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In 2015 and 2016 waves of student protest swept across South African campuses under the banner of FeesMustFall. This book offers a historical perspective, analysing regional influences on the ideologies that have underpinned South African student politics from the 1960s to the present. The author considers the history of student organisations in the Northern Transvaal (today Limpopo Province) and the ways in which students and youth influenced political change on a national scale, over generations.
The University of the North at Turfloop played an integral role in building the South African Students’ Organisation (SASO) in the late 1960s and propagating Black Consciousness in the 1970s; in the 1980s it became an ideological battleground where Black Consciousness advocates and ANC-affiliates competed for influence. Limpopo has remained a hotbed of political activism in the country. Generations of nationally prominent student and youth activists became politically conscientised here – among them Julius Malema, Onkgopotse Tiro, Cyril Ramaphosa, Frank Chikane and Peter Mokaba.
Turfloop (University of Limpopo) has remained politically significant in the post-apartheid era: it was here in 2007 that Julius Malema supported Jacob Zuma’s ascension to the South African presidency during the ANC’s pivotal party conference that resulted in the ousting of Thabo Mbeki.
A remarkable new book about a dark stain on modern South Africa – our enormous and problematic prison population – and what we can do to fix it.
"Lock them up and throw away the key!" is a cry we hear often in South Africa today. But this simplistic solution to crime simply isn’t working. As Father Babychan Arackathara, a Catholic chaplain to some of the Western Cape’s most notorious prisons, shows in this compassionate reflection on his work, even criminals have stories, and crime invariably has roots. He listens to those stories and untangles those roots on our behalf, sharing insights into the brokenness of our society and communities – and offering real, workable suggestions for fixing them.
Can we move to the ideal of hating the crime, but loving the criminal? What must we do to see that offenders are themselves victims and to engage them constructively? How do we break the cycles of addiction, trauma and crime to reach for reconciliation and transformation?
On bended knee, he leaned over the stricken boxer and counted him out. When he waved the fight over, there was exactly one second to go in the dramatic and brutal world championship bout and Víctor Galíndez had retained his title. But the referee, his shirt stained with the champion’s blood, had cemented his reputation as a cool professional, one destined to become an esteemed figure in world boxing.
South Africa’s own Stanley Christodoulou has officiated an unprecedented 242 world title fights over five decades, some of them among the most iconic in boxing history, and became his nation’s very first inductee into the International Boxing Hall of Fame. He rose from humble beginnings, learning his trade in the South African townships of the 1960s, and went on to lead his national boxing board as it sought to shed the racial restrictions of the apartheid era. It was a contribution to his country’s sporting landscape that saw him recognised by the president of the ‘new’ South Africa, Nelson Mandela.
The Life and Times of Stanley Christodoulou is Stanley’s memoir in boxing. It takes the reader to a privileged position, inside the ropes with champions and into the company of boxing legends.
“Rebels And Rage is a critically important contribution to public discussion about #FeesMustFall”–Eusebius McKaiser
Adam Habib, the most prominent and outspoken university official through the recent student protests, takes a characteristically frank view of the past three years on South Africa’s campuses in this new book. Habib charts the progress of the student protests that erupted on Wits University campus in late 2015 and raged for the better part of three years, drawing on his own intimate involvement and negotiation with the students, and also records university management and government responses to the events. He critically examines the student movement and individual student leaders who emerged under the banners #feesmustfall and #Rhodesmustfall, and debates how to achieve truly progressive social change in South Africa, on our campuses and off.
This book is both an attempt at a historical account and a thoughtful reflection on the issues the protests kicked up, from the perspective not only of a high-ranking member of university management, but also Habib as political scientist with a background as an activist during the struggle against apartheid. Habib moves between reflecting on the events of the last three years on university campuses, and reimagining the future of South African higher education.
The presidential campaign in the USA grabbed the global imagination. It also grabbed the feminist imagination, presenting the hope that if a woman could become the president of the USA, women throughout the world would finally break through the reinforced glass ceiling. However, when it didn’t happen, the lost opportunity became the metaphorical kick in the feminist gut on a global scale. Through the subsequent misogyny, vulgarity, lewd comments, the pussy grabbing video, and the threats of the erosion of feminist activism in the trenches, worldwide a deep mourning arose from the feminist community. It was the name calling of “nasty women” that really smarted. Initial feelings of anger gave rise to empowerment of women — those who talk back to patriarchy — to embrace the label of “nasty women”.
