Celebrating the rich and untold history of investigative journalism – Southern African Muckraking, edited by Anton Harber

Southern African Muckraking: 150 Years of Investigative Journalism which has Shaped the Region celebrates the rich and untold history of investigative journalism in southern Africa and the crucial role it has played in holding power to account over the last 150 years.

It is the third book in the best-selling series of Muckraking titles: Global Muckraking, African Muckraking and now Southern African Muckraking.

This anthology is a selection of some of the best and most interesting investigative journalism from southern Africa, but makes no claim to be comprehensive or exhaustive. Selection has been based on an attempt to ensure a diverse and representative spread of different kinds of work covering a long period and many countries …
– Anton Harber

It tells, amongst other issues, of: the early fight against monopolies in the Cape wine industry; the man who broke the Peace of Vereeniging before the British cabinet knew about it; the escapades of ‘Mr Drum’; the nun who exposed Rhodesia’s protected village; how the opening of Parliament in eSwatini became an investigative exposé; the journalist who dressed as a priest to witness the Matabeleland massacre; and the use of satellites to get round Botswana censorship.

The book breaks new ground in tracing the history of investigative journalism back to 1706, including for the first time largely ignored work such as John Dube’s coverage of the 1906 Bambatha Rebellion and Ricardo de Mello’s fax newspaper in Angola. It highlights the long record of accountability journalism in countries such as South Africa, Zimbabwe and Namibia, and the recent surge of work in others such as Botswana, Tanzania and Lesotho.

It includes an introduction by Anton Harber, editor and professor of journalism, with each of the 47 case studies being written and contextualised by an expert in the area.

Contributors include: 

  • Hlonipha Mokoena, South Africa, 1877, ‘Fuze – Myths on Zulu king killing’
  • Peter Limb, South Africa, 1887, ‘Conditions in Herschel’
  • Kevin Davie, South Africa, 1900, ‘Delagoa Bay rail scandal’
  • Irwin Manoim, South Africa, 1902, ‘Treaty of Vereeniging leak’
  • Robert Edgar, South Africa, 1905, ‘AK Soga’
  • Ben Carton, South Africa, 1906, ‘Dube on Bambatha’
  • Peter Limb, South Africa, 1913, ‘Women’s protest’
  • Tembeka Ngcukaitobi, South Africa, 1913, ‘Richard Msimang – Land Act’
  • Anton Harber, South Africa, 1958, ‘Henry Nxumalo’
  • Peter Delius, South Africa, 1959, ‘Sekhukhune Rebellion’
  • Raymond Joseph, South Africa, 1960, ‘Broederbond’
  • Benjamin Pogrund, South Africa, 1960, ‘Starvation’
  • Benjamin Pogrund, South Africa, 1960, ‘Prison conditions’
  • Indra de Lanerolle, South Africa, 1961, ‘Helen Joseph on banished people’
  • Jo-Ann Bekker, South Africa, 1964, ‘Allister Sparks on Eastern Cape trials’
  • Raymond Joseph, South Africa, 1970, ‘Info scandal’
  • Andrew Meldrum, Zimbabwe, 1980, ‘Matabeleland Killings’
  • Paul Fauvet, Mozambique, 1983, ‘Matola raid’
  • Paul Fauvet, Mozambique, 1986, ‘Samora Machel death’
  • Reg Rumney, South Africa, 1990, ‘Sharemax’
  • Tim du Plessis, South Africa, 1990, ‘Vlakplaas’
  • Philippa Garson, South Africa, 1990, ‘Third Force/Inkathagate’
  • Erika Rodriguez, Mozambique, 1999, ‘Carlos Cardoso’
  • Tanya Pampalone, South Africa, 2000, ‘Rian Malan’s The Lion Sleeps Tonight’
  • George Lugalambi, Tanzania, 2000, ‘Albinism’
  • Mbongeni Mbingo, Swaziland, 2002, ‘King Mswati’
  • John Aerni-Flessner, Lesotho, 2006, ‘Water abuse’
  • Harry Dugmore, South Africa, 2007, ‘Mount Frere Hospital’
  • Nic Dawes, South Africa, 2009, ‘Nkandla’
  • Ron Nixon, South Africa, 2010, ‘Killing for profits’
  • Mbongeni Mbingo, Swaziland, 2014, ‘Arrest of Chief Justice Makhubu’
  • Justin Pearce, Angola, 2015, ‘Rafael Marquez’
  • Tim du Plessis, South Africa, 2017, ‘Esidimeni’
  • Joel Konopo, Botswana, 2017, ‘State abuse of asylum seekers’
  • Anton Harber, South Africa, 2017, ‘Gupta Leaks’
  • Mike Antanda, Lesotho, 2017, ‘Prime Minister’s dodgy deals’

Categories Fiction South Africa South African Current Affairs

Tags Anton Harber Jacana Media New books New releases Southern African Muckraking

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