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JJ Crwys-Williams (peony@iafrica.com) RSS Feed (South Africa)

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No Future Without Forgiveness
No Future Without Forgiveness
by Desmond Tutu
Edition: Hardcover
74 used & new from $0.01

49 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A message in morality for the next century., October 17, 1999
I interviewed Desmond Tutu in Atlanta just before the release of the book, which he wrote at the rate of one chapter a week; towards the end of the interview I asked him if he thought his prostate cancer had been either caused by or accelerated by South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission. So much horror, surely, needs an outlet? "Oh, yes," he said, as the warm rain cascaded down outside the studio, "it's had its effect all right. But I am still full of wonder. And I am so grateful that I have lived through it all." By this he means living through apartheid, preventing a necklacing-in-progress, welcoming Nelson Mandela on his first day out of 27 years' of incarceration, being one of the clerics to swear in South Africa's first democratically elected President - and marrying the 80 year-old man on his birthday. Tutu is a humble man, although he calls himself vain; the book displays little vanity. What it displays is a shining, unequivocal message for the next century: we need to search for a new worldwide morality, a new sense of ethics. If we don't, be sure that somewhere, another South Africa will emerge. He spares few people in this sometimes horrifying book: white South Africans who have not responded with generosity to the changes in the country, Nobel Peace Prize winner FW de Klerk, who instigated the change in South Africa; the generals of the past, the mean and the miserly. He sheds light on the behind the scenes tensions of the TRC, surely a microcosm of the new South Africa as it seeks to integrate. He reveals that he nearly resigned at one point; he explains his rage when the final report of the TRC was placed in jeopardy within hours of its release; how he fought to subdue his tears as horror story followed upon horror story. Of these, there are mercifully few in this book, although the voice of the victims shines through on page after page. They want so little, he explains, perhaps just a son's bones so they can be buried with honour. The book is one of massive integrity and a moral message for the future which is upon us.


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