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Set amid the civil rights movement, this is the true story of NASA's African-American female mathematicians who played a crucial role in America's space program.
Before Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, a group of professionals worked as 'Human Computers', calculating the flight paths that would enable these historic achievements. Among these were a coterie of bright, talented African-American women. Segregated from their white counterparts, these 'coloured computers' used pencil and paper to write the equations that would launch rockets, and astronauts, into space.
Moving from World War II through NASA's golden age, touching on the civil rights era, the Space Race, the Cold War, and the women's rights movement, 'Hidden Figures' interweaves a rich history of mankind's greatest adventure with the intimate stories of five courageous women whose work forever changed the world.
Jonathan Jansen is the former Vice Chancellor of the University of the Free State, with a formidable reputation for transformation and for a deep commitment to reconciliation in communities living with the heritage of apartheid. In this, Jansen’s most personal and intimate book to date, South Africa’s beloved professor contemplates the stereotypes and stigma so readily applied to Cape Flats mothers as bawdy, lusty and gap-toothed – and offers this endearing antidote as a praise song to mothers everywhere who raise families and build communities in difficult places.
As a young man, Jansen questioned how mothers managed to raise children in trying circumstances – and then realised that the answer was right in front of him in the form of Sarah Jansen, his own mother. Tracing her early life in Montagu and the consequences of apartheid’s forced removals, Jansen unpacks how strong women managed to not only keep families together, but raise them with integrity.
With his trademark delicacy, humour and frankness, Jansen follows his mother’s life story as a young nurse and mother to five children, and shows how mothers dealt with their pasts, organised their homes, made sense of politics, managed affection, communicated core values – how they led their lives. As a balance to his own recollections, Jansen has called on his sister, Naomi, to offer her own insights and memories, adding special value to this touching personal memoir.
Internationally-renowned historian Hermann Giliomee has himself been intimately involved in the unfolding drama of South Africa’s history, as participant at the Dakar talks with the ANC, as outspoken commentator for the English press, and as leading thinker on the Afrikaners. Giliomee’s lucidity and original insights make this more than just his own story. It is also a gripping narrative, filled with anecdotes and revealing inner workings of the Afrikaner establishment.
As uitgesproke kommenatator wat voor en na 1994 met die regering gebots het, een van die Dakar-gangers wat al in die 1980s die ANC gaan ontmoet het en wereldkenner van die Afrikaners, is Giliomee ten nouste betrokke by ons land se geskiedenis – en hoe ons dit verstaan. Hier verweef hy sy eie lewensverhaal met die van die land en die mense wat hom fassineer in leesbare, narratiewe vorm, vol staaltjies en onvertelde verhale.
South Africa is a country rich in pathways, tracks and roads – both tar and gravel. It is also a country of wonderful stories, blessed with a varied, colourful and contested history.
For more than a year veteran journalist Luke Alfred walked South Africa’s roads through cities, countryside and everything in between.
Early One Sunday Morning I Decided to Step Out and Find South Africa tells the stories of some of the country’s most interesting and sometimes forgotten places.
In die jare 1891 tot 1893 het ongeveer 770 persone Transvaal verlaat en na Angola en Duits-Suidwes-Afrika getrek om hulle heil daar te soek. Dit staan bekend as die “sesde” Dorslandtrek.
Sowat 45 De Jagers het in verskillende groepe aan hierdie epiese trek deelgeneem. Ná die sesde Dorslandtrek het hulle tussen Angola, Suidwes-Afrika, Suid-Afrika en selfs Kenia rondgeswerf en verdere avonture oor die hele Suider-Afrika beleef. Sommige De Jagers het in 1928 van Angola na Suidwes-Afrika getrek en hulle daar gevestig, terwyl ander eers in 1958 uit Angola gerepatrieer is.