The idea for the collection was born, cradled and nurtured between friends who wanted to create a space for writing and thinking about the marches. The group of feminists who contributed to this collection used the marches and the posters inspired by the marches as a vehicle which galvanised women into action to put pen to paper and show fervour for ongoing feminist activism.
The nexus of this beautifully written and evocatively illustrated collection is telling narratives that link very personal stories with deeply political issues. These are the stories told by nasty women who are making the personal political, who are seeking to live their lives in ways that resist and challenge patriarchy. Through their very intimate nature these are stories that speak to the creation of a different kind of social order, one based on equity, the promotion of human rights and social justice.
When the Cradock Four's Fort Calata was murdered by agents of the apartheid state in 1985, his son Lukhanyo was only three years old. Thirty-one years later Lukhanyo, now a journalist, becomes one of the SABC Eight when he defies Hlaudi Motsoeneng's reign of censorship at the public broadcaster by writing an open letter that declares: "my father didn't die for this".
Now, with his wife Abigail, Lukhanyo brings to life the father he never knew and investigates the mystery that surrounds his death despite two high-profile inquests.
Join them in a poignant and inspiring journey into the history of a remarkable family that traces the struggle against apartheid beginning with Fort's grandfather, Rivonia trialist and ANC Secretary-General Rev James Calata.
The Land Is Ours tells the story of South Africa’s first black lawyers, who operated in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. In an age of aggressive colonial expansion, land dispossession and forced labour, these men believed in a constitutional system that respected individual rights and freedoms, and they used the law as an instrument against injustice.
The book follows the lives, ideas and careers of Henry Sylvester Williams, Alfred Mangena, Richard Msimang, Pixley ka Isaka Seme, Ngcubu Poswayo and George Montsioa, who were all members of the ANC. It analyses the legal cases they took on, explores how they reconciled the law with the political upheavals of the day, and considers how they sustained their fidelity to the law when legal victories were undermined by politics.
The Land Is Ours shows that these lawyers developed the concept of a Bill of Rights, which is now an international norm. The book is particularly relevant in light of current calls to scrap the Constitution and its protections of individual rights: it clearly demonstrates that, from the beginning, the struggle for freedom was based on the idea of the rule of law.
Four years. Seven continents. An unprecedented quest to document and preserve our last remaining wild lands.
In more than 200 striking images, acclaimed South African photographers Peter and Beverly Pickford have created an epic, unparalleled portrait of some of our planet’s most untouched places: from the heat-beaten country of Namibia’s Skeleton Coast to Alaska and the Yukon’s abundance of water, in ocean, river and lake; from the subantarctic islands’ wind-tossed shores in the south to the Arctic’s immense expanses of cracked pancake ice in the north; and the dazzling juxtaposition of desert and water in Australia’s Kimberley to the remote, frozen peaks of Tibet and Patagonia. Within these extreme landscapes, Beverly and Peter’s images illuminate and celebrate myriad forms of life: polar bears, rhinoceroses and bharal, as well as the humble lichen, are all evocatively pictured within the landscapes upon which they depend. This is a wildlife book like no other, its images aching with what words struggle to describe: the resonance of wilderness in our inner being, the power of land to transform our emotion, and our ability to transcend the immediate to become sublime.
Wild Land’s stunning images are accompanied by a fascinating text in which Peter not only vividly describes the photographers’ adventures in pursuit of wild land, but also delivers a timely message that highlights the urgent need for these lands to be preserved for the future of the planet – a future on which humankind’s very survival is dependent.
In 2007, thirteen years after adopting black rule, South Africa became a net food importer for the first time since its founding in 1652. This book tells the story of South Africa's "land reform" which, although proceeding at a slower pace than in Zimbabwe, is no less insidious and is leading to the same disastrous consequences.
