ISBN : 9780198746331
J.M. Coetzee is one of the world's most intriguing authors. Compelling, razor-sharp, erudite: the adjectives pile up but the heart of the fiction remains elusive. Now, in J.M. Coetzee and the Life of Writing, David Attwell explores the extraordinary creative processes behind Coetzee's novels from Dusklands to The Childhood of Jesus. Using Coetzee's manuscripts, notebooks, and research papers-recently deposited at the Harry Ransom Center of the University of Texas at Austin-Attwell produces a fascinating story. He shows convincingly that Coetzee's work is strongly autobiographical, the memoirs being continuous with the fictions, and that his writing proceeds with never-ending self-reflection. Having worked closely with him on Doubling the Point: Essays and Interviews and given early access to Coetzee's archive, David Attwell is an engaging, authoritative source. J. M. Coetzee and the Life of Writing is a fresh, fascinating take on one of the most important and opaque literary figures of our time. This moving account will change the way Coetzee is read, by teachers, critics, and general readers.
Preface. The Coetzee Papers
1. An alphabet of trees. Autobiography. The uses of impersonality.
2. Recusant Afrikaners. Identity drift
3. 1 January 1970. The beginning. Dusklands
4. Karoo. The beloved landscape. Life & Times of Michael K, In the Heart of the Country
5. The Burning of the Books. Censorship in the life of writing
6. Writing revolution. Waiting for the Barbarians
7. Suburban bandit. Michael K as outlaw
8. Crusoe, Defoe, Friday. Foe
9. Mother. Age of Iron
10. Father. Summertime
11. The Shot Tower. The Master of Petersburg
12. Migrations. Irreconcilable lives. Elizabeth Costello, Disgrace
13. The third stage. Australia. Slow Man, Diary of a Bad Year, The Childhood of Jesus