Uit die beperkte beskikbare bronne is die verskillende trekroetes van die sesde Dorslandtrek gerekonstrueer en vir die eerste keer word ’n kaart van die verskillende trekroetes gepubliseer. ’n Geslagregister van bykans 1800 afstammelinge en aangetroude familielede van die De Jagers van die sesde Dorslandtrek en byna 500 foto’s vorm ’n omvattende beeld van hierdie familiegeskiedenis.
From 1952 to 1981, South Africa's apartheid government ran a school for the training of African art teachers at Indaleni, in what is today KwaZulu-Natal. The Art Of Life In South Africa is about the students, teachers, art, ideas, and politics that led to the school's founding, and which circulated during the years of its existence at a remote former mission station. It is a story of creativity, beauty, and community in twentieth-century South Africa.
Daniel Magaziner radically reframes apartheid-era South African history. Against the dominant narrative of apartheid oppression and black resistance, this book focuses instead on a small group's efforts to fashion more fulfilling lives through the ironic medium of an apartheid-era school.
Lushly illustrated with almost 100 images, this book gives us fully formed lives and remarkable insights into life under segregation and apartheid.
What is it like to be born dirt-poor in South Africa? Clinton Chauke knows, having been raised alongside his two sisters in a remote village bordering the Kruger National Park and a squatter camp outside Pretoria. Clinton is a young village boy when awareness dawns of how poor his family really is: there’s no theft in the village because there’s absolutely nothing to steal. But fire destroys the family hut, and they decide to move back to the city. There he is forced to confront the rough-and-tumble of urban life as a ‘bumpkin’.
He is Venda, whereas most of his classmates speak Zulu or Tswana and he has to face their ridicule while trying to pick up two or more languages as fast as possible. With great self-awareness, Clinton negotiates the pitfalls and lifelines of a young life: crime and drugs, football, religion, friendship, school, circumcision and, ultimately, becoming a man. Throughout it all, he displays determination as well as a self-deprecating humour that will keep you turning the pages till the end.
Clinton’s story is one that will give you hope that even in a sea of poverty there are those that refuse to give up and, ultimately, succeed.
This close media study considers how, squeezed in the moral vice of past and present, Afrikaners look in a mirror that reflects only a beautiful people.
It is an image of upstanding, hard-working citizens. To hold on to that image requires blinkers, sleights of hand and contortion. Above all, it requires an inversion of the liberation narrative in which the wretched of South Africa are the historical oppressors, besieged in their language, their homes, their jobs.
They are the new `grievables', an identity that requires intricate moral manoeuvres, and elision as much of the past as of transformation.
Too much of South Africa’s history has been lost and suppressed, leaving a void for many South Africans. Sylvia Vollenhoven brings together her life and that of a long-ago ancestor, Kabbo, a respected Khoisan storyteller.
She writes of her experience as being “too black” for her coloured schoolmates, working as one of the early female journalists in the misogynistic environment of the 70s, and of the constant impact on her life of her background – including her ancestors.
Winner of the European Book Prize.
On 10 July 1941 a horrifying crime was committed in the small Polish town of Jedwadbne. Early in the afternoon, the town's Jewish population - hundreds of men, women and children - were ordered out of their homes, and marched into the town square. By the end of the day most would be dead. It was a massacre on a shocking scale, and one that was widely condemned. But only a few people were brought to justice for their part in the atrocity. The truth of what actually happened on that day was to be suppressed for more than sixty years.
Part history, part memoir, part investigation, The Crime And The Silence is an award-winning journalist's account of the events of that day: both the story of a massacre told through oral histories of survivors and witnesses, and a portrait of a Polish town coming to terms with its dark past.
JAN: My Franse Kosverhaal is ’n gedenkskrif en feesviering wat voortspruit uit JAN – die welbekende restaurant in die suide van Frankryk.
Dié restaurant is ’n vertoonstuk van die tradisionele Suid-Afrikaanse gasvryheid wat begin het op ’n plaas in die Suid-Afrikaanse platteland en voortvloei na die glansryke Franse Riviera. JAN, tans ’n eenster-Michelin-restaurant, het bewys dat drome waar kan word en dat jy eenvoudige bestanddele in ’n meesterstuk kan omskep wanneer jy jou passie uitleef. Elke hoofstuk weerspieël die stemming en inspirasie van die disse wat by JAN voorgesit word.
