Citation du mois : Nelson Mandela

“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his own language, that goes to his heart.”

« Si vous parlez à un homme dans une langue qu’il comprend, cela va à sa tête. Si vous lui parlez dans sa langue, cela lui va droit au cœur. »

Nelson Mandela Citation du mois : Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela was born on the 18th July 1918 in a small village in the Transkei, a south eastern area of South Africa. Ninety-three years later he has become one of the most recognizable faces on the planet and has influenced widespread political and social change worldwide.

“Madiba”, Mandela’s tribal name, began to make a name for himself in the aftermath of the 1948 election victory for the National Party, an Afrikaner-dominated political party which campaigned for an apartheid South Africa. In 1961 Mandela became leader of the Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the anti-apartheid group ANC (African National Congress.) With this new position, Mandela moved away from peaceful protest, a Ganhi-inspired approach which he had followed up to this point in his fight against racial segregation. The sabotage and guerilla style approach which followed was seen as a last resort by Mandela, a path which was only chosen after years of unsuccessful protest had made little progress towards a united South Africa.  This, in short, made up Mandela’s defense when in 1964 he was accused of, amongst other charges, treason and sabotage. On the 12th June 1964, just short of this 46th birthday, Nelson Mandela was sentenced to life imprisonment.

Mandela’s release on the 11th February 1990 was broadcast live all over the world. Mandela’s 27 years in prison heightened his reputation as one of the most influential black leaders of 20th Century. Over the next four years Mandela would reach the zenith of his political career. Having being reinstated as the leader of the ANC following his release, four years of political negotiations ensued, culminating in South Africa’s first ever multi-racial elections. On the 10th May 1994 Nelson Mandela was inaugurated as South Africa’s first ever black president.

Since 2010, the United Nations has adopted international Mandela Day. Communities and organizations are asked to give 67 minutes of their time to helping others to honour the 67 years of his life that Nelson Mandela gave fighting for social equality.

If you are interested in finding out more about Nelson Mandela’s life, his autobiography, “Long Walk to Freeom”, is available online (see link below) as well as the recent film “Invictus” starring Morgan Freeman as Nelson Mandela and Matt Damon as South African rugby captain François Piennar.

Long Walk to Freedom

Un long chemin vers la liberté


Chargé de pédagogie