Customer Reviews


6 Reviews
5 star:
 (5)
4 star:
 (1)
3 star:    (0)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 
Most Helpful First | Newest First

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The State of SA - Past, Present & Future., 24 July 2012
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the African National Congress (ANC), a significant milestone for the liberation movement which helped to bring about the end of apartheid in South Africa. In this timely, conversant account, Martin Plaut and Paul Holden carefully examine the battle for power in South Africa right up to the present date. The book is incredibly thorough and their extensive research is apparent - but their detective work has been worth it for the insight and knowledge share with the reader. The chapter breaks in the book allow the reader to dip in and out, but I urge you to read in its entirety to gain a true understanding of post apartheid South Africa.

This book strikes an engaging balance between fact and comment - and is essential reading for anyone interested in South africa or politics in general.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Provides questions and answers., 28 July 2012
This book provides a truly balanced, thorough and up to date account of the complex web of power struggles in South Africa . Plaut and Holden seek to answer the question that is on everyone's lips: will South Africa be another tragedy or is there reason to hope for a stable, democratic society? The very style and nature of the book leaves it open to readers who know, or think they know, something about post-apartheid South Africa, and those who are looking to learn. It is careful to break down its argument, whilst still undergoing a painstakingly researched and high level of analysis and argument.

I don't know whether enjoyable is the right word, but if you're interested in South African politics then this is the book for you. Would argue too that book has lessons to impart not just for SA, but rather it is also a warning against one party states and the cancers of cronyism and corruption.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Incisive, 14 Mar. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Who Rules South Africa? (Kindle Edition)
A tiny bit out of date given the smooth passing of the ANC meeting in December 2012 which they posited as a potential break point. It would also be interesting to hear their view of what a South Africa in which the tripartite alliance has collapsed looks like. Other than that it is excellent and gave me a good understanding of the political background to the country on a recent visit. Essentially a collection of interlinked essays/investigations: clearly researched and concisely written in a terse, rather gripping style.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A comprehensive but readable account of an incredibly difficult question, 14 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The authors' expertise shines through as they help the reader wrestle with they key question of who rules South Africa.
It strikes an excellent balance between exploring the historic origins of various interest groups and not getting bogged down into making this a history book; it is a book grounded entirely in the here and now reality. Very enlightening.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Well Written and Well Argued., 4 Aug. 2012
I bought and read this book after listening to the authors give a lecture on the subject at SOAS. Although the book is obviously about SA, it also provides a general warning against one party states, political corruption and governments being swayed too much by unions and big business.
The book is a mix of both history and politics. As well as having conducted lots of interviews with ordinary South Africans, the book also focuses in on big personalities like Zuma.
Book is not wholly pessimistic, though it may bring home some inconvenient truths to supporters of the ANC.
Who Rules South Africa? Is well written and well argued.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Keep this book by you as the ANC leadership race hots up, 6 Aug. 2012
It is impossible in a review to cover all aspects of this detailed and very timely book. Its remit is wide, and it does not shirk the task of examining key events and relationships in great detail. Holden's chapters on the corrupt arms deal and the role of factionalism in the intelligence services over the Zuma-Mbeki fight (and Zuma's current battle to stay in power) are very dense and take a lot of working through, but the task is worth it and the diligent reader will be rewarded with gleaming nuggets of information and insight. Plaut's chapter on Helen Zille and the DA is also very important, as the DA has the potential - if it can reach out to a black constituency more effectively - to become a genuine political force.
I felt a sense of exhaustion after finishing the book - not because it was a slog to read, but because like completing a marathon, I had come out stronger on the other side. Stronger in being able to pick apart the complex web of relationships in modern South Africa, stronger in my understanding of the clever strategies of the Anglo-South African business community in retaining economic power through strategies to outflank Afrikaner and African nationalism, stronger in my grasp of why the more right-wing ANC Youth League and ANC factions want nationalization but the unions don't (at this stage), and finally, stronger in my appreciation of how factionalism is likely to continue and sharpen both before and after Mangaung. As I watch developments surrounding the December ANC conference, I will keep this book by me.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Who Rules South Africa?
Who Rules South Africa? by Martin Plaut
£7.79
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews