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"This review essay examines the prevalent critical tendency to assign teleological labels to JM Coetzee's work, arguing that any attempt to categorise the notoriously publicity-shy Coetzee as a "public intellectual" should take into account the fact that Coetzee has always had to defend his own heterodox literary faith against more powerful orthodoxies. The article traces Coetzee's abiding preoccupation with literary form by examining the inbuilt hermeneutic reflex in his fiction and the often ambiguous public response in South Africa to his work. This formal preoccupation is evident not only in Coetzee's novels, which seem to describe a movement from metafiction to a greater degree of realism, but also in his critical opinions on other authors, which in turn throw light on Coetzee's own writerly aesthetic." (60)

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  • Appears in:
    y Scrutiny 2 vol. 13 no. 1 May 2008 Z1527630 2008 periodical issue 2008 pg. 60-67
Last amended 9 Sep 2008
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