The Question Of Women’s Language In J.M. Coetzee’s In The Heart Of The Country


  • Dr. Seema Madhok


Coetzee’s women narrators have drawn considerable feminist interest as each of them is concerned with finding a “woman’s voice” to situate against patriarchal authority. Nevertheless, interpreting these readings becomes intricate because of their complicity with the established authority and the language structures they employ for expression. This double bind weaved in their speaking position is to be found in all his narrators where their consciousness of the possibility of bad faith enables them to interrogate structures of power, language, authority and authorship. This article aims at studying one of these narrators, Magda in In the Heart of the Country to analyse how her ambivalent position of being both the colonizer and the colonized has an impact on her writing. All Magda’s attempts to reconcile with the land and her lot are thwarted by an extreme degree of alienation in language. Her words have been depicted as unstable, unauthorized and outside literary canon in the novel, which renders her susceptible to self-consciousness of her writing and to write self-reflexively. This self-reflectivity, while highlighting the gaps and silences in the text, puts under suspicion the act of writing itself.


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How to Cite

Madhok, D. S. . (2024). The Question Of Women’s Language In J.M. Coetzee’s In The Heart Of The Country. Migration Letters, 21(S7), 1971–1978. Retrieved from