here was the s u b s t a n c e of t r u t h , and not from England or R u s s i a or France or A m e r i c a , n e c e s s i t a t i n g a l l k i n d s of mental t r a n s l a -t i o n s , s w i t c h e s , c o r r e s p o n d e n c e s , but r e f l e c t i n g what I knew and c o u l d see. And the book became p a r t of me, as the few r a r e books do (98-99). She d i s m i s s e s the p l o t , acknowledging t h a t A f r i c a n Farm i s not a c o n v e n t i o n a l l y good n o v e l . I n s t e a d she l a u d s i t as an o r i g i n a l " m i x t u r e of j o u r n a l i s m and the Z e i t g e i s t and a u t o b i o g r a p h y t h a t comes out of a p a r t of t h e human c o n s c i o u s n e s s which i s always t r y i n g t o u n d e r s t a n d i t s e l f . . . ." ( 9 9 ) . T h i s i s not o n l y a good c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n of S c h r e i n e r ' s n o v e l s , but a l s o an a c c u r a t e d e s c r i p t i o n o f L e s s i n g ' s own f i c t i o n , which i s a s i m i l a r l y a m b i t i o u s and o r i g i n a l attempt t o e x p l a i n human c h a r a c t e r and i t s d e t e r m i n a n t s . The G r a s s i s S i n g i n g The c r i t i c a l and commercial s u c c e s s of L e s s i n g ' s f i r s t n o v e l The G r a s s i s S i n g i n g m i r r o r e d the r e c e p t i o n of S c h r e i n e r ' s The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm. I t s c e n t r a l c h a r a c t e r Mary Tur n e r 107 i s a n e g a t i v e v e r s i o n of Martha Quest, Karen B l i x e n and L y n d a l l ; she i s w i t h o u t t h e i r beauty and b r a i n s , t h e i r a r t i s t i c or i n t e l l e c t u a l a m b i t i o n s . Mary's m o d e l s — t h e i d e a l images a g a i n s t which she measures her own d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n s — a r e from Hollywood f i l m s and r o m a n t i c f i c t i o n r a t h e r than p o e t r y , p h i l o s o p h y and s c i e n c e . But she e x p e r i e n c e s the same gap between f a n t a s y and r e a l i t y t h a t L y n d a l l and Martha f e e l . As L e s s i n g n a r r a t e s , "There seemed t o be no c o n n e x i o n between the d i s t o r t e d m i r r o r o f the s c r e e n and her own l i f e ; i t was i m p o s s i b l e t o f i t t o g e t h e r what she wanted f o r h e r s e l f , and what she was o f f e r e d " ( 4 6 ) . L o s t t o t h e imagined d e l i g h t s of t h e town, marooned on her f a r m — a s L y n d a l l and Martha a r e — s h e too f e e l s a p r i s o n e r o p p r e s s e d by h o s t i l e emanations from the l a n d , e s p e c i a l l y , as i n S c h r e i n e r , by the t e r r i b l e h e a t . Mary T u r n e r , i n f e a r and l o a t h i n g of the farm and i t s b l a c k l a b o r e r s ("always so c l o s e t o t h e i r l i v e s but a l s o so c u t o f f " 102) i s the o p p o s i t e of Karen B l i x e n , who embraces ev e r y a s p e c t of l i f e on her farm. When Mary's husband f a l l s i l l she, l i k e Karen B l i x e n , t a k e s over the farm, but u n l i l k e the h e r o i n e of Out o f A f r i c a who works a l o n g -s i d e her employees, e n t e r i n g i n t o t h e i r j o y s and s o r r o w s , the r e s e n t f u l Mary t a k e s p l e a s u r e o n l y i n p i t t i n g her w i l l a g a i n s t the r e c a l c i t r a n t "boys." Whereas Karen B l i x e n welcomes the p e r s o n a l r e l a t i o n w i t h her dependents, Mary i s t e r r i f i e d of i t , t a k i n g r e f u g e b e h i n d the sjambok. But g i v i n g i n t o her h a t r e d by s t r i k i n g Moses m y s t e r i o u s l y b r i n g s her c l o s e r t o him; her e x e r c i s e of power i s a c t u a l l y a l o s s of c o n t r o l which p u t s her i n t o her s e r v a n t ' s power. 108 From t h i s p o i n t Mary i s obsessed w i t h Moses. As she l o s e s her g r i p on the farm and her house, the l a n d s c a p e i s i n c r e a s -i n g l y d e s c r i b e d as savage and menacing. I n t h e l a s t c h a p t e r the i r o n i c use of n a t u r e so c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of w h i t e A f r i c a n f i c t i o n b e g i n n i n g w i t h S c h r e i n e r i s e v i d e n t . I t i s at the end of t h e d r y season. A f t e r a serene and gorgeous dawn the sun r i s e s b r u t a l l y , drawing t h e c o l o r from t h e sky and f l a t t e n i n g the l a n d s c a p e . Mary's d i s t u r b e d i m a g i n a t i o n p a i n t s the s e t t i n g o f her d e a t h : "the sky shut down over h e r , w i t h t h i c k y e l l o w i s h w a l l s of smoke growing up t o meet i t " ( 2 0 4 ) . Moses i s an i n s t r u m e n t of t e r r i b l e n a t u r e : "And then the bush avenged i t s e l f ; t h a t was her l a s t t h o u g h t . The t r e e s advanced i n a r u s h , l i k e b e a s t s , and the thunder was the n o i s e of t h e i r coming" ( 2 1 7 ) . At the moment of her death come the l i f e - g i v i n g r a i n s , as t h e y do i n A f r i c a n Farm. Mary's v i o l e n t end f o l l o w s the p a t t e r n o f L y n d a l l ' s and Waldo's p e a c e f u l but u n n a t u r a l d e a t h s , as Mary's a s p i r a t i o n s a r e t h e i r s i n debased form. As they a r e , she i s t r a p p e d i n a s e t t i n g and s i t u a t i o n which i n e v i t a b l y d e s t r o y s h e r . The G r a s s  i s S i n g i n g i s a g r i p p i n g , t i g h t l y s t r u c t u r e d i f o v e r w r i t t e n r e a l i s t i c n o v e l , which borrows the a u t h o r i t y of T.S. E l i o t ' s Waste Land t o connect Mary's t r a g e d y w i t h a l a r g e r statement about the s p i r i t u a l inadequacy of Western c u l t u r e — h e r e s y m b o l i c a l l y d e f e a t e d by A f r i c a : " I n t h i s decayed h o l e among the mountains/ In t h e f a i n t m o o n l i g h t , t h e g r a s s i s s i n g i n g / . . . . Then spoke the thunder" (from the n o v e l ' s e p i g r a p h ) . L e s s i n g makes use of the imagery of heat and d r y n e s s t o s y m b o l i z e w h i t e 109 d i s c o n t e n t and a l i e n a t i o n i n her o t h e r A f r i c a n f i c t i o n as w e l l , i n c l u d i n g the C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e . Martha Quest i s born i n O c t o b e r , the month i n which Mary Turner d i e s , t h e month of v e l d f i r e s and t e n s e e x p e c t a t i o n of t h e promised r a i n s . Nadine Gordimer pursues the symbolism of drought and r a i n i n The  C o n s e r v a t i o n i s t , i n which the A f r i c a n dead, borne on the f l o o d w a t e r s , r i s e t o c l a i m t h e i r l a n d . L e s s i n g and Gordimer both e x p l o r e the r e l a t i o n between w h i t e m i s t r e s s and b l a c k s e r v a n t i n t h e i r s h o r t f i c t i o n , w h i l e Gordimer t a k e s t h i s theme t o i t s l o g i c a l c o n c l u s i o n i n J u l y ' s P e o p l e i n which Maureen Smales becomes a dependent i n the t r i b a l v i l l a g e of which her s e r v a n t J u l y i s C h i e f . The p r o b l e m a t i c a s p e c t of The G r a s s i s S i n g i n g i s the t o t a l l a c k of c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n f o r Moses; the i n s t r u m e n t o f Mary's d e a t h , the avenger of the s t o l e n l a n d , i s h i m s e l f a blank whose m o t i v a t i o n s remain unfathomable. Gordimer and J.M. C o e t z e e , whose I n the H e a r t of t h e C o u n t r y a l s o examines the power of t h e s e r v a n t over t h e m i s t r e s s on an i s o l a t e d farm i n an a r i d l a n d — s h are L e s s i n g ' s d i f f i c u l t y i n c r e a t i n g a d e q u a t e l y developed b l a c k c h a r a c t e r s . N e v e r t h e l e s s the w h i t e c h a r a c t e r s i n t h e i r n o v e l s a t l e a s t attempt t o imagine what t h e i r b l a c k c o u n t e r p a r t s t h i n k and f e e l . F u r t h e r m o r e , i n The C o n s e r v a t i o n i s t and J u l y ' s  P e o p l e Gordimer g i v e s the r e a d e r what g l i m p s e s she can of b l a c k c h a r a c t e r s among t h e m s e l v e s , f r e e of t h e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the w h i t e c e n t r a l c h a r a c t e r . But L e s s i n g does not p r o v i d e even o b l i q u e scenes of b l a c k p e o p l e : as L o r n a Sage sees th e problem i n The G r a s s i s S i n g i n g : 110 To e x p l a i n Moses, t o w r i t e him o u t , might w e l l be t o w h i t e him o u t . . . . But then a g a i n , t o l e a v e him b l a n k , i n a book so c o n s c i o u s of the o p p r e s s i v e f u n c t i o n of s i l e n c e , i s d e e p l y e m b a r r a s s i n g . What t h i s dilemma r e v e a l s i s a v i t a l problem i n L e s s i n g ' s w r i t i n g . How much can one r e p r e s e n t ? How much, t h a t i s , can one f i n d o t h e r s i n o n e s e l f , i n e x p e r i e n c e , i m a g i n a t i o n and language? i n s h o r t . . . L e s s i n g the w r i t e r i s e n c o u n t e r i n g her s e t t l e r ' s p r oblem, and hasn ' t found a s o l u t i o n ( D o r i s L e s s i n g 27-28).3 The e m b a r r a s s i n g s i l e n c e i n the t e x t , the d i s t u r b i n g h o l e i n t he s t o r y caused by the absence of Moses as a c h a r a c t e r , not o n l y f l a w s The Gra s s i s S i n g i n g but a l s o i n d i c a t e s a problem i n L e s s i n g ' s subsequent f i c t i o n , p a r t i c u l a r l y her n o v e l s . The " s e t t l e r ' s problem" of how t o r e p r e s e n t the A f r i c a n o t h e r as a s u b j e c t r a t h e r than an o b j e c t — a r e s e r v o i r o f t h e w h i t e s ' d e s i r e s and f e a r s — i s an u n r e s o l v e d i s s u e t h a t p a r t l y e x p l a i n s her abandonment of A f r i c a n s u b j e c t s . E a r l y i n her c a r e e r she d e s c r i b e d t h e f r u s t r a t i o n she e n c o u n t e r e d , the dead end she f e l t she had reached i n w r i t i n g about s o u t h e r n A f r i c a . The c o l o r bar was an i s s u e t h a t the w r i t e r c o u l d not a v o i d , and c o u l d not t r a n s c e n d ; f u r t h e r m o r e , i t had a l l been s a i d b e f o r e — a n d b e t t e r — i n t h e c o n t e x t of c l a s s d i v i s i o n s i n n i n e t e e n t h - c e n t u r y European l i t e r a t u r e . 4 I n L e s s i n g ' s words from Going Home: " I n w r i t i n g t h i s I am c o n s c i o u s of a f e e l i n g o f f a t i g u e and s t e r i l i t y which i s what I have t o f i g h t a g a i n s t as soon as I s e t f o o t i n w h i t e A f r i c a " ( 1 7 ) . T h i s f e e l i n g of f a t i g u e and s t e r i l i t y p e rvades Martha Quest. Martha Quest The e p i g r a p h t o P a r t One of Martha Quest i s from O l i v e S c h r e i n e r : " I am so t i r e d o f i t , and a l s o t i r e d of the f u t u r e I l l b e f o r e i t comes."5 Martha i s f i f t e e n and ready t o l e a v e her p a r e n t s ' farm; L e s s i n g ' s n o v e l b e g i n s , i n f a c t , a t the p o i n t i n A f r i c a n Farm when L y n d a l l r e t u r n s from s c h o o l , f u l l of b i t t e r e x p e r i e n c e and dread of the f u t u r e . Martha, l i k e L y n d a l l , has outgrown the farm. L e s s i n g w r i t e s : "She r e p e a t e d t h e i n c a n t a t o r y names of c h i l d h o o d l i k e a s p e l l which had l o s t i t s f o r c e . . . . For e v e r y t h i n g had shrunk f o r h e r " ( 3 1 ) . The s p a c i o u s sky and windswept l a n d s c a p e "caused her o n l y the p r i c k l i n g f e e l i n g of c l a u s t r o p h o b i a " ( 9 ) . Compare Martha's f e e l i n g s t o L y n d a l l ' s : She l o o k e d about among the o l d f a m i l i a r o b j e c t s ; a l l was t h e r e , but the o l d s e l f was gone. 