Write the Beloved Country


Course Description

This is a hybrid course. When you register, please select whether you would prefer to participate in the course in person at our Atwater offices or online on Zoom. 

Fiction is the lie through which we tell the truth.                                                                —Albert Camus

South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission sought to restore justice and promote peace after decades of systemic racism under Apartheid. Similarly, South African novelists have sought to contribute to the national healing process through works of fiction. How do novelists muster the creative energy to write during a time of political turmoil? What are the truths that are better captured in fiction than in nonfiction? How does literature contribute to social healing, particularly in the South African context?

In this 12-week course, we will look at three novels by non-white South African writers of the 21st century, who confront the costs of national trauma while exploring the possibilities of healing and even renewal: Zakes Mda’s Cion, Achmat Dangor’s Bitter Fruit, and Aziz Hassim’s The Lotus People. What do these writers say about remembering past injustices, about cultivating resilience and hope, and about overcoming cynicism regarding different peoples living together in harmony? We will also look at different paths taken to restore justice and peace—and the costs involved in following these paths—as described by writers such as John W. De Gruchy and Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela.

Books to Purchase (will be available at Argo Bookshop during the weeks prior to the course beginning):

    • Bitter Fruit by Achmet Danghor
    • The Lotus People by Aziz Hassim
    • Cion by Zakes Mda

This course is full; to add yourself to the waitlist, email info@thomasmore.qc.ca or call (514) 935-9585. Should vacancies develop, those on the waiting list will be contacted on a first-come, first-served basis.

Course Details

First Session: Tuesday 21 September 2021

Course Length: 12 weeks, Tuesdays, 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.

Discussion Team: Munirah Amra, Louise Jarrett, Irene Menear

Degree Credit: 3.0 credits

Course Fee: 

$150.00 (standard tuition)
$100.00 (promotion for new students)

Administration Fee:



$185.00 (standard tuition)
$135.00 (promotion for new students)

Course fees are refundable in full before the second session. After the second session, a fee of $50 for the withdrawal will be applied. Refunds will not be issued after the third session. Please note that non-attendance does not constitute a withdrawal.

Students pursuing studies for credit are encouraged to consult with their advisers as they register for courses.

Course leaders, and students wishing to use credit vouchers, should call (514) 935-9585 to pay by phone or to schedule an appointment to pay in person.

Questions? Stuck? Give us a call at (514) 935-9585
or email us at info@thomasmore.qc.ca