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Do not turn off the light - a book review
an article by Sodis, Editions Gallimard

"It was during the 30s, in a pro-Nazi organization called Ossewa Brandwag (the Oxcart Sentinel) that the three precursors of apartheid. John Vorster , Verwoerd Hendrik Frensch and Daniel Malan met and shared two sinister dreams. The first was to take power to avenge the British rule over the Afrikaners. The second was to make a hierarchical racial system in which blacks would be further marginalized. To achieve these objectives, these men needed two key levers : a shared vision of the world, a doctrine, a political party to mobilize the mass of whites. The system of apartheid thus became the doctrinal response and the National Party 's instrument of propaganda, organization and conquest of powe. But what is the meaning of apartheid? What is the real meaning of the doctrine?"  

click on photo to enlarge

"Do not turn off the light" is a book of reflections on the thought of Nelson Mandela. It analyzes the conditions for the emergence of his political personality as well as his legacy for future struggles. The light symbolizes culture in the progressive and humanist sense. It springs from traditional education, the African philosophy of Ubuntu, the willingness to learn and the conclusions that the hero of the struggle against apartheid draws from each political struggle .

Mandela believes that every human being can better himself, and that education raises the human condition and makes people free. To survive the harsh conditions of imprisonment, Mandela and his companions put in place a strategy of resolute resistance. Neither terror nor subhuman prison conditions designed to break the morale of the prisoners could defeat the freedom fighters .

The author, Nestor Bidadanure, is a journalist and specialist in conflict resolution. He contributes to the magazine Afrique-Asie . He is the author of the books "Cultures of peace versus populism" and Memoirs of the future" in the "Naive" editions (2011).

(Click here for a French version of this article)


Question(s) related to this article:

What is the legacy of Nelson Mandela for us today?,

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In death, as in his life, Nelson Mandela has captured the imagination of the world. Mourning mixed with celebration has electrified crowds all over South Africa and elsewhere. His life’s achievements and his lasting legacy are the topics of discussions. He has been described as a great warrior, a great liberator, the last giant in the fight against colonialism, forgiver, peace maker, and in many other ways.

All this week, Mandela’s lasting legacy has been on my mind. We tend to capture the legacies of great men and women in a word or two. A scientist becomes famous for an important discovery, a writer for a famous book, a musician for a great composition, and so on.

People like Mandela fall in a different category. He is in the category of Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King. . ...more.

This report was posted on January 27, 2014.