Beethoven Was One-Sixteenth Black: And Other Stories (Google eBook)

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Macmillan, Nov 27, 2007 - Fiction - 192 pages
16 Reviews
"You’re not responsible for your ancestry, are you . . . But if that’s so, why have marched under banned slogans, got yourself beaten up by the police, arrested a couple of times; plastered walls with subversive posters . . . The past is valid only in relation to whether the present recognizes it."

In this collection of new stories Nadine Gordimer crosses the frontiers of politics, memory, sexuality, and love with the fearless insight that is the hallmark of her writing. In the title story a middle-aged academic who had been an anti-apartheid activist embarks on an unadmitted pursuit of the possibilities for his own racial identity in his great-grandfather’s fortune-hunting interlude of living rough on diamond diggings in South Africa, his young wife far away in London. “Dreaming of the Dead” conjures up a lunch in a New York Chinese restaurant where Susan Sontag and Edward Said return in surprising new avatars as guests in the dream of a loving friend. The historian in “History” is a parrot who confronts people with the scandalizing voice reproduction of quarrels and clandestine love-talk on which it has eavesdropped.“Alternative Endings” considers the way writers make arbitrary choices in how to end stories—and offers three, each relating the same situation, but with a different resolution, arrived at by the three senses: sight, sound, and smell.
  

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Review: Beethoven Was One-Sixteenth Black: And Other Stories

User Review  - Michael Ryan - Goodreads

Published in 2007 when Nadine Gordimer was 83 years of age, and still brilliant. These short stories are, in my opinion, even better than some of her earlier anthologies. Kinda thoughtful and ... Read full review

Review: Beethoven Was One-Sixteenth Black: And Other Stories

User Review  - Greg Brozeit - Goodreads

An interesting, small collection of short stories assembled around the general themes of loss, mortality and acceptance. The stories include: a South African university professor contemplating his ... Read full review

Contents

Tape Measure
17
Dreaming of the Dead
25
A Frivolous Woman
43
Gregor
55
Safety Procedures
63
Mother Tongue
73
Allesverloren
85
History
103
A Beneficiary
113
Alternative Endings
137
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Nadine Gordimer, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1991, is the author of fourteen novels, nine volumes of stories, and three nonfiction collections. She lives in Johannesburg, South Africa.

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