1. I first heard of Rhodesia from a Monty Python skit. Being born in the 80s, I had never heard of it before. I had to go to Wikipedia to learn more.
    The whites and the non-whites. That ‘us and them’ mentality. Yeah. This one needs to be weeded.

  2. Blast from the past; this reminds me of the first book you blogged: The Soviet Union!

    And I believe “coloreds” was the official term used by the Rhodesian state. Still weed worthy, though you might have trouble finding an up to date book on Zimbabwe to replace it.

  3. Actually, “coloured” is the accepted word for mixed-race folks in modern S. Africa. I’m American, my fiancee is S. African, and it surprised the heck out of me the first time he used it. I’ve had to remind him a few times not to use the term since it’s considered offensive here.

  4. This was a major issue in Britain in the 1960s – ’80s. Just before independence was given to the old British colony of Rhodesia the white minority seized control and declared ‘U.D.I.’ (Unilateral Declaration of Independence). UN sanctions were imposed and Rhodesia was expelled from the Commonwealth and only openly supported by Apartheid South Africa – though Britain and the USA continued to secretly help the pariah state, considering it better than if it had gone Communist and Soviet-backed during the Cold War. There was a civil war, the independence forces of ZANU and ZAPU led by Joshua Nkomo and Robert Mugabe. British governments constantly tried to mediate; finally succeeding, removing the white minority govt of Rhodesia – always run by Ian Smith – and installing that nice Mr Mugabe… Ironically it was the right-wing Thatcher administration that achieved this, admittedly with the liberal-leaning Foreign Secretary Lord Carrington in charge: the Lancaster House Agreement.

    So while we were making our Anti Apartheid demonstrations against South Africa in those decades, we also included racist Rhodesia in our protests. Of course one good thing about Lancaster House was that the South African minority state couldn’t survive much longer after that.

  5. At my library we have around ten books on both Northern and Southern Rhodesia. How do I know this? Because we had a huge shifting project last summer and the weeding that was supposed to have been done before we shifted wasn’t done. So there is nothing like physically moving books that shouldn’t still be there.

  6. Its about time all those that comment on how bad it was in Rhodesia to have a very deep and long look at what is going on in Zimbabwe. How can a person comment ‘nice Mr Mugabe’ about a man who is responsible for the ruining of a once beautiful country and putting it into poverty.

    Also if you have a look at the history of Rhodesia before it became Zimbabwe, you will find that the supposed ‘racist Rhodesia’ was not actually racial. If you had lived there then you would know this. America has more racial problems than Rhodesia ever did, but no one dare call America.

  7. I was in South Africa in 2008 and at that time “colored” was the term used for people of mixed race. Two of the women that I was working referred to their own children as colored. This was very matter of fact. They thought it was hilarious that the term “colored” is considered derogatory in the US.

  8. Apartheid, as cruel as it was, was a VERY important part of South Africa’s history; we all can–and should– learn from it. Even though I am an American, born and bred, I am quite comfortable with the term “colored” and actually prefer it… to me “black” is just a shade, and I find the term “African-American” to be a confusing mouthful. Yes, I am White, from the American South, but I am NOT racist in anyway. I have many friends of all shades and I will talk to anyone regardless of color. I remember referring to some of my South African friends from college in the 90s as “colored” and my parents, who were raised during segregation, went livid, even after I went into a lengthy, detailed description: “Their government calls them colored. They call THEMSELVES colored. They ARE colored!” I remember one time at the college I went to recently (graduated in 2010) I met a mixed girl from South Africa. I took one look at her and asked, “Are you Colored?” She said, “Yes I am,” and there was a tinge of pride in her voice and attitude. She also had trouble understanding Americans’ discomfort with that designation.

    I agree with Phillip May regarding Rhodesia…Mugabe’s Zimbabwe is a much worse state than Rhodesia. Look how fast the country has deteriorated. I know a girl from Zim whose father and uncle were in the government in the early days of the country. She knows Mugabe on a social level and says he is quite socially intelligent, but NOT a good president.

  9. If you’re going to start banning ANY books in public and school libraries, you should call them private, facsist libraries instead. That was one of Hitler’s aspirations, for those of you who don’t remember. Telling the unwashed masses what was and was not good for them to read, know, and be aware of! Hasn’t anyone ever heard the old saying about those who forget history being destined to repeat it? For better or for worse, this is history. How dare this site!

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