- Publisher: PublicAffairs,U.S.
- Format: Paperback | 592 pages
- Dimensions: 145mm x 216mm x 43mm | 658g
- Publication date: 22 September 2008
- Publication City/Country: New York
- ISBN 10: 1586486411
- ISBN 13: 9781586486419
- Illustrations note: black & white illustrations, maps
- Sales rank: 669,027
Southern Africa was once regarded as a worthless jumble of British colonies, Boer republics, and African chiefdoms, a troublesome region of little interest to the outside world. But then prospectors chanced upon the worlds richest deposits of diamonds and gold, setting off a titanic struggle between the British and the Boers for control of the land. The result was the costliest, bloodiest, and most humiliating war that Britain had waged in nearly a century, and the devastation of the Boer republics. The New Yorker calls this magisterial account of those years [an] astute history...Meredith expertly shows how the exigencies of the diamond (and then gold) rush laid the foundation for apartheid.
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Martin Meredith is a journalist, biographer, and historian who has written extensively on Africa and its recent history. His previous books include "Mugabe" and "The Fate of Africa." He lives near Oxford, England.