Die versameling van meer as 90 resepte strek van plaaslikgebakte brode, amuse bouche en watertandhoofdisse van vleis of vis, tot by die maaltye wat sjefs ná ’n lang werkdag in die warm kombuis geniet.
JAN: A Breath Of French Air is a memoir and celebration of the renowned eatery JAN, a South African restaurant in the south of France.
The restaurant is a showcase of South Africa’s tradition of hospitality, transported from a farm in rural South Africa to the glamorous French Riviera. JAN is proof that dreams can be lived and how a love for what you do can transform humble ingredients into a masterpiece.
Each chapter captures the mood and inspiration of what is served at JAN, and the collection of over 90 recipes covers everything from locally baked breads, amuse bouche and mouthwatering main course meat and fish dishes to what the chefs eat after a long night’s service in a hot kitchen.
What happened to Generation X? Millenials dominate our Facebook feeds and people bang on about the baby boomers - but what about us? The lost generation, the middle youth, the middle child of today. Are we still cool?
Generation X? Remember them? The kids who believed they'd never grow up. The generation Douglas Coupland immortalised in his novel of the same name. The wry, knowing navel-gazers obsessed with cool and being cool who today are sandwiched between the boomers of the 60s and the millennials. Gen X'ers came of age against a backdrop of Britpop and the Spice Girls, Tarantino and Pulp Fiction, Madchester and the Stone Roses, acid house and rave, super clubs, Ministry and Cream. They holidayed in Ibiza high on hooch and E and never ever believed there'd be a comedown. So whatever happened to them? We turned 40. And as Tiffanie Darke points out in this witty exploration of the generation who defied generalisation, we're not handling it all that well...
Where once we wore floaty skirts and Doc Martins, now we're sporting Scandi fashion and 'interesting' trainers. We still party in Ibiza but now bodyboard in Cornwall. Where once mixtapes were the ultimate mating call, now we take selfies and swap Spotify playlists - all the while conspicuously wearing large Dr Beats headphones and casually leaving old packets of Kingsize Rizla lying round our open plan kitchens. More to the point, Gen X are now in charge. In government, in business and the creative industries. The most anti-establishment of generations has now become the establishment. But as tech overtakes the arts as society's great shaping force, Tiffanie ponders - does cool and its pursuit still matter?
If Gen X had it sorted, gave us Barack Obama and downward facing dogs, why is stress the new flu? Why are we working not for love anymore - or cool - but to avoid negative equity and depleting pension pots? In Now We Are 40, Tiffanie interviews some of the most iconic Gen X'ers such as Pearl Lowe, Richard Reed and Blur's bassist Alex James to look at how Gen X live their life in between being young and old, and how it feels to want to burn down the establishment only to realise that now you are the establishment.
From the 2015 winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature comes the first English translation of her latest work, an oral history of the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the emergence of a new Russia. Bringing together dozens of voices in her distinctive documentary style, Second-Hand Time is a monument to the collapse of the USSR, charting the decline of Soviet culture and speculating on what will rise from the ashes of Communism. As in all her books, Alexievich gives voice to women and men whose stories are lost in the official narratives of nation-states, creating a powerful alternative history from the personal and private stories of individuals. ‘Communism had an insane plan: to refashion the “old” breed of man, ancient Adam,’ writes Alexievich. ‘This was perhaps communism’s only achievement. Seventy plus years in the Marxist-Leninist laboratory gave rise to a new kind of man, the Homo sovieticus.’ In this magnificent requiem Alexievich’s method is simple: ‘I don’t ask people about socialism, I ask about love, jealousy, childhood, old age. Music, dances, hairstyles. The myriad sundry details of a vanished way of life… It never ceases to amaze me how interesting ordinary, everyday life is. There are an endless number of human truths… I am fascinated by people.’ From this fascination emerges a hugely important and deeply moving portrait of post-Soviet society. In a nation that likewise grapples with making sense of scattershot historical experience, Alexievich’s portraits may make the South African reader draw unexpected and uncomfortable parallels between Russia post-1990 and South Africa post-1994.
