8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is well worth of my shelf space.
You should read, at least, a book or two about biographies of such noble people as Nelson Mandela, whose lives have been a blessing to the world. This was a great inspirational book and helped me to realize how simple and small things in life could bring so much joy into one's life. Far too often, I personally take simple pleasures of life for granted. The freedom is not...
Published on July 4 2004 by A. Tserendavaa
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Struggle of One Man Can Change a Nation
Long Walk to Freedom is an experience to be remembered. Although the book is an autobiography, the details are exquisite. It is apparent that Mandela wrote this book not to boast over a life of fame or fortune, but to guide us through a lifetime struggle filled of humiliation and pride, success and defeat. Throughout Mandela's journey, we learn insight into Mandela's...
Published on May 29 2003 by chickita_de_bandera
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is well worth of my shelf space.,
You should read, at least, a book or two about biographies of such noble people as Nelson Mandela, whose lives have been a blessing to the world. This was a great inspirational book and helped me to realize how simple and small things in life could bring so much joy into one's life. Far too often, I personally take simple pleasures of life for granted. The freedom is not free and the book cites how the freedom is brought at the expense of sacrifices of our fathers. The book is very well written and what impresses me is Nelson Mandela's mastery of English language.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Struggle of One Man Can Change a Nation,
Long Walk to Freedom is an experience to be remembered. Although the book is an autobiography, the details are exquisite. It is apparent that Mandela wrote this book not to boast over a life of fame or fortune, but to guide us through a lifetime struggle filled of humiliation and pride, success and defeat. Throughout Mandela's journey, we learn insight into Mandela's thoughts, and the long walk he took to overcome the odds. Although his struggle was not easy, Mandela never quit, and for that he is a man to be commended by millions. Perhaps, Mandela wrote this book to teach us all a lesson in the true merit of human heart, "No one is born hating another person because of the color of their skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite." (622) Though the book is long, and at times tedious, it is filled with a variety of storylines that keeps the reader intrigued. Between the fight to keep his family alive and well, Mandela also battles the South African government, other political organizations, oppressors of freedom, and the South African court of law. In doing this, Mandela shows how a man's life is not only a complex event, but also a road with many paths. He also shows us how one man's paths can cross and change the course of history, and the oppression of a nation. This book is bound to keep readers captivated, as it involves more than one element of Mandela's life. No matter your name, your age, or the color of your skin, Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela is a book that will guide you through a struggle that we all are fighting for; the struggle against discrimination.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars INSPIRING!!,
This book was incredibly inspiring. It is the kind of book that you never want to put down. I would recommend this book to anyone and everyone, because I think each one of us can learn something from Nelson Mandela's thought provoking life story. Happy reading!
5.0 out of 5 stars If you learned anything from school about Nelson Mandela, it's mostly wrong!,
I decided to get this book because he died recently and I wanted to know more about the person who went to prison for 27 years.
I'm also into history and he has contributed a lot to history itself.
I love this book because I couldn't put it down. It was inspiring and taught me a lot not only about him but about the history of South Africa and surprisingly my self. When you read biographies of people you admire, you tend to reflect on yourself and what you can do to become a more successful person in your life.
The few things I didn't like about the book is the format and a pronunciation guide. Its a thick book but if they put like the Steve Jobs biography, it would be easier to walk around with. I would have liked to have a pronunciation guide simply because when I read, I like to put myself in the book and in this book I didn't know how to pronounce a lot of names.
I also learned that a lot of things that I learned in school were wrong such as he went to prison for 26 or 28 years and that he was a pacifist. There's a difference between being a pacifist and being non-violent. Read the book because I recommend it to anyone who wants to learn about this difference, South Africa and the man himself.
5.0 out of 5 stars Portrait of a Leader for All Times,
If you read only one autobiography this year, I recommend this one.
