Louise Bethlehem’s book, Skin Tight: Apartheid Literary Culture and its Aftermath (Unisa Press, Brill 2006), investigates the role of literature in contexts of severe political oppression and resistance. It traces the responses to this question provided by the emergent paradigm of South African literary studies from the 1970s onwards. The volume was published in Hebrew translation by the Tel Aviv publishing house, Resling, with a new preface by the author and the translator, Oded Wolkstein which positions it as an “emergent allegory” for this constituency (Resling 2011).
Louise Bethlehem has co-edited numerous volumes, including South Africa in the Global Imaginary in collaboration with Leon de Kock and Sonja Narunsky-Laden (Unisa 2004). Originally a themed issue of the journal, Poetics Today, it won the prestigious Council of Editors of Learned Journals (CELJ) award for the best special issue of the year 2001. Other volumes include Violence & Non-Violence in Africa, co-edited with Pal Ahluwalia and Ruth Ginio (Routledge, 2007); the special centenary edition of English Studies in Africa, co-edited with Reingard Nethersole and Michael Titlestad (2008); as well as Rethinking Labour in Africa, Past and Present, co-edited with Lynn Schler and Galia Sabar (Routledge, 2010). Most recently, she and Ashleigh Harris co-edited “Unruly Pedagogies; Migratory Interventions: Unsettling Cultural Studies” as a special volume of Critical Arts: A Journal of South-North Cultural and Media Studies.
Louise Bethlehem wrote the entry on South African literature for the Edinburgh Companion to Twentieth Century Literature in English, edited by Brian McHale and Randall Stevenson (2006), and contributed to the Modern Language Association’s volumes Teaching the African Novel (2009) edited by Gaurav Desai, and Approaches to Teaching Coetzee’s Disgrace and Other Works (2013) edited by Laura Wright, Jane Poyner and Elleke Boehmer. She has translated the works of prominent Israeli intellectuals, including Hannan Hever, Orly Lubin and Ariella Azoulay. Her translation of Ariella Azoulay’s Civil Imagination: A Political Ontology of Photography was published by Verso in 2011.