This article undertakes an analysis of the narrative temporalities and of the
narratives of temporality, specifically those of apocalypse or end-times and of
living-on respectively, to be found in two recent South African novels, Eben
Venter’s Trencherman (2008) and David Medalie’s The Shadow Follows
(2006). Against Venter’s hyperbolic narrative of catastrophe, which also turns
out to be a critique of the residual elements of the erstwhile apartheid era,
I posit that Medalie’s litotic and patchwork narrative offers a more appropriate
narrative of the slow transformation of the post-apartheid South African polity.
I use Venter’s and Medalie’s oddly complementary novels as a template for
exploring an emergent sense of a non-teleological ‘minor narrative’ of
liberation in a time ‘after postcoloniality’.