Leadership breakthroughs are few and far between. They are even rarer in the political arena. Although I had closely followed the path to an integrated democracy in South Africa (and worked hard on the anti-apartheid sanctions and boycotts), much of Nelson Mandela's struggle was hidden to me at the time. Only after the reconciliation had gone on for a number of years did it become apart how remarkable this man's contribution has been.
Recently, I read Playing the Enemy which described some of the nuances in how Mandela conceived of creating a peaceful transition through an unauthorized sole negotiation from a prison cell. Those stories impressed me even more. Now, I had to read the autobiography. And I'm glad I did.
Let me warn you, however, that Nelson Mandela is so self-effacing that the real story of what he accomplished and how he did it doesn't fully come through in the autobiography, Long Walk to Freedom. I recommend that you read Playing The Enemy first.
What the autobiography will do is show the cultural and social backgrounds of the struggle and how critical it was that Mandela be a man of honor, principle, and loyalty. He was a leader for the whole nation even when many people didn't want him to be in the nation. It's a remarkable way to be, a way that few people can accomplish.
The apartheid system was as vile a way to treat citizens as anything that has come along since Germany in the 1930s. It's hard to imagine that it arose after World War II and was so difficult to break.
The treatment of the African National Congress's leaders will appall you. Their grace will delight you.
May every nation have a Nelson Mandela to lead it!
4.0 out of 5 stars THE DETERMINATION OF ONE MAN- A MUST READ!,
After reading LONG WALK TO FREEDOM, I came away with a sense of awe for a man who spent 27 years in prison but never gave up the hope for his freedom and the freedom of his country.
Communicating was key to keeping the "freedom fighters" on the outside informed and encouraged. One way this was done was to write in tiny, coded script on toilet paper. The paper was so small and easily hidden that this became a popular way of smuggling out messages. When the authorities discovered a number of these communications, they took the extraordinary measure of rationing toilet paper. After awhile, only eight squares of toilet paper were given to each prisoner each day.
To live under such conditions where you can be so isolated from the world (For 27 years), that you contemplate conversing with a cockroach, is a test of the human spirit. To sacrifice the obligations of family so that a nation of people can breath in freedom is nothing short of courageous with a fiercely determined spirit. Here is what Nelson Mandela writes about in his struggle for family and nation:
I did not in the beginning choose to place my people above my family, but in attempting to serve my people, I found I was prevented from fulfilling my obligations as a son, a brother, a father, and a husband.
In that way, my commitment to my people, to the millions of South Africans I would never know or meet, was at the expense of the people I knew best and loved most. It was as simple and yet as incomprehensible as the moment a small child asks her father, "Why can you not be with us?" And the father must utter the terrible words: "There are other children like you, a great many of them....." and then one's voice trails off.
Nelson Mandela is a man that has a spirit and determination that is above and beyond most people or leaders today. READ THE BOOK!! It will open your eyes and in the end, it'll make you feel good about the human spirit.
5.0 out of 5 stars Long Walk to Freedom,
'Long walk to freedom' is a book that doesn't take you long to read it. It's one of the most interesting autobiographies you ever got to read. It's definitely written beautifully and it is so vivid and enjoyable. What makes this person so adorable and a hero is the way he tackled the most difficult situations with ease, even in his book he didn't make such a big fuss about his
sufferings and tough times he had to go through.
This book includes 10 parts, and the eleven-th one is the part of FREEDOM.
A country childhood - in which he recalls his childhood days so vividly.
Johannesburg - he runs away from regend (foster parent) after he arranges a marriage for him with a girl who was in love with the regend's son.
Birth of a freedom fighter - his liberation struggles begin here...
and so on...
A remarkable book - from which not that I have seen one man's struggles for FREEDOM, but also learned a lot of things - that are most useful in everyday 'civilised' world!!!
4.0 out of 5 stars A good autobiography,
Long Walk to Freedom is the autobiography of Nelson Mandela, one of the greatest leaders of South Africa. It gives a detailed account of his childhood, youth, and adulthood. It takes you through his years in college and his work as a lawyer as well as all of his political struggles with apartheid including his years in jail.
