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Recent Posts

  • Pitch Battles: Sport, Racism and Resistance

    Peter Hain and André Odendaal, Pitch Battles: Sport, Racism and Resistance (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2021) THIS book marks the fiftieth anniversary of the exclusion of apartheid South Africa from world cricket. At first […]

     
  • Abolish the Olympics

    IT seems that the delayed 2020 Olympic Games will go ahead in July in spite of the opposition of a large number of Japanese. Their medical infrastructure is under considerable strain, parts of their country […]

     
  • Violence and Solace: The Natal Civil War in Late-Apartheid South Africa

    Mxolisi R. Mchunu, Violence and Solace: The Natal Civil War in Late-Apartheid South Africa (Pietermaritzburg: University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, 2020) TWO main narratives frame the civil war that engulfed the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands in the late […]

     
  • Bloody Sunday: The Nun, the Defiance Campaign and South Africa’s Secret Massacre

    Mignonne Breier, Bloody Sunday: The Nun, the Defiance Campaign and South Africa’s Secret Massacre (Cape Town: Tafelberg, 2021) THE BROAD sweep of apartheid history is well-known and debated. But there remain many silences, particularly around […]

     
  • A Lawyer’s Odyssey: Apartheid, Mandela and Beyond

    Henry Brown, A Lawyer’s Odyssey: Apartheid, Mandela and Beyond (Pietermaritzburg: Otterley Press, 2020) THE APARTHEID era produced a stream of political trials ranging from the mundane to the highly dramatic. It was not difficult to […]

     
  • Cancel the Olympics

    THE POSTPONED 2020 Olympic Games are due to open on 23 July: they should be cancelled. Japan is currently in the middle of a fourth wave of Covid-19 infections and parts of the country including […]

     
  • Dr Abdullah Abdurahman: South Africa’s First Elected Black Politician

    Martin Plaut, Dr Abdullah Abdurahman: South Africa’s First Elected Black Politician (Johannesburg: Jacana, 2020) HIS funeral in Cape Town in February 1940 attracted a massive multiracial crowd. He had been a dedicated Cape Town city […]

     
  • Jwara!: Induna’s Daughter

    Joyce Piliso-Seroke, Jwara!: Induna’s Daughter (Cape Town: Tafelberg, 2020) THE AUTHOR of Jwara!, a clan name, was born in 1933 into her father’s second house, part of the Eastern Cape African Christian bourgeoisie. Her father, […]

     
  • The Unlikely Mr Rogue: A Life with Ivan Pillay

    Evelyn Groenink, The Unlikely Mr Rogue: A Life with Ivan Pillay (Johannesburg: Jacana, 2020) TITLE and sub-title are well chosen: this is both biography and autobiography. Evelyn Groenink is an accomplished journalist and writer who […]

     
  • Adam Habib, SOAS and the speech police

    BACK in the mid-1980s, when the anti-apartheid struggle was at a height, a group of Pietermaritzburg youngsters set up a group called Forward Youth. It had a socialist agenda and lived up to it by […]