Muriel Spark in Africa with her young son Robin.
Muriel Spark faced many challenges in Africa. Along with the disintegration of her marriage, she struggled to come to terms with aspects of colonial life.
Spark's son Robin was born on 9 July 1938 in Bulawayo. Following the separation from her husband, Spark lived with her friend May Heygate. Spark writes:
‘We felt a predominant concern for our toddlers, and very isolated from home’.
Robin boarded at the Dominican Convent High School in Gwelo, Southern Rhodesia. At this time Spark was in Cape Town awaiting return to Britain. Sister Benigna writes on a postcard that ‘Sonny [Robin] is very well and he is growing fast and looking cheerful’.
Spark would go on to have a difficult relationship with her son. By the time of her death in 2006, they were completely estranged.