The most important historical and journalistic portrait to date of a teetering nation whose destiny will determine the fate of a continent.
Drawn "to investigate what happened in the aftermath of great social convulsions," journalist Foster is "hooked on the postliberation story of the Republic of South Africa." In this thoroughly engrossing account based on his travels there between 2004 and 2012, Foster offers a richly detailed account, both personal and professional, of "the only place on the globe where advanced capitalism, AIDS, and political freedom rushed through the door together." Foster utilizes interviews with three "insiders" from divergent political perspectives (Mandela's grandson, President Jacob Zuma's daughter, opposition leader Zille's son), three "outsiders" (a homeless orphan in Cape Town, a teenager with HIV living outside Johannesburg, an "unabashedly hopeful" boy from the northern-most province), and President Zuma himself. Besides an array of other political figures, he speaks with doctors, journalists, even Condoleezza Rice. Rendering places as vividly as a travel book, Foster tucks in enough South African history for the reader to understand the backstory of his speakers. However engrossing as Foster's account is, the thicket of political intrigue surrounding Thabo Mbeki, president of South Africa 1999-2008, and Zuma, and assorted internal ANC conflicts and controversies, remains impenetrable. Agent: David Black, David Black Agency. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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W. W. Norton & Company
September 10, 2012
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