It spent 14 weeks on my bedside table – not because I did not want to read it, but because I was hoping to read it slowly & without interuption.
It was given to me by a friend on a visit to Bloemfontein.
Dolf said I would enjoy it. That it would challenge me & enrich me. That it would broaden my perspective & understanding.
That it would help me make sense of my frustration with my own kind, in a world radically changed.
Knowledge in the Blood did all of that & more.
As we took a breather at the end of 2011, I took Jonathan Jansen’s book with me into the Winterberg & devoured it as the days lazed away with baboons calling from their caves by day & jackal calling us at night.
At first I felt a bit like an insect under a magnifying glass: Professor Jansen understands & comprehends the subject he writes about, immensely well.
He speaks of a knowledge in our blood.
I agree with him that this knowledge is in our blood.
I agree with him that it is a false knowledge.
I see how great aunts & uncles & aged parents – and even piers – speak & respond in ways which extend this knowledge way beyond the present.
I’m frustrated as I know it is a destructive knowledge.
A knowledge which will destroy the ones whose blood it infects.
I struggle to keep it from the blood of my children, without alienating them from family.
I’m astounded by the knee-jerk reaction of so many South Africans, resorting to this ‘blood-knowledge’ instead of trying to make new sense in a world with new opportunities.
I see it in action as we celebrate Christmas with an extended family.
This book is a must read for any Afrikaner living inside or outside South Africa.
It is a must read for black South Africans.
For South Africans.
It effectively unwraps a mind-set & worldview which prevents people from embracing the gift of forgiveness & freedom.
You need to read this.
It is one of those books with the potential to transform & influence our society.
I’d like you to read it, I have a copy you could borrow.
It will be time well spent.