review LIFE OF BISHOP SMYTHIES


The first edition of this book was published in December 1898. The second edition followed in February 1899. I have a very good copy of the second edition. So over 120 years this book was published. It seems that both the first and second edition each had 2000 copies. Who wrote this book? On the … Continue reading review LIFE OF BISHOP SMYTHIES

review The HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSITIES’ MISSSION TO CENTRAL AFRICA


On page 259 I saw it with my own eyes. The words: “Ex Africa semper aliquid novi”.  One of the forms in which this famous statement has rolled through history.  But let me start at the beginning. We do not start in Central Africa but in the British university town Cambridge. The explorer and missionary … Continue reading review The HISTORY OF THE UNIVERSITIES’ MISSSION TO CENTRAL AFRICA

review LIVINGSTONE


In my mind David Livingstone is a Scotsman who travelled to the southern parts of Africa, did missionary work, started travelling and writing, sought possibilities for commerce and missionary work. Henry Morton Stanley went to look for him, I presume. After Livingstone’s death he was carried by a few of his most faithful followers to … Continue reading review LIVINGSTONE

review AN INSTANT IN THE WIND


What kind of novel is this book by the late South African writer André Brink? Is it a historical novel? Is it a psychological novel? Is it a thriller? Is it a political statement? Is it ….? This beautiful novel can be read in many ways. You can peel off layer after layer. You may … Continue reading review AN INSTANT IN THE WIND

review AH, BUT YOUR LAND IS BEAUTIFUL


This is what visitors to South Africa said in the 1950’s : Ah, but your land is beautiful. The South African writer Alan Paton (1903 – 1988) wrote this sentence in his book several times. Yes, a beautiful land, but what about the politics and the rule of law and the mutual understandings? In the … Continue reading review AH, BUT YOUR LAND IS BEAUTIFUL

review PRAYING MANTIS


Should I have remembered the name ‘Cupido Kakkerlak’ or ‘Cupido Cockroach’? I now know I came across his name several times when I read a book written by Ido Enklaar on the Dutch scholar and missionary Johannes Theodorus van der Kemp (1747-1811). In The Netherlands he founded a missionary society and he himself, after having … Continue reading review PRAYING MANTIS