Voices of South Africa: Growing Up in a Troubled Land

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9780152006372: Voices of South Africa: Growing Up in a Troubled Land

The author recounts her visit to South Africa where she interviewed numerous young people, both black and white, to find out what growing up is like in a country torn apart by racial strife.

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From School Library Journal:

Grade 9-12 An introduction to some of the complex realities in the lives of South African young people today. Meyer spent five weeks in South Africa in 1985, asking questions of even casual acquaintances. She openly admits that she had difficulties in obtaining information and describes with remarkable restraint situations that she found unpleasant and South Africans' opinions with which she disagreed. She writes at greater length and in more depth about contacts with whites and coloreds than with blacks, a situation that she could not change. Yet her account provides descriptions of the living conditions of a variety of segments of the population and widely differing opinions of teenagers and adults in each. Brief historical background is provided on each area, placing the current conditions she describes and the opinions South Africans expressed in context. The personalities of many of the South Africans whom Meyer met come across, even in some of the shortest interviews. The book incorporates facts found in recent social studies books in a personalized context and South Africans' attitudes toward selected current social and political conditions. For young people who want to learn more about the background of the daily news on South Africa, Voices of South Africa is an excellent source from which to start. Nancy J. Schmidt, Indiana University Library, Bloomington
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Publishers Weekly:

For five weeks in 1985, Meyer crisscrossed South Africa, interviewing families and students from many groupsEnglish, Afrikaner, Asian, black and racially mixed or "coloured." In one aimto give a feel for South African territory, history and customsshe succeeds; readers will indeed see what lies behind the headlines. In another aim, to inject her own voice and understanding, she also adds interest. Unfortunately, her book is nearly as complex as the situation. By covering such a large geographic area, visiting schools, churches and libraries, and meeting so many people across the class-structure spectrum, she has created abrupt jumps in material. Too many vignettes become dizzying, even annoying. The writing is excellenteach family history is captivating enough to follow furtherbut as a consequence of a five-week whirlwind, each story is dropped before it is fully told.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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