Multilingual Margins: A journal of multilingualism from the periphery <h3 style="font-weight: normal !important;">Multilingual Margins aspires to deliver incisive theorizations that critically deconstruct ways of talking about language and multilingualism that emanate from the Center. It seeks to provide a forum for the emergence of alternative discourses of multilingualism rooted in close (historiographical) accounts of local language practices and ideologies of the translocal and entangled communities of the geopolitical South. To the extent that margins are productive spaces of annotation and commentary on the body or main theme of a text, an approach to multilingualism from the geopolitical margin promises also to contribute to reflection and afterthought, and to new epistemological approaches to language formulated in the Center.</h3> Centre for Multilingualism and Diversities Research, University of the Western Cape en-US Multilingual Margins: A journal of multilingualism from the periphery 2221-4216 Table of Contents Quentin Williams Copyright (c) 2023 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2183 Introduction <p>In the piece ‘Creative Non-Fiction: A Conversation’, we argued that ‘creative non-fiction has become in a sense “the genre” of South African writing, [...] writing which makes its meanings at the unstable fault line of the literary and journalistic, the maginative and the reportorial’ (2011: 57): recently, the work of Sihle Khumalo, Jacob Dlamini, Max du Preez, Rian Malan, Kevin Bloom, Denis Beckett, Shaun Johnson, Antjie Krog, Jonny Steinberg, Stephen Otter, John Carlin, Njabulo S. Ndebele, Jeff Opland, Julia Martin, Sarah Nuttall, Liz McGregor, Hedley Twidle, Duncan Brown; historically, Sol T. Plaatje, Can Themba, Nat Nakasa, Todd Matshikiza, Alan Paton, H. I. E Dhlomo, and many more. Perhaps more broadly, and recognising the important work of ‘Northern’ writers in this genre, we would argue that creative non-fiction has become a particularly significant genre of the global ‘South’, in which its imaginative engagement with ‘truth telling’ has been profoundly enabling in narrating pasts and presents characterised by injustice, inequality, division, and the need to ‘uncover’. It has also enabled writers to bring their own singular life and surroundings into an imagined narrative.</p> Duncan Brown Antjie Krog Copyright (c) 2024 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2175 Notes on Contributors <p>Duncan Brown is Professor of English in the Centre for Multilingualism and Diversities Research at the University of the Western Cape. He has published widely in the field of South African literary and cultural studies. His recent books include Wilder Lives: Humans and Our Environments (2019), and Finding My Way: Reflections on South African Literature (2020). He is Principal Investigator on the Andrew W. Mellon funded project on “Rethinking South African Literature(s)” (2019-2024), and Co-ordinator on the South African section of the University of Oslo funded project on “Global Trout: Investigating Environmental Change through More-than-Human World Systems” (2019-2024). Michael Chapman is a researcher-in-residence at the Durban University of Technology in South Africa. His creative nonfictional work Green in Black-and-White Times appeared in 2016. On Literary Attachment in South Africa: Tough Love (2022) seeks to embody in a single language of response two categories that are usually thought to be apart, criticism (conceptual) and art (creative). Andries du Toit is the director of the Institute for Poverty, Land and Agrarian Studies at the University of the Western Cape, where he has spent most of the last thirteen years answering emails and navigating the university's labyrinthine procurement and HR system. In his spare time he does research, focusing on the politics of landlessness, poverty, and inequality in South Africa.</p> Quentin Williams Copyright (c) 2024 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2177 Letting Go <p>My mom didn’t allow me to hold anything close. Not her or my dad. She bathed me in discomfort. Dried me in shame. Let me feel the uttermost of temperatures. I had to find footholds. Learn that branches break. I slipped, fell in mud. Stood up without help. Today I held her memory close without fear to let her go. My mom taught me what freedom is.</p> Diana Ferrus Copyright (c) 2023 Diana Ferrus 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2166 The Poetry of Our Lives <p>‘... the passions/of dolphins’ In the mid-1980s at the University of Natal, the student body was overwhelmingly of white, middle class and suburban upbringing. Most had attended well-performing, or reasonably performing, schools. The smattering of Indian and African faces in the lecture halls signalled the unravelling of ‘grand’ apartheid (to use an oxymoron of the time). The parents of these students had probably managed, by whatever means, to enter the peripheries of the white suburbs, or the white economy.