The book is extremely well written and gives the detail that only someone who witnessed the events could posses. Mandela's hindsight as he reviews the events of his life shows a more personal side to him. I liked the book but anyone who is considering reading it should be reminded that it is an autobiography so it does have a bias. He wrote the book as someone who had been wronged. Long Walk To Freedom provides an interesting and detailed account of the South Africans struggle with apartheid. It details Nelson's joining of the ANC (African National Congress) his rise in the ANC, and his creation of the MK. It also gives facts about his personal life and the life of his family. It is recommended to anyone who enjoys autobiographies or to anyone who is looking to learn more about the history of apartheid and South Africa.
4.0 out of 5 stars A great book and a great man,
Nelson Mandela was a legend. Putting his life in an autobiography doesn't even do justice to it. However, it is a very well written book and shows Nelson Mandela's high level of intelligence distinctly. The events of this man's life, portrayed in vivid detail in his book, have rocked the foundation of the entire world. No piece of literature recaps such an influential life as Mandela's with such accuracy and powerful detail as A Long Walk to Freedom. The book may seem extraordinarily long and boring at first and resemble nothing more than another political biography, but this book is unlike any other book of its kind. Straight from the beginning, Mandela describes his mostly uneventful childhood in a surprisingly interesting fashion, which is a great quality for snaring new readers. The vivid retelling of many insane events as Mandela approached the climax of his political career is the trademark of his skilled writing, and brought on a flow of renewed interest before one could suspect the plot was dead. The inclusion of countless crimes against humanity in the book, are the masterpiece behind its immensely famous influential power. The description of these events allowed me to see on the same level as Mandela and gradually understand why he was permanently devoted to the struggle. Nelson Mandela had no problem asserting the importance of his beliefs and justifying on a human level why his feelings and actions were pointed in the right direction. This book asserts that the highest importance in life is freedom, and from reading about the many woes of the oppressed South Africans, one can see that this book makes an effort to show that the opposite of freedom will always be unethical mayhem. This book should be read by anyone who understands it and wants to read it; I guarantee it will influence your views in some way and really have you thinking.
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the length,
I was required to read Long Walk to Freedom for a class in school. I had heard from students who were previously required to read the book that it was too long, and very bad. I did not go into this book with high expectations, which made Long Walk to Freedom a pleasant surprise.
Written by Nelson Mandela over the course of several years, beginning with a first draft written in prison (which was lost to authorities), the book covers each stage of Nelson's life. Beginning with his early childhood in an African tribe, through his education and career as one of the first black lawyers of Africa, and eventually his decision to join the famed political party, the African National Congress, where Nelson began his struggle for equal rights for his people. From there Nelson goes on to describe his life fighting for the freedom of the native people of Africa. Harassed and 'banned' by the authorities for his actions, Mr. Mandela's struggle is not an easy one. He would be put on trial three separate times for crimes stemming from his political views, his third trial landing him a life sentence. But with Nelson's natural resiliency in bad situations, and nations all over the world calling for his release, he did not fear spending the rest of his life in prison. His years spent in prison would be long and hard, but he knew upon his release that the long walk to freedom would near an end.
The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela is written well, and its length is not of issue, especially when taking into account how expansive the story of his life really is. The pacing of the story is actually very well done, years are written away in a few pages without anything seeming to be missed. In my opinion, even if this book had the worst writing of any novel, it would still be worth reading; its story holds so much importance and teaches so much about so many aspects of life, that it would lose nothing.
Long Walk to Freedom leaves one feeling refreshed; if the racist policies of the government of an entire nation can be taken down by a group of common citizens, perhaps there is hope for reform in any nation that is going through a period of strife.
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Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela by Nelson Mandela (School & Library Binding - Oct. 1995)
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