'What a r e you n o t i c i n g ? ' asked Em. 'Nothing and e v e r y t h i n g . I thought the windows were h i g h e r . I f I were you when I get t h i s p l a c e I s h o u l d r a i s e the w a l l s . There i s not room t o b r e a t h e h e r e ; one s u f f o c a t e s ' ( A f r i c a n Farm 183). Not a l l Martha's emotions about t h e farm a r e n e g a t i v e , how-e v e r . L e s s i n g , l i k e S c h r e i n e r , i s a m b i v a l e n t about t h e A f r i c a n l a n d . She d e s c r i b e s i t as b r e a t h t a k i n g , l i b e r a t i n g , a l i v e w i t h w o n d e r f u l c r e a t u r e s , and i s p a r t i c u l a r l y r h a p s o d i c about t h e wide h i g h v e l d s k y . She w r i t e s : " . . . the l a n d t r a v e l l e d e n d l e s s l y , w i t h o u t l i m i t , and faded i n t o a b l u i s h h aze, l i k e t h a t h i n t e r l a n d t o the i m a g i n a t i o n we cannot do w i t h o u t " ( 9 ) . The a m b i v a l e n t d e s c r i p t i o n s of n a t u r e i n Martha Quest echo one of S c h r e i n e r ' s e s s a y s , "South A f r i c a ' s S p e l l , " i n which she weighs t h e p r o s and cons of t h e bush v e r s u s t h e c i t y , South A f r i c a v e r s u s Europe: "There's no room t h e r e . . . . I t ' s so f r e e h e r e , " argues t h e South A f r i c a n , w h i l e t h e European i s a p p a l l e d by the v a s t , empty A f r i c a n l a n d s c a p e . The m a g n i f i c e n t n a t u r a l v i s t a s i n Martha Quest, l i k e t h e d i s t a n t mountains i n A f r i c a n Farm, s i g n i f y a c o u n t r y of the 112 i m a g i n a t i o n , an A f r i c a unencumbered by human c o m p l i c a t i o n s . D i nesen's d e s c r i p t i o n s of the view from Denys' a i r p l a n e have a s i m i l a r s i g n i f i c a n c e i n Out of A f r i c a . But whereas Dinesen t r i e s t o m a i n t a i n t h a t view from t h e heavens, t o a v o i d coming down t o e a r t h , as i t were, S c h r e i n e r and L e s s i n g keep t h e i r c h a r a c t e r s e m b r o i l e d i n r e a l i s t i c dilemmas. N e v e r t h e l e s s , they gaze l o n g i n g l y toward t h e mountains and s k y , which s y m b o l i z e t h a t i d e a l c o u n t r y which they imagine must e x i s t somewhere. L e s s i n g w r i t e s : " [ M a r t h a ] l o o k e d . . . a c r o s s t h e v e l d t o t h e Dumfries H i l l s , and r e f a s h i o n e d t h a t unused c o u n t r y t o the s c a l e of her i m a g i n a t i o n " ( 1 7 ) . L a t e r she r e f e r s t o " t h a t i d e a l l a n d s c a p e of w h i t e c i t i e s and n o b l e p e o p l e which l a y over the a c t u a l v i s t a s of h a r s h g r a s s and s t u n t e d t r e e s l i k e a g o l d e n mirage" ( 3 5 ) . Martha's i d e a l c o u n t r y i s an i n t e l l e c t u a l t e r r a i n , p e o p l e d by p o e t s , n o v e l i s t s and r e b e l l i o u s t h i n k e r s , from S h e l l e y and Whitman t o E n g e l s , whom she reads "as i f they were a c o n f i r m a t i o n of some k i n d of e x i l e " ( 2 2 1 ) . L i k e L y n d a l l and Waldo, Rebekah and Karen B l i x e n , Martha c o n s t r u c t s an i n n e r w o r l d i n which she a t t e m p t s t o connect an i m p o r t e d i n t e l l e c t u a l s t r u c t u r e t o her immediate s e t t i n g . I t i s t h i s i n n e r w o r l d of dreams and f a n t a s i e s t h a t Martha c a l l s her " l o d e s t o n e , " her " c o n s c i e n c e . " As the n a r r a t o r n o t e s i r o n i c a l l y , i t i s a c o u n t r y from which one cannot be e x i l e d because i t does not e x i s t . Martha has a sense of e x i l e not o n l y from the i n t e l l e c t u a l c a p i t a l s of Europe and A m e r i c a , but a l s o , and more p r o f o u n d l y , from the A f r i c a she i n h a b i t s i n the ambiguous r o l e of w h i t e s e t t l e r . I f Martha's i d e a l c i t y i s a " g o l d e n mirage," t h e n 113 h a r d l y more r e a l i s t h e c o l o n i a l town which i s "so l i g h t l y s c r a t c h e d on the s u r f a c e of the s o i l t h a t one c o u l d see the v e l d by . . . l o o k i n g down t o the end of t h e s t r e e t . . ." (2 2 1 ) . I n Martha Quest as w e l l as i n L e s s i n g ' s o t h e r A f r i c a n n o v e l s and s t o r i e s t h e w h i t e h e r o i n e i s unable t o connect w i t h A f r i c a and A f r i c a n s — m u c h as E.M. F o r s t e r ' s F i e l d i n g t r i e s but i s unable t o connect w i t h I n d i a and I n d i a n s . The f i g u r e of the i m p e n e t r a b l e and o f t e n a c t i v e l y h o s t i l e n a t i v e , who i n h a b i t s an e q u a l l y h o s t i l e "dark c o n t i n e n t , " e x e m p l i f i e d i n Conrad's Hear t  of D a r k n e s s , i s a " g i v e n " of w h i t e c o l o n i a l l i t e r a t u r e , i n c l u d i n g the work of S c h r e i n e r , D i n e s e n , L e s s i n g , Gordimer and Coetzee. The European l i b e r a l ' s s e a r c h f o r c o n n e c t i o n e x e m p l i -f i e d i n F o r s t e r ' s A Passage t o I n d i a , i s a r e f i n e m e n t of t h e h e a r t of darkness theme, and the b a s i s f o r t h e r e a l i s t i c f i c t i o n of S o u t h e r n A f r i c a t h a t b e g i n s w i t h O l i v e S c h r e i n e r , r e a c h i n g i t s c u l m i n a t i o n , and p r o b a b l y i t s f i n a l form, i n Nadine Gordimer. L e s s i n g ' s H e a r t of Darkness i s The Gr a s s i s S i n g i n g , i n which Mary Turner seeks and f i n d s — o n e might say she c r e a t e s — her death a t the hands o f Moses. L e s s i n g ' s f i r s t c o l l e c t i o n o f s t o r i e s , The O l d C h i e f ' s C o u n t r y i s her Passage t o I n d i a . Martha Quest, l i k e The S t o r y o f an A f r i c a n Farm and Out of  A f r i c a , f o c u s e s on i n d i v i d u a l s e l f - d i s c o v e r y . The c o l o n y of Southern R h o d e s i a i s a s e t t i n g f o r Martha's own drama, but one which i n c o n t r a s t t o Dinesen's c h a l l e n g i n g , m a g i c a l , u l t i m a t e l y b e n i g n Kenya i s d i s t u r b i n g even i n i t s b e a u t y , i n d u c i n g i n the w h i t e h e r o i n e unease and g u i l t . The l a n d and n a t i v e c h a r a c t e r s 114 which form a backdrop t o t h e a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l drama of L y n d a l l and Waldo i n A f r i c a n Farm, w h i l e l e s s w e l l d e f i n e d than i n L e s s i n g ' s n o v e l , i nduce s i m i l a r f e e l i n g s of a l i e n a t i o n and vague g u i l t . Whereas Karen B l i x e n f e e l s t h a t she b e l o n g s , L y n d a l l , Waldo and Martha p r o f o u n d l y do n o t . Of c o u r s e Karen B l i x e n ' s b e l o n g i n g i s p r o b l e m a t i c a l , a l t h o u g h she i s r e l u c t a n t t o acknowledge t h a t t h e c o u n t r y w i t h which she f e e l s a m y s t i c a l bond a l s o i s o l a t e s and f i n a l l y r e j e c t s h e r . I n Out o f A f r i c a she wonders, " I f I know a song of A f r i c a . . . does A f r i c a know a song of me?" ( 6 4 ) . Martha i s aware from t h e s t a r t t h a t A f r i c a i s u n l i k e l y t o know a song of h e r . "The farm," w r i t e s L e s s i n g , " l a y about her l i k e a l o v e d c o u n t r y which r e f u s e d her c i t i z e n s h i p " ( 3 1 ) . So she t u r n s , l i k e Waldo, t o her b o o k s — t o t h a t c o u n t r y of the mind from which one cannot be e x i l e d . As the n o v e l b e g i n s , Martha i s r e a d i n g Havelock E l l i s on sex; w h i l e waving the book l i k e a r e d f l a g i n her mother's f a c e , she e s t a b l i s h e s her i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h the i n t e l l e c t u a l r e b e l s of the p a s t — i n c l u d i n g t h rough E l l i s h i s f r i e n d O l i v e S c h r e i n e r . Martha's r e l a t i o n s h i p t o books, however, i s more c o m p l i c a t e d t h a n Waldo's or Rebekah's. For Martha as f o r her p r e d e c e s s o r s books are t a l i s m a n s , keys t o the o t h e r w o r l d beyond the farm. But whereas S c h r e i n e r ' s c h a r a c t e r s have an almost r e l i g i o u s awe of the few books t h a t come i n t o t h e i r p o s s e s s i o n , Martha i n the n i n e t e e n - t h i r t i e s , i s swamped w i t h books, s t e e p e d i n l i t e r a t u r e , and i n p o s s e s s i o n o f more knowledge than she can use. Martha's problem i s t h a t she knows more than she can u n d e r s t a n d ; her 115 i n t e l l e c t i s more developed than her e x p e r i e n c e . As L e s s i n g w r i t e s : She was, i n f a c t , s u f f e r i n g from the form of moral e x h a u s t i o n which i s caused by s e e i n g a g r e a t many f a c t s w i t h o u t knowing the cause f o r them, by s e e i n g o n e s e l f as an i s o l a t e d p e r s o n , w i t h o u t o r i g i n or d e s t i n a t i o n (182-83). M artha, u n l i k e Waldo, has the b e n e f i t of Freud and Marx, the l i t e r a t u r e of the Gre a t War and the a l r e a d y m y t h i c a l t w e n t i e s . In c o n t r a s t t o Karen B l i x e n , who e s s e n t i a l l y r e j e c t s contemporary European t h o u g h t — a n d even i n s o f a r as she can, contemporary h i s t o r y — M a r t h a s t r u g g l e s t o p l a c e her own s i t u a t i o n i n h i s t o r i c a l c o n t e x t : And from a l l t h e s e books Martha had ga i n e d a c l e a r p i c t u r e of h e r s e l f , from t h e o u t s i d e . She was a d o l e s c e n t , and t h e r e f o r e bound t o be unhappy; B r i t i s h , and t h e r e f o r e uneasy and d e f e n s i v e ; i n the f o u r t h decade of the t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r y , and t h e r e f o r e i n e s c a p a b l y b e s e t w i t h problems of r a c e and c l a s s ; f e m a l e , and o b l i g e d t o r e p u d i a t e the s h a c k l e d women of the p a s t . She was tormented w i t h g u i l t and r e s p o n s i -b i l i t y and s e l f - c o n s c i o u s n e s s ; and she d i d not r e g r e t the torment . . . (14-15). Martha i s more s e l f - a w a r e than L y n d a l l , but f o r a l l her s o p h i s t i c a t i o n she i s h e l p l e s s t o p r e v e n t h e r s e l f from f a l l i n g p r ey t o a modern v e r s i o n of L y n d a l l ' s m i s f o r t u n e . The i r o n y t h a t i s such a marked f e a t u r e of the n o v e l r e v o l v e s around j u s t t h i s p o i n t . M a r t h a , l i k e L y n d a l l , i s p o r t r a y e d as b e i n g v u l n e r a b l e because she i s a woman; L e s s i n g , l i k e S c h r e i n e r , p r o v i d e s n e g a t i v e s t e r e o t y p e s of f e m i n i n i t y f o r her h e r o i n e t o r e j e c t . Mrs. Van Rensberg, the f a t , complacent mother of e l e v e n , p l a y s the r o l e of S c h r e i n e r ' s Tant' S a n n i e ; from Martha's p o i n t of view she i s a r e p u l s i v e and f r i g h t e n i n g s p e c t e r of what c o u l d 116 happen t o h e r . " I w i l l not become l i k e t h a t , " Martha promises h e r s e l f , l o o k i n g a t the o l d e r woman's s w o l l e n , v e i n e d l e g s . Marnie Van Rensberg, who i s Martha's age, p l a y s the r o l e of Em i n A f r i c a n Farm: the c o n v e n t i o n a l l y f e m i n i n e g i r l who i s a f o