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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box5/Fold1/1912/35
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date29 July 1912
Address FromDe Aar, Northern Cape
Address ToChambers, St Georges Street, Cape Town, Western Cape
Who ToWilliam Philip ('Will') Schreiner
Other Versions
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
The Project is grateful to Manuscripts and Archives, University of Cape Town, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Manuscripts and Archives Collections. The address this letter was sent to is provided by an attached envelope.
1 De Aar
2 July 29th 1912
4 Dear old Man
6 Thank you very much for the pictures. I like the one doubly where you
7& I show because I am holding your arm. I’m so glad you have got
8away for a little time to Mossel River; I hope your stay will be
9longer than one week. You must need rest.
11 I think it is many years since I boiled over with rage at any thing as
12at Rubusana’s daring to tell white women their place was the home,
13& voting against our being allowed to join the Provincial Council. My
14mouth is in future forever shut when I am arguing with the women who
15state that because the Kaffir is black has wool instead of hair, is
16much unlike us in other physical matters & has ages of savagery behind
17unreadable him, where we have civilization his place is the Kraal &
18the field of manual labour. If the mere difference of her sexual
19function & size makes her unfit for being the equal of the white man,
20what of the native, one step removed from savagery! If the place of a
21woman is in the heavy physical drudgery of domestic labour – which
22"the home" means to all but the handful of wealthy women with over
23£400 a year which means they can employ other women to work for them,
24then as as Cresswell would say "the place for the Kaffir is his Kraal".
25 But enough.
27 Alles ten besten. Dear, you don’t know how much I love you & feel the
28world is not empty for me while you are in it. Villa Flandre & its
29folk & the dear ones in England fill a bigger place in my thought than
30you can understand. I was very surprised to hear Ursie was going to
31take up medicine: Alice Corthorn’s letter to me a month ago said she
34 ^certainly going to take up nursing. I am so anxious to hear her plans.
35Except two picture post cards I have not heard from her since I was in
36town at Xmas time.^
'Personal' is written on the envelope attached to this letter.