After the Party: Corruption, the ANC and South Africa's Uncertain Future

Andrew Feinstein, Author Verso $26.95 (308p) ISBN 978-1-84467-356-8

Former South African Member of Parliament Feinstein delivers a damning portrait of the African National Congress in this lacerating political memoir. The author, who won a seat in the provincial legislature in South Africa's first democratic elections, affectionately recounts the tenure of Nelson Mandela as president, reserving his criticism for Mandela's successor, Thabo Mbeki, whom he excoriates repeatedlyand sometimes repetitiouslyfor his denial of the country's AIDS crisis and failure to exert political pressure on Zimbabwe president Robert Mugabe. The book's central narrative hinges on an investigation into an arms deal that revealed the depth of corruption in the Mbeki-led ANC. The text follows the investigation and the changing fortunes of the ANC through Mbeki's resignation in September of 2008, concluding at a moment of uncertainty for the country and the party. The author occasionally digresses from his compelling history of South African politics to reflect on his own Jewish-African identity and his philosophical approach to governmentinfluenced by the writings of Vaclav Havel. Charged with passionate conviction, this book is a deeply personal but far-reaching insider's account of a political party losing its way. ""(May)"" .