Kaffir Boy
by Mark Mathabane

The protagonist: Mark Mathabane

The Antagonist: The Apartheid State

Plot teaser: The True Story of a Black Youth's Coming of Age in Apartheid South Africa. Mark Mathabane 1986.


Mark is born at a favorable time in South African history. He witnesses the moment when the struggle for liberation takes a violent turn from peaceful protests to the creation of an armed wing of the African National Congress.


The lives of both blacks and whites in apartheid South Africa were regulated by a very rigid system of rules and laws that dictated where each race was allowed to live, work, play, and travel. Whites had far fewer restrictions, since they were only prohibited from entering the small portions of land that had been set aside for the large population of black South Africans. Black South Africans were regulated heavily. The rules governing the lives of black South Africans were so restrictive that it was nearly impossible not to break them at some point or another. The passes blacks were required to carry were difficult to keep in order, and officials made it more difficult than necessary.

I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in learning about how a struggling person who has courage, and who is determined to achieve a big goal in life.  

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