There is a moment when you can sense the power draining away, when a point of no return has been reached and passed. Prime Minister Gordon Brown is facing that moment now in Britain, as a sense of staleness, sleaze and incompetence overwhelms his government.
At last Mark Gevisser's long-awaited biography of Thabo Mbeki is out. For a project that began in 1999 and took eight years to complete, the title <i>The Dream Deferred</i> seems especially apt. As a subject, Mbeki is a walking "writer's block". Not only is he a densely complex person, as the book confirms, but he shimmers in the light, making it all but impossible to have a single thesis to explain the man.