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MUSICAL PARADIGMS OF SOCIAL HORROR IN THE APARTHEID POETRY OF DENNIS BRUTUS

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Abstract:

The poetry of Dennis Brutus the anti-Apartheid South African freedom fighter is often an intricate combination of content and form, with its sometimes overt, sometimes covert but pervasive structure of bipartition involving multiple units of paired (often volatile and conflicting) opposites. This paper shall largely explore how skilfully he casts that theme of horror against the contrasting backdrop of music, by which he further stresses the dimensions of the horrific conflicts between victims and victimizers. It is the persuasion of this paper that the binary vision of Dennis Brutus is the tacit censorious expression of his creative perspective on the social conflicts in Apartheid South Africa; unspeakable conflicts for whose imperative expression even the devices of music become a (sometimes camouflaging, sometimes accentuating) technical paradigm.

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