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The Opening Of The Apartheid Mind: Options For The New South Africa
by Heribert Adam And Kogila Moodley
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From Publishers Weekly
Adam and Moodley, authors of the prescient 1986 book South Africa Without Apartheid, offer a sophisticated, accessible analysis of South Africa's recent past and make predictions for the future. Drawing on both academic and popular literature as well as firsthand resarch, the authors declare South Africa "a laboratory for the new global compromise between the North and the South." Nuanced in their analysis, they reproach the white government for trying to freeze economic inequality, criticize the African National Congress's "false triumphalism" and ideological ambiguity, warn of a growing and less-compromising black nationalism and suggest that recent political violence has more complex causes than most acknowledge. Adam and Moodley recommend that foreign governments try to level the political playing field rather than assist specific groups, and list six areas, from policing to tourism development, in which the West can help. The authors predict that South Africa will likely not descend into the authoritarian populism of Zimbabwe or the ethnically driven warfare of Yugoslavia, and that it will rather develop peacefully like post-war West Germany, thanks to a social-democratic pact between business, labor and the state.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
Adam and Moodley ( South Africa Without Apartheid , LJ 8/86) have written a systematic sociological analysis of the current political movements in South Africa. The first three chapters set South Africa in world context and detail steps leading to compromises considered totally impossible a decade ago. Detailed chapters on the African National Congress, black consciousness, Inkatha, and the far-right Afrikaner Resistance Movement give a view of the strengths and weaknesses of these organizations that is quite different from that provided by many scholars. The final chapter on the country's future concludes that the "the most rational and also the most likely scenario for South Africa is a social-democratic pact between business, labor, and key state bureaucracies, as practiced in postwar Germany." Excellent notes, an extensive bibliography, and a very helpful annotated list of selected Southern African journals and newsletters add to the value of this book. Of interest to scholars and well-informed lay readers.
- Maidel Cason, Univ. of Delaware Lib., Newark
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Kirkus Reviews
From Canadian husband-and-wife sociologists Adam (Simon Fraser University, Vancouver) and Moodley (University of British Columbia): a nonpartisan and nuanced look at the ``various competing forces'' now shaping post-apartheid South Africa. Adam and Moodley also coauthored South Africa without Apartheid (1986). Much of the analysis here attempts to address the stereotypes of both left and right that failed to explain the ``miracle'' that led to South Africa's current multiparty negotiations--or to account for the continuing violence. The authors note that neither the revolutionary nor the reformist agenda anticipated that the country would be transformed by these negotiations--negotiations ``that grant all major forces a stake in a historic compromise, by which each party stands to gain more than it would lose by continuing the confrontation.'' The result will probably be an ANC government working with a strong multiracial Nationalist Party to create broad-based policies. But such a compromise, Adam and Moodley warn, may well exacerbate South Africa's increasing divide along economic rather than racial lines as these two urban-based political parties control the spoils. The authors contend that it's this divide between the haves and the have-nots--between the urban areas and the rural--that's basically responsible for the current escalating violence. Tribal identity, they say, isn't as important as economic disparities, enormous unemployment among unskilled migrant workers, and the pervasive feeling among this group that their situation has deteriorated rather than improved with the ending of apartheid. Adam and Moodley analyze the various parties; the Communist agenda; the role of the unions; and the potential for disruption by either the far right or the left. As to the future, they're somewhat sanguine: A Yugoslavia or Lebanon type of scenario seems unlikely if the present cautious cooperation and ``remarkable pragmatic rationalism'' continue. For South Africa watchers: a timely, informative, and thoughtful appraisal. -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
Refusing to be governed by what is fashionable or inoffensive, Heribert Adam and Kogila Moodley frankly address the passions and rationalities that drive politics in post-apartheid South Africa. They argue that the country's quest for democracy is widely misunderstood and that public opinion abroad relies on stereotypes of violent tribalism and false colonial analogies.
Adam and Moodley criticize the personality cult surrounding Nelson Mandela and the accolades accorded F. W. de Klerk. They reject the black-versus-white conflict and substitute sober analysis and strategic pragmatism for the moral outrage that typifies so much writing about South Africa. Believing that the best expression of solidarity emanates from sympathetic but candid criticism, they pose challenging questions for the African National Congress and Nelson Mandela. They give in-depth coverage to political violence, the ANC-South African Communist Party alliance, Inkatha, and other controversial topics as well.
The authors do not propose a solution that will guarantee a genuinely democratic South Africa. What they offer is an understanding of the country's social conditions and political constraints, and they sketch options for both a new South Africa and a new post-Cold War foreign policy for the whole of southern Africa. The importance of this book is as immediate as today's headlines.
About the Author
Heribert Adam is Professor of Sociology at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver. His books include Modernizing Racial Domination (California, 1971) and also with Kogila Moodley, South Africa Without Apartheid (California, 1986). Kogila Moodley is Associate Professor in the Department of Social and Educational Studies at the University of British Columbia. She is editor and co-author of Race Relations and Multicultural Education (1984).
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