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A Hippopotamus At The Table: A true story of a journey to a new life in Cape Town, South Africa in 1975

ISBN: 9780957612242
Publisher: Tambourine Press
Edition: 1
Publication Date: 2015-06-28
Number of pages: 330
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  • Regular price $24.02

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Description


This is a true story - a memoir set in Cape Town 1975.
A young woman, with her husband and baby travelled to South Africa in 1975 at a time when apartheid was at its height. Their journey took them from a high rise apartment in Johannesburg, to a chicken farm and then a thousand miles across the Karoo to Cape Town. There they lived for over two years at a time of growing social unrest against the rigid strictures of the apartheid system.
Her husband’s work as an actor took him touring from Cape Town to the townships and into major roles in innovative theatre. Her journey became a spiritual quest to make sense of the world in which she found herself, a world where black and white mingled but were kept apart.
The government of the time was clamping down, enforcing rigid censorship and the separation of people. It was the children of the townships who fermented the riots of 1976, rebelling against the oppressive rules of a hateful system. The murders of these children resulted in a huge outcry across the world. Censorship kept that largely hidden from many of the people who lived there.

This is a story of a young family living in those times in South Africa. The effects of apartheid crept up on them until two tragedies drove them to realise that continuing to live there had become untenable.
Excerpt from the book:
Waiting at the reception desk to check in, I saw the toilet signs for the first time, in both Afrikaans and English – Blanke Dames (White Ladies), Nie Blanke Vrou (Non-White Females) … the first time I had to go, I stood outside, hesitating, feeling that by choosing one I was accepting their distinction.

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