J. M. Coetzee’s Dusklands. DAVID ATTWELL. J. M. Coetzee’s first novel, Dusklands (), is an agonizing encounter bot colonialism’s violence, and with the. Complete summary of J. M. Coetzee’s Dusklands. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of Dusklands. Dusklands: J.M. Coetzee: Dusklands (), Coetzee’s first book, contains two novellas united in their exploration of colonization, The Vietnam Project (set in the.

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Two stories deal with an investigation into psychological warfare in Vietnam and an eighteenth-century conflict between Dutch settlers in southern Africa and the native Hottentots. Would you like to tell us about a lower price?

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J.M. Coetzee: Dusklands – The Mookse and the Gripes

Life and Times of Michael K: In the Heart of the Country: Waiting for the Barbarians: A Novel Penguin Ink. Customers who viewed this item also viewed. Penguin Non-Classics Language: Start reading Dusklands on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don’t have a Kindle? Try the Kindle edition and experience these great reading features: Share your thoughts with other customers. Write a customer review. Read reviews that mention vietnam project jacobus coetzee south africa narrative of jacobus heart of the country dusklands vietnamese violence narrator novels report form government hottentot human literary native text volume century.

Showing of 15 reviews. Top Reviews Most recent Top Reviews. There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later. Kindle Edition Verified Purchase. Were you perhaps under the impression that JM Coetzee was once an innocent, wonder-filled little boy, marvelling at all the unexpected delights of Mother Earth? Read this book and disabuse yourself! Like grown-up Coetzee, little Coetzee dislikes everyone, especially himself, but this is better than self-pity, I suppose.

It is perhaps no wonder that a sensitive child, unable to grow accustomed to discrimination, the destructive caprices of adults and the violence of Apartheid South Africa, should form such a grim world view.


I most appreciated the novel a portrait of a kind of vulnerability specific to sensitive and intelligent children. One person found this helpful.

This is not a bad or poorly done book, but when an author lays too much mentality and premeditation into a kid’s head I think he or she misses the point of childhood in this case boyhood by transferring the adult view into the child.

Some of the absolute worst, most pretentious, emptiest, and most ultimately worthless drivel I have ever read.

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Jorge Luis Borges, regardless of all the idolatry that’s been heaped upon him, had a surprising number of misses, and maybe nothing much to say. But I’ll grant that he had a few high spots. Very derivative and disappointing stuff I’ll go elsewhere for literary thrills.

There is no mistaking his piercing prose. There is no mistaking his piercing prose, probing questions, and an unrelenting bleakness that falls somewhere between Kafka and Cormac McCarthy.

: Dusklands (): J M Coetzee: Books

Needless to say, I was happy or at least as happy as you sanely can be to delve into a Coetzee novel to stumble upon Dusklands, his first work from The first thing prospective readers should know about Dusklands is that it is not a novel proper, but rather, a pair of thematically linked novellas.

The second thing that readers should know is that Coetzee’s preoccupation with imperialism remains in full force in these inaugural works. Point being, I have yet to devour a book by Coetzee that qualifies as a comfy beach read. The first novella, “The Vietnam Project”, shows us coetzfe glimpse inside the mind of a mythography researcher for the U. From his opening line, the speaker is easily pinned as an unreliable narrator: I cannot help that.

In an odyssey echoing that of Poprishchin in Gogol’s “Diary of a Madman”, we come along for the ride leading up to Dawn’s confinement in a psychiatric facility. While Dawn is less absurdly psychotic than Duskladns, it is his position in society as a military research drone that makes his gradually unveiled insanity comparably unsettling. Besides an eventual act of violence and his all-but-admitted misogyny, the most off-putting of Dawn’s actions in the story is his refusal to visit Vietnam and actually see that country that he is giving his government tactical recommendations to more effectively destroy.


This inaction makes Dawn into a pinpointed exemplar of a dangerous brand of white, first-world ignorance and arrogance.

Both novellas in Dusklands undoubtedly form a concise attack on imperialism, but Coetzee makes it blatantly clear that he is not atop a high horse able to wade through the bog of history unscathed. In fact, characters in both novellas are named Coetzee. In “The Vietnam Project” there is a Coetzee who supervises and criticizes Dawn’s reports, but in the second novella it is clear from title alone – “The Narrative of Jacobus Coetzee” – that Coetzee the author is unafraid to take his historical complicity one step further.

Jacobus Coetzee consumes the same brand of white, first-world arrogance as Eugene Dawn, but unlike Dawn, Coetzee’s story takes place in s South Africa.

Even in the thick of a Hottentot bloodbath, Jacobus Coetzee remains faithful to his Western delusion of native other-ness in the name of imperialist avarice.

See all 15 reviews. What other items do customers buy after viewing this item? A Novel Penguin Ink Paperback. Scenes from Provincial Life: Boyhood, Youth, Summertime Paperback.

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