i l t o t h e r e b e l l i o u s h e r o i n e . Martha, l i k e L y n d a l l , vehemently r e j e c t s M a m i e ' s p r e o c c u p a t i o n w i t h m a r r i a g e ; i t i s not s u r p r i s i n g however t h a t Martha, l i k e her p r e c u r s o r , becomes a young mother i n the next v o l u m e — a n d f u r t h e r b e t r a y s her own and L y n d a l l ' s i d e a l s by m a r r y i n g a c i v i l s e r v a n t . The r o l e of Waldo (and Rebekah's Mr. Drummond) i s p l a y e d by J o s s Cohen, a young J e w i s h i n t e l l e c t u a l who i n s p i r e s Martha's b e l i e f i n a t h e i s m , s o c i a l i s m , and r a c i a l e g u a l i t y . U n l i k e S c h r e i n e r , however, L e s s i n g acknowledges a s e x u a l c u r r e n t be-tween h e r o i n e and he r o ; Martha i s d i s t u r b e d and c o n s t r a i n e d by J o s s Cohen's response t o her appearance. She i s an i n c i p i e n t but c o n f u s e d f e m i n i s t , who demands t o be t a k e n s e r i o u s l y as an i n t e l l e c t u a l e q u a l , but n e v e r t h e l e s s c u l t i v a t e s a s t y l i s h , p r o v o c a t i v e l o o k . L e s s i n g , t h e n , r e p l a c e s the myt h i c i d e n t i f i -c a t i o n between L y n d a l l and Waldo w i t h a r e a l i s t i c p o r t r a y a l of the d i f f i c u l t i e s c r e a t e d by Martha's i n d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h J o s s . F o l l o w i n g L y n d a l l and Waldo, Martha and J o s s do not a c t u a l l y have a s e x u a l r e l a t i o n s h i p , but i t i s s i g n i f i c a n t t h a t Martha's f i r s t l o v e r i s a Jew. Adolph i s a s o c i a l o u t c a s t i n t h e S p o r t s C l u b , and Martha i s seen t o be b r e a k i n g a taboo by s l e e p i n g w i t h him. As w e l l as a s u r r o g a t e J o s s , he i s a l s o , p e r h a p s , a s u r r o g a t e b l a c k man. 117 As i n S c h r e i n e r and D i n e s e n , the p e r s o n a l d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n s of L e s s i n g ' s h e r o i n e l e a d her t o make a wider s o c i a l c r i t i q u e . Martha's s e n s i t i v i t y t o her t r e a t m e n t as a woman i n c r e a s e s her awareness of o t h e r forms of h y p o c r i s y and u n f a i r n e s s i n the community. For example, i t i s a f t e r an e n c o u n t e r w i t h J o s s , i n which she has r e s e n t e d b e i n g p a t r o n i z e d as a p r e t t y g i r l , t h a t she has an i n t u i t i o n of a p a r t h e i d t h a t goes beyond her h e r e t o f o r e p u r e l y i n t e l l e c t u a l u n d e r s t a n d i n g of the problem. As L e s s i n g d e s c r i b e s Martha's r e v e l a t i o n : . . . the f a c t was, she c o u l d not remember a time when she had not thought of p e o p l e i n terms of g r o u p s , n a t i o n s , or c o l o u r of s k i n f i r s t , and as p e o p l e a f t e r w a r d s . . . . Martha c o u l d f e e l the s t r i v i n g f o r c e s i n her own s u b s t a n c e : the e f f o r t of i m a g i n a t i o n needed t o d e s t r o y t h e words b l a c k , w h i t e , n a t i o n , r a c e , e xhausted h e r , her head ached and her f l e s h f e l t heavy on her bones ( 5 6 ) . Martha reaches a deep e m o t i o n a l and p h y s i c a l u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f t h e d i v i s i o n s i n t h e c o l o n y , and she now b e g i n s t o i d e n t i f y w i t h the b l a c k A f r i c a n s , who have been i n v i s i b l e t o h e r . But the language of t h i s l o n g v i s i o n a r y passage b e t r a y s M a r t h a ' s — a n d L e s s i n g ' s — r e l i a n c e on f o r e i g n l i t e r a r y c o n c e p t i o n s t o d e f i n e her r e l a t i o n t o her s e t t i n g . For i n s t a n c e , t h e i n f l u e n c e of D.H. Lawrence i s p a i n f u l l y o b v i o u s i n the f o l l o w i n g s e n t e n c e : And each group, community, c l a n , c o l o u r , s t r o v e and f o u g h t away from th e o t h e r , i n a s i c k n e s s of d i s s o l u -t i o n ; i t was as i f the p r i n c i p l e of s e p a r a t e n e s s was b r e d from the v e r y s o i l , , the s k y , the d r i v i n g sun; as i f t h e i n c h o a t e v a s t n e s s of the u n i v e r s e , always i n s i s t e n t i n the enormous unshrouded s k i e s , the enormous m o u n t a i n - g i r t h o r i z o n s , so t h a t one might n e v e r , not f o r a moment, f o r g e t the inhuman, r e l e n t -l e s s s t r u g g l e of s o i l and l i g h t , b r e d a f e v e r of s e l f - a s s e r t i o n i n i t s c h i l d r e n ( 5 6 ) . 118 The message of t h e passage, t h a t Martha i s b r e a k i n g out of the w h i t e s e t t l e r c a s t of mind w i t h i t s r i g i d c e r t a i n t i e s , i s b e l i e d by t h e s t y l e . M a r t h a / L e s s i n g p r o j e c t s her c o n c e p t i o n of c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y onto the " v a s t , " " i n c h o a t e , " "inhuman" l a n d -s c a p e — a s Martha p r o j e c t s her f a n t a s y of the i d e a l c i t y onto the " h a r s h , " "empty" v e l d (as S c h r e i n e r and Dinesen s i m i l a r l y p r o j e c t t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e c o n c e p t i o n s of A f r i c a onto what they see as the empty, u n c l a i m e d , unformed l a n d ) . A l t h o u g h th e sentence quoted above i m p l i e s t h e i m p o s s i -b i l i t y of t r a n s c e n d i n g a p a r t h e i d , Martha b e g i n s t o t r y . When she sees a p r o c e s s i o n of b l a c k p r i s o n e r s h a n d c u f f e d t o g e t h e r , "She marched, i n i m a g i n a t i o n , down the s t r e e t , one of the f i l e , f e e l i n g the o p p r e s s i o n of a p o l i c e s t a t e as i f i t were heavy on her . . ." ( 1 8 4 ) . But she f e e l s p o w e r l e s s t o a l l e v i a t e anyone's s u f f e r i n g , l e a s t o f a l l her own: 'And what now?' demanded t h a t s a r c a s t i c v o i c e i n s i d e M a r t h a , and i t answered i t s e l f , 'Go out and j o i n the P r i s o n e r s ' A i d S o c i e t y , ' Here she sank i n t o s e l f -d e r i s o r y impotence . . ." ( 1 8 4 ) . Martha's s e l f - d e p r e c a t i n g , even d e s t r u c t i v e sense of humor i s d i f f e r e n t from a n y t h i n g we f i n d i n S c h r e i n e r or D i n e s e n ; f a c e d w i t h t h e s i g h t of h a n d c u f f e d p r i s o n e r s Rebekah would almost c e r t a i n l y have j o i n e d t h e P r i s o n e r s ' A i d S o c i e t y t h a t Martha r i d i c u l e s . Karen B l i x e n would have charmed the Governor i n t o r e l e a s i n g t h e p r i s o n e r s and then o f f e r e d them s q u a t t i n g r i g h t s on her farm. Martha's v e r y d i f f e r e n t r e a c t i o n o f " s e l f -d e r i s o r y impotence" i s c onnected t o her h i s t o r i c a l sense of h e r s e l f as one o f the " C h i l d r e n o f V i o l e n c e . " T h i s r e f e r s t o 119 th e g e n e r a t i o n who th r o u g h t h e i r p a r e n t s ' memories must r e l i v e the n ightmare of t h e F i r s t World War and h a l f - w i l l i n g l y f i n d t h e m s e l v e s swept up i n t h e h o l o c a u s t of the Second World War. For M artha, as a c h i l d o f w h i t e s e t t l e r s , the l e g a c y of v i o l e n c e a l s o i n c l u d e s t h e c o l o n i z a t i o n of A f r i c a : a s i t u a t i o n which she was born i n t o , d e p l o r e s , and by v i r t u e of her s k i n p r i v i l e g e , c o l l u d e s i n . She t r i e s t o escape t h e l a n d w i t h i t s weight of a m b i v a l e n t a s s o c i a t i o n s and her p a r e n t s w i t h t h e i r weight of d i s t u r b i n g memories by m i g r a t i n g t o t h e c a p i t a l . L e s s i n g ' s i r o n y i s broad here as she d e s c r i b e s Martha's y o u t h f u l o p t i m i s m : "And a door had c l o s e d , f i n a l l y ; and b e h i n d i t was the farm and the g i r l who had been c r e a t e d by i t . . . . She was a new p e r s o n , and an e x t r a o r d i n a r y , m a g n i f i c e n t , an a l t o g e t h e r new l i f e was b e g i n n i n g " ( 9 2 ) . A f t e r a few weeks of b l i s s f u l s e l f -d e l u s i o n , Martha, a g a i n s t her c o n s c i o u s w i l l , a b s o rbs t h e war h y s t e r i a t h a t g r i p s the town's y o u t h . I t i s the w i n t e r of 1938, and t h e promise of comradeship, g l o r y , and death beckons the young men o f the c o l o n y . Martha h e r s e l f cannot r e s i s t t he f r a n t i c d a n c i n g , d r i n k i n g and m a r r y i n g t h a t c h a r a c t e r i z e s t h e s e months. Here L e s s i n g ' s p r e s e n t a t i o n o f Martha as a h i s t o r i c a l t y p e becomes v e r y c l e a r ; she was born i n t h e a f t e r m a t h of t h e F i r s t World War t o a f a t h e r broken and obsessed by h i s e x p e r i e n c e i n the t r e n c h e s . Images of no-man's l a n d , e x p l o d i n g s h e l l s , r a t s and mud, are almost as r e a l t o Martha as i f she had seen them h e r s e l f ( a s , a c c o r d i n g t o L e s s i n g ' s b e l i e f i n t h e c o l l e c t i v e u n c o n s c i o u s , she h a s ) . Martha's young womanhood as c h r o n i c l e d 120 i n Books Two t o Four of the C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e , i s l i v e d i n the shadow of the next war, w h i c h , f a r from the a c t u a l c a r n a g e , she v i v i d l y s u f f e r s a t second hand. When i n The Four-Gated  C i t y , she f i n a l l y a r r i v e s i n E n g l a n d , i t i s not the pre-war "Home" t h a t her mother has s e n t i m e n t a l l y d e s c r i b e d t o h e r , but the b l e a k , bomb-scarred and t h r e a d b a r e London of the n i n e t e e n -f o r t i e s . At the end o f The Four-Gated C i t y , Martha d i e s on a remote i s l a n d i n the H e b r i d e s , among a c o l o n y of s u r v i v o r s of World War Three. As t h i s p a t t e r n a s s e r t s i t s e l f i n the n o v e l s , the f i g u r e of Martha the unique i n d i v i d u a l i s superseded by Martha the h i s t o r i c a l t y p e and, i n t h e l a s t volume, by Martha the a r c h e -t y p a l Woman of the C e n t u r y . The second through f o u r t h n o v e l s of the s e r i e s seem h u r r i e d l y , r a t h e r s l o p p i l y w r i t t e n , as i f the au t h o r had been i m p a t i e n t t o get through the n e c e s s a r y n a r r a t i o n i n o r d e r t o make her i d e o l o g i c a l p o i n t s and remarks on c h a r a c t e r t y p e s and group dynamics. The Four-Gated C i t y i s s i m i l a r l y f l a w e d , but more c o m p e l l i n g and o r i g i n a l i n i t s e x p l o r a t i o n o f the middle-aged Martha's r e l a t i o n t o the mass mind. I t i s i n t h e f i r s t two volumes of the s e r i e s , Martha Quest and A P r o p e r M a r r i a g e , t h a t L e s s i n g b e s t i n t e g r a t e s the a u t o b i o -g r a p h i c a l , t y p i c a l , and a r c h e t y p a l a s p e c t s o f her c h a r a c t e r s and s t o r y . Martha's f a t h e r , f o r i n s t a n c e , i s more than a p o r t r a i t of the a u t h o r ' s f a t h e r and a r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of h i s w a r - s c a r r e d g e n e r a t i o n , he i s a l s o a unique and l i v e l y f i c t i o n a l c h a r a c t e r . L e s s i n g ' s mother, on the o t h e r hand, e x e r t s a m a l e v o l e n t , almost s u p e r n a t u r a l power over Martha which tends t o unbalance the t e x t ' s r e a l i s m . 