White Afrikaner farmers are being driven from the land through a combination of murder, terrorism, and state coercion. Almost every farm taken over by black farmers has collapsed and food production has plummeted. There are now around 30,000 white farmers left, from a high of 80,000 in 1980. When first published, pressure was exerted by the South African government to suppress this book - and the reader will soon discover why as example after example of black failure is laid out with incontrovertible factual analysis.
This book lifts the lid on what is really happening to white South Africans since the ANC's assumption of power, and serves as a dramatic warning to Western nations of their future should they allow Third World immigration to swamp their lands as well. Now updated with two appendices: "Land Reform in South Africa: The Situation in 2012" and "Farm Murders: The Statistics as of January 2012."
The new South Africa cannot be understood without a knowledge of the history of the UDF and its role in the transition to democracy. As Professor Gail Gerhart has written, "Without the UDF, the politics of the contemporary ANC would have been entirely different, its accession to power more difficult, and the character of its subsequent actions undoubtedly both different and probably much less successful. The UDF was far more than a John the Baptist to the ANC's second coming: it was actually the mechanism through which the ANC, in exile for 30 years, effected its successful return, adaptation and reintegration as South Africa's post-apartheid government."
This is a major study of an organisation that transformed South African politics in the 1980s. By co-ordinating popular struggles on the ground and promoting the standing of the African National Congress, the UDF played a central role in the demise of apartheid and paved the way for South Africa's emergence as a democracy.
Based on extensive documentary and interview sources, this title traces the UDF's birth, career and dissolution. It is a remarkable tale of strategic and tactical decision-making: of how opponents of apartheid made choices that helped to seal the fate of white domination whilst avoiding the general bloodbath that always threatened.
This informal history of the Cape Times, the oldest daily newspaper in South Africa and a much-loved Cape Town institution, is the story of a vigorous tradition of independent journalism.
The infamous Seriti Commission into the arms deal. The Glenister case following the disbanding of the Scorpions. Busting open the bread manufacturers’ cartel.
High drama; high stakes brought to South Africa courtesy of the Accountability Now NGO, and its founder Paul Hoffman.
Join him in his journey from jaded silk to corruption buster – a fly-on-the-wall account of courtroom battles, influential personalities, secrets and lies in the battle to speak truth to power.
“We thank you for the inspiration and strength
That you have given to Madiba,
Enabling him, over so many years, to draw out the best in others,
rousing us always, by word and example,
to seek the highest good for every child of this nation.”
So prayed Archbishop Thabo Makgoba with Nelson Mandela in his home in 2009 at the request of Graca Machel. This marked the start of an unusual relationship between southern Africa’s Anglican leader and Mandela in his quietening years. Join Makgoba in his journey towards faith, from his boyhood in Alex as the son of a ZCC pastor to Bishopscourt and praying with Mandela. He shares his feelings about his pastoral approach to the world icon, and how they influenced his thinking on ministering to church and nation in the current era. What did praying with those nearest and dearest to Mandela mean? What was his spirituality? In trying to answer these questions, Makgoba opens a window on South Africa’s spiritual make-up and life.
Allegations of treason, real or imagined, always rankle. So much more when a life and death struggle of a nation is perceived to be at stake. Yet treason is common in warfare and accusations of sedition abound in any war.
While this book focuses specifically on the intricacies of alleged Afrikaner treason during a particularly volatile period, the analysis is also informed by an awareness of treason in the wider context.
#FeesMustFall, the student revolt that began in October 2015, was an uprising against lack of access to, and financial exclusion from, higher education in South Africa. More broadly, it radically questioned the socio-political dispensation resulting from the 1994 social pact between big business, the ruling elite and the liberation movement.
The 2015 revolt links to national and international youth struggles of the recent past and is informed by Black Consciousness politics and social movements of the international Left. Yet, its objectives are more complex than those of earlier struggles. The student movement has challenged the hierarchical, top-down leadership system of university management and it’s ‘double speak’ of professing to act in workers’ and students’ interests yet enforce a regressive system for control and governance. University managements, while one one level amenable to change, have also co-opted students into their ranks to create co-responsibility for the highly bureaucratised university financial aid that stand in the way of their social revolution.