What if the princess didn't marry Prince Charming but instead went on to be an astronaut? What if the jealous step sisters were supportive and kind? And what if the queen was the one really in charge of the kingdom? Illustrated by sixty female artists from every corner of the globe, Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls introduces us to one hundred remarkable women and their extraordinary lives, from Ada Lovelace to Malala, Amelia Earhart to Michelle Obama.
Empowering, moving and inspirational, these are true fairy tales for heroines who definitely don't need rescuing.
The 1930s and 40s were tumultuous decades in South Africa’s history. The economy declined sharply in the wake of the Wall Street crash, giving rise to a huge number of poor whites and the growth of a militant and aggressive Afrikaner nationalism that often took its lead from the Nazis in Germany.
A Perfect Storm reveals how the right-wing’s malevolent message moved from the margins to the centre of political life; how antisemitism seeped into mainstream political life with real and lasting consequences. Milton Shain, South Africa’s leading scholar of modern Jewish history, brings into sharp relief the ‘Jewish Problem’, detailing the rise of influential organisations such as the Grey Shirts and the New Order, which fanned the flames of antisemitism. He devotes considerable attention to the Ossewa-Brandwag, which, by 1941, constituted the largest yet mobilisation of Afrikaners.
The National Party itself contributed to the climate of hostility to Jews. It was instrumental in ensuring that only few of the Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany and elsewhere were permitted as immigrants. The National Party contributed to the prevailing climate of Jew-baiting. Indeed, some of its worst offenders were accorded high office after 1948 when the National Party came to power.
My Cape Malay Kitchen is Cariema Isaacs’s heartfelt and poignant account of the extraordinary relationship between herself and her father and how that was reflected in their shared passion for food and cooking.
She recollects all of the dishes they cooked and ate together, and shares her childhood memories of growing up in Bo-Kaap (the Cape Malay Quarter in Cape Town), lending insight into the culture, religious ceremonies and family events that have shaped the Cape Malay community into what itis today. But My Cape Malay Kitchen is also a book about flavourful food, richly spiced curries, indulgent cakes and decadent desserts.
Cariema's refreshing approach to food showcases many of the much-loved Cape Malay vintage recipes as well as a selection of modern dishes, and is ideal for anyone who needs a little inspiration in the kitchen.
This acclaimed book by Steven Pinker argues that, contrary to popular belief, humankind has become progressively less violent over millenia and decades. Can violence really have declined?
The images of conflict we see daily on our screens from around the world suggest this is an almost obscene claim to be making. Extraordinarily, however, Steven Pinker shows violence within and between societies - both murder and warfare - really has declined from prehistory to today. We are much less likely to die at someone else's hands than ever before. Even the horrific carnage of the last century, when compared to the dangers of pre-state societies, is part of this trend.
Debunking both the idea of the 'noble savage' and an over-simplistic Hobbesian notion of a 'nasty, brutish and short' life, Steven Pinker argues that modernity and its cultural institutions are actually making us better people.
Two ordinary Americans. Fifty innocent lives. One unforgettable journey.
In early 1939, few Americans were thinking about the darkening storm clouds over Europe. Nor did they have much sympathy for the growing number of Jewish families who were increasingly threatened and brutalized by Adolf Hitler's policies in Germany and Austria.
But one ordinary American couple decided that something had to be done. Despite overwhelming obstacles—both in Europe and in the United States—Gilbert and Eleanor Kraus made a bold and unprecedented decision to travel into Nazi Germany in an effort to save a group of Jewish children.
This is their story.
Born To Kwaito considers the meaning of kwaito music now. ‘Now’ not only as in ‘after 1994’ or the Truth Commission but as a place in the psyche of black people in post-apartheid South Africa.
