Obama is half-white, half-black: Nadine Gordimer

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Kolkata, Nov 11: Branding US President-elect Barack Obama as 'half-white and half-black', Nobel Laureate Nadine Gordimer has hoped that fight against apartheid and terrorism would be successful gradually.

Delivering the 'Second Nobel Laureate Lectures' on the theme 'Witness: the Inward Testimony', organised by External Affairs Ministry on Monday, Nov 10 night, the acclaimed writer opined that Obama brought together in his own blood the mixture of the two races which, according to her, indicated that eradication of all odds from the society would be noticeable in phases. ''Indeed, Mr Obama is half-white and half-black. This is what we all want to see,'' Ms Gordimer observed.

Making a strong appeal to the writers and intellectuals to fight against growing incidents of global violence, the Nobel Laureate urged them to be more sensitive to what was happening in the world.

Citing the contribution of another Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore, she said it was the beauty and responsibility of the litterateur of the new age ''to reveal the secrets of the heart, not the sequence of mere events.'' Ms Gordimer felt that a writer would have to go deeper - from the realisation of what was happening to its significance and meaning.

She mentioned that before her crusade against apartheid, she had witnessed the plight of the blacks in South African society.

Referring to the ongoing process of globalisation, she said globalisation should be applicable in the truest sense of the term, assuring equality among the residents around the world.

''The present globalisation process is nothing but trade and industrial pacts, not bridging the gap between the rich and the poor,'' she regretted.

External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee, also present on the occasion, informed that his ministry had decided to organise such annual lectures by Nobel Laureates across the country.


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