Gardazragore Through writing tools such as sarcasm and repetition, the writer brings our attention to the absurd variations of the explanations that the police gave. Indeed, it is hard to see what questions could be asked in the exams. It was therefore a most painful way of suicide and so, once again, would only have happened very occasionally, not as often as the pronounced excuses made it seem. The poet has in fact taken a series of statements from the prison authorities themselves announcing the deaths. He was also an editor at Ravan Press.
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He told his parents he was going to be a writer when he was five! One of six children, he was brought up in a happy home in the working-class suburb of Riverlea near Johannesburg. He says his favourite pastime is to skinder gossip. His latest book is his own story of growing up in a coloured township in the s.
He says he interviewed many people while writing the book, and got to hear all their gossip. He says that humour is a weapon in life and that he used it against Apartheid. He is married to Kathy, his childhood sweetheart, and they have chosen to bring up their two sons in Riverlea.
About the poem During Apartheid, police were allowed to arrest people and put them into prison without a trial. Many people died in detention. The police gave various reason for their deaths. Some reasons were completely ridiculous. It was obvious that the police had killed them. In the first three lines the poet uses three excuses the police gave for these deaths.
Then he mixes them up so that they sound more and more ridiculous. He is making the point that the reasons given were made-up nonsense. Understand the poem Look at the first three lines. Each line contains one reason for someone dying. Explain what each reason probably really means. In which line does the poet start mixing up the reasons?
Explore poetic devices It is unusual for each line in a poem to start with the same word, and use the same sentence structure. Why do you think Van Wyk uses this kind of repetition? Which word best describes the tone of the poem: bitter, mocking, humorous?
Give a reason for your answer. Do you think this poem is effective — that is, does it achieve its aim? Give reasons for your answer.
Christopher van Wyk
He fell from the ninth floor He hanged himself He slipped on a piece of soap while washing He hanged himself He slipped on a piece of soap while washing He fell from the ninth floor He hanged himself while washing He slipped from the ninth floor He hung from the ninth floor He slipped on the ninth floor while washing He fell from a piece of soap while slipping He hung from the ninth floor He washed from the ninth floor while slipping He hung from a piece of soap while washing. The main idea and purpose of the poem is to state or show the reasons and excuses that were given by the Apartheid police for killing people in prison. The tone of the poem is sarcastic however works out to be very effective. Through writing tools such as sarcasm and repetition, the writer brings our attention to the absurd variations of the explanations that the police gave. The variations of the explanations are rather absurd and quite frankly make no sense, showing that the police, in some sense abused their authority and were disrespectful enough to give such reasons and think the public would believe them.
IN DETENTION BY CHRIS VAN WYK PDF
Dukasa The tone of the poem is sarcastic however works out to be very effective. As the poem progresses, the explanations become more and more strange and queer, creating more of an effect of twisted facts. What is the overall TONE of this short poem? During the apartheid era, laws were passed which allowed the security police to detain people indefinitely without having to give any reason. In Detention — Chris Van Wyk. Many people were tortured, some committed suicide, and some like Steve Biko died at the hands of their interrogators those who were questioning them.
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