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p. 1497. Spectres in the prison gardenlocked

  • Elleke Boehmer


As well as being a man of style, Mandela is a man of strict physical discipline. He was able to survive stringent circumstances so effectively as he excelled at stringency. ‘Spectres in the prison garden’ looks in detail at Mandela's time in prison and how it coloured his views. His time in prison was characterized by contrastive features: the spectral qualities of life on the island coupled with the brutal regime of prison life, and the transformative aspects of imprisonment which emerge from a combination of above two features. Given the confined space he lived in for so long, it is interesting how he developed a particularly intimate, perhaps even proprietorial, relationship to his wider home: South Africa.

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