1 2 1 The e p i s o d e of Martha's f i r s t dance i s the b e s t example of how L e s s i n g merges the d i f f e r e n t elements of c h a r a c t e r and s i g n i f i c a n c e . Martha works round the c l o c k sewing a l o n g , glamorous w h i t e d r e s s , as i f under a s p e l l i n which she has assumed the r o l e of The Young G i r l Going t o Her F i r s t Dance. Martha, w r i t e s L e s s i n g , " d i d not know t h i s a l o o f , dream-logged g i r l who t u r n e d a b r o o d i n g f a c e under the c u r v e of l o o s e blonde h a i r " ( 8 3 ) . T r a n s f i g u r e d by t h i s " a n c i e n t r o l e , " she i s endowed w i t h the power t o escape from c h i l d h o o d , t o be " s e t f r e e " . With her c h a r a c t e r i s t i c i r o n y , L e s s i n g s e t s Martha's g l o w i n g a n t i c i p a t i o n a g a i n s t the d i s a p p o i n t i n g a c t u a l i t y of the dance at the Van Rensbergs' house. Martha's f a n t a s y i s q u i c k l y d e f l a t e d by r e a l i t y : the shadowy l o v e r of whom she has been dreaming t u r n s out t o be an uncouth and o r d i n a r y n e i g h b o r . F u r t h e r m o r e , Mr. Van Rensberg S e n i o r b r e a k s i n t o Martha's r e v e r y and b r i n g s her down t o e a r t h by a d d r e s s i n g her as a r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of the B r i t i s h community. He c a l l s Martha t o account f o r B r i t i s h c h a u v i n i s m , h y p o c r i s y and b r u t a l i t y a g a i n s t the B o e r s . Martha responds by i n g e n u o u s l y d e f e n d i n g e q u a l r i g h t s f o r a l l r a c e s . F i n a l l y , i n an e x p r e s s i o n of h o s t i l i t y as much f o r Martha's " B r i t i s h a r r o g a n c e " as f o r her p r o v o c a t i v e v i r g i n i t y , her e s c o r t c a r r i e s her o u t s i d e i n t o the mud and k i s s e s h e r . Her w h i t e d r e s s s p a t t e r e d w i t h r e d mud i s an o b v i o u s metaphor f o r her s y m b o l i c l o s s of v i r g i n i t y , which i n c l u d e s the shedding of r o m a n t i c i l l u s i o n and the i n i t i a t i o n i n t o a d u l t p o l i t i c a l r e a l i t i e s . S i g n i f i c a n t l y , i t i s a f t e r t h i s dance t h a t Martha awakes from the s t u p o r of i n a c t i o n t h a t has 122 kept her on t h e farm, throws o f f t h e weight of her p a r e n t s ' dreams, and b e g i n s the next phase of her l i f e : i n town. I n Martha Quest as i n A f r i c a n Farm and Out of A f r i c a , t h e images of s l e e p and awakening, dreams and n i g h t m a r e , are prominent symbols of s e l f - d i s c o v e r y , t h e i m a g i n a t i o n and i t s l i m i t s . ^ Mrs. Quest i s "a w i t c h " or "the e t e r n a l mother, h o l d i n g s l e e p and death i n her t w i n hands . . . l i k e a b a n e f u l f i g u r e i n the nightmare i n which she h e r s e l f was c a u g h t " ( 3 1 - 3 2 ) . S t r u g g l i n g t o keep Martha l o c k e d i n t h e s l e e p of c h i l d h o o d , she t r a n s f e r s her own n i g h t m a r e s t o her d a u g hter. On t h e a u t o -b i o g r a p h i c a l l e v e l are echoes of S c h r e i n e r ' s antagonism toward her m o t h e r — a l o n g w i t h her f e a r o f r e l i v i n g her mother's l i f e . M a r tha, l i k e L y n d a l l , Waldo, and Rebekah (who f o r e g o e s her s l e e p i n t h e p u r s u i t of knowledge) f i g h t s t o s t a y awake, t h a t i s , t o g u e s t i o n a u t h o r i t y , t o t h i n k f o r h e r s e l f . In town she b a r e l y s l e e p s , p a r t l y because she i s a f r a i d of her dreams. Thus f o r L e s s i n g ' s and S c h r e i n e r ' s young c h a r a c t e r s s l e e p i s d e a d l y and dreams a r e t h r e a t e n i n g as w e l l as l i b e r a t i n g . L e s s i n g and S c h r e i n e r a r e more p e s s i m i s t i c about the p o s s i b i l i t i e s of the i m a g i n a t i o n than D i n e s e n , who i n Out of A f r i c a embraces her dream w h o l e h e a r t e d l y . I n L e s s i n g ' s l a t e r f i c t i o n her c h a r a c t e r s do embrace, use, and become t h e i r dreams, but Martha's g o a l i s awakening. I n t h e A f r i c a n volumes of the C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e Martha awakes t o an u n d e r s t a n d i n g of h e r s e l f and her p l a c e i n t h e w o r l d , of her h i s t o r i c a l r o l e , t h r o u g h her i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h the b l a c k 123 A f r i c a n s — w h o a r e t h e m s e l v e s r e a l i z i n g t h e i r power, awakening t o freedom.7 Martha e x p r e s s e s her i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h the b l a c k s , as w e l l as her r e b e l l i o n a g a i n s t w h i t e s e t t l e r mores, by j o i n i n g a communist group whose s t a t e d aim i s b l a c k r e v o l u t i o n . Here L e s s i n g i s q u i t e s a r c a s t i c , a t t h e expense of her own y o u t h f u l i d e a l i s m , about the e f f e c t i v e n e s s of the s m a l l a l l - w h i t e group which has no c o n t a c t w i t h t h e b l a c k s i t proposes t o l e a d i n t o a brave new p o s t - c o l o n i a l w o r l d . (As E i l e e n Manion n o t e s , L e s s i n g d e p i c t s t h e communist c e l l as e l i t i s t , h i e r a r c h i a l and a u t h o r i t a r i a n , i n f a c t as "the m i r r o r image of the c o l o n i a l a u t h o r i t i e s , " "Transcendence Through D i s o r d e r " 212.) As t h e group's p o l i t i c a l c o n t r a d i c t i o n s and i n t e r p e r s o n a l c o n f l i c t s come t o the f o r e , i n A R i p p l e from the Storm and L a n d l o c k e d , Martha's o n l y d e s i r e i s t o escape the c o l o n y from which she has become i r r e v o c a b l y a l i e n a t e d . Her i d e n t i f i c a t i o n w i t h the b l a c k s , from the s t a r t p r o b l e m a t i c , i s r e v e a l e d as s h a l l o w and n a r c i s s i s t i c , t o o tenuous t o b u i l d a new l i f e upon. I t i s n o t a b l e t h a t i n L e s s i n g , the most h i s t o r i c a l l y c o n s c i o u s and p o l i t i c i z e d of t h e t h r e e w r i t e r s c o n s i d e r e d so f a r , the b l a c k s a r e l e a s t v i v i d and most s u b o r d i n a t e t o the w h i t e h e r o i n e ' s s t o r y . I n c o n t r a s t , i n D i n e s e n , who i s the most c o n s e r v a t i v e , a h i s t o r i c a l w r i t e r o f the t h r e e , the b l a c k c h a r a c t e r s a r e much more f u l l y drawn and more i m p o r t a n t i n t h e h e r o i n e ' s s t o r y . Perhaps i t i s the case t h a t w i t h i n her m y t h i c framework Dinesen i s f r e e r t o d e s c r i b e her secondary c h a r a c t e r s v i v i d l y , whereas L e s s i n g ' s d e p i c t i o n of c h a r a c t e r i s c o n s t r a i n e d by t h e messages and p r e c o n c e p t i o n s w i t h which her f i c t i o n i s 124 w e i g h t e d . S c h r e i n e r ' s c h a r a c t e r s f a l l somewhere i n between: they are not r e p r e s e n t a t i v e h i s t o r i c a l t y p e s as L e s s i n g ' s a r e , nor a r e they f r e e of d i d a c t i c c o n t e n t as are D i n e s e n ' s . S c h r e i n e r d e l i g h t s i n making her "bad" c h a r a c t e r s c o l o r f u l and humorous, and w h i l e her b l a c k c h a r a c t e r s are o f t e n n e g a t i v e s t e r e o t y p e s , t h e y have more l i f e than L e s s i n g ' s o n e - d i m e n s i o n a l c r e a t i o n s . I t i s o n l y Nadine Gordimer who extends r e a l i s t i c c h a r a c t e r p o r t r a y a l t o A f r i c a n s , a l t h o u g h her p o i n t of view has been i n c r e a s i n g l y l i m i t e d by the l e g a l and s o c i a l b a r r i e r s of a p a r t h e i d . In Martha Quest, t h e n , L e s s i n g m a i n t a i n s the f i n e b a l a n c e between r e a l i s m and symbolism; Martha the a r c h e t y p e emerges from Martha the f unny, dreamy, s e n s i t i v e c h i l d w i t h i n t u i t i o n s of d i s s o l u t i o n and U t o p i a . Martha i n her r o l e s o f p o e t i c h i s t o r i a n and spokeswoman f o r the human r a c e i s o n l y a c r e d i b l e h e r o i n e i n s o f a r as she remains the mundane, s p e c i f i c Martha. When i n The Four-Gated C i t y Martha l o s e s her s p e c i f i c i t y t o become a mouthpiece f o r L e s s i n g ' s a p o c a l y p t i c messages, the f i c t i o n c eases t o be b e l i e v a b l e ; but i n Martha Quest at l e a s t , L e s s i n g ' s tendency t o g e n e r a l i z e i s kept i n check by the demands of the r e a l i s t i c g enre. Because Martha i s an a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l h e r o i n e , her q u e s t i s i m p l i c i t l y a r t i s t i c and l i t e r a r y ; her s t r u g g l e t o c r e a t e an i d e n t i t y , t o f i n d a b a l a n c e between freedom and commitment, i s d e p i c t e d i n terms of p e r c e p t i o n r a t h e r than a c t i v i t y . T h i s i s one f u n c t i o n of Martha's i n n e r w o r l d , her v i s i o n s on.the v e l d ; as an a d o l e s c e n t female she has i n s i g h t w i t h o u t power; she i s a 125 p a s s i v e o b s e r v e r and c r i t i c ; what she c r e a t e s i s i n t a n g i b l e . Throughout the s e r i e s she i n t e r n a l i z e s r a t h e r than a c t s , t r a n s -f o r m i n g h i s t o r y i n t o i m a g i n a t i v e e x p e r i e n c e . Martha i l l u s t r a t e s Simone de B e a u v o i r ' s t h e o r y of the young g i r l as a b e i n g who, o u t w a r d l y p a s s i v e , has a r i c h i n n e r w o r l d . In the v e r y c o n f l i c t between her f a n t a s i e s o f power and her l a c k of scope f o r a c t i o n i n the r e a l w o r l d l i e s her p o s s i b i l i t y f o r i n t e l l e c t u a l and c r e a t i v e g r o w t h — a t odds w i t h s o c i e t y . ("The F o r m a t i v e Y e a r s , " i n The Second S e x ) . L e s s i n g ' s d e p i c t i o n of Martha's q u i n t e s s e n t i a l l y female p e r c e p t i o n o f war i s b r i l l i a n t l y c o n v i n c i n g ; unable t o f i g h t or make p o l i t i c a l d e c i s i o n s , she s u f f e r s war as a n i g h t m a r e , as s c h i z o p h r e n i a , as h o s t i l i t y between l o v e r s . Martha's A f r i c a undergoes the same k i n d of i n n e r t r a n s f o r m -a t i o n i n t o symbol, i n t o c o u n t r y of t h e mind. I t i s d i s t o r t e d t o r e f l e c t L e s s i n g ' s messages, which have l e s s t o do w i t h the r e a l problems of c o l o n i a l i s m than w i t h t h e t w e n t i e t h - c e n t u r y female psyche. The b l a c k c h a r a c t e r s a r e c i p h e r s , whose main f u n c t i o n i s t o r e f l e c t Martha's f e e l i n g of entrapment and p o w e r l e s s n e s s , as w e l l as her hopes f o r freedom. The b r u t a l i t y of the c o l o n i a l system i s d e p i c t e d as a r e f l e c t i o n of a w o r l d mad w i t h war. The m a l a i s e t h a t a f f l i c t s "Zambesia," L e s s i n g ' s i m a g i n a r y Southern A f r i c a n c o l o n y , i s a r e f l e c t i o n of t h e g e n e r a l m a l a i s e a f f l i c t i n g the o l d empires of Europe. Thus the r e a l i s t i c d e p i c t i o n of female coming-of-age under c o l o n i a l i s m i s a l r e a d y i n Martha Quest s u b j u g a t e d t o L e s s i n g ' s l a r g e r p l a n . 