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3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Mark Mathabane does it again!, 9. Juli 2000
Von 
Dr. Gilbert Huffman (Mount Airy, N.C. United States) - Alle meine Rezensionen ansehen
(REAL NAME)   
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Miriam's Song: A Memoir (Gebundene Ausgabe)
MIRIAM'S SONG is the heartbreaking, but hauntingly beautiful, story of a black girl's struggle to overcome the difficulties of living in South Africa under apartheid to achieve her one goal in life. Her brother, Mark Mathabane, writing in the first person present tense, reveals the horrors of living in a ghetto of Alexandra where poverty, filth, violence, abuse, and fear are everyday occurrences.
In spite of a dysfunctional family headed by an abusive father more interested in buying alcohol for himself than food for his family of eight living in a two-room shack with an open sewer in the front door, Miriam is determined to get an education. The Bantu (Black) Education system is staffed by cruel teachers who are more interested in clean hands and fingernails, combed hair, and clean bloomers (or if they have bloomers) than the quality of education in overcrowded, and understaffed classroom with inadequate teaching materials. Miriam is encouraged by her mother to do her best to succeed in spite of the handicaps.
The book is a social commentary on a society where women are subservient to men, where polygamy is the accepted way, and where physical, mental, and sexual abuse are a way of life in the ghettos. Miriam resides in a culture where witchcraft, divination, and the casting of spells are accepted, and she and her mother are criticized for attending church services.
MIRIAM'S SONG is also a commentary on the conditions blacks endure in a country where they make up a vast majority of the population but have no voice in the government. The author skillfully paints a vivid picture of the struggle for equality and how peaceful strikes, stayaways, and demonstrations give way to violence and to the eventual triumphant overthrow of the white-only government.
Even though MIRIAM'S SONG recounts some of the struggles Mark Mathabane wrote about in KAFFIR BOY, it should join his earlier work on the list of required reading for students throughout the world. It is must reading for anyone interested in human rights and the struggle to overcome apartheid in South Africa. It reads like a novel but carries the impact of an atomic bomb.
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2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Remarkable woman, her brother, and the Family he saved., 4. Juli 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Miriam's Song: A Memoir (Gebundene Ausgabe)
This is the first I have ever read of the Mathabane Family and their remarkable accomplishments despite the contrived, race-based evil that was Apartheid. For this book to be referred to as "defused and vague" causes one to wonder what horrors constitute clarity, and how graphic must descriptions be of tortured children (by the government), rape, murder, and a uniquely gruesome form of killing referred to as being "necklaced" to satisfy the voyeur. "Unsparingly graphic" is succinct, accurate, and sorrowfully true.
Apartheid was another example of how deranged one group can be to another, and happily its ultimate fate was to become the abortion of hatred that it was, but during its reign prior to its predestined death, the horror it caused was epic. I felt I was fairly informed about the topic, this book proved that feeling to be very wrong.
"Bantu Education" will forever be a monument to the manner an enlightened minority was determined to keep the majority "in their place". Despite this system of abuse, humiliation, and a goal to keep a people ignorant, the oppressed broke the system's back. Whether it was a man spending 25 years in prison only to emerge as a World Figure, or students like Miriam who just would not quit, the delusion the minority of whites so badly wanted, was appropriately destroyed.
The story that Miriam relates through her Brother opened up new realities of Apartheid I was unaware of. The large demonstrations that became a fixture on World news were composed partly of students "impressed" like soldiers centuries ago into participating. Refusing to participate could court death. The treatment of women specifically and in general was again a horror, and one that was implemented not by the government but by the anarchy that reigned in the ghetto. Some was clearly based on tradition, tribal conflict, and superstition, but none of it was justifiable.
Mark managed to gain his way to the USA, and once here never forgot his family. With the help of some well-known celebrities he brought his Family to the United States. His best-selling book "Kaffir Boy" not only supported his Family until they could be brought to the USA, but brought even more attention to the malignancy that was Apartheid
I am glad they made it, I thank those who helped them, and I believe the spirit that kept them alive makes them a great addition to this Country, not only as citizens, but role models.
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Miriam's Song: A Memoir
Miriam's Song: A Memoir von Mark Mathabane (Taschenbuch - 12. Juni 2001)
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