This book maps the contours of student discontent a year after the start of the #FeesMustFall revolt. Student voices dissect coloniality, improper compromises by the founders of democratic South Africa, feminism, worker rights and meaningful education. In-depth assessments by prominent scholars reflect on the complexities of student activism, its impact on national and university governance, and offer provocative analyses of the power of the revolt.
The late Dr Ambrosini was an ltalian-American Constitutional Lawyer who arrived in South Africa on the cusp of South Africa’s Political Transition. He found himself drawn into the thick of constitutional negotiations, on behalf of the lFP, enabling him to play a significant role in shaping the country’s constitutional democracy.
Dr Ambrosini and Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi (The President of the INKATHA Freedom Party and Traditional Prime Minister to the Zulu Monarch and Nation) formed an unexpectedly close friendship. He was a young foreign national with no experience of Zulu culture or African politics. Yet he became champion and adviser to a Zulu Prince; a descendent of King Mpande (brother to King Shaka), Traditional Prime Minister to the Zulu Nation, and political leader to some two million South Africans.
Ambrosini made South Africa his home, as he provided legal, policy and institutional advice to Prince Buthelezi, supporting him in his roles as Minister of Home Affairs, Acting President of South Africa, Leader of the Inkatha Freedom Party, and traditional Prime Minister to the Zulu Monarch and Nation. Ambrosini’s extraordinary ability won him friends, and enemies, in very high places. Over the years he attracted numerous epithets, both in the media and intelligence reports; but in 2009 his adopted country embraced him fully, as he became a Member of the South African Parliament.
Tragically, it was from this position that he waged his final war. Ambrosini was diagnosed with final stage, inoperable lung cancer in April 2013.
In this fresh and highly readable collection of South African biographical essays, a distinguished group of authors illuminates the lives of eleven colourful, complex men and women whose personal experiences throw fascinating light on the times in which they lived.
The individuals whose stories are told here are very different in time, in place and in work and at play, but are united by an abundantly rich humanity and the myriad ways in which they navigated their existence through the uneven terrain of South Africa's distant and more recent past. Including colonial administrators, activists, educationists, sportsmen, a poet, a painter and a pilot, Illuminating Lives is a wide-ranging and moving book that provides readers with striking and unexpected insights into our history.
Here are some intriguing South African lives well worth knowing about.
Once an enemy of the apartheid police, Andrew Brown has worked as a police reservist for almost twenty years. In this book he takes the reader on patrol with him – into the ganglands of the Cape Flats, the townships of Masiphumelele and Nyanga, and the high-walled Southern Suburbs.
Good Cop, Bad Cop is a personal account of the perilous and often conflicting work of a SAPS officer. Brown describes being shot at, arresting suspects in a drug bust, chasing down leads in a homicide investigation and keeping the peace during the UCT student protests. Brown illustrates how difficult the job of the police is, and how easy it is to react with undue force. Yet he argues passionately that the role of the police is to be a service to communities and not a force to suppress social discontent.
Gripping and thought-provoking, this is a fascinating insight into the social fabric of current South Africa.
1-Recce was the sharpest, most versatile and deadliest specialist unit in the entire South African army. These men were super fit, unbelievably tough and stopped at nothing. Time and again they put their lives at risk in the execution of highly secret operations behind enemy lines.
For decades these missions have been kept secret. Now, for the first time, the Recces' most famous generals (including the legendary colonel Jan Breytenbach) reveal their involvement in many highly sensitive political operations.
Explosive revelations are made of a collapsed mission to blow up key ANC figures in the final years of the apartheid era. They tell of 1-Recce's involvement in the controversial Border War and reveal the existence of a top secret squadron in the then Rhodesian army.
After years of myths and secrecy, this book gives a new perspective on the Recces and the way they operated invisibly behind the scenes.
The fifty years, 1880-1930, saw momentous changes in the economy and social life of Cape Town, the Mother City.
Growth and physical expansion altered the previous character of the city, but this was accompanied by social and cultural developments springing from the opinions and interests of the citizens.
A.B. Reid, in his career as a Master Builder and subsequently as leader in the public life of Cape Town, not only contributed to the changes that took place but also influenced their direction.
