My Traitor's Heart: A South African Exile Returns to Face His Country, His Tribe, and His Conscience

Rian Malan, Author Atlantic Monthly Press $19.95 (349p) ISBN 978-0-87113-229-1
Written with smoldering moral outrage, this odyssey offers a firsthand glimpse of South African apartheid and its practitioners' rationalizations. The author grew up in a white Johannesburg suburb; his great-uncle Daniel Malan was the first Afrikaner nationalist prime minister and an architect of today's racist system. The author, a youthful leftist, then a crime reporter, left his homeland in 1977 to become a Los Angeles rock 'n' roll critic, returning to South Africa in 1985. His blistering book combines autobiography, reportage, coming to terms with his ancestral roots and loosely-stitched-together tales of murder and violence committed predominantly by whites. He claims that, for fear of being branded racists, white liberals avoid discussing certain topics, such as atrocities committed by blacks in the name of the anti-apartheid struggle and blacks' involvement in animistic religions. He sees no ready solutions in the fight to change an oppressive system. Author tour. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990
Release date: 01/01/1990
Paperback - 425 pages - 978-0-09-974900-4
Paperback - 425 pages - 978-0-679-73215-0
Paperback - 349 pages - 978-0-8021-3684-8
Open Ebook - 368 pages - 978-0-8021-9390-2
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