Previous work of John Carlin: ThePlaying Enemy inspired Invictus narrative whose author John Carlin, a journalist who wrote most of his work is covered under sport and political themes. Invictus captures a moment that rugby match that took place in South Africa after the appointment of President Nelson Mandel as the first black president in South Africa. Nelson Mandela was a black revolutionary that served a jail term of 27 years, upon his release was assigned the role of becoming a president. The theme of the book centers on the negotiated revolution, which saw apartheid giving way to the ruling of the majority without bloodshed through the coverage of the rugby, match that took place between the Afrikaners and the white resulting to national triumph and South Africa team being rewarded as the best rugby team in 1995. The story, with the aid of the rugby as a metaphor, daily conversation quotes and a mood of expresses different experiences between the two racial groups as the country transforming its leadership.
Carlin writes the narrative in the third person narrative, but the voice in the main character is in the form of the first-person narrative. This approach reveals Carlin was a witness, but he uses the first person voice to express the experiences of the main character directly through the narration. In the narration, one can spot the use of 'I,' which represented Mandela and 'we 'standing including the Carlin. For instance:
"Francois Pienaar was the captain of rugby, and I wanted to use rugby I had to work with him, Mandela'' bi concentrated in our meeting on complimenting him for him the role which he was playing and which he could play. And I briefed him on what I was doing about sports and why I was doing so... " (Invictus, 103)
Through this approach, the narrative gives a reader sense of immediacy concerning Mandela's experience, as well as a sense of intimacy and connection with Mandela's attitude, active state, and, personal reading of the proceedings of the rugby match.
The film symbolically used the rugby sport that took place in 1995 in South Africa to simplify the main idea of post-Apartheid South Africa in its primary years of democracy, which was to generate a new, integrated national identity. Mandela never made his purpose over the first meeting, but he did edge closer to the central theme when he switched the conversation to his memories of Barcelona Olympic Game, which he attended in 1992 and called with great joy (Invictus, 163). This sentence shows how Mandela indirectly desired to use rugby to fulfill his agenda during the match, striking words such as "Simunye! We are one", the Proudly South African company, product, and service branding campaign, and the "One Team, One Country" (Grundlingh, 70). Mandela such striking words to trigger the feeling of togetherness, ones, and peace indirectly during Rugby match. Consequently, rugby match as presented by the author did not portray issues related to technical, tactical, physical, and, motor features of that sports match. Instead, it has discussed one of the significant sociological functions that enhanced, validates, and, legitimize the need of integrated nation has President Nelson Mandela suggests it.
The narrative of Invictus echoes some of the major themes in President Nelson Mandela stated it during the rugby match in 1995 as it was reported in Playing the Enemy. Example of topics that are found in the playing enemy and Invictus are the theme of forgiveness, the importance of understanding, and, Springbok rugby. Carlin once claimed that The Playing the Enemy is an outstanding body of work and rugby forms only a contextual theme (Playing the Enemy, 96). In other words, Invictus has been presented by Carlin a bibliographic narrative of the Nelson Mandela life during the 1995 World Cup Rugby. By reference the work in playing the enemy, Carlin demonstrate that this narration is a continuation of previous past event in Mandela life; from being imprisoned to his release and currently is president.
The story cites conversation between the black and the white as they were confronting each other to portray how racial lines caused hostility between whites and black. An example of such citation is of a white parent who prohibited black pupils from playing against white pupils, saying: "These little kaffers can't play rugby" (Booth, 94). The other used such quotation was to show how the racism had deeply rooted in the South African society. However, with quotes on the real conversation on rugby shows rugby shows how the people valued game and how it acted as a source of division between the black and the white. Grundlingh (80) suggests that Rugby was part of the white Afrikaner culture and not support for black citizens in South Africa whereas soccer became the main sport for black. Hence gives a rational ground of the Carlin to use it symbolically as a tool of echoing Mandela quest of an integrated nation, because it was until 1995 Rugby became an exclusive game (Invictus, 212).
Carlin also used another quotation to express different views of regarding the release of Mandela release and show how his appointment differed along racial lines. According to Invictus (9-20), the black was happing and singing "Mandela, Mandela" while the white children did not find a logical reason for the celebration of the black as Carlin quoted one of the children asked "Who is that man, Sir?" and the response to that was: "It's the terrorist, Mandela; they let him out. The coach of the white children added the comment stating that Remember this day, boys; this is the day our country went to the dogs" (Invictus, 20-25). These quotes helped Carlin to depict how it was a brave move when Mandela managed to unite the two sides that were in a constant disagreement in their daily lives.
With the aid of mood of fear, Invictus shows the difficulties both sides faced with the new transformation. The book illustrates the significant moment unveil the route of the Springbok players acknowledging their position as representatives, a nation inclusive of the previously marginalized black community and culture. One of the striking moment took place in the gym with the president of the team proclaiming Mandela's message that the squad is to "conduct coaching clinics in the townships all over the country" (Invictus, 105-115). Carlin expresses that their facial expression showed fear. Moreover, sentences such as "This is complete crap" and "What are we, some sicker sack now?" Expressed how it was fearful for the team to assume their obligation has toward promoting the success of the nation.
This narrative is a representation of the occurrence that happened in South Africa as the nation transformed from stereotype to embrace integrated nation as a way of ending racism that had affected South Africa for many years before President Nelson took leadership. Unlike non-fiction narrative such as Frankenstein by Mary Shelly that talks of an imaginative story of a being that was created in a lab and end up being evil, this narrative uses the real-life event to find its relevance and touches of a significant theme of racism that affects the world up today.
Invictus: Carlin, John, and Gideon Emery. . Warner Home Video ed. 2010.
Grundlingh, Albert. "From redemption to recidivism? Rugby and change in South Africa during the 1995 Rugby World Cup and its aftermath." Sporting Traditions 14.2 (1998): 67-86.
Playing the Enemy: John Carlin. NZ Rugby World.2014 ;( 166):96. http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=s3h&AN=95635409&site=ehost-live. Accessed October 3, 2018.
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