126 To S h i k a s t a and Beyond With Martha Quest D o r i s L e s s i n g began her f i v e - v o l u m e C h i l d r e n o f V i o l e n c e s e r i e s ; w i t h S h i k a s t a (1979), t w e n t y - e i g h t y e a r s l a t e r , she began another v e r y d i f f e r e n t s e r i e s of n o v e l s . Canopus i n A r g o s : A r c h i v e s a l s o c o n s i s t s so f a r of f i v e n o v e l s : Re: C o l o n i z e d P l a n e t 5, S h i k a s t a (1979); The M a r r i a g e s Between  Zones Three, Four and F i v e (1980); The S i r i a n E x p e r i m e n t s (1980); The Making of t h e R e p r e s e n t a t i v e f o r P l a n e t 8 (1982); and Documents R e l a t i n g t o the S e n t i m e n t a l Agents i n the V o l y e n  Empire (1983). Between Martha Quest and S h i k a s t a L e s s i n g wrote s e v e r a l v e r s i o n s of Martha i n A f r i c a between the wars and i n w a r t i m e . I n The Golden Notebook (1 9 6 2 ) , w i d e l y acknowledged as her m a s t e r p i e c e , L e s s i n g r e i n t e r p r e t s t h e a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l m a t e r i a l of The C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e from the p e r s p e c t i v e o f the h e r o i n e ' s subsequent e m i g r a t i o n t o E n g l a n d , l o s s of f a i t h i n the Communist P a r t y , and r e l u c t a n t commercial s u c c e s s as an " A f r i c a n " w r i t e r . The Golden Notebook governs and c l a r i f i e s , condenses and i l l u m i n a t e s , the s t o r y which f i l l s up t h r e e c o m p a r a t i v e l y p l o d d i n g volumes of The C h i l d r e n o f V i o l e n c e . I n The Four-Gated C i t y ( 1 9 6 9 ) , the f o r m a l d i s t i n c t i o n s which so s u c c e s s f u l l y govern and c l a r i f y t h e c o n t e n t of The  Golden Notebook a r e broken down, and out of the chaos, L e s s i n g ' s c h a r a c t e r s i s s u e p r o p h e c i e s . I n t h e w o r l d she d e p i c t s i n t h i s a p o c a l y p t i c f i c t i o n , t h e r e i s no time f o r the slow w o r k i n g of p o l i t i c a l change; the o n l y hope i s a m y s t i c a l c o n v e r s i o n , t o t r a n s c e n d i n an e v o l u t i o n a r y l e a p our a l t o g e t h e r b l e a k h i s t o r i c a l c i r c u m s t a n c e s . 127 In the s y m b o l i c f a n t a s y The Memoirs of a S u r v i v o r (1975), L e s s i n g a g a i n e x p e r i m e n t s s u c c e s f u l l y w i t h the f i c t i o n a l form t h a t she had t a k e n as g i v e n i n Martha Quest and her o t h e r e a r l y n o v e l s and s t o r i e s . The n a r r a t o r of Memoirs i s a v e r s i o n o f the a g i n g Martha Quest, w h i l e her younger s e l f E m i l y i s another i n c a r n a t i o n o f the a d o l e s c e n t Martha. On the a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l l e v e l L e s s i n g works out and h e a l s the p a i n f u l r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h her mother t h a t so marks and d e b i l i t a t e s Martha Quest. ( L e s s i n g ' s use of her mother's name, E m i l y , works s i m i l a r l y t o S c h r e i n e r ' s use of her mother's name, Rebecca L y n d a l l , f o r her h e r o i n e s . ) S i g n i f i c a n t l y , E m i l y and the n a r r a t o r i n h a b i t a p o s t - W o r l d War Three London which p a r a l l e l s Martha Quest's p o s t - W o r l d War One A f r i c a and p o s t - W o r l d War Two London.8 The n a r r a t o r p asses between t h i s i m a g i n a r y p o s t - c a t a s t r o p h e London and the i n n e r or p s y c h i c w o r l d which i s r e p r e s e n t e d as a s e r i e s of rooms beyond the w a l l s of her f l a t . At t h e end she m a g i c a l l y r e i n t e g r a t e s the c h a r a c t e r s i n t o the realm o f her i m a g i n a t i o n — w h i c h i s a l s o the m y t h i c r e a l m of the sh a r e d u n c o n s c i o u s — w h e n she and her s u r r o g a t e c h i l d r e n walk t h r o u g h the w a l l i n t o the o t h e r w o r l d beyond. So, i n Memoirs, as w e l l as working through some u n r e s o l v e d p e r s o n a l m a t e r i a l , L e s s i n g f i n d s a d i s t i n c t i v e form i n which t o r e p r e s e n t t h a t c o n j u n c t i o n of the p e r s o n a l and s o c i a l , a r c h e t y p a l and h i s t o r i c a l which has been her major p r e o c c u p a t i o n . I t i s i m p o r t a n t t h a t Memoirs i s an a r t i s t p a r a b l e : whereas Martha i s an a r t i s t who does not admit she i s one, an a r t i s t who i s d e n i e d t h e chance t o c r e a t e , the unnamed 128 n a r r a t o r of Memoirs i s c l e a r l y a w r i t e r f i g u r e . Memoirs i s a n o v e l about the i n t e r c o n n e c t i o n s between the i m a g i n a t i o n and the r e a l w o r l d , as such i t i s L e s s i n g ' s most dense and s o p h i s t i c a t e d f o r m a l v e h i c l e , r e a l i z e d i n some of her b e s t w r i t i n g . 9 The next Martha f i g u r e , and the one who most resembles t h e a d o l e s c e n t h e r o i n e of Martha Quest, appears i n S h i k a s t a . L e s s i n g ' s f i r s t attempt a t what she c a l l s "space f i c t i o n " i s an i n c o n g r u o u s and s t r a i n e d m i x t u r e of documentary, a l l e g o r y , r e a l i s m and f a n t a s y whose gaps and rough edges p o i n t t o some of the c o n t r a d i c t i o n s i n her p o l i t i c a l and a e s t h e t i c i d e o l o g y s i n c e the w r i t i n g of Martha Quest and "The S m a l l P e r s o n a l V o i c e , " her l e f t - w i n g h u m a n i s t - r e a l i s t c r e d o . The e q u i l i b r i u m between the p e r s o n a l , s o c i a l and a r c h e t y p a l l e v e l s t h a t L e s s i n g s e t out as her aim i n "The S m a l l P e r s o n a l V o i c e " and l a r g e l y a c h i e v e d i n Martha Quest i s i n S h i k a s t a q u i t e unbalanced. The g r e a t e s t i d e o l o g i c a l problem i n S h i k a s t a , t o which i t s f o r m a l problems a r e t i e d , i s L e s s i n g ' s a t t i t u d e toward c o l o n i a l i s m ; the s u b j e c t of the n o v e l i s the c o l o n i z a t i o n o f the E a r t h - l i k e p l a n e t by a b e n e v o l e n t s u p e r i o r r a c e , who f a r from b e i n g r e p r e s e n t e d as i n v a d e r s or d e s t r o y e r s , as we might have ex p e c t e d from L e s s i n g ' s e a r l i e r f i c t i o n , a re d e p i c t e d as wise and even g o d l y c r e a t u r e s who attempt t o a l t e r the c o u r s e of human h i s t o r y f o r the b e t t e r . C o r r e s p o n d i n g l y t h e S h i k a s t a n s or humans are r e p r e s e n t e d as i g n o r a n t , u n r u l y savages who must be c i v i l i z e d . The m i s s i o n of the Canopean empire i s t o h e l p the more p r i m i t i v e r a c e s e v o l v e t o i t s own h i g h l e v e l , not o n l y of t e c h n o l o g y , but a l s o of e t h i c s . T h i s i s an uneasy echo of t h e 129 s l o g a n s of B r i t i s h i m p e r i a l i s m , t o which L e s s i n g s u r e l y s h o u l d be s e n s i t i v e , but which she l e a v e s unresolved.1° I n From Man t o Man O l i v e S c h r e i n e r uses th e h y p o t h e t i c a l example of c o l o n i z e r s from a n o t h e r p l a n e t i n o r d e r t o i l l u s t r a t e t h e c r u e l t y and i n j u s t i c e of t h e f o r c e d i m p o s i t i o n of t e c h n o l -o g i c a l l y advanced European c u l t u r e on a l e s s t e c h n o l o g i c a l l y advanced but as f u l l y human n a t i v e c u l t u r e . I n S h i k a s t a D o r i s L e s s i n g s u r p r i s i n g l y t a k e s the s i d e of the c o l o n i z e r s a g a i n s t the n a t i v e p e o p l e , and even more s u r p r i s i n g l y , she seems unaware of the i r o n y of her p o s i t i o n , d e s p i t e the f a c t t h a t a s u b p l o t i n her n o v e l i s t h e t r i a l of the European e x - c o l o n i a l powers by the young p e o p l e of the T h i r d World ( w i t h whom the n a r r a t o r s y m p a t h i z e s ) . How can we account f o r t h e s e c o n t r a d i c t i o n s i n the n o v e l ? E s s e n t i a l l y L e s s i n g ' s space f i c t i o n m a g n i f i e s the i d e o l o g i c a l c o n t r a d i c t i o n s t h a t e x i s t e d from th e b e g i n n i n g i n her A f r i c a n f i c t i o n o f the n i n e t e e n f i f t i e s . I n her e a r l y f i c t i o n , she c o n c e n t r a t e d on t h e dilemma of t h e w h i t e s e t t l e r a t the expense of f u l l y - r e a l i z e d b l a c k c h a r a c t e r s ; i n S h i k a s t a , t h i s p r e o c c u p a t i o n w i t h t h e c o l o n i s t s r a t h e r than th e c o l o n i z e d i s t a k e n t o i t s l o g i c a l extreme. Another e x p l a n a t i o n i s the t i p p i n g of the b a l a n c e from th e h i s t o r i c a l t o t h e a r c h e t y p a l ; t h o r o u g h l y d i s e n c h a n t e d w i t h human h i s t o r y , L e s s i n g t r i e s t o l e a p beyond i t . So L e s s i n g t h e communist and humanist has become L e s s i n g the prophet and mythmaker, and the myth she has chosen t o warn and i n s t r u c t her p u z z l e d r e a d e r s i s b oth d i s c o n c e r t i n g and t e l l i n g i n r e l a t i o n t o her e a r l i e r themes. 130 In a f u r t h e r ambiguous c o n n e c t i o n between w h i t e - s e t t l e r A f r i c a and the c o l o n y of S h i k a s t a , the n o v e l i s d e d i c a t e d t o ". . .my f a t h e r , who used t o s i t . . . o u t s i d e our house i n A f r i c a , w a t c h i n g the s t a r s . ' W e l l , * he would s a y, ' i f we blow o u r s e l v e s up, t h e r e ' s p l e n t y more where we came from!'" L e s s i n g seems t o have come around t o her f a t h e r ' s r a d i c a l c o n s e r v a t i s m and f a t a l i s t i c r e l i a n c e on t h e m y s t e r i o u s f o r c e s beyond human c o n t r o l . However, a l t h o u g h i n the space f i c t i o n she i s no l o n g e r e x p l i c i t l y c oncerned w i t h t h e j u n c t i o n of p e r s o n a l i t y , c l a s s and the h i s t o r i c a l moment upon which her f i c t i o n had been based, one of t h e , f o r us, l u c k y c o n t r a d i c t i o n s which f r a c t u r e s the scheme of the Canopus s e r i e s i s t h a t t h e r e a r e r e a l i s t i c c h a r a c t e r s and t o p i c a l a n a l y s e s which c r e a t i v e l y undermine what one can o n l y term the n o v e l s ' i m p e r i a l i s t message. Thus the " T r i a l " s e c t i o n of S h i k a s t a c o n s i s t s of t h e d e t a i l e d , h i s t o r i c a l l y p r e c i s e documentation o f European i m p e r i a l i s t e x p l o i t a t i o n i n the n i n e -t e e n t h and t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r i e s . L e s s i n g uses R h o d e s i a , i n f a c t , as a t e x t - b o o k example of the ravages of B r i t i s h r u l e . L e s s i n g ' s c o n c e r n here i s t o i l l u s t r a t e t h e r e c u r r i n g p a t t e r n s of human h i s t o r y i n the hope t h a t the c y c l e of e x p l o i t a t i o n and war can be b r o k e n . However, by s h i f t i n g her hopes f o r r e g e n e r a t i o n from the human t o t h e cosmic and m e t a p h y s i c a l a r e n a , she c r e a t e s problems which her f i c t i o n cannot r e s o l v e . L e s s i n g ' s replacement of " e v i l " c o l o n i a l i s m w i t h "good" c o l o n -i a l i s m i s n e c e s s a r i l y u n c o n v i n c i n g i n l i g h t of her e a r l i e r work. What i s i n t r i g u i n g , though, i s t h a t she r e i n t e r p r e t s r a t h e r than 131 abandons