This collection of essays tackles the changing meaning of the genre after its decline and its ever-contested relevance. Through rigorous historical analysis as well as threads of narrative journalism Born To Kwaito interrogates issues of artistic autonomy, the politics of language in the music, and whether the music is part of a strand within the larger feminist movement in South Africa. Candid and insightful interviews from the genre’s foremost innovators and torchbearers, such as Mandla Spikiri, Arthur Mafokate, Robbie Malinga and Lance Stehr, provide unique historical context to kwaito music’s greatest highs, most captivating hits and most devastating lows. Born To Kwaito offers up a history of the genre from below by having conversations not only with musicians but with fans, engineers, photographers and filmmakers who bore witness to a revolution.
Living in a place between criticism and biography, Born To Kwaito merges academic theories and rigorous journalism to offer a new understanding into how the genre influenced other art forms such as fashion, TV and film. The book also reflects on how some of the music’s best hits have found new life through the mouths of local hip-hop’s current kingmakers and opened kwaito up to a new generation.
The book does not pretend to be an exhaustive history of the genre but rather a present-active analysis of that history as it settles and finds its meaning.
Huis Kombuis commemorates the rich fusion of food and cultural heritage in District Six through personal stories, recipes, historical images and craft work.
The book is a culmination of memories and narrative. It weaves through the days of a typical week in District Six, focusing on traditional family recipes that were prepared with love and often limited resources. This is a visual celebration of the vibrancy and warmth of the community - who foraged, preserved, baked and cooked together.
Portraits of 23 former District Six residents, accompany recollections of lives lived in a significant time. Artifacts, food and anecdotes bring the spirit of District Six alive again.
An illustrated guide to the Normans - the invaders of 1066 who changed English life forever The 1066 Norman conquest of England, led by William, Duke of Normandy ("the Conqueror"), was the single greatest political change England has ever seen. The Normans brought with them a new culture, which included law, architectural style and methods, and leisure pursuits. The old aristocracy was stripped of their assets and denounced, and in its place a new French aristocracy began to run the country - even bringing their language with them. The guide examines the impact the new Norman rule had on the English way of life. Look out for more Pitkin Guides on the very best of British history, heritage and travel.
'Timely... wonderfully entertaining' - The Wall Street Journal In It's All A Game renowned games expert Tristan Donovan opens the box on the incredible and often surprising history and psychology of board games. He traces the evolution of the game across cultures, time periods, and continents, from the paranoid Chicago toy genius behind classics like Operation and Mouse Trap, to the role of Monopoly in helping prisoners of war escape the Nazis, and even the scientific use of board games today to teach artificial intelligence how to reason and how to win. With these compelling stories and characters, Donovan ultimately reveals why board games have captured hearts and minds all over the world for generations.
David Abulafia begins with the earliest of seafaring societies - the Polynesians of the Pacific, the possessors of intuitive navigational skills, long before the invention of the compass, who by the first century were trading between their far-flung islands. By the seventh century, trading routes stretched from the coasts of Arabia and Africa to southern China and Japan, bringing together the Indian Ocean and the western Pacific, linking together half the world through the international spice trade. In the Atlantic, centuries before the little kingdom of Portugal carved out its powerful, seaborne colonial empire, many peoples sought new lands across the sea - the Bretons, the Frisians and, most notably, the Vikings, now known to be the first Europeans to reach North America. As Portuguese supremacy dwindled in the late sixteenth century, the Spanish, the Dutch and then the British each successively ruled the waves. Following merchants, explorers, pirates, cartographers and travellers in their quests for spices, gold, ivory, slaves, lands for settlement and knowledge of what lay beyond, David Abulafia has created an extraordinary narrative of humanity and the oceans. Besides its grand narratives, The Boundless Sea explores the lesser known maritime enterprises of Denmark, Sweden, Oman, Sri Vijaya and many others. And today, as plastic refuse covers thousands of square miles of the waters, and once exotic trading cities and outposts are replaced by vast, mechanized container ports, he asks - what next for our oceans and our world?
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