Disgrace is a novel written by South African writer J M Coetzee . The author was winner of noble prize in literature in 2003 and book itself won booker prize in 1999 . The plot is set up in post apartheid South Africa where shift of power has its repercussions on socio economic life of people . It depicts the catharsis of people who have been oppressed from centuries . This is the story of rage , retribution ,race, rape and relationships .
The protagonist, David lurie is professor of romantic poetry . He falls for one his students and establishes physical intimacy with her and has no qualms for it . Later the same student slaps the charges of sexual harassment against him . David accepts the charges but does not repents for it because that was what he desired . He gave no nonsense answers in proceedings and is forced to leave university in ignominy . He decides to live with his daughter Lucy who is lives in countryside and does farming over there . There she is raped and robbed by three black men . David feels guilty for being helpless in these circumstances . David repents for his sins by working in a place where he is supposed to take care of sick dogs and dispose them when they are dead . His life is reduced to that of an animal .
The story raises question whether a men should feel apologetic for sins which he does not consider sins at all . We might punish him although but cannot forcefully draw apology . The story poignantly describes the impact of changing power equations in Africa on day to day life of its citizens . This kind of social upheaval is observed in society whenever the centre of power is shifted .
The book is dark with gray shaded character and is not recommended for pleasure reading . The plot though sublime leaves you disturbed .