</p> Michael Chapman Copyright (c) 2023 Michael Chapman 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2167 In Patagonia <p>There is a sentence that has stirred the imagination of Europe as powerfully as any call to arms. I’ve seen it written a hundred times, and have always felt a pang of envy for its lucky author. It is so jaunty, so unreasonably larger than life. It promises to deliver the unexpected –some fantastic reversal of fortune, some miraculous transformation in the character of the writer. It deserves a paragraph to itself, and should be printed in ceremonious italics.</p> Duncan Brown Copyright (c) 2023 Duncan Brown 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2168 The Mountain in the Sea: Place, Wilderness and History on the Sunset Side of Hoerikwaggo <p>For six years of my life, I lived in Camps Bay. That’s a bit like saying I lived in Beverley Hills, or Knightsbridge, or on The Peak in Hong Kong. Every city has a suburb that is the local byword for conspicuous consumption, for interstellar property values, for self-indulgent wealth. In Cape Town to say you live in Camps Bay is to say your other car is a Range Rover; that your Pilates instructor comes to your house every morning; that your daughter started using Botox at seventeen.</p> Andries du Toit Copyright (c) 2023 Andries du Toit 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2169 Time Piece <p>I’ve never believed in setting the alarm clock early and then snoozing it, and snoozing it, and snoozing it. I calculate to the minute the time I need to get ready at full speed and then set the alarm to the very last second before. I like to be surrounded by time: a clock in every room and one for each veranda. I like to forget time: don’t wear a watch on the weekends, put the cell phone aside. I need the calendar alerts to tell me what to do next. I hate the calendar alerts telling me what to do. I set them faithfully; I grumble at them when they buzz.</p> Anthea Garman Copyright (c) 2023 Anthea Garman 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2170 Ken jy My Hart? <p>Ek is een vanne twieling. Op ’n paa mâne val my suster op haa kop en daana begin sy fit. Epileptiese aanvalle soes die doktus ôs verduidelik et. Soe nou was sy die siek kint en ek die invisable, of soe het ek daao gevoel. As sy ’n fit gekry et moes ek by haa sit in case sy wee een kry. My ma-hulle’t dan tiê oppie stoep gedrink en gesels en ek’t yti kamevenster die kinnes en my niggies sien aeroplane-hokkie oppie pavement voorie hys sien speel, while ek my siste guard. Ek kan onhou. In primary skool. In stanerd vier. Dai jaar wassit op sy ergste. As sy oppie skool ’n toeval gekry et, dat ekkie net geworry dat sy sal dood gani, ma oek geworry ori kinnes wat ek moet regsien wat nog kans sien ve haa condition mock deur hulle gesigte te trek soes sy lyk as sy fight om asem te kry. Wanne sy fit, is haa brein oxygen deprived en kannit breindood cause. Hulle hettie dai gewietie en niemand herrit ve hulle ooit gesê nie, ma ek het gewiet. En ek’t nooit kans gekry om eers dit te onthou innie moment ie, want ek moes sieke maak sy’s op haa linke sy en haa tong probee sy nie afbyt ie. Soe ek moes focus en amal ytblock en ma die bysake virrie aftermath los. Dit was horrible en ek was daa. Deur alles, amper altyd. Ek was haa bodyguard.</p> Gaireyah Fredericks Copyright (c) 2023 Gaireyah Fredericks 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2171 Archivist <p>With trembling legs, I descended the stairs. Hoping to hide a sudden weakness I navigated by clinging to the banister for stability. But my legs betrayed me. I collapsed onto the cement stairs. Something was terribly wrong—my heart raced, and fear mingled with a sense of emptiness and confusion. At 13:05 on September 24, 2021, a creepy silence settled over Zisukhanyo High in Samora Machel township. In the days leading up to the incident, I had noticed occasional crunching sensations and a growing weakness in my knees, but couldn't pinpoint the exact cause. Was it due to my continued participation in soccer at the age of 53? I recalled a specific moment after a soccer match when my knees suddenly weakened, making it impossible for me to stand up. Was being a vegetarian contributing to this? A lack of certain nutrients? My genetics? Pulling myself up on the banister, I stumbled and leaned against the wall, then made my way down the quiet corridor toward the administration block swaying my body in an effort to propel my legs forward. Upon reaching the hall where the Grade 12 learners were engrossed in their September trial examination, I mustered a smile and clung to the edge of the nearest desk. Nomtha, a cheerful learner, giggled at my exaggerated movements, while the other learners shook their heads, assuming my Creative Arts subject had taken its toll.