Race and Fiction: God’s Stepchildren and Turbott Wolfe

  • David Rabkin


In God’s Stepchildren, published in 1924, Sarah Gertrude Millin wrote of the British attitude to the ‘colour problem’:

… colour was so rare a thing [there] that it was only a matter of casual consequence: the ordinary person did not think of it, or brood over it, or consider it, or understand it.1


Colour Problem South AFRICAN Ordinary Person South African Society British Attitude 
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  1. 1.
    Sarah Gertrude Millin, God’s Stepchildren (London, 1924) p. 263, in the undated Central News Agency (Johannesburg) edition with a Preface (dated 1 January 1951) by the author. All references are to this edition.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    William Plomer, Turbott Wolfe (1926; 2nd edition, 1965) p. 68; all references in this article are to the 1965 edition.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    J. P. L. Snyman, The South African Novel in English 1880–1930 (U. of Potchefstroom, Potchefstroom S.A. 1952).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Michael Wade, ‘William Plomer, English Liberalism, and the South African Novel’, The Journal of Commonwealth Literature, VIII, 1, p. 22.Google Scholar
  5. 7.
    V. Klima, South African Prose Writing in English (Prague, 1971) p. 73.Google Scholar
  6. 8.
    William Plomer, Double Lives (London: Jonathan Cape, 1943) p. 9.Google Scholar
  7. 9.
    Laurens van der Post, ‘Introduction’, Turbott Wolfe, 1965 edition, pp. 32–3.Google Scholar
  8. 10.
    Cosmo Pieterse, ‘Conflict in the Germ’, Protest and Conflict in African Literature, ed. C. Pieterse and D. Munro (London, 1969) pp. 1–26.Google Scholar
  9. 18.
    Nadine Gordimer, ‘The Novel and the Nation in South Africa’, African Writers on African Writing, ed. G. D. Killam (London, 1973) p. 39.Google Scholar

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© David Rabkin 1978

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  • David Rabkin

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