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The architecture of South Africa mirrors the vast ethnic and cultural diversity of the country and its historical colonial period.
In addition, influences from other distant countries have contributed to the variety of the South African architectural landscape.
Notable white English-language South African authors include Nadine Gordimer who was, in Seamus Heaney's words, one of "the guerrillas of the imagination", and who became the first South African and the seventh woman to be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1991.
Her most famous novel, July's People, was released in 1981, depicting the collapse of white-minority rule.
It is among these people, however, that cultural traditions survive most strongly; as South Africans have become increasingly urbanized and Westernised, aspects of traditional culture have declined.
Urban South Africans usually speak English or Afrikaans in addition to their native language.
The oldest art objects in the world were discovered in a South African cave.
There are small groups of speakers of endangered languages, most of which are from the Khoisan family, that receive no official status; however, some groups within South Africa are attempting to promote their use and revival.
In the 20th century, traditional tribal forms of art were scattered and re-melded by the divisive policies of apartheid.
New forms of art evolved in the mines and townships: a dynamic art using everything from plastic strips to bicycle spokes.
Athol Fugard, whose plays have been regularly premiered in fringe theatres in South Africa, London (The Royal Court Theatre), and New York City.
Olive Schreiner's The Story of an African Farm (1883) was a revelation in Victorian literature: it is heralded by many as introducing feminism into the novel form.