Thursday, 18 August 2016

Mandela: An Audio History produced by Joe Richman

Mandela: An Audio History produced by Joe Richman

Published by Highbridge Audio on the 19th February 2014

Where to buy this book:
Buy from independent booksellers via Abebooks
Buy from independent booksellers via Alibris
Buy the audiobook download from Audible via

How I got this book:
Downloaded as part of the AudioSYNC summer programme in 2016

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

'Recognized as one of the most comprehensive oral histories of apartheid ever broadcast (NPR, BBC, CBC, SABC), Mandela: An Audio History tells the story of the struggle against apartheid through rare sound recordings. The series weaves together more than 50 first-person interviews with an unprecedented collection of archival sound: a rare recording of the 1964 trial that resulted in Mandela’s life sentence; a visit between Mandela and his family secretly taped by a prison guard; marching songs of guerilla soldiers; government propaganda films; and pirate radio broadcasts from the African National Congress (ANC). Once thought lost forever, Radio Diaries producer Joe Richman unearthed a treasure trove of these historic recordings in the basement archive of the South African Broadcasting Corporation. Ultimately, over 50 hours of archival recordings and many more hours of contemporary interviews with the living witnesses to South Africa’s turbulent history have gone into the creation of one of the most moving audio documentaries ever produced.'

This Radio Diaries programme provides a concise overview of the apartheid years in South Africa. It lasts one hour fifteen minutes and and includes iconic moments such as an original recording of Mandela's 'Prepared to die' statement at the conclusion of his trial speech. Snippets of African protest songs link other recordings of news broadcasts and interview segments. I found the audiobook interesting to hear and felt that this would have been a suitable introduction to the other South Africa history book I recently read, The Road To Soweto. However I was disappointed that there wasn't more to it. If this really is 'one of the most comprehensive oral histories of apartheid' I am left wondering how many others have been produced.

Search Lit Flits for more:
Books by Joe Richman / History books / Books from America

No comments:

Post a comment