"Heart dying up last 5 or 6 years, 'Soul of a People' like rain falling on dry parched soil" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box11/Fold2/Undated/4
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date1901
Address FromHanover, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToBetty Molteno
Other Versions
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
Legend
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 year has been written on this letter in an unknown hand. Schreiner was resident in Hanover from September 1900 to October 1907, after 1902 with visits, sometimes fairly lengthy, elsewhere. The name of the addressee is indicated by content. The first page of the letter is missing.
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5 body away from Kra Kimberley where she is buried in the garden, & bury
6her at Krantz Plaats, & then I shall sell the little house & be able
7to return you the £200. You’ll never know what a help it has been to
8me mentally. If I can get my articles done I shall have plenty of
9money. You will like the article I’m copying now. It’ll be such a
10comfort to me to have said what I have to say on the woman question,
11in ever such a poor way, & though I may never get any of my big books
12revised. I sit every morning from 9 till 1 at my desk whether I do
13much or not. I always think it would be the hard thought in dying that
14one hadn’t
I hope my darling Miss Green is better. I’d like to tell
15her about a dear old man I saw in the train the other day, such an
16ugly old man too, physically, who was so kind to every one, & made me
17feel so happy for a couple of days. "Nor knowest thou what argument
18thy life to thy neighbour’s creed hath lent!" I do hope your brother
19Charles will get in. Does he feel hopeful?
20
21 Good bye. It was so good to see your hand-writing.
22 Olive
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Notation
The articles referred to are two linked essays published in the US under the title of 'Woman', which eventually became Woman and Labour. They were part of a major theoretical work, a book on the 'man and woman' question. However, the manuscript, left in Johannesburg when Schreiner went to Karree Kloof in late August 1899, was destroyed when her house was badly damaged and burned by marauding troops during the South African War.