The Train from Rhodesia Essay

1311 WordsMay 10, 20136 Pages
The Train from Rhodesia The short story “The Train from Rhodesia” by Nadine Gordimer is a story compiled of many different themes through the use of a vast variety of symbolism and imagery. The precision and reminiscent nature of Gordimer’s literary genre has led to her affiliation with a discern brand of social and psychological pragmatism, while the ironic and critical tone of her prose has colored her passionate indictment of the apartheid state. Though not an explicitly political story, “The Train from Rhodesia” renders the prejudicial noesis that induced apartheid and strengthened it once racial segregation became law. By presenting characters of both races that are demeaned by their belief in racial disparity, the author exhibits how both black and white South Africans are hurt by apartheid. Nadine Gordimer uses her short story “The Train from Rhodesia” to reflect upon the harmful and useless affects of apartheid. She believed that only truth can help a good cause. The events in the story revolve around this idea of apartheid and how it creates conflicts within the whites themselves. The story is pertained to the negative effects of apartheid even in the lives of the white - as they deteriorate in their moral values towards human kind - due to a sense of superiority and dominance over the blacks. Kathlein Wilson in the Short Stories for Students describes that through her story “The Train from Rhodesia”, Gordimer “reveals the patronizing attitude of whites toward blacks and blacks’ virtual enslavement and dependency on the whites” (295). As the story progresses the conflict between the woman and her husband starts to build up over her husband’s inability to pay the full price to the poor craftsman, she felt like “everything was turning around inside her” (Gordimer, 912). This is described by Wilson when she says that the woman “is dismayed at this

More about The Train from Rhodesia Essay

Open Document