Best South African History Books
Here you will get Best South African History Books For you.This is an up-to-date list of recommended books.
1. "Exterminate All the Brutes": One Man's Odyssey into the Heart of Darkness and the Origins of European Genocide
Author: by Sven Lindqvist
Now part of the eponymous HBO docuseries written and directed by Raoul Peck, Exterminate All the Brutes is a brilliant intellectual history of Europe’s genocidal colonization of Africaand the terrible myths and lies that it spawned A book of stunning range and near genius….
The catastrophic consequences of European imperialism are made palpable in the personal progress of the author, a late-twentieth-century pilgrim in Africa. Lindqvist’s astonishing connections across time and cultures, combined with a marvelous economy of prose, leave the reader appalled, reflective, and grateful.
David Levering Lewis Exterminate All the Brutes, Sven Lindqvist’s widely acclaimed masterpiece, is a searching examination of Europe’s dark history in Africa and the origins of genocide. Using Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness as his point of departure, the award-winning Swedish author takes us on a haunting tour through the colonial past, interwoven with a modern-day travelogue.
Retracing the steps of European explorers, missionaries, politicians, and historians in Africa from the late eighteenth century onward, Exterminate All the Brutes exposes the roots of genocide in Africa through Lindqvist’s own journey through the Saharan desert. As he shows, fantasies not merely of white superiority but of actual exterminationcleansing the earth of the so-called lesser racesdeeply informed the colonialism and racist ideology that ultimately culminated in Europe’s own Holocaust.
2. Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela
Author: by Nelson Mandela
“Essential reading for anyone who wants to understand history and then go out and change it.” President Barack Obama Nelson Mandela was one of the great moral and political leaders of his time: an international hero whose lifelong dedication to the fight against racial oppression in South Africa won him the Nobel Peace Prize and the presidency of his country.
After his triumphant release in 1990 from more than a quarter-century of imprisonment, Mandela was at the center of the most compelling and inspiring political drama in the world. As president of the African National Congress and head of South Africa’s antiapartheid movement, he was instrumental in moving the nation toward multiracial government and majority rule.
He is still revered everywhere as a vital force in the fight for human rights and racial equality. Long Walk to Freedom is his moving and exhilarating autobiography, destined to take its place among the finest memoirs of history’s greatest figures.
Here for the first time, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela told the extraordinary story of his life – an epic of struggle, setback, renewed hope, and ultimate triumph. The book that inspired the major motion picture Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.
3. Kaffir Boy: An Autobiography–The True Story of a Black Youth's Coming of Age in Apartheid South Africa
Author: by Mark Mathabane
The classic story of life in Apartheid South Africa. Mark Mathabane was weaned on devastating poverty and schooled in the cruel streets of South Africa’s most desperate ghetto, where bloody gang wars and midnight police raids were his rites of passage.
Like every other child born in the hopelessness of apartheid, he learned to measure his life in days, not years. Yet Mark Mathabane, armed only with the courage of his family and a hard-won education, raised himself up from the squalor and humiliation to win a scholarship to an American university.
This extraordinary memoir of life under apartheid is a triumph of the human spirit over hatred and unspeakable degradation. For Mark Mathabane did what no physically and psychologically battered “Kaffir” from the rat-infested alleys of Alexandra was supposed to do – he escaped to tell about it.
4. Three Sips of Gin: Dominating the Battlespace with Rhodesia's famed Selous Scouts
Author: by Timothy Bax
Helion and Company
August 19, 2013
There is nothing that terrorized Russian and Chinese-backed guerillas fighting Rhodesia’s bush war in the 1970s more than the famed Selous Scouts. The very name of the unit struck fear into the very heart and soul of even the most battle-hardened guerillas.
Too afraid to even whisper the name amongst themselves, they referred to soldiers of the unit simply as Skuzapu, or pickpockets. It was not for nothing that history has recorded the Selous Scouts Regiment as being one of the deadliest and most effective killing machines in modern counter-insurgency warfare.
The Selous Scouts comprised specially selected black and white soldiers of the Rhodesian army, supplemented with the inclusion of hardcore terrorists captured on the battlefield. Dressed and equipped as communist guerrillas and with faces and arms blackened, members of this elite Special Forces unit would slip silently into the shadows of the night to seek and destroy real terrorist gangs.
It became a deadly game of hide-and-seek played out between gangs and counter-gangs in the harsh and unforgiving landscape of the African bush. So successful were the Selous Scouts at being able to locate and destroy terrorist in their lairs that by the mid-1970s, they had begun to dominate Rhodesia’s battle space.
5. Black Reconstruction in America (The Oxford W. E. B. Du Bois): An Essay Toward a History of the Part Which Black Folk Played in the Attempt to Reconstruct Democracy in America, 1860-1880
Author: by W. E. B. Du Bois
Oxford University Press
February 1, 2014
W.E.B.Du Bois was a public intellectual, sociologist, and activist on behalf of the African American community. He profoundly shaped black political culture in the United States through his founding role in the NAACP, as well as internationally through the Pan-African movement.
