Bryan Rostron
Guest Author
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/ 26 September 2007

A red lesson from Italy

Tear gas billowed down the street every day as rioters battled police. Enraged protesters believed that even the Communist Party had turned its back on them. One evening, amid the debris of street barricades, I spotted two party officials — famed for their underground resistance — pleading with a group of rioters to renounce violent protest. This was in Rome exactly 30 years ago.

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/ 22 January 2007

Rider Haggard rides again

The swashbuckling colonial novelist remains a persistent feature of many books on Africa. Events are not merely reported, but interpreted through the incredulous eyes of our intrepid ”white man in Africa”. Curiously, this retrograde genre remains extremely popular in South Africa.

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/ 19 July 2002

There’s money in horror

‘Some call me the devil,” proclaims Ed Fagan delightedly. We are in a Cape Town Waterfront hotel and Fagan, a showman, is enjoying himself as he details the multibillion-dollar class action he has launched against foreign companies accused of propping up apartheid.

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/ 12 July 2002

(Illiberal) liberalism?

The Edwardian English writer Saki (HH Munro) began one of his acerbic short stories along the lines of, ”Lady So-and-So was a passionate socialist, secure in the conviction that such a catastrophe would never arrive in her lifetime.”