Country of My Skull

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Random House, 1998 - Abuse of administrative power - 286 pages
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In 1995, South Africa's new, black-majority government set up the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to investigate the murders and torture that occurred under state-sanctioned apartheid. Headed by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the commission heard testimony from the perpetrators of the crimes as well as its victims and sought a way to reach some sort of tenuous closure.

Country of My Skull is a response to the commission's findings, but it is also a compelling meditation on violence and its aftermath. In the same way that The Haunted Land revealed how communism's sins still echo in the eastern Europe of today, Country of My Skull tells of the desperate attempts of South Africa to recover from the nightmare of apartheid.

As an award-winning Afrikaner poet and a reporter for the South African Broadcasting Corporation, Antjie Krog is uniquely qualified to write this masterful blend of memoir and reportage. As she recounts the ways in which blacks and whites must confront the injustices of the past and the uncertainties of the future, Antjie also reveals the soul-searching and agony her reporting wrought on herself and her family. Her work fuses a poet's sensibility with a reporter's relentless pursuit of the story.

From the chilling testimony of the Afrikaner police who murdered Steve Biko, to Desmond Tutu begging Winnie Mandela to apologize for the violence she engineered, to the heartbroken voices of apartheid's victims, this is a wrenching story of a nation in turmoil, told by one of South Africa's most articulate and perceptive voices.

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User Review  - LibraryCin - LibraryThing

2.5 stars Shortly after Nelson Mandela became president of South Africa, the Truth and Reconciliation Committee was formed to listen to victims and perpetrators of apartheid. If perpetrators applied ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - patrickgarson - LibraryThing

Country of My Skull is an astonishing book. Krog's attempt to embrace, explicate, and bear witness to South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission is complicated, creative, flawed, distressing ... Read full review

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