Disgrace by J. M. Coetzee Essay

1848 Words 8 Pages
Report on the Novel: DISGRACE by J. M. Coetzee

For a man of his age, fifty-two, divorced, he has, to his mind, solved the problem of sex rather well. On Thursday afternoons he drives to Green Point. Punctually at two pm. He presses the buzzer at the entrance to Windsor Mansions, speaks his name, and enters. Waiting for him at the door of No. 113 is Soraya. This weekly rendezvous with a prostitute is the closet thing to a personal and intimate relationship Professor David Lurie has.

J. M. Coetzee' novel, "Disgrace," takes place in post-apartheid South Africa. The times swing chaotically in the great upheaval as South Africa's political power arm swings from a white ruling minority, to black majority rule. The power shift is
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He has even failed to establish any closeness with his own daughter, Lucy.

At the beginning of the book, it becomes clear the way Lurie has lived his life has isolated him. He attempts to develop a deeper personal relationship with his standing Thursday appointment, the prostitute, known only to him by her alias, Soraya. This unwanted attention, compiled with his later action to stalk and invade her personal life, brought an to the relationship.

Thus, Lurie now finds himself adrift – and seduces his secretary, but did not continue with her, being, he found sex her displeasing. Bored and again cast adrift with no available sexual outlet, Lurie seduces one of his young students, Melanie. She is twenty years old, inexperienced and easily manipulated. After several encounters, Melanie tried to hide from Lurie, and even quit coming to his class. Lurie became obsessed with the taking of Melanie's body. In Melanie's school records Lurie learns where she lives and he stalks her – watching her through her apartment window. Then Lurie acts: “At four-o”clock the next afternoon he is at her flat. She opens the door . . . “No, not now! She says, struggling, . . . nothing will stop him. He carries her to the bedroom, . . . She does not resist. All she does is avert herself: avert her lips, avert her eyes, . . . .” Lurie avoids thinking this is rape, rather he thinks, “ . . . Not rape, not quite that, but

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