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Khabzela by Liz McGregor

Khabzela by Liz McGregor

  • R 19500

Khabzela concerns the brief life and perplexing death of Fana Khaba, aka Khabzela, a youth icon whose brief life mirrors that of the first generation to reach adulthood after liberation. Born and brought up in dire poverty in Soweto, he managed against all the odds to fulfil a lifelong dream of becoming a DJ. No sooner had he achieved his dream – the most popular DJ on the most popular youth radio station, Yfm, with money flowing in and girls throwing themselves at him – than he fell ill with Aids. 

The central question of this timely and compellingly readable book is: why didn't he take anti-retrovirals and save his own life? The answer reveals a lot about many South Africans' understanding of Aids as well as the mendacity of the government's approach to it. McGregor's story introduces the reader to all sorts and conditions of South Africans as they connected with Fana and his life; taxi drivers, sangomas, a couple of Argentinian-born elderly Dutch ladies who have concocted a cure from their kitchen; academics and doctors, snake-oil salesmen, Dr Magic and his seductive potions and patter, the Minister of Health, and all the while, McGregor engages with these people and vividly portrays a changing South African world while trying to understand the country she had spent many years away from. 

This is a story about the fragility of the frontier generation: damaged by years of struggle, and now trying to make their way in a world totally different to the one they were prepared for.

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