Du Bois’s sociological and historical research on African-American communities and culture broke ground in many areas, including the history of the post-Civil War Reconstruction period. Du Bois was also a prolific author of novels, autobiographical accounts, innumerable editorials and journalistic pieces, and several works of history.
Black Reconstruction in America tells and interprets the story of the twenty years of Reconstruction from the point of view of newly liberated African Americans. Though lambasted by critics at the time of its publication in 1935, Black Reconstruction has only grown in historical and literary importance.
In the 1960s it joined the canon of the most influential revisionist historical works. Its greatest achievement is weaving a credible, lyrical historical narrative of the hostile and politically fraught years of 1860-1880 with a powerful critical analysis of the harmful effects of democracy, including Jim Crow laws and other injustices.
6. Hero of the Empire: The Boer War, a Daring Escape, and the Making of Winston Churchill
Author: by Candice Millard
“A thrilling account…. This book is an awesome nail-biter and top-notch character study rolled into one.” New York Times Critic Jennifer Senior’s Top Ten Books of 2016 At the age of twenty-four, Winston Churchill was utterly convinced it was his destiny to become prime minister of England.
He arrived in South Africa in 1899, valet and crates of vintage wine in tow, to cover the brutal colonial war the British were fighting with Boer rebels and jumpstart his political career. But just two weeks later, Churchill was taken prisoner.
Remarkably, he pulled off a daring escapetraversing hundreds of miles of enemy territory, alone, with nothing but a crumpled wad of cash, four slabs of chocolate, and his wits to guide him. Bestselling author Candice Millard spins an epic story of bravery, savagery, and chance encounters with a cast of historical charactersincluding Rudyard Kipling, Lord Kitchener, and Mohandas Gandhiwith whom Churchill would later share the world stage.
But Hero of the Empire is more than an extraordinary adventure story, for the lessons Churchill took from the Boer War would profoundly affect twentieth century history.
7. Uncommon Grounds: The History of Coffee and How It Transformed Our World
Author: by Mark Pendergrast
The definitive history of the world’s most popular drugUncommon Grounds tells the story of coffee from its discovery on a hill in ancient Abyssinia to the advent of Starbucks. Mark Pendergrast reviews the dramatic changes in coffee culture over the past decade, from the disastrous “Coffee Crisis” that caused global prices to plummet to the rise of the Fair Trade movement and the “third-wave” of quality-obsessed coffee connoisseurs.
As the scope of coffee culture continues to expand, Uncommon Grounds remains more than ever a brilliantly entertaining guide to the currents of one of the world’s favorite beverages.
8. Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight: An African Childhood
Author: by Alexandra Fuller
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER A worthy heir to Isak Dinesen and Beryl Markham, Alexandra Fuller shares visceral memories of her childhood in Africa, and of her headstrong, unforgettable mother. This is not a book you read just once, but a tale of terrible beauty to get lost in over and over.
Newsweek By turns mischievous and openhearted, earthy and soaring … Hair-raising, horrific, and thrilling. The New Yorker Though it is a diary of an unruly life in an often inhospitable place, Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight is suffused with Fuller’s endearing ability to find laughter, even when there is little to celebrate.
Fuller’s debut is unsentimental and unflinching but always captivating. In wry and sometimes hilarious prose, she stares down disaster and looks back with rage and love at the life of an extraordinary family in an extraordinary time. From 1972 to 1990, Alexandra Fullerknown to friends and family as Bobogrew up on several farms in southern and central Africa.
9. Black Magic: Religion and the African American Conjuring Tradition
Author: by Yvonne P. Chireau
Black Magic looks at the origins, meaning, and uses of Conjurethe African American tradition of healing and harming that evolved from African, European, and American elementsfrom the slavery period to well into the twentieth century. Illuminating a world that is dimly understood by both scholars and the general public, Yvonne P.
Chireau describes Conjure and other related traditions, such as Hoodoo and Rootworking, in a beautifully written, richly detailed history that presents the voices and experiences of African Americans and shows how magic has informed their culture. Focusing on the relationship between Conjure and Christianity, Chireau shows how these seemingly contradictory traditions have worked together in a complex and complementary fashion to provide spiritual empowerment for African Americans, both slave and free, living in white America.
As she explores the role of Conjure for African Americans and looks at the transformations of Conjure over time, Chireau also rewrites the dichotomy between magic and religion. With its groundbreaking analysis of an often misunderstood tradition, this book adds an important perspective to our understanding of the myriad dimensions of human spirituality.
10. No Future Without Forgiveness
Author: by Desmond Tutu
The establishment of South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission was a pioneering international event. Never had any country sought to move forward from despotism to democracy both by exposing the atrocities committed in the past and achieving reconciliation with its former oppressors.
At the center of this unprecedented attempt at healing a nation has been Archbishop Desmond Tutu, whom President Nelson Mandela named as Chairman of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. With the final report of the Commission just published, Archbishop Tutu offers his reflections on the profound wisdom he has gained by helping usher South Africa through this painful experience.