her e a r l i e r themes and m o t i f s , among which i s the theme of female coming-of-age i n an u n s t a b l e c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y . L e s s i n g r e c r e a t e s t h e young Martha Quest i n t h e c h a r a c t e r of R a c h e l , an e n d e a r i n g , a r t i c u l a t e h e r o i n e from whose p o i n t of view we w i t n e s s many of the e x t r a o r d i n a r y e v e n t s of S h i k a s t a . For a time she l i v e s i n the Arab q u a r t e r of a N o r t h A f r i c a n c i t y where she i s , l i k e Martha Quest, a member of the p r i v i l e g e d w h i t e m i n o r i t y ; t h e r e f o r e she i s a " c o l o n i s t " w i t h i n the p l a n e t a r y c o l o n y of S h i k a s t a . As do t h e o t h e r w h i t e h e r o i n e s of L e s s i n g , S c h r e i n e r and D i n e s e n , R a c h e l i d e n t i f i e s w i t h the A f r i c a n women and th r o u g h them comes t o und e r s t a n d her own p o s i t i o n as d i f f e r e n t ( w h i t e , m i d d l e - c l a s s , European) and as s i m i l a r (young and f e m a l e ) . As i n Martha Quest and the A f r i c a n s t o r i e s , and s i m i l a r l y i n I s ak D i n e s e n , t h e young g i r l ' s e x p e r i e n c e of t h e A f r i c a n o t h e r s i s rendered i n v i v i d s e n s u a l d e t a i l which r e i n f o r c e s her a t t r a c t i o n t o and sense of e x i l e from t h e i r w o r l d . R a c h e l keeps a d i a r y about her l i f e i n the N o r t h A f r i c a n slum. Thus we are a l l o w e d d i r e c t a c c e s s t o her t h o u g h t s , u n l i k e M a r t h a ' s , which are f i l t e r e d t h r ough the o f t e n s a r c a s t i c h i n d s i g h t of the o l d e r , w i s e r n a r r a t o r - a u t h o r . R a c h e l w r i t e s : F a t i m a c a l l s me i n t o the cubbyhole she s h a r e s w i t h the t h r e e o l d e r c h i l d r e n , and she t a k e s down her b e s t d r e s s from a hook i n the mud w a l l . I t i s a dark b l u e d r e s s , of a s o f t c l o t h , v e r y worn. I t s m e l l s of Fatima and of her perfume, heavy and l a n g u i s h i n g . The d r e s s has b e a u t i f u l embroidery on i t i n l o v e l y c o l o u r s . F a t i m a made t h e d r e s s and d i d the emb r o i d e r y . T h i s d r e s s i s a b i g t h i n g i n her l i f e ( 2 4 0 ) . 132 Wearing F a t i m a ' s d r e s s , R a c h e l i s d r e s s e d up as a b r i d e by her Arab n e i g h b o r s t o a c t out t h e i r f a n t a s y of p o l i t i c a l and economic power; i n the p r o c e s s she sees h e r s e l f t h rough t h e i r eyes: as both an i n s t r u m e n t of power and a sex o b j e c t . As she r e c o r d s t h e i n c i d e n t i n her d i a r y : [ Y u s u f ] p r e t e n d s I am h i s b r i d e . I t i s funny and sweet. As i f everyone i s f o r g i v i n g everyone f o r something. I say t o them, c r o s s , t h a t a l l t h i s i s s i l l y because I have no i n t e n t i o n a t a l l of g e t t i n g m a r r i e d . But I am q u i t e wrong t o say i t , because i t i s a s o r t of game. They a r e making an a l t e r n a t i v e e v e n t . A P o s s i b i l i t y . T h e i r l i v e s a r e so narrow. They have so l i t t l e . So here i s t h i s s p o i l e d w e s t e r n g i r l R a c h e l . But they l i k e her r e a l l y . But they have t o manage h e r . And a f t e r a l l , she might marry Y u s u f , who knows! S t r a n g e t h i n g s do happen! . . . A romance! But of c o u r s e t h e y don't b e l i e v e t h i s f o r a moment. And so i t i s a s o r t of a c t e d - o u t p o s s i b i l i t y , no hard f e e l i n g s . I t was a f e a s t . V e g e t a b l e stew and meat-b a l l s . They h a r d l y ever e at meat. . . . There I s a t , a l l d o l l e d up, a s a c r i f i c i a l c a l f . I t was a l o v e l y meal. I adored i t . A l l the time I was f u r i o u s . Not a t them. At the aw f u l n e s of t h i s p o v e r t y . At A l l a h . At e v e r y t h i n g (240-41). R a c h e l , the r i c h w h i t e o u t s i d e r who y e t l i v e s among the p o v e r t y - s t r i c k e n N o r t h A f r i c a n s and empathizes w i t h t h e i r s t r u g g l e t o c r e a t e moments of beauty and p o s s i b i l i t y , i s u l t i m a t e l y a l i e n a t e d , s e t a p a r t , g u i l t y . L i k e the o t h e r L e s s i n g h e r o i n e s b e g i n n i n g w i t h M a r t h a , R a c h e l passes from empathy t o anger t o impotent d e s p a i r i n the f a c e of the poor and o p p r e s s e d . But R a c h e l , s p e a k i n g i n her own v o i c e , not f i l t e r e d t h r ough an i r o n i c n a r r a t o r , p a r t i c i p a t e s i n the l i v e s of o t h e r s and even i n her own l i f e , more w h o l l y than the s e l f - c o n c e r n e d , s e l f - c r i t i c a l Martha i s a l l o w e d t o do. W h i l e L e s s i n g ' s l a r g e r statement about c o l o n i a l i s m — t h e s t o r y of S h i k a s t a and C a n o p u s — i s vague and c o n t r a d i c t o r y , t h e " s m a l l p e r s o n a l v o i c e " of R a c h e l i s c l e a r and f r e s h . 133 T h i s i s s u r e l y a c r i t i c i s m which can r e f e r t o L e s s i n g ' s e a r l i e r f i c t i o n ; her i n d i v i d u a l v o i c e s and t h e i r p a r t i c u l a r s r i n g t r u e , whereas her g e n e r a l i t i e s a re o f t e n i n danger of l o s i n g touch w i t h r e a l i t y , of l o s i n g c oherence. I t i s most n o t a b l y i n The Golden Notebook t h a t the human c o n d i t i o n , the p o s i t i o n of woman, the c l a s h of p o l i t i c a l i d e o l o g i e s i n our c e n t u r y , and the c r i s i s of the n o v e l a re s u c c e s s f u l l y subsumed w i t h i n the. s t o r y of Anna, the ex-communist woman w r i t e r from A f r i c a . One of the g r e a t s t r e n g t h s of The Golden Notebook i s i t s s t r u c t u r e of the w r i t e r ' s d i a r i e s . T h i s n o v e l , u n l i k e the C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e books, r e c o g n i z e s t h a t i t i s about w r i t i n g ; Martha Quest, on i t s s t r o n g a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l l e v e l , i s about becoming a w r i t e r , y e t L e s s i n g does not a l l o w Martha w r i t e r s h i p . As N i c o l e Ward Jouve ( t o whom I am i n d e b t e d f o r e x p l o r i n g t h i s p o i n t ) e x p l a i n s , i t i s a w r i t e r ' s a u t o b i o g r a p h y w i t h the w r i t i n g e r a s e d ("Of Mud and Other M a t t e r — T h e C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e " ) . The Golden Notebook w i t h i t s d i v i s i o n s i n t o Anna's v a r i o u s v o i c e s , R a c h e l ' s f i r s t p e r s o n j o u r n a l i n S h i k a s t a , The Memoirs  of a S u r v i v o r , t o l d i n the f i r s t - p e r s o n v o i c e of an a r t i s t / w r i t e r , and even The M a r r i a g e s between Zones T h r e e , Four and  F i v e , n a r r a t e d by a c h r o n i c l e r , w i t h i t s s u b t e x t on the theme of s t o r y - t e l l i n g , a r e a l l concerned w i t h the p r o c e s s of t h e i r t e l l i n g . They a r e w r i t e r ' s s t o r i e s , concerned w i t h language and form, which remind us t h a t much of L e s s i n g ' s f i c t i o n — t o i t s d e t r i m e n t — i s not p r o p e r l y c o g n i z a n t of i t s e l f as l i t e r a t u r e , does not b r i n g the s u b t e x t of the w r i t e r or a r t i s t c h a r a c t e r t o the s u r f a c e of the t e x t . ( L e s s i n g ' s n e g l e c t of s t y l e i s r e l a t e d 134 t o t h i s problem; she w r i t e s b e s t when she i s most c o n s c i o u s of the l i t e r a r y s u b t e x t i n her f i c t i o n . ) W h i l e S h i k a s t a i s one o f the most d i s j o i n t e d o f L e s s i n g ' s n o v e l s , she i s somewhat more s u c c e s s f u l i n subsequent volumes of the Canopus s e r i e s , i n which she f o c u s e s more c l e a r l y on a c e n t r a l female c h a r a c t e r : f o r i n s t a n c e A l ' i t h i n The M a r r i a g e s  Between Zones Three, Four and F i v e , and Ambien I I i n The S i r i a n  E x p e r i m e n t s . Both of t h e s e s p a c e - f i c t i o n n o v e l s t r e a t , among o t h e r s u b j e c t s , c o l o n i a l i s m — f r o m the p o i n t of view of a woman caught i n the m i d d l e , w i t h a l l e g i a n c e s t o both s i d e s . The age-l e s s Ambien I I , a h i g h - l e v e l c o l o n i a l b u r e a u c r a t , has more power and a u t h o r i t y than Martha Quest, but she t o o sees h e r s e l f as a pawn of h i s t o r i c a l f o r c e s , caught between her a l l i a n c e w i t h the r u l e r s and her sympathy f o r the s u b j e c t s . I n The S i r i a n  E x p e r i m e n t s as i n her A f r i c a n f i c t i o n , L e s s i n g ' s i n t e r e s t i s i n the g u i l t and r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of the c o l o n i s t r a t h e r than i n the p e r s o n a l i t i e s of the c o l o n i z e d , who, a l t h o u g h t h e y are t h e m a t i c a l l y c e n t r a l , are p o r t r a y e d as minor p l a y e r s i n the p r o t a g o n i s t ' s dilemma. In M a r r i a g e s A l ' i t h of Zone Three i s a c i v i l i z i n g agent i n the more b a r b a r i c Zone Fou r , at the same time a b s o r b i n g from t h a t Zone some of the p r i m i t i v e v i t a l i t y t h a t i s l a c k i n g i n the a t t e n u a t e d atmosphere of her own Zone. A l ' i t h ' s s t o r y conveys two messages: t h a t the c r o s s - f e r t i l i z a t i o n of c u l t u r e s l e a d s t o h e a l t h i e r s o c i e t i e s , and t h a t t h e r e i s a h i e r a r c h y of c i v i l i z a t i o n s . T h i s l a t t e r p o i n t i s c l e a r l y i l l u s t r a t e d by the numbered Zones through which the c h a r a c t e r s descend i n o r d e r 135 u l t i m a t e l y t o r i s e . M a r r i a g e s i s one of the more a c c e s s i b l e of L e s s i n g ' s space f i c t i o n n o v e l s , employing as i t does a s i m p l e m y t h i c s t r u c t u r e t h a t r e v o l v e s around a r o m a n t i c - s e x u a l a t t r a c t i o n t o one's o p p o s i t e . I t s i d e a s can be t a k e n as r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of the o t h e r f i v e n o v e l s i n the s e r i e s . I t i s t e m p t i n g t o compare the p i c t u r e of e v o l u t i o n i n M a r r i a g e s and by e x t e n s i o n the Canopus s e r i e s w i t h S c h r e i n e r ' s e v o l u t i o n a r y t h e o r i e s i n From Man t o Man. S c h r e i n e r , w h i l e c r i t i c a l of the e x c e s s e s o f c o l o n i a l i s m , defends a h i e r a r c h y of c i v i l i z a t i o n s : the Europeans s h o u l d p a t i e n t l y work t o b r i n g the A f r i c a n s up t o t h e i r l e v e l , r e c o g n i z i n g t h e i r common humanity. T h i s was an e n l i g h t e n e d i f unremarkable p o s i t i o n f o r her t i m e . L e s s i n g , who has borne w i t n e s s t o the e x t r a o r d i n a r y e x c e s s e s of " c i v i l i z e d " Europe d u r i n g t h i s c e n t u r y , s t i l l , i n her l a t e r f i c t i o n , approves of an e v o l u t i o n a r y h i e r a r c h y of s o c i e t i e s , the agent of which i s an e n l i g h t e n e d form of c o l o n i a l i s m . She has even moved backward, so t o speak, h a v i n g r e t r e a t e d t o her c u r r e n t p o s i t i o n from a more r a d i c a l M a r x i s t c r i t i q u e of European