A Question of Power Setting

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South Africa

In this novel, South Africa is represented as the place of Elizabeth’s early life and traumas. On the occasions that Elizabeth thinks about South Africa, she remembers it as a grim, depressing place and “back-breaking life” (19) for Africans—as she, the product of a white woman and black man, would legally have been classified. Elizabeth describes the experience of living in South Africa “like living with permanent nervous tension, because you did not know why the white people…hate you or loathe you” (19). The traumas of living under such a contradictory and hypocritical system as apartheid are apparent in Elizabeth’s own mixed background and her mother’s madness—the product of being shamed for having sex with a black man and for being separated from her daughter.

Botswana

Botswana, which is located to the north of South Africa, provides Elizabeth with a place of emotional...

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This section contains 524 words
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Buy the A Question of Power Study Guide
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