Exclusive Books Centurion invites you to join them on Saturday, 6 September 2014 at 12 PM as they welcome Zelda la Grange to their store.
Good Morning, Mr Mandela, her first book, is the extraordinary story of how a young woman had her life and everything she once believed in transformed by the greatest man of her time, Nelson Mandela. La Grange grew up in South Africa as a white Afrikaner who supported the rules of segregation. Yet a few years after the end of apartheid she would become the trusted assistant to Nelson Mandela. Now she shares his lasting and inspiring gifts with the world.
La Grange will be in store to sign copies of her book.
Don’t miss this!
Mark Gevisser chatted to Jenny Crwys-Williams about his new book Lost and Found in Johannesburg on Talk Radio 702.
Gevisser explains that the book is part memoir, as he balances the external reality of Johannesburg with his internal experience of it. As a young boy, Gevisser says, he was fascinated with people and spaces, and this comes through in how the book uses maps and photographs.
Crwys-Williams says that this book looks at borders in the city, and how people identify themselves by boundaries, or by trangressing them. Although the city space has division built into it, in the interview Gevisser says that Johannesburg is also a place of reinvention where people get over and around gates and thresholds (sometimes for mischievous purposes).
Black Like Me founder and author of Black Like You, Herman Mashaba, speaks to filmmaker Adrian Steirn about his grit and determination in rising above his circumstances, for the 21 Icons South Africa project. His continued resolve to help other people has made this entrepreneur a household name in South Africa.
Mashaba tells the story of his constant struggle to survive. When the university he was attending closed down, Mashaba had to make a plan. He started selling products from the boot of his car.
His liberation cannot be severed from the liberation of his people:
“I think community is me; it’s all of us … It’s not something you can divorce yourself from – that my existence is totally dependent on other people around me.”
Watch the video:
Zelda la Grange and Penguin invite you to the book signing of Good Morning, Mr Mandela at the Table Bay Hotel at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town on Saturday, 30 August.
La Grange’s biography of the late Nelson Mandela is also available in Afrikaans as Goeiemore, Mnr. Mandela, and readers can have their copies signed from 11 AM until noon.
See you there!
Jonathan Kaplan recently spent a morning with Rian van Heerden in the Jacaranda FM studio as a guest on The Complimentary Breakfast show, discussing, among other things, his book Call It Like It Is: The Jonathan Kaplan story.
Kaplan shares his thoughts on Kiwi referee Bryce Lawrence’s controversial career, owning up to mistakes, “the dirtiest game he ever blew”, and gets a surprise phone calls from Piet van Zyl (who infamously tackled a referee) and rugby legend Kobus Wiese.
Listen to the entertaining podcast, which is a little more than 30 minutes long:
In light of Nat Nakasa’s remains finally being repatriated to South Africa, read an extract from A Native of Nowhere: The Life of Nat Nakasa by Ryan Brown as well as coverage of the memorial service in Manhattan, New York.
Brown’s biography of Nakasa, which was published in October last year, illuminates Nakasa’s short but vibrant career as a writer and journalist during the 1950s and early ’60s, and his journey to Harvard University in the United States, where because of an apartheid exit-permit he became a “native of nowhere … a stateless man [and] a permanent wanderer”, before dying after falling, or jumping, from the seventh-floor window of an apartment building new Central Park in 1965.
In this excerpt from A Native of Nowhere: The Life of Nat Nakasa, shared by the Nieman Foundation to which Nakasa belonged, Brown examines his unusual attitude towards race, and the astounding writing the 21-year-old produced from that conflict:
Do Blacks Hate Whites?” blared the headline of Drum’s cover story in November 1958. The story was an “investigation into the most difficult, most critical issue in our country, in our time,” its opening lines announced. In fact, the question had seemed to hover over much of the magazine’s content that year, from stories of the African independence movements sweeping the continent to profiles of rioting factory workers and spot news pieces on protests against forced removals—all of them haunted by the question of apartheid and the chasms it was opening in South African society.
For his piece, Nat had collected the testimonies of a wide spectrum of black South Africans—a singer, a priest, a herdsman, a doctor, an activist—concluding that what the majority felt was “not hate then—quite. Suspicion. Distrust. Resentment. And guilt.” Along with a piece the following month casting the opposite question—“Do Whites Hate Blacks?”—the richly reported article was by far Nat’s most significant piece from his first year of reporting at Drum—and his most personal. “It is the correct, the accepted thing on the White side to show a cold hostility, if nothing worse, towards the black,” the 21-year-old wrote. “This harsh voice is now producing a black echo. The black man who still maintains social or friendly contacts with whites is being thought of as a ‘sell out’!”
Ted Botha, a South African writer living in America, attended Nakasa’s memorial service in Manhattan:
At a church in the north of Manhattan, not far from where Nakasa jumped out of a seventh-floor window of a building near Central Park in 1965, a service was held to mark the beginning of the repatriation of Nakasa’s body to KwaZulu-Natal. Finally, he can be laid to rest in the country he was exiled from and always longed for, South Africa. He would have been 78.
The story of Nat Nakasa might not be that well known today – his was a short life a long time ago, after all – but there are many who remember him as a well-known author, a talented journalist, an exile, and finally an icon.
Siphiwo Mahala of the Department of Arts and Culture, who was part of the South African delegation in New York to mark the occasion, wrote a moving piece reflecting on Nakasa’s legacy earlier this year, and his coverage of the event highlighted the emotional importance of Nakasa’s return: