Gordimer & Censorship

Nadine Gordimer has decided to halt publication of a biography about her after seven years of research and collaboration. Her biographer, Ronald Suresh Roberts is accusing her of censorship.

[Roberts] supplied letters from Bloomsbury Publishing in London and the New York-based Farrar, Straus and Giroux which lavished praise on his book but made publication conditional on the approval of Ms Gordimer, whose novels and short story collections they publish. Both publishers dropped the biography after she objected.
Mr Roberts said the Nobel laureate objected to his quoting a letter from the 60s in which she revealed disdain for Ruth First, a fellow anti-apartheid activist who was subsequently assassinated by a letter bomb. “I keep thinking of points to score off the silly bitch,” the letter allegedly said.

The U.S. and U.K. publishers are affected by Gordimer’s decision but the book will apparently come out in South Africa.

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