Thursday, February 26, 2009

South African Bank Robber

In the seventies, Andre Stander, a South African police officer, was dissatisfied with the corruption in the force as well as the prevailing system of apartheid and began robbing banks during his lunch break. Later in the day, he found it amusing to investigate his own crimes. In 2003, an American director produced Stander, based on this cult hero’s life. Stander was eventually imprisoned, but escaped and formed a gang with two other inmates. After fleeing to the States, he was killed by a police officer who tried to take him into custody in Florida. To learn more about Stander, you can visit the following sites: or

Monday, February 16, 2009

Athol Fugard’s Sizwe Bansi is Dead

Thursday night I saw Athol Fugard’s Sizwe Bansi is Dead at the Lantern Theatre. It was first performed 35 years ago and is now running for the month of February in Philadelphia. I was interested in seeing the production since I recently read Master Harold and the Boys with my students. I had also enjoyed watching Tsotsi, the movie based on the one novel Fugard wrote. Sizwe Bansi is Dead is about a man facing the constraints of passbooks during the apartheid era in South Africa. The play wasn’t originally written down because it could have been used against the authors in the South African court. Fugard's heroic efforts are to be commended. I thoroughly enjoyed the performance and hope to see Master Harold performed someday.

Sunday, February 8, 2009


After renting Kim Wolhuter’s National Geographic video Predators at War, I explored his Wildcast website. I was so impressed that I subscribed right away. The site is exceptional because it combines writing, photography, and video. Kim presently films from a reserve in Zimbabwe. The viewer can read about his daily activities in the bush as well as view the accompanying photos and video. Kim will later incorporate some of this material into his next film. I view the latest posting every morning when I arrive at school and appreciate how it makes me feel close to the bush. To learn more about Kim, you can visit his website: or view some of his photos or videos: or