Race, Decolonization, and Global Citizenship in South Africa

October 2018
240 pages
9x6 in
Rochester Studies in African History and the Diaspora
ISBN: 9781580469333
Format: Hardback
University of Rochester Press
BISAC POL033000, SOC031000, POL053000

Race, Decolonization, and Global Citizenship in South Africa

Chielozona Eze

Examines the importance of South Africa's peaceful transition to democracy, especially in light of Nelson Mandela's belief that cosmopolitan dreams are not only desirable but a binding duty.
Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu left an enduring legacy of forgiveness, openness, and solidarity in South Africa. This book looks at how the country's historic transition to democracy has not only changed the negative narrative about South Africa but also provided a model for a new form of ethical participation in the world. In addition to Mandela and Tutu, this book considers South African cultural theorists, poets, and novelists such as J. M. Coetzee, Nadine Gordimer, Zakes Mda, Njabulo Ndebele, and Antjie Krog, all of whom have engaged with the struggle to overcome the legacies of apartheid and create a more humane society. Most of these figures share common cultural and moral traits with Mandela and Tutu, the most outstanding of which is their belief in the notion of global citizenship. In engaging the latter concept, this work seeks to answer the following questions: How can we understand being human in a world that is increasingly marked by hatred of others? Can Mandela's vision of his society provide us with a theory of how to live in our globalized world? This wide-ranging volume will appeal to scholars and students of history, African studies, literature, ethics, and international affairs.

CHIELOZONA EZE is Professor of African literature and cultural studies at Northeastern Illinois University, Chicago, Extraordinary Professor of English at Stellenbosch University, and a fellow at Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Studies, South Africa.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: New World Order, New Moral Challenges
Theorizing the Present: Sources of the New Moral Self in South Africa
Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu as Global Citizens
The Violence of History and the Angel of Forgiveness
The Challenges of Cosmopolitan Thinking in a Postapartheid Society
Of Xenophobia and Other Bigotries: Forging Transcultural Visions
Narrating Ubuntu: The Weight of History and the Power of Care
Conclusion: South Africa in Search of a New Humanism

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