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date: 30 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

In 2008, the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) aired four updatings of Shakespeare’s plays in vernacular languages, using local settings and black South African actors. This chapter offers an analysis of three of these cultural appropriations in order to illustrate the two-way traffic between the global and the local. In this exchange, the raw materials of Shakespeare’s texts are reassembled to work out local anxieties about national identity, race, class, and gender in contemporary South Africa. This chapter probes the relationship of the global to the local in a setting dense with particularities of histories, language practice, and gender, class, and race hierarchies. Shakespeare’s role as a globalized public property, performances disseminated through electronic technologies and international film and television codes, facilitates a complex indigenizing process in post-apartheid South Africa as global and local engage in reciprocal artistic transformation.

Keywords: Key terms, vernacular languages, appropriation, global, local, indigeneity, identity, race, post-apartheid

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