The Moment Before the Gun Went Off (Activities Included)

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Worksheet 3 Nadine Gordimer Biography Gordimer was born near Springs, Gauteng, an East Rand mining town outside Johannesburg, the daughter of Jewish immigrants. Her father, Isidore Gordimer, was a watchmaker from Lithuania near the Latvian border, and her mother Nan was from London. Gordimer's early interest in racial and economic inequality in South Africa was shaped in part by her parents. Her father's experience as a Jewish refugee in czarist Russia helped form Gordimer's political identity, but he was neither an activist nor particularly sympathetic toward the experiences of black people under apartheid. Conversely, Gordimer saw activism by her mother, whose concern about the poverty and discrimination faced by black people in…show more content…
People in the farming community understand how he must feel. Bad enough to have killed a man, without helping the Party's, the government's, the country's enemies, as well. They see the truth of that. They know, reading the Sunday papers, that when Van der Vyver is quoted saying he is 'terribly shocked', he will 'look after the wife and children', none of those Americans and English, and none of those people at home who want to destroy the white man's power will believe him. And how they will sneer when he even says of the farm boy (according to one paper, if you can trust any of those reporters), 'He was my friend. I always took him hunting with me: Those city and overseas people don't know it's true: farmers usually have one particular black boy they like to take along with them in the lands: you could call it a kind of friend, yes, friends are not only your own white people, like yourself, you take into your house, pray with in church and work with on the Party committee. But how can those others know that? They don't want to know it. They think all blacks are like the big-mouth agitators in town. And Van der Vyver's face, in the photographs, strangely

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