Paperback / softback
June 1, 2015
87 color illus., 1 map
9.25 Inches (US)
7.50 Inches (US)
1.03 Pounds (US)
$30.00 USD, £23.00 GBP
v2.1 Reference

Building a New South Africa

One Conversation at a Time

Once a thriving, multiracial community, the Sophiatown suburb of Johannesburg was home to many famous artists, musicians, and poets. It was also a place where residential apartheid was first put into practice with forced removals, buildings bulldozed, and the construction of new, cheap housing for white public employees. David Thelen and Karie L. Morgan facilitate conversations among today's Sophiatown residents about how they share spaces, experiences, and values to raise and educate their children, earn a living, overcome crime, and shape their community for the good of all. As residents reflect on the past and the challenges they face in the future, they begin to work together to create a rich, diverse, safe, and welcoming post-Mandela South Africa.

About the Authors

David Thelen is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of History at Indiana University.

Karie L. Morgan is a postdoctoral fellow in history at the University of Johannesburg.


"The conversation transcripts are rich with possibilities both analytical and practical and make for fascinating reading for historians of contemporary South Africa, as well as those interested in urban histories more broadly."—Journal of Contemporary History

"Building a New South Africa is quite wonderful. It's one of the few books I know that can breathe life into that worn word 'community' and do it with eloquent specificity."—Jackson Lears, Board of Governors Professor of History, Rutgers University

"A distinctive and original contribution, this book engages with a community which has changed so much over the past 30 years. It underscores how people, isolated in their homes aspire to turn strangers into neighbors and asks about how to raise and educate children, how to sustain a family life, and how to overcome crime. It records conversations among groups, not individual interviews, and it illustrates how conversation itself can actually bring a community into being."—Philip Bonner, University of the Witwatersrand
Indiana University Press

9780253017840 : building-a-new-south-africa-thelen-morgan
Paperback / softback
202 Pages
$30.00 USD

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