Some Are Born to Sweet Delight


This study guide will help you analyse the short story “Some Are Born to Sweet Delight” by Nadine Gordimer. We will show you examples of elements in the text that will be relevant for your analysis. In these notes, we will focus on the summary, structure, characters, setting, narrator and point of view, language, themes and message.

Presentation of the text

Title: “Some Are Born to Sweet Delight” (1991)
Author: Nadine Gordimer
Genre: Short story

Nadine Gordimer ( 1923-2014) was a South-African writer and political activist. Her works typically deal with themes such as race, love, and morality. In 1991, she won the Nobel Prize in Literature. She published “Some Are Born to Sweet Delight” in 1991 in her short story collection Jump And Other Stories.


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The title of the short story “Some Are Born to Sweet Delight” by Nadine Gordimer has a symbolic meaning.

The title shows how some people, like Vera and her family, are living a comfortable life. Vera was born in times of peace in a country with a stable political system. She has a house and a good job, and she can enjoy going out with friends and travelling. In comparison, Rad had to leave his country, possibly because of the political situation there. He works an ordinary job, and it is implied that he comes from a poor background. The title underlines the difference between the lives of those born in Western society and the lives of immigrants who come to the West in search of security and a better life. As an immigrant, Rad has poor prospects and has faced discrimination: “a foreigner who likely had been turned away from other vacancies posted on a board at the supermarket”.

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Some Are Born to Sweet Delight

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