Recent Posts

  • Views on life in the continuing crisis: part three

    BORIS Johnson’s star has been, to some inexplicably, largely in the ascendant during the pandemic, most recently explained by the successful vaccine rollout, despite any visible connection between him and it. A for-once inspired appointment, […]

     
  • 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 […]