International Journal of
English and Literature

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. English Lit.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2626
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJEL
  • Start Year: 2010
  • Published Articles: 278


No country for old men: Finding a place to be in New South Africa

Duncan Emmanuel Godfred Kobina Essel
  • Duncan Emmanuel Godfred Kobina Essel
  • Department of Languages, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Methodist College of Education, Ghana.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 18 September 2021
  •  Accepted: 16 March 2022
  •  Published: 31 March 2022


This paper examines the interconnectedness of masculinity and setting in African fiction by a close reading of Coetzee’s Disgrace. The negative effects of subscribing to a single masculinity have been discussed in scholarly works since masculinity studies were given mainstream attention over two decades ago. However, the importance of setting to the formation of and subscription to masculine archetypes has not been carried over from men’s studies (the sociological antecedent of literary masculinity studies) to masculinity studies. The author argues for the importance of setting to masculine identification by showing the ways the performance of masculinity changes based on differences in place and time. Specifically, this work analyzes the traumatic effects of the abrupt change of masculine performance on men due to the change of setting. 


Key words: Africa, masculinity, setting, performance, trauma.