In No Future Without Forgiveness, Tutu argues that true reconciliation cannot be achieved by denying the past. But nor is it easy to reconcile when a nation “looks the beast in the eye.” Rather than repeat platitudes about forgiveness, he presents a bold spirituality that recognizes the horrors people can inflict upon one another, and yet retains a sense of idealism about reconciliation.
11. The Scramble for Africa: White Man's Conquest of the Dark Continent from 1876 to 1912
Author: by Thomas Pakenham
From the rear cover of this 738 page book: “A phenomenal achievement, clear, authoritative and compelling…… Thomas Pakenham’s fine book tells the story of this particular gold rush with admirable and judicious poise…. Contains some of the best-known episodes of 19th-Century history as well as some of the most mythologized and colorful characters the world has ever seen…..
Livingstone and Stanley, Brazza and Rhodes, Kitchener and Gordon, Lugard and Jameson….. Highly readable.” and “Taking the entire continent as his canvas, Pakenham has painted a picture of heroism and horror. He writes both with compassion and with an effective combination of detachment and judgement.A splendid book.”
12. Africa: A Biography of the Continent
Author: by John Reader
In 1978, paleontologists in East Africa discovered the earliest evidence of our divergence from the apes: three pre-human footprints, striding away from a volcano, were preserved in the petrified surface of a mudpan over three million years ago. Out of Africa, the world’s most ancient and stable landmass, Homo sapiens dispersed across the globe.
And yet the continent that gave birth to human history has long been woefully misunderstood and mistreated by the rest of the world. In a book as splendid in its wealth of information as it is breathtaking in scope, British writer and photojournalist John Reader brings to light Africa’s geology and evolution, the majestic array of its landforms and environments, the rich diversity of its peoples and their ways of life, the devastating legacies of slavery and colonialism as well as recent political troubles and triumphs.
Written in simple, elegant prose and illustrated with Reader’s own photographs, Africa: A Biography of the Continent is an unforgettable book that will delight the general reader and expert alike.
13. Ancient African Kingdoms: A Captivating Guide to Civilizations of Ancient Africa Such as the Land of Punt, Carthage, the Kingdom of Aksum, the Mali Empire, and the Kingdom of Kush
Author: by Captivating History
If you want to discover the captivating history of ancient Africa and the Kingdom of Kush, then keep reading… Two captivating manuscripts in one book:Ancient Africa: A Captivating Guide to Ancient African Civilizations, Such as the Kingdom of Kush, the Land of Punt, Carthage, the Kingdom of Aksum, and the Mali Empire with its TimbuktuThe Kingdom of Kush: A Captivating Guide to an Ancient African Kingdom in Nubia That Once Ruled EgyptAfrica is the continent where the first humans were born.
They explored the vast land and produced the first tools. And although we migrated from that continent, we never completely abandoned it. From the beginning of time, humans lived and worked in Africa, leaving evidence of their existence in the sands of the Sahara Desert and the valleys of the great rivers, such as the Nile and Niger.
Some of the earliest great civilizations were born there, and they give us an insight into the smaller kingdoms of ancient Africa. Egypt is the main source of knowledge of many neighboring kingdoms that were just as rich and developed.
14. The Darker Nations: A People's History of the Third World (New Press People's History)
Author: by Vijay Prashad
The New Press
Here, from a brilliant young writer, is a paradigm-shifting history of both a utopian concept and global movementthe idea of the Third World. The Darker Nations traces the intellectual origins and the political history of the twentieth century attempt to knit together the world’s impoverished countries in opposition to the United States and Soviet spheres of influence in the decades following World War II.
Spanning every continent of the global South, Vijay Prashad’s fascinating narrative takes us from the birth of postcolonial nations after World War II to the downfall and corruption of nationalist regimes. A breakthrough book of cutting-edge scholarship, it includes vivid portraits of Third World giants like India’s Nehru, Egypt’s Nasser, and Indonesia’s Sukarnoas well as scores of extraordinary but now-forgotten intellectuals, artists, and freedom fighters.
The Darker Nations restores to memory the vibrant though flawed idea of the Third World, whose demise, Prashad ultimately argues, has produced a much impoverished international political arena.
15. A Human Being Died That Night: A South African Woman Confronts the Legacy of Apartheid
Author: by Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela
A Human Being Died That Night recounts an extraordinary dialogue. Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela, a psychologist who grew up in a black South African township, reflects on her interviews with Eugene de Kock, the commanding officer of state-sanctioned death squads under apartheid.
Gobodo-Madikizela met with de Kock in Pretoria’s maximum-security prison, where he is serving a 212-year sentence for crimes against humanity. In profoundly arresting scenes, Gobodo-Madikizela conveys her struggle with contradictory internal impulses to hold him accountable and to forgive. Ultimately, as she allows us to witness de Kock’s extraordinary awakening of conscience, she illuminates the ways in which the encounter compelled her to redefine the value of remorse and the limits of forgiveness.