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  The Position of Women in Post-Apartheid South Africa: An Assessment of Gains and Losses When: 4/29/2011 1:00:00 PM
Where: Student Center Room 205
Ahmed Kathrada

Ahmed Kathrada (commonly known by his nickname “Kathy”) joined the South African liberation movement as a teenager. Nelson Mandela was reluctant at first to accept the young Indian man as a fellow freedom-fighter, but they soon became strong friends and advocates for each other. Both men, along with many other prominent activists, were given life and hard labor and taken to the Robben Island prison. They were released after 26 years, bringing new hope to the anti-apartheid struggle. He and Barbara Hogan met soon after they were both released; he writes “we rapidly gravitated towards a romantic relationship, which still continues.” After the apartheid leaders abdicated a few years later, Kathrada and Mandela began to build a new South Africa. They started the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to deal with past injustice and built the new South African government based on non-racialism.

Giving the newly inaugurated U.S. president a tour of Robben Island, Kathrada told Barack Obama that “The main depravation [in prison] is children. You miss children.” As he continues his work promoting the ideas of non-racialism and preserves the memory of the anti-apartheid movement, he makes sure to surround himself with his great-nieces and nephews.

Kathrada’s Memoirs will be published in the United States for the first time under the name Kathrada wished for—“No Bread for Mandela” because he got bread in prison (as all Indian and Coloured inmates did), but Mandela did not. 

Reviews for "No Bread for Mandela"

The first installation of an Exhibit on Kathrada’s life will be housed in the Anthropology Museum in Lafferty Hall in spring. It will go on a nation-wide tour following its United States premier in Lexington.

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