hegemony and the i n e q u i t i e s of c o l o n i a l i s m . L e s s i n g ' s i d e o l o g i c a l r e t r e a t i s p a r t i c u l a r l y s t r i k i n g i n comparison t o Nadine Gordimer's c a r e e r : Gordimer, l i v i n g i n the h e a r t of the l a s t c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y i n A f r i c a — p r i v i l e g e d , but c u t o f f from the h e a r t of e v e n t s , from the f u t u r e , by her w h i t e s k i n — h a s not o n l y borne w i t n e s s t o i n j u s t i c e , but a l s o has a d vocated and t r i e d t o r e a l i z e i n her f i c t i o n a f r e e b l a c k s t a t e from which she would p r o b a b l y be e x c l u d e d . A l t h o u g h she i s always aware of the a c t u a l and i m a g i n a t i v e l i m i t a t i o n s t h a t her 136 s k i n c o l o r and background impose, her v a l u e system has s u b t l y s h i f t e d from w h i t e t o b l a c k , European t o A f r i c a n . O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s empathy w i t h o t h e r r a c e s and c u l t u r e s went f a r t h e r than most o t h e r European t h i n k e r s and w r i t e r s o f the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h and e a r l y t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r i e s . Isak Dinesen took S c h r e i n e r ' s h e s i t a n t rapprochement a s i g n i f i c a n t s t e p f u r t h e r by welcoming A f r i c a n p e o p l e a l o n g w i t h t h e i r p e r s p e c -t i v e , v a l u e s , symbols and language i n t o her i m a g i n a t i o n . Karen B l i x e n t h e c o l o n i s t took f a r more from Kenya i n terms of c u l t u r e and c i v i l i z a t i o n than she gave, i m p o r t a n t as her p r e s e n c e seems t o have been f o r t h e A f r i c a n s who knew h e r . Her c h a r a c t e r and i m a g i n a t i o n were p r o f o u n d l y e n r i c h e d by her e x p e r i e n c e as a w h i t e s e t t l e r ; Out of A f r i c a i s a t r i b u t e t o t h e l a n d and p e o p l e which acknowledges her d e b t . D o r i s L e s s i n g pays no such t r i b u t e , acknowledges no such debt t o A f r i c a . In f a c t her r e l a t i o n s h i p t o the w h i t e - s e t t l e r A f r i c a of her y outh i s the most p r o b l e m a t i c a l of t h e group; her A f r i c a n f i c t i o n i s c h a r a c t e r i z e d by gaps, e v a s i o n s and i n c o n s i s t e n c i e s t h a t o n l y become more prominent i n her c o l o n i a l space f i c t i o n . 1 1 The Problem of " E x i l e " i n L e s s i n g ' s F i c t i o n The absence of M o s e s — L e s s i n g ' s u n w i l l i n g n e s s or i n a b i l i t y t o p o r t r a y the b l a c k c h a r a c t e r who p l a y s such a key r o l e i n her f i r s t n o v e l — c o n t i n u e s t o weaken her A f r i c a n and c o l o n i a l f i c t i o n . Rebecca O'Rourke s u g g e s t s t h a t , 137 The problems of what t o r e p r e s e n t and how, which i n c r e a s i n g l y come t o dominate L e s s i n g ' s f i c t i o n s , a r e a r g u a b l y grounded i n the problem of how, as a w h i t e s e t t l e r , t o r e p r e s e n t the r e l a t i o n o f o p p r e s s i o n : the i n t e r n a l and e x t e r n a l d i m e n s i o n s of her s i t u a t i o n as e x i l e , b o th w i t h i n and when d i s t a n t from 'her' c o u n t r y ("Doris L e s s i n g : E x i l e and E x c e p t i o n " 2 2 ) . L e s s i n g has w r i t t e n t h a t , " A l l w h i t e A f r i c a n l i t e r a t u r e i s the l i t e r a t u r e of e x i l e — n o t from Europe, but from A f r i c a " ("Desert C h i l d " ) . One can see from Martha Quest t h a t from an e a r l y age L e s s i n g f e l t e x i l e d from A f r i c a , c u t o f f from t h e r o o t s of A f r i c a n l i f e by the s i t u a t i o n o f w h i t e s e t t l e r d o m . She was unable t o overcome her a l i e n a t i o n , which c o l o r s a l l her w r i t i n g about So u t h e r n A f r i c a . Mary T u r n e r , l i k e Conrad's K u r t z , walks i n t o t h e murderous embrace of the bush. Martha's t e n t a t i v e good i n t e n t i o n s toward the A f r i c a n s a r e r i d i c u l e d by the n a r r a t o r as mi s g u i d e d and i n e f f e c t u a l , i f not p o s i t i v e l y h a r m f u l . (For example, i n A R i p p l e From the Storm the one b l a c k member of Martha's communist c e l l i s a p o l i c e spy.) One of the l e s s o n s t h a t Martha l e a r n s i s t h a t she can make no e f f e c t i v e p o l i t i c a l or p e r s o n a l c o n t a c t w i t h t h e b l a c k m a j o r i t y , i n s p i t e of her sympathy f o r t h e i r cause. In the C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e as i n The Gra s s i s S i n g i n g the b l a c k s a re f o r t h e most p a r t a m i s s i n g p r e s e n c e , a h o l e i n the t e x t which Martha f i l l s w i t h images of her own d e s i r e f o r l i b e r a t i o n . D o r i s L e s s i n g c r i t i c i s m has r e c e n t l y begun t o f o c u s more on th e h o l e s and c o n t r a d i c t i o n s i n her f i c t i o n , t h a n on i t s n a r r a t i v e , t h e m a t i c and s y m b o l i c u n i t y , as had p r e v i o u s l y been the c a s e . Jenny T a y l o r s e t s t h e tone of Notebooks/Memoirs/  A r c h i v e s : Reading and R e r e a d i n g D o r i s L e s s i n g by t h e s e remarks about t h e C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e : 138 . . . the r e s o u r c e s [ o f t h e c o n v e n t i o n s of n i n e t e e n t h - c e n t u r y r e a l i s m and the l i b e r a l - h u m a n i s t w o r l d view] cannot ' t r a n s c e n d ' t h e e x p e r i e n c e of d i s s o l u t i o n , e x i l e and d i s p l a c e m e n t which they r e p r e s e n t , d e s p i t e t h e i m p l i e d t o t a l i z i n g sweep of the n a r r a t i v e ( I n t r o d u c t i o n , 5 ) . In t h e same volume N i c o l e Ward Jouve pursues t h e problem of t h e gap between the r e a l i s t i c form of the C h i l d r e n o f V i o l e n c e , w i t h i t s p a r t i c u l a r i z e d p s y c h o l o g i c a l and s o c i a l l a n d s c a p e s , and what comes t o be i t s dominant theme of t h e i m p e r s o n a l n a t u r e of the s e l f . The t e x t "chooses t o i g n o r e t h a t i t i s i n f o r m e d by detachment r a t h e r than r o o t e d n e s s . I t c l a i m s t o be i n c l u s i v e when i t i s e x c l u s i v e . L i k e i t s h e r o i n e , i t chooses e x i l e . . ." ( 1 0 3 ) . Jouve c l a i m s t h a t , "The n o v e l s as t h e y proceed become aware of something f a l s e , a v a c u i t y , which i s the f a l s i t y of t h e i r own f i c t i o n a l mode" ( 1 3 0 ) . As t h e s e c r i t i c s d e m o n s t r a t e , the t e x t c l a i m s an i n c l u s i v e -ness and l o g i c a l p r o g r e s s i o n t h a t i t does not p o s s e s s . A l t h o u g h i t i s on one l e v e l a B i l d u n g s r o m a n the main c h a r a c t e r i s g i v e n no c h i l d h o o d ; she b e g i n s as a d i s g r u n t l e d a d o l e s c e n t and, s k i p p i n g m a t u r i t y , ages i n t o a sage. Martha cannot r e a l l y be s a i d t o grow a l o n g w i t h her y e a r s : she does not a c h i e v e any-t h i n g , nor does she l e a r n v e r y much, a l t h o u g h we a r e t o l d t h a t her mind has expanded beyond th e s h e l l t h a t i s t h e i n d i v i d u a l c a l l e d M artha. P a r t of t h e d i s j u n c t i o n i n the C h i l d r e n o f V i o l e n c e can be e x p l a i n e d by i t s p u b l i s h i n g d a t e s : 1952 t o 1969. The f i r s t two volumes, which do form a c o h e r e n t p a i r , were w r i t t e n i n L e s s i n g ' s e a r l y y e a r s i n London, w h i l e she was a Communist P a r t y member. A R i p p l e from the Storm, which i s l a r g e l y t a k e n up w i t h 139 R h odesian l e f t - w i n g p o l i t i c s , was p u b l i s h e d soon a f t e r L e s s i n g had l e f t t he P a r t y , which e x p l a i n s the c y n i c i s m and sarcasm w i t h which she d e s c r i b e s Martha's group. L a n d l o c k e d was p u b l i s h e d t h r e e y e a r s a f t e r the The Golden Notebook, which had blown open the B ildungsroman form f o r L e s s i n g . By The Four-Gated C i t y L e s s i n g had abandoned the r e a l i s t i d e o l o g y which i n f o r m e d Martha Quest and A Pr o p e r M a r r i a g e and i s b e s t r e p r e s e n t e d by "The S m a l l P e r s o n a l V o i c e . " L e s s i n g ' s i d e a of who Martha i s and what she r e p r e s e n t s changes d u r i n g the c o u r s e of the n o v e l s e r i e s ; more fund a -m e n t a l l y , L e s s i n g ' s i d e a of what a n o v e l i s seems t o have changed d u r i n g the w r i t i n g o f C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e . The l e v e l a t which t h e n o v e l s b e s t cohere i s t h e a r c h e t y p a l , m y t h i c l e v e l , which c o n s i s t s o f s e v e r a l s y m b o l i c image p a t t e r n s . Most of L e s s i n g ' s c r i t i c s have been encouraged by t h e s e m o t i f s t o read the C h i l d r e n o f V i o l e n c e as an o r g a n i c w o r k . 1 2 But whereas they s t r e s s t h e growth imagery of t r e e s and p l a n t s or t h e i d e a l c i t y on the v e l d which f i n a l l y becomes London, the imagery of rooms and houses seems t o l e a d i n a d i f f e r e n t d i r e c t i o n : toward e x i l e r a t h e r than i n t e g r a t i o n . I n c o n t r a s t t o the s c h e m a t i c , b r o a d l y o u t l i n e d c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n i n the books, i n t e r i o r s a r e h i g h l y p a r t i c u l a r i z e d and l o v i n g l y d e s c r i b e d . From the f i r s t p o w e r f u l image of Martha's c h i l d h o o d p o l e - a n d - t h a t c h house (which L e s s i n g has d e s c r i b e d i n Going Home as her own p a r e n t s ' house) u n t i l Martha t a k e s r o o t a g a i n i n t h e m u l t i - l e v e l C o l d r i d g e house i n London one senses t h a t M a r t h a / L e s s i n g i s l o o k i n g f o r a home, or t r y i n g t o get back home. C e r t a i n l y she i s always l e a v i n g home. 140 S e v e r a l of t h e c r i t i c s I have quoted p o i n t , r a t h e r v a g u e l y , t o L e s s i n g ' s " e x i l e " as the r o o t of the problems i n her f i c t i o n . I f by the p r i n c i p l e of e x i l e t h a t i n f o r m s her t e x t s we mean her eager e m i g r a t i o n t o B r i t a i n , where she has l i v e d a p p a r e n t l y c o n t e n t e d l y and i n d u b i t a b l y p r o l i f i c a l l y f o r alm o s t f o r t y y e a r s , then t h e g e o g r a p h i c a l c o n d i t i o n o f e x i l e does not i n i t s e l f e x p l a i n her work. I f by e x i l e we mean a l i e n a t i o n and m a r g i n a l i z a t i o n , mixed w i t h the o u t s i d e r ' s s k e p t i c i s m and independence of mind, p l u s the e x - b e l i e v e r ' s sense o f b e t r a y a l , t h e n we come c l o s e r t o e x p l a i n i n g L e s s i n g . Examining the ways i n which t h e c h a r a c t e r s i n her A f r i c a n f i c t i o n a r e a l i e n a t e d and m a r g i n a l i z e d , or " e x i l e d , " the most i m p o r t a n t c a t e g o r i e s a r e sex, r a c e , c o l o n i a l s t a t u s , and l e f t - w i n g p o l i t i c s . Martha i s m a r g i n a l i z e d as a f e m a l e : t h e h i g h l y d e f i n e d sex r o l e s of L e s s i n g ' s w h i t e - s e t t l e r s o c i e t y c o n f i n e her t