Ahmed Kathrada

Program 30 • 29 mins


CDs available via special order.    HumanMedia ®

Free Podcast Available

In 1989, after 26 years, Ahmed Kathrada was released from Robben Island, the South African prison for anti-apartheid leaders. He was the gentle jailmate of Nelson Mandela. This episode of Humankind presents an audio memoir of a life lived in hope, agony, and persistence. Hear about brutalities endured, healing forged, and humanity prevailing against all odds. Kathrada’s story will provoke real questions, stark reflections, and a sense of admiration for a quiet hero.


  • What is it like to be in prison for twenty-six years in South Africa for opposing the Apartheid System?
  • How can one man forgive after being tortured and bearing witness to his friend’s deaths?
  • Why was the truth and reconciliation commission in South Africa established?
  • Why are truth and forgiveness necessary for reconciliation?

Forgiveness goes together with reconciliation. The one cannot be done without the other.”

—Ahmed Kathrada, leader in the South African resistance and jailmate of Nelson Mandela


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