Country of My Skull
Ever since Nelson Mandela dramatically walked out of prison in 1990 after twenty-seven years behind bars, South Africa has been undergoing a radical transformation. In one of the most miraculous events of the century, the oppressive system of apartheid was dismantled. But how could this country - one of spectacular beauty and promise - come to terms with its ugly past? How could its people, whom the oppressive white government had pitted against one another, live side by side as friends and neighbors? To begin the healing process, Nelson Mandela created the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, headed by the renowned cleric Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Established in 1995, the commission faced the awesome task of hearing the testimony of the victims of apartheid as well as the oppressors. In this book, Antjie Krog, a South African journalist and poet who has covered the work of the commission, recounts the drama, the horrors, the wrenching personal stories of the victims and their families. Through the testimonies of victims of abuse and violence, from the appearance of Winnie Mandela to former South African president P.W. Botha's extraordinary courthouse press conference, this award-winning poet leads us on an amazing journey.
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But the amnesty hearing of police captain Jeffrey Benzien seizes the heart of truth and reconciliation the victim face to face with the perpetrator – and tears it out into the light . Never before had the double - edged relationship ...
He was pitch - black in the face ; I'd never seen him so black and his face – what was left of his face – a huge hole in the back of his head on the sticky floor . They used a pillow as a silencer ... pushed the pillow against his head ...
When their stories cut too close , victims often bury their faces in their hands , and wipe their eyes with tissues . ... Several times the pincers move towards his face in a reflex action as if he wants to cover his face with his hands ...
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LibraryThing ReviewUser 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 ReviewUser 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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