"Barrenness middle class women's lives" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box3/Fold6/1907/13
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date14 May 1907
Address FromHanover, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToAlice Greene
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.
1 Hanover
2 CC
3 May 14 / 07
4
5 Darling Alice
6
7 I long so to hear from you; & more, to see you. I would write much
8longer letters to you & Miss Molteno, but I never feel sure of their
9reaching you. Things are going on here just in the old way. The latest
10Hanover news is that two leading Hanover young Boer girls, one the
11daughter of the richest man here had a stand up fight, they slapped
12each other in the face & one was knocked down as they were coming home
13from church. It appears the one woman made remarks in the church quite
14loud enough to be heard by the other woman & many others in the church
15about a feather boa the other young lady had on. The case was to come
16before the magistrate tomorrow, but the Dutch Parson is trying to get
17the parents to bring it before the church instead. They are not
18children; both of them are over twenty. To these pitiful smallnesses
19the Boer nation seems to have fallen now It seems as though after the
20strain of the war & the pain of being hated, a great terrible mental &
21moral reaction & deterioration has set in. It will pass when another
22generation rises. But all this has taught me as nothing else could the
23evil of war. It is like a cancer that does nothing, but harm. All the
24bigotry about their language & their religion with which they used to
25be falsely charged before the war is true of them now. Unless you &
26Miss Molteno can come back forgetting that the war ever existed –
27then you had better never come – only that I long to see your two
28beautiful faces so.
29
30 I am getting on a little with my book, I work every minute I’m well
31enough.
32
33 I’m still living alone at Hanover & seldom see or speak to any human
34being. Cron came over & spent last Sunday with me, & it was so nice to
35cook his dinner. I’d not seen him for more than two weeks. He has
36taken to playing golf, & I’m so glad it gives him something pleasant
37to do when he comes out of office at de Aar, & is doing his health
38such good. I wonder if you will be at Cambridge & if you would see my
39little niece Dot who is at Newnham. Give my tender love to my sweet
40darling old friend if you are with her, & tell her I’m going to
41write her a long letter on the woman question. She does write so
42strangely about it, perhaps I don’t understand, (but I always do
43understand her about almost every thing, & agree with her too!) I
44wonder if you have the same view?
45
46 Good bye darling one; I would tell you more about myself, only I
47haven’t anything to tell.
48 Olive
49
Notation
The 'little book' Schreiner was 'getting on a little with' was From Man to Man.