South Africa

How 19th-century gold rushes led to a distrust of China

2 October 2021 9:00 am

For a brief moment three summers ago it seemed that the clear Idaho air wafting through the Sun Valley Literary…

Letters: Why aren’t Italians fighting for their liberty?

14 August 2021 9:00 am

Wage concern Sir: Martin Vander Weyer’s call for higher wages to end the shortage of British HGV drivers (‘Your country…

Letters: The problem with the ‘alpha migrants’

7 August 2021 9:00 am

Here illegally Sir: Unfortunately, Charlotte Eagar misses the point (‘The alpha migrants’, 31 July). The Channel migrants may be ‘bright…

The case for travelling abroad

31 July 2021 9:00 am

I’m off. In the week when you may read this, my partner and I will be winging our way to…

The real reasons for South Africa’s riots

31 July 2021 9:00 am

Sixty-eight years ago, when I was four, my Scottish father and English mother took me from London to South Africa,…

Death and dishonour: The Promise, by Damon Galgut, reviewed

31 July 2021 9:00 am

If death is not an event in life, as Wittgenstein observed, it’s a curious way to structure a novel. But…

What's behind the South African riots?

15 July 2021 8:59 am

South Africa is ablaze once more. In the provinces of KwaZulu-Natal (formerly Natal) and Gauteng (which includes Johannesburg and Pretoria),…

Memories of Stellenbosch and South Africa’s finest wines

27 February 2021 9:00 am

Lockdown provides time to think, and to reminisce. A South African friend, trapped in Amsterdam, phoned the other day. Had…

Prue Leith: My carbon footprint should put me in jail

29 February 2020 9:00 am

I made the mistake of saying I thought insects might help feed the world. They are high-protein, cheap to farm…

Death in the Cape – the lonely fate of Mary Kingsley

15 February 2020 9:00 am

What compelled three well-known British writers to leave their homes and travel 6,000 miles to participate in a nasty late-19th-century…

A terrific two-hander that belongs at the National: RSC's Kunene and the King reviewed

7 February 2020 10:00 pm

The Gift is three plays in one. It opens in a blindingly white Victorian parlour where a posh lady, Sarah,…

The long death of South Africa’s political centre

2 November 2019 9:00 am

 Cape Town Last Sunday, when South Africa beat Wales to go through to the rugby World Cup final against England,…

Claret, dogs and nothing to grouse about

14 September 2019 9:00 am

What do you get if you cross a dyslexic, an insomniac and an agnostic? Someone who wakes up at 4…

Savagery in the Cape Colony: Red Dog, by Willem Anker, reviewed

6 July 2019 9:00 am

Red Dog is an ambitious hybrid of a book. It was published in South Africa to wide acclaim in 2014…

Boer refugees were herded by the British into cattle trucks to be shunted into concentration camps at Bloemfontein in 1901. Credit: Alamy Stock Photo

Brutish Brits: You Will Be Safe Here, by Damian Barr, reviewed

25 May 2019 9:00 am

Damian Barr explains the upsetting genesis of his impressive debut novel, You Will Be Safe Here, in his acknowledgements: This…

Rorke’s Drift: a desperate brawl at a mission station up there with the great battle honours of the British army

Snatching victory from the jaws of defeat: the triumph of Rorke’s Drift

19 January 2019 9:00 am

On 22 January last year, the entrance whiteboard at London Underground’s Dollis Hill carried a brief factual statement: On this…

Photo by Alain Grosclaude/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Taki: Should I just move to a cave in France?

19 January 2019 9:00 am

Gstaad   Do any of you know what cisgender is? I just found out. Cisgender is a term that describes…

Durban Notebook: a nation in paralysis

20 October 2018 9:00 am

No one likes uncertainty and in Britain we’ve got more than our fair share. But spare a thought for South…

The white DJ: permissible only in Palm Beach, Biarritz or on the Riviera

My faux pas at the Duke of Beaufort’s bash

15 September 2018 9:00 am

A letter from a reader in South Africa mentions that the writer’s father insisted a white dinner jacket was permissible…

My fans say I could have won the Nobel – if it wasn’t for the bizarre sex

19 May 2018 9:00 am

The family ranch, which my father acquired when I was about six years of age, lay along the banks of…

Farming is a hard life no matter where you do it

7 April 2018 9:00 am

Laikipia, Kenya Erupe is a Kenyan farmer. He owns a smallholding of a few acres not far from my own…

Genocide in South Africa: now that’s a black-and-white issue

17 March 2018 9:00 am

Last time I was in South Africa I spent two weeks deep in the Karoo, that desiccated wasteland in the…

In Woolf’s clothing

19 August 2017 9:00 am

Martin Amis once said that the writer’s life is half ambition and half anxiety. While one part of your brain…

South Africa’s Heart of Darkness

2 April 2016 9:00 am

Trencherman was first published in Afrikaans in 2006 and translated into English for a South African readership shortly afterwards, but…

A glimpse of an older, kinder Chelsea

2 April 2016 9:00 am

The Parish Church of St Luke in Sydney Street, Chelsea, is enormous. Vaguely reminiscent of King’s College Chapel, Cambridge, it…