Dinah and her sister Lisa are growing up in 1950s South Africa,
where racial laws are tightening. They are two little girls from a
dissenting liberal family. Big sister Lisa is strong and sensible,
while Dinah is weedy and arty. At school, the sadistic Mrs
Vaughan-Jones is providing instruction in mental arithmetic and
racial prejudice. And then there's the puzzle of lunch break.
'Would you rather have a native girl or a koelie to make your
sandwiches?' a first-year classmate asks. But Dinah doesn't know
the answer, because it's her dad who makes her sandwiches. As the
apparatus of repression rolls on, Dinah finds her own way. As we
follow her journey through childhood and adolescence, we enter into
one of the darker passages of twentieth-century history.
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