In South Africa, two unmistakable features describe post-Apartheid politics. The first is the formal framework of liberal democracy, including regular elections, multiple political parties and a range of progressive social rights. The second is the politics of the ‘extraordinary’, which includes a political discourse that relies on threats and the use of violence, the crude re-racialization of numerous conflicts, and protests over various popular grievances. In this highly original work, Thiven Reddy shows how conventional approaches to understanding democratization have failed to capture the complexities of South Africa’s post-Apartheid transition. Rather, as a product of imperial expansion, the South African state, capitalism and citizen identities have been uniquely shaped by a particular mode of domination, namely settler colonialism. South Africa, Settler Colonialism and the Failures of Liberal Democracy is an important work that sheds light on the nature of modernity, democracy and the complex politics of contemporary South Africa.
Jan Christian Smuts was soldier, statesman and intellectual, one of South Africa’s greatest leaders. Yet little is said about him today, even as we appear to live in a leadership vacuum.
Unafraid of Greatness is a re-examination of the life and thoughts of Jan Smuts. It is intended to remind a contemporary readership of the remarkable achievements of this impressive soldier-statesman. The author argues that there is a need to bring Smuts back into the present, that Smuts’ legacy still has much to instruct. He draws several parallels between Smuts and President Thabo Mbeki, both intellectuals much lionised abroad and yet often distrusted at home. This book is a highly readable account of Smuts’ life. It also examines a number of overarching themes: his relationships with women, spiritual life, intellectual life and his role as advisor to world leaders. Politics and international affairs receive the lion’s share, but Smuts’ unique contributions to other fields – for example, botany – are not neglected.
Unafraid of Greatness does not shy away from the contradictions of its subject. Smuts was one of the architects of the United Nations, and a great champion of human rights, yet he could not see the need to reform the condition of the African majority in his own country.
This is the untold story of how James Logan was instrumental in developing the game of cricket in South Africa at a time when the country was heading towards war with the British Empire.
Illustrated throughout with photographs and documents, Empire, War & Cricket in South Africa is a unique social and political history of the workings of the British Empire in South Africa during the late 19th century; a well-researched and fascinating biography of the man who gave us Matjiesfontein; and an entertaining and at times unbelievable story of cricket’s origins in South Africa.
Nearly two decades after he was anointed by Nelson Mandela as his successor, Cyril Ramaphosa has at last taken office as the president of South Africa. But the country Ramaphosa has inherited is very different from the rainbow nation that Mandela led in the 1990s.
The South Africa of 2018 is divided and caught in a web of state capture, corruption, poverty and despair. The Zuma years have left the country and its institutions battered and bruised.
Can Ramaphosa pull South Africa out of the quagmire and restore it to its former glory, as so many people desperately hope? Is his turn at the presidency really the beginning of a new dawn.
Ralph Mathekga answers these questions, and more, in this riveting book.
A bold and innovative social history, The Seed Is Mine concerns the disenfranchised blacks who did so much to shape the destiny of South Africa. After years of interviews with Kas Maine and his neighbors, employers, friends, and family - a rare triumph of collaborative courage and dedication - Charles van Onselen has recreated the entire life of a man who struggled to maintain his family in a world dedicated to enriching whites and impoverishing blacks, while South Africa was tearing them apart.
“If ever one wondered whether the life of a single man could illuminate a century, [this] brilliant biography … proves the point.” — Carmel Schrire, The Boston Globe
“An epic … [that] tells of the loss of human potential generated by a politics that surrendered generosity and openness to self-interest and bigotry. It reveals the way an ordinary man can survive with dignity in such a world.” — Vincent Crapanzano, the New York Times
“A magnificent book [with] implications beyond its modest claims … This remarkable story compels foreboding but also kindles hope, for it shows the extraordinary courage of 'ordinary' men under severe difficulties.” — Eugene Genovese, Emory University
“[Van Onselen] teases out the subtleties of the paternalistic relationships between rural whites and blacks which gave rise to real friendships but also to much betrayal, anger, and humiliation . . . It is a monumental masterpiece of research, and a poetic evocation of the human spirit to survive … ” — Linda Ensor, Business Day
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