Afrikaner Odyssey - Martin Meredith (Trade Paperback)

The Life and Times of the Reitz Family

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Description

In the first half of the nineteenth century, southern Africa was a jumble of British colonies, Boer republics and African chiefdoms, a troublesome region of little interest to the outside world. Into this frontier world came the Reitz family, Afrikaner gentry from the Cape, who settled in Bloemfontein and played a key role in the building of the Orange Free State.

Frank Reitz, successively chief justice and modernising president of the young republic, went on to serve as State Secretary of the Transvaal Republic. In 1899, he stood shoulder to shoulder with President Paul Kruger to resist Britain’s war of conquest in southern Africa.

At the heart of this tale is the extraordinary life of Deneys Reitz, third son of Frank Reitz and Bianca Thesen.

The young Reitz’s account of his adventures in the field during the Anglo-Boer War (1899–1902), published as Commando, became a classic of irregular warfare. After a period of exile in Madagascar, he went on become one of South Africa’s most distinguished lawyers, statesmen and soldiers. Martin Meredith interweaves Reitz’s experiences, taken from his unpublished notebooks, with the wider story of Britain’s brutal suppression of Boer resistance.

Concise and readable, Afrikaner Odyssey is a wide-ranging portrait of an aristocratic Afrikaner family whose achievements run like fine thread through these turbulent times, and whose presence is still marked on the South African landscape.

Product Details

Barcode
9781868427734
Department
Books
Released
3 Mar 2017
Content Source
South African
Supply Source
South Africa

Book

Author
Martin Meredith
Binding
Paperback / softback
Publisher
Jonathan Ball Publishers SA
Language
English
Number of Pages
224
Dimensions
233 x 152 x 15mm (233g)

Summary

In the first half of the nineteenth century, southern Africa was a jumble of British colonies, Boer republics and African chiefdoms, a troublesome region of little interest to the outside world. Into this frontier world came the Reitz family, Afrikaner gentry from the Cape, who settled in Bloemfontein and played a key role in the building of the Orange Free State. Frank Reitz, successively chief justice and modernising president of the young republic, went on to serve as State Secretary of the Transvaal Republic. In 1899, he stood shoulder to shoulder with President Paul Kruger to resist Britain's war of conquest in southern Africa. At the heart of this tale is the extraordinary life of Deneys Reitz, third son of Frank Reitz and Bianca Thesen. The young Reitz's account of his adventures in the field during the Anglo-Boer War (1899-1902), published as Commando, became a classic of irregular warfare. After a period of exile in Madagascar, he went on become one of South Africa's most distinguished lawyers, statesmen and soldiers.
Martin Meredith interweaves Reitz's experiences, taken from his unpublished notebooks, with the wider story of Britain's brutal suppression of Boer resistance. Concise and readable, Afrikaner Odyssey is a wide-ranging portrait of an aristocratic Afrikaner family whose achievements run like fine thread through these turbulent times, and whose presence is still marked on the South African landscape.

Classification

General Subject
History
BISAC Subject 1
History / Military / Other
BISAC Subject 2
History / Social History
BISAC Subject 3
Reference / Genealogy & Heraldry
BISAC Subject 4
History / Africa / South / Republic of South Africa
BIC Classification 1
Revolutions, uprisings, rebellions
BIC Classification 2
Colonialism & imperialism
BIC Classification 3
Boer Wars
BIC Classification 4
African history
BIC Classification 5
Genealogy, heraldry, names & honours
Dewey Classification
968.20460922

Author Bio

Martin Meredith is a journalist, biographer and historian who has written extensively on Africa and its modern history. He is the author of several bestselling books including The State of Africa: A History of the Continent Since Independence; Mugabe: Power, Plunder, and the Struggle for Zimbabwe, and Mandela: A Biography. His 2002 book Fischer's Choice, which documents the life of anti-apartheid activist Bram Fischer, was published as a revised edition earlier this year.

Review Quotes

"An author who knows African history intimately" - The New York Times