Anatomy Of A Miracle

Reviews Patti Waldmeir’s book Anatomy of a Miracle, which chronicles the fall of apartheid in South Africa. Discusses key personalities such as De Klerk, Mandela and Buthelezi.

Anatomy of a Miracle

The story of South Africa and the end of apartheid is a complicated one. It is not clear, however, that Waldmeir is adequate to the task of explicating that complexity. Her credentials, as provided to us through the discussion in the prologue, seem sufficient. She has a background in journalism, acquaintance with the continent and country, and interest in the subject. However, there is also a lack of sophistication in her presentation of herself and the understanding of the actors in the South African drama. It is particularly surprising that she makes a character assessment of a revolutionary based on his demeanor, and the fact that he swam laps in a swimming pool. That seems more of a child’s perception of reality than …

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