Imaginative Trespasser : Letters Between Bessie Head, Patrick and Wendy Cullinan 1963-1977 Edited by Patrick Cullinan
Wits University Press, 30 July 2005
Paperback | 288 pages
During her exile in Botswana, Bessie Head conducted a correspondence with the South African poet and publisher Patrick Cullinan and his wife, Wendy, that became a record of her struggle to survive her isolation, and that traces Head's discovery of her powers as a writer. The Cullinans were among her few constant sources of moral, and sometimes material, support, and in the warm exchange of letters that passed between them, a picture emerges of the period during which so many South African writers and activists faced the challenge of exile. Cullinan's commentary on Head's letters is trenchant and engaging, and he uses his own considerable skills as a writer to construct a narrative that is both absorbing and illuminating. ""Imaginative Trespasser"" is a poignant account of a friendship that grew in and through letters, survived the pressures of exile, and yet was deeply damaged by the demons that Bessie Head carried within her during the difficult years of her life in Botswana.