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We Need to Talk
‘Ways of speaking can help heal or they can provoke; they can inflame passions or settle nerves.’Professor Jonathan Jansen is fast becoming a household name in South Africa for his critical and, at times, inconvenient voice. In this collection of articles previously published in The Times, South Africa, Jansen highlights the issues that confront the country – the issues we ...more
Kindle Edition, 280 pages
(first published January 4th 2011)
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I had heard Jonathan Jansen's name mentioned in conversation from time to time over the past couple of years, but had never read any of his work. I'm glad I picked up this book, and I'm glad I read every chapter in it! Even though this series of columns would have been extremely topical at the time of original publication, the message and the analysis contained in these vignettes are still so relevant. There's also something about being able to see in clear 'hindsight' what a lone voice had the ...more
I have been wanting to read this for a while, and in fact the followup book has already been released, so my rating is a little harsh because some of the writings are now a bit dated, and I have a resistance to any 'diary' type book (silly i know because i do read blogs online a lot). I find Jansen truly inspiring from an educational transformation perspective, and hope to meet him one day. I especially enjoyed his ideas on reducing the drop out rate and the value of asking questions, seeking to ...more
I am hooked. Can't wait to get time to read more tonight. I love Prof Jansen's voice through his writing: it feels as if I'm sitting in his office, having a cup of tea and chatting about the state of our amazing, scary, beloved, complicated country. I love his analogy of seeing the rainbow through the rain. Too often the voices we listen to, be it through the media, at a braai, or in our own head, see the rain or the rainbow exclusively.
While his 'solutions' are a bit idealistic and impractical, Jansen tackles some difficult issues in an eloquent and thought-provoking way. Although he has some nice ideas about what SA should be, he can be a bit doom 'n gloomy, and a bit of a sensationalist. His style makes up for it. Worth a read.
Prof Jansen highlights some deep issues engrained in South African society. Throughout the book he brings to light the major perpetuating issues of over 300 years of collonialism in schools, universities, leadership and sport. It is a good read, but be prepared to be very challenged.
Professor Jonathan Jansen is the Vice Chancellor of the University of the Free State, South Africa, where he has earned a formidable reputation for transformation and for a deep commitment to reconciliation in communities living with the heritage of apartheid. He is an educationalist, a former Dean of Education at the University of Pretoria, South Africa, who holds an impressive collection of degr ...more
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