TheJakartaPost

Please Update your browser

Your browser is out of date, and may not be compatible with our website. A list of the most popular web browsers can be found below.
Just click on the icons to get to the download page.

Jakarta Post

Rewriting the white man's burden

  • Sara Veal

    Contributor

Jakarta   /   Sun, August 16 2009   /  12:22 pm

JP/Arief SuhardimanPatrick Neate describes his latest novel, which concludes the loose trilogy that began with Musungu Jim and the Great Chief Tuloko and Twelve Bar Blues, as "a far-flung tale of three generations of a family rooted in the English establishment" as well as "a broad satire of colonialism, postcolonialism and neocolonialism". While those who have read the prequels will enjoy the return of familiar characters, Jerusalem stands on its own feet, offering timely insights into issues such as international economic crisis, corrupt elections, asylum-seekers and AIDS, with a wry execution that prevents it from collapsing under the weight of its ideas. Jerusalem opens with a 1900 diary entry by a "local *English* gentleman", reflecting on his traumatic Boer war experience and colonial disillusionment, fearing that "in this place we have become less than human, less even ...