o a p a s s i v e , f r i v o l o u s p o s i t i o n , w h i l e her i n n e r s e l f , t he p a r t of her t h a t responds t o p o e t r y and i d e a s , i s b u r i e d , w a i t i n g t o be reawakened. I t i s by her in v o l v e m e n t i n a s e c r e t p o l i t i c a l group t h a t she f i n a l l y e x t r i c a t e s h e r s e l f from r e s p e c t a b l e c o l o n i a l s o c i e t y . Yet Martha t h e r e b e l i s a l s o a m a r g i n a l f i g u r e ; her group i s regarde d w i t h s u s p i c i o n by t h e w h i t e s , i s i r r e l e v a n t t o the b l a c k s and " c o l o u r e d s " who a r e the o s t e n s i b l e o b j e c t s of i t s schemes, and f u r t h e r m o r e , i s c u t o f f from the r e a l a c t i o n o f a w o r l d a t war o u t s i d e the c o l o n y . I t i s t h e i s s u e of L e s s i n g ' s p o l i t i c s as they a f f e c t t h e theme of e x i l e i n her f i c t i o n t h a t has been l e a s t examined by her c r i t i c s , d e s p i t e her e v i d e n t p r e o c c u p a t i o n w i t h j o i n i n g and 141 e s p e c i a l l y w i t h l e a v i n g the Communist P a r t y i n the l a s t t h r e e volumes of the C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e and i n The Golden Notebook. B r i t i s h communists i n the n i n e t e e n - f i f t i e s were m a r g i n a l i z e d , d i v i d e d , and made b i t t e r w i t h b e t r a y a l by the r e v e l a t i o n s o f the S t a l i n i s t death camps, crowned by the S o v i e t i n v a s i o n of Hungary i n 1956. I t i s L e s s i n g ' s p r o f o u n d d i s i l l u s i o n m e n t w i t h l e f t -wing p o l i t i c s i n B r i t a i n , t h a t , as r e f l e c t e d i n her A f r i c a n f i c t i o n , s e t s i t s i r o n i c and o f t e n d e s p a i r i n g t o n e . Her p o s t -Golden Notebook f i c t i o n i s i n l a r g e p a r t an escape from p o l i t i c s — i n i t s s u b j e c t s (the w o r l d of n o n r a t i o n a l e x p e r i e n c e ) and i t s forms (a r e j e c t i o n o f the s o c i a l - p s y c h o l o g i c a l r e a l i s m t h a t was connected t o her communist-humanist i d e a l ) . To summarize, t h e n , L e s s i n g ' s a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l c h a r a c t e r s are a l i e n a t e d as women i n male-dominated s o c i e t y , as w h i t e s i n A f r i c a and c o l o n i a l s i n B r i t a i n , as communists i n R hodesia and ex-communists i n London. The web of " e x i l e " i n her f i c t i o n v i e s w i t h O l i v e S c h r e i n e r ' s i n i t s c o m p l e x i t y , and i n d i c a t e s some of the s t r e n g t h s — s u c h as d a r i n g and o r i g i n a l i t y — a n d w e a k n e s s e s — such as i d e o l o g i c a l and f o r m a l c o n f u s i o n — t h a t t h e i r t e x t s s h a r e . D i n e s e n , i n c o n t r a s t , i s s i m p l e r . She found i n " e x i l e " from Denmark her freedom; she found i n " e x i l e " from Kenya the w i l l t o r e c r e a t e her l o s t Eden. Nadine Gordimer has chosen y e t a n o ther r o a d , t h a t of f i g h t i n g e x i l e , of t r y i n g t o overcome i n her f i c t i o n her m a r g i n a l s t a t u s as a w h i t e i n a South A f r i c a on the v e r g e of r e v o l u t i o n . I n c o n t r a s t t o t h e d i s i l l u s i o n m e n t w i t h contemporary h i s t o r y t h a t overshadows L e s s i n g ' s f i c t i o n , G o rdimer's f i c t i o n has been c l o s e l y i n f o r m e d by the r e c e n t 142 h i s t o r y of South A f r i c a ; her work has been n o u r i s h e d by t h e p o l i t i c a l i s s u e s , r a c i a l c o n f l i c t s , t r a g e d i e s and hopes of her s o c i e t y . To pursue t h i s comparison o f the f o u r w r i t e r s i n f o r m a l t e r m s , S c h r e i n e r ' s n o v e l s eschew seamless form i n t h e i n t e r e s t s of h o n e s t y and a u t h e n t i c i t y ; t h e i r n a r r a t i v e i n c o n s i s t e n c i e s , changes of v o i c e and mode r e f l e c t t h e p r o c e s s of t h e i r c r e a t i o n . From Man t o Man i n p a r t i c u l a r r e v e a l s t h e l e n g t h y s t r u g g l e of i t s c o m p o s i t i o n : S c h r e i n e r ' s attempt t o i n c o r p o r a t e her changing i d e a s , p l u s , p e r h a p s , her f e a r o f f i n i s h i n g i t . I s a k D i n e s e n , i n c o n t r a s t , succeeds i n r e a l i z i n g t he seamless u n i t y between theme and form t h a t d i d not i n t e r e s t S c h r e i n e r . D i n e s e n , w h i l e o s t e n s i b l y w r i t i n g a u t o b i o g r a p h y , makes i t c l e a r t h a t she i s a c t u a l l y t e l l i n g a s t o r y — o f a d v e n t u r e , d a r i n g , b e a u t i e s and m a r v e l s — a n d t h e re a d e r i s not t o expect a n y t h i n g t h a t might mar the t a l e . Thus one does not f e e l c h e a t e d t h a t she has e d i t e d out c e r t a i n u n p l e a s a n t f a c t s and u n f l a t t e r i n g d e t a i l s . Even i f one knows the s u b t e x t , the " r e a l " s t o r y o f Karen B l i x e n , one i s not c o n s c i o u s o f gaps, d i s c o n t i n u i t i e s or d i s r u p t i o n s i n the " f i c t i o n a l " t e x t . What then makes D o r i s L e s s i n g a more d i f f i c u l t and p r o b l e m a t i c w r i t e r than S c h r e i n e r or D i n e s e n — o r Gordimer, who f a c e d w i t h many of L e s s i n g ' s p roblems, such as t h e l a c k of ac c e s s t o b l a c k c o n s c i o u s n e s s , d e a l s more d i r e c t l y , more t r u t h f u l l y w i t h race? I t i s p a r t l y a r e f u s a l t o be s e l f -c o n s c i o u s about language and form. When she i s so, as i n 143 The Golden Notebook and The Memoirs of a S u r v i v o r , she w r i t e s m a s t e r p i e c e s . I n The Golden Notebook Anna c o n f r o n t s her w r i t e r ' s demons, t h e i n t e r f a c e between a u t o b i o g r a p h y , h i s t o r y and f i c t i o n , her c y n i c i s m and u n b e l i e f , and her own e x i l e and detachment. C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e , i n which t h e i s s u e of w r i t i n g i s b u r i e d , i s a weaker work. What L e s s i n g has s a i d — a n d l e f t u n s a i d — a b o u t her A f r i c a n c o l o n i a l h e r o i n e s and t h e i r r e l a t i o n t o t h e i r h i s t o r y and c u l t u r e i n v i t e s comparison w i t h her c l o s e contemporary Nadine Gordimer, who d e s p i t e the b i o g r a p h i c a l p a r a l l e l s w i t h L e s s i n g , and d e s p i t e t h e s i m i l a r c o n t e n t o f t h e i r e a r l y work, has become a s t r i k i n g l y d i f f e r e n t w r i t e r . 144 D o r i s L e s s i n g Notes ^ M i c h a e l Thorpe, i n D o r i s L e s s i n g ' s A f r i c a , n otes the c o n n e c t i o n between L e s s i n g and S c h r e i n e r , w r i t i n g t h a t ". . . Martha Quest seems t o tak e up the t h r e a d where S c h r e i n e r dropped i t i n The S t o r y o f an A f r i c a n Farm . . ." ( 5 8 ) . However Thorpe does not d e v e l o p t h i s i d e a ; nor have any o t h e r c r i t i c s . The c o n n e c t i o n between L e s s i n g and Dinesen does not seem t o have been n o t i c e d a t a l l by L e s s i n g ' s c r i t i c s . 2 L e s s i n g has w r i t t e n about her p a r e n t s and c h i l d h o o d i n " A f t e r w o r d t o The S t o r y of an A f r i c a n Farm," "My F a t h e r , " and Going Home. I have t a k e n o t h e r b i o g r a p h i c a l i n f o r m a t i o n from Dorothy B r e w s t e r , D o r i s L e s s i n g and M i c h a e l Thorpe, D o r i s  L e s s i n g ' s A f r i c a . 3 i n a 1980 i n t e r v i e w L e s s i n g j u s t i f i e s her p o r t r a y a l of Moses by s a y i n g t h a t , "With t h e anonymity I t r i e d t o sum up how the w h i t e p e o p l e would see someone l i k e t h i s because they wouldn't see him v e r y much as an i n d i v i d u a l a t a l l . " But she goes on t o admit t h a t , ". . . 1 wrote The G r a s s i s S i n g i n g i n Rhod e s i a as a w h i t e p e r s o n and my c o n t a c t w i t h t h e b l a c k s as e q u a l s was j u s t n o n e x i s t e n t " ( I n t e r v i e w w i t h M i c h a e l Thorpe, K u n a p i p i 102). 4 L e s s i n g makes t h e s e comments i n Going Home (17 - 2 0 ) , n o t i n g the s o c i a l - h i s t o r i c a l p a r a l l e l s between w h i t e - s e t t l e r A f r i c a and p r e - r e v o l u t i o n a r y R u s s i a , and s u g g e s t i n g t h a t t h o s e w i s h i n g t o und e r s t a n d Rhodesian or South A f r i c a n s o c i e t y s h o u l d read Anna  K a r e n i n a . I n a r e c e n t i n t e r v i e w she r e i t e r a t e s t h e s e views ( I n t e r v i e w w i t h Eve B e r t e l s e n , J o u r n a l of Commonwealth  L i t e r a t u r e 148). 5 I have not been a b l e t o l o c a t e the s o u r c e o f t h i s q u o t e , perhaps i t i s a p a r a p h r a s e . *>Eve B e r t e l s e n d i s c u s s e s L e s s i n g ' s use o f the S l e e p i n g Beauty myth, i n which Martha i s not o n l y "the a c t i v e q u e s t e r , " but a l s o "the e n t h r a l l e d p r i n c e s s " ("Doris L e s s i n g ' s R h o d e s i a " 33-34). T h i s i s p a r t of her argument t h a t t h e r e a r e "competing d i s c o u r s e s " i n C h i l d r e n of V i o l e n c e . ^ F r e d e r i c k K a r l was one o f the f i r s t c r i t i c s t o r e c o g n i z e t h a t the b l a c k s r e p r e s e n t Martha's emerging s e l f i n her ques t f o r p e r s o n a l freedom ("Doris L e s s i n g i n the S i x t i e s : The New Anatomy of M e l a n c h o l y " 2 5 ) . 145 ^ M a r t i n Green o f f e r s an i n t r i g u i n g r e a d i n g of Memoirs as a c o l o n i a l n o v e l , s e e i n g i t as an i n v e r t e d adventure s t o r y about the end o f the B r i t i s h e m pire, an i r o n i c " l a s t r e c a p i t u l a t i o n " o f Robinson C r u s o e , (The E n g l i s h Novel i n the T w e n t i e t h C e n t u r y , 199-202). ^ P a t r i c i a M e r i v a l e w r i t e s t h a t , " D o r i s L e s s i n g has w r i t t e n an a r t i s t - p a r a b l e w i t h an a n t i p h o n a l s t r u c t u r e y i e l d i n g a s e l f - r e f l e x i v e t e x t . . . . I t i s an a l l e g o r y of the way memory and e x p e r i e n c e are summoned t o f l e s h out the c r e a t i v e concept t h r u s t upon an a u t h o r : the c h a r a c t e r s thus c r e a t e d ' l i v e 1 f o r the l e n g t h of the book, and then ' r e t u r n ' t o the t r a n s c e n d e n t a l w o r l d of the i m a g i n a t i o n " ("Neo-Modernism i n the Canadian A r t i s t P a r a b l e , " 203-4). 1 0 W i l l i a m Plomer quotes the g r e a t i m p e r i a l i s t C e c i l Rhodes as d e c l a r i n g , " I would annex the p l a n e t s i f I c o u l d " ( C e c i l  Rhodes, 165). H T h u s I cannot agree w i t h K a t h e r i n e F i s h b u r n ' s c l a i m t h a t i n S h i k a s t a L e s s i n g has " f u l l y r e a l i z e d the d i a l e c t i c a l p o s s i b i l i t i e s i n h e r e n t i n s c i e n c e f i c t i o n " (The Unexpected  U n i v e r s e of D o r i s L e s s i n g 56) . 12por example, Mary Ann S i n g l e t o n , The C i t y and the V e l d ; R o b e r t a R u b e n s t e i n , The N o v e l i s t i c V i s i o n of D o r i s L e s s i n g ; and E l l e n Cronan Rose, The Tree O u t s i d e the Window. B e t s y D r a i n e , i n Substance Under P r e s s u r e , a t t e m p t s the more complex approach of s e e i n g L e s s i n g ' s f i c t i