</p> Madoda Gcwadi Copyright (c) 2023 Madoda Gcwadi 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2172 The Voices Who Live in Us <p>My mother writes ... One morning a man who owed my husband a substantial amount of money, pitched up in a rattling, worn-out bakkie. ‘My husband is not here,’ I said. ‘No, it’s okay, Antie, I just brought the uncle a sirpraais.’ And he took some scaffolding down and a white wooden box. ‘Doesn’t she look beautiful, Antie?’ ‘Are there bees in it?’ I ask carefully. ‘Tjok and blok, my antie, tjok and blok. You see, this hive will create three, four other swarms a year and soon the uncle will have a whole bee farming business.’ ‘But bees sting!’ I interrupted. ‘Sting?’ he seemed utterly astonished. ‘These bees do not sting, Antie. These ones are not the small nasty kind of bee, it is the fat striped one. When they know you, they actually fly out of the hive towards you to welcome you...’ We both heard my husband’s bakkie coming up the road and before I could say anything, the money borrower was back in his own bakkie and revving away. My suspicion was correct, the uncle was not pleased about this goldmine dropped in his yard.</p> Antjie Krog Copyright (c) 2023 Antjie Krog 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2176 Headstall <p>My father is the healthiest I have ever seen him. He is brown again. His liver is healing. His eyes are glistening because<br>they are happy to see me not because he is too intoxicated to talk. His beard is shaven, white stubble sitting quietly on his skin. His<br>hair is shaven with a no.2 blade. He is spick ’n span. The last time he was sober he was attending my book launch with my mother (legally blind), aunt, uncle (who is blind now). My father was agitated in the bookshop and found every utterance and the fidgeting of my mother a disturbance to his church. My mother was the same. They argued like crumpled up paper. I hugged him sort of reluctantly since he always reeked of alcohol. It would sweat out of his pores. He was shaking and smoking, leaning against the bookshelf, completely out of place in his funeral best.</p> Jolyn Phillips Copyright (c) 2023 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2179 Life Goes on: Hard Bread and Lyricism on the Island of the Sponge Divers <p>On the Aegean island of Kalymnos they make hard bread. The koulouria baked each morning on Symi are rings of white dough coated with sesame seeds, crisp on the outside, soft in the middle, and stale by midday. But the distinctive bread of Kalymnos, krithini kouloura or paximadia, is a rusk made of tough barley flour fermented with anise and mastic, and slow- baked to an unrelenting hardness to last six months at sea. The people too have a reputation for being tough, divers especially. Much of the mountainous island is rock, and in the Kalymnian stories of sponge diving, there’s a special pride in qualities of extreme endurance. Since the divers had always been champions whose manhood was intimately linked to acts of daring, once the deep-sea diving suit they called the skafandro, the man-boat, became available in the mid-1860s, the modern dangers of the new diving tech were easily assimilated into an old code of heroism. Or at least this was how it seemed to the cultural anthropologist H. Russell Bernard when he studied the Kalymnian sponge fishing industry in the 1960s.</p> Julia Martin Copyright (c) 2023 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2180 Patrick <p>Patrick had to go. I decreed it. I had allowed him to move into my garage one winter but then I evicted him. Not immediately, but after his tobacco and other noxious habits had begun to unsettle my equilibrium. Also, it was becoming unsanitary for reasons I’m sure I need not explain. I granted him refuge and then I ejected him. I sent him back to the streets, towards a world of bandits with no suburban carport for safe harbour. However, when I stood outside my house, arms akimbo for courage, I said nothing of my personal discomfort. In truth I said that I was worried about the way he struck matches and smoked while lying beneath my car. I recall no resistance, only mute acceptance. He left a bag of things – aging plastic packets, a woman’s wide-brimmed straw hat now lopsided and<br>limp, food I’d given him days before. He’d return periodically to tell me he would be back the next day to remove it. Every ‘next day’ I circled his midden, noting how its contents had expanded: a shoe, a few more plastic bundles, food I’d given him the day before, an empty matchbox. Then quickly I walked away from its smell of Patrick. I was walking away from my own shame but, being the one more mute, knew not how to say it.</p> Gillian Rennie Copyright (c) 2023 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2181 Back inside cover Quentin Williams Copyright (c) 2023 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2182 Back Cover Quentin Williams Copyright (c) 2023 2024-04-30 2024-04-30 10 1 10.14426/mm.v10i1.2186