Physical setting

“Country Lovers” by Nadine Gordimer takes place in a rural landscape set somewhere in South Africa, during apartheid. The events take place over several years, starting with Thebedi and Paulus' childhood, and ending with one year after Thebedi's baby dies. The rural aspect is highlighted by the title, so the readers know immediately the story will take place in the countryside

The story generally differentiates between the white people living on the Eysendyck farm and the black people living in the kraal – the traditional African village of huts. In the kraal, after Njabulo and Thebedi get married, the young man builds a hut made to look like the houses of white people: “… the hut Njabulo had built in white man's style, with a tin chimney, and a proper window with glass panes set in as straight as walls made of unfired bricks would allow” (ll. 147-149). Eventually, the hut becomes the place where Paulus murders his baby.

The farmhouse is also presented in the story through Thebedi’s eyes (ll. 99-103). ...

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