Exploring the Banal and Extremes of Apartheid in the Poetry of Oswald Mtshali

  • Nesther Albert Alu


This article scrutinizes the effects and consequences of South Africa’s institutionalized regime of systematic oppression and dominion by the white minority. The deliberate massacre, imposition and infliction of bodily and mental torture, as well as the infringements on the freedom of its victims, has had adverse effects on them; alongside the degradation of the blacks racially. These, among many unprintable others, have been some of the pressing charges against apartheid. Furthermore, there are blatant denials of all forms of freedom, expropriation of landed property, exploitation of labour and persecution of individuals or organizations that oppose apartheid. Consequences such as unequal access to power and resources are some of the human indignities writers in South Africa have addressed at the expense of their lives, while others faced incarcerations, book-ban and (or) exile. South African writers like Oswald Mtshali (in an insider’s account) have created pungent pictures and diminutive descriptions of the horrid world-denounced oppression-meted on the non-white population/the blacks of South Africa. The paper presents a selectfew of Mtshali’s themes stringed on a tartlet and evocative imagery which inflicts highly infectious feelings on his readers. Some of his inscriptions are seemingly borne on the beheaded-sweats and spilt-blood of the victims of one of the unfortunate accidents of history.

LWATI: A Journal of Contemporary Research, 8(3), 100-111, 2011

Author Biography

Nesther Albert Alu
Department of English,University of Jos, Nigeria

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1813-2227