Portraits of South African Women in Lauren Beukes’ Writings

Luiza Caraivan 1
  • 1 “Tibiscus” University, Timișoara 6, Lascăr Catargiu, Timișoara, Romania


The aim of this paper is to study some of Lauren Beukes’ feminine characters and to draw a parallel between them and some famous South African personalities presented in her non-fiction work Maverick: Extraordinary Women from South Africa’s Past. To this end, I will analyse three of her novels, Moxyland (2008), Zoo City (2010) and The Shining Girls (2012), in order to draw attention to the part played by South African women in Apartheid and post-Apartheid society.

If the inline PDF is not rendering correctly, you can download the PDF file here.

  • Andrews, Neena. 2013. “Lauren Beukes Opens Up” in The Oprah Magazine South Africa. [Online]. Available: http://www.oprahmag.co.za/books/news-interviews/laurenbeukes-opens-up [Accessed 2016, October 21].

  • Betancourt, David. 2015. “Wonder Woman” in The Washington Post. [Online]. Available: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/comic-riffs/wp/2015/04/13/wonderwoman-south-african-writer-wants-to-help-empower-young-girls-of-color/ [Accessed 2016, October 14].

  • Beukes, Lauren. 2008. Moxyland. Oxford: Angry Robot.

  • Beukes, Lauren. 2010. Zoo City. Oxford: Angry Robot.

  • Beukes, Lauren. 2013. The Shining Girls. New York: Mulholland Books.

  • Beukes, Lauren. 2015. “Shining Girls”. Interview in Locus Magazine. Issue 648, vol.74(1):6-7.

  • Brodie, Nechama. 2013. About Me. [Online]. Available: https://nechamabrodie.com/about/ [Accessed 2016, October 20].

  • Cloete, Elsie.2012. Johannesburg Noir: Lauren Beukes’ Zoo City and its Evil Woman. [Online]. Available: http://www.inter-disciplinary.net/at-the-interface/wpcontent/uploads/2012/04/cloeteewpaper.pdf [Accessed 2016, October 14].

  • Geschiere, Peter. 1997. The Modernity of Witchcraft: Politics and the Occult in Postcolonial Africa. Charlottesville and London: University of Virginia Press.

  • Gordimer, Nadine. 1984. The Essential Gesture: Writers and Responsibility. [Online]. Available: http://tannerlectures.utah.edu/_documents/a-to-z/g/gordimer85.pdf [Accessed 2016, October 14].

  • Green, Shaun. 2014. “Lauren Beukes’ Moxyland and Fear of the Future”. [Online]. Available: http://www.nostalgiaforinfinity.com/2014/02/lauren-beukes-moxyland/[Accessed 2016, October 16].

  • Neuhaus, Susan and Sharon Mascall -Dare. 2014. Not for Glory: A Century of Service by Medical Women to the Australian Army and its Allies. Brisbane: Boolarong Press.

  • Rathebe, Dolly. 2011. Biography in South African History Online. [Online]. Available: http://www.sahistory.org.za/people/dolly-rathebe [Accessed 2016, October 14].

  • Samuelson, Meg. 2005. Remembering the Nation, Dismembering Women? Stories of the South African Transition. PhD. thesis. University of Cape Town. [Online]. Available: https://open.uct.ac.za/bitstream/item/21569/thesis_hum_2005_samuelson_m_a.pdfsequence=1 [Accessed 2016, October 14].


Journal + Issues