David Coltart’s roots in Africa might be deep generational ones but his love for and commitment to the country he grew up in, Zimbabwe, goes far beyond the accident of birth. This is an authoritative work, spanning the last 60 years of Zimbabwe’s history, told from the unique perspective of a first-hand witness. Reflecting his career initially as a human rights lawyer in Bulawayo and later, from 2000, as a member of Parliament for the MDC opposition party, Coltart’s personal narrative is compelling and his scope broad. With sharp insight and intelligent analysis, he is as unsparing of himself as he is of those who continue to wash their hands in the blood of a traumatised people.
Facets of Power is the first comprehensive account of the emergence, meaning and profound impact of Chiadzwa’s diamonds. Drawing on new fieldwork and published sources, the contributors present a graphic and accessibly written narrative of corruption and greed, as well as resistance by those who have suffered at the hands of the mineral’s secretive and violent beneficiaries. If the lessons of resistance have been mostly disheartening ones, they also point towards more effective strategies for managing public resources, and mounting democratic challenges to elites whose power is sustained by preying on them.
The narrative of Cephas Msipa’s life follows the arc of Zimbabwe’s history, and embraces the people and events that have shaped it. Beyond that, it is the story of a gentle, humorous, committed man who enjoyed a long and loving marriage and continues to fill his retirement with philanthropy and wide-ranging friendships.