Nadine Gordimer

Gordimer, Nadine (nādēnˈ gôrˈdəmər) [key], 1923–, South African writer, b. Springs. A member of the African National Congress, Gordimer fought apartheid in her political life and in her writings, which often combine the political and personal. She is often militantly critical of South African life in her fiction, and tendered little moral hope for whites who lived under apartheid. In 1991 she won the Nobel Prize in Literature.

Gordimer published her first short story at age 15 and later many of her stories appeared in the New Yorker magazine. Her stories show a fine sensitivity to the complexities of human relationships. Her collections include Selected Stories (1975), A Soldier's Embrace (1980), Jump and Other Stories (1991), Why Haven't You Written? Selected Stories 1950–1972 (1993), Loot and Other Stories (2003), Beethoven Was One-Sixteenth Black and Other Stories (2007), and Life Times: Stories, 1952–2007 (2010). Her novels include The Late Bourgeois World (1966), A Guest of Honor (1970), The Conservationist (1974, Booker Prize), Burger's Daughter (1979), July's People (1981), A Sport of Nature (1987), My Son's Story (1990), Get a Life (2005), and No Time like the Present (2012). Gordimer also has written many essays, often political or literary; they are collected in The Essential Gesture (1988), Writing and Being (1995), Living in Hope and History (1999), Telling Times: Writing and Living, 1954–2008 (2010), and other books.

See N. T. Bazin and M. D. Seymour, ed., Conversations with Nadine Gordimer (1990); biography by R. S. Roberts (2005); studies by J. Cooke (1985), S. Clingman (1986), R. Smith, ed. (1990), K. Kreimeier (1991), B. King, ed. (1993), D. Head (1995), K. Wagner (1994), J. Uraizee (1999), B. Temple-Thurston (1999), and B. J. Uledi Kamanga (2002); D. Goldblatt, ed. A Writing Life: Celebrating Nadine Gordimer (1998).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: South African Literature: Biographies

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