Montag, 3. August 2009

kleiner exkurs

"i was not born with a hunger to be free. i was born free - free in every way that i could know. free to run in the fields near my mother's hut, free to swim in the clear stream that ran shrough my village, free to roast mealies under the stars and ride the broad backs of slow-moving bulls. as long as i obeyed my father and abided by the customs of my tribe, i was not troubled by the laws of man or god.
it was only when i began to learn that my boyhood freedom was an illusion, when i discovered as a young man that my freedom had already been taken from me, that i began to hunger for it. at first, as a student, i wanted freedom only for myself, the transitory freedoms of being able to stay out at night, read what i pleased and go where i chose. later, as a young man in johannesburg, i yearned for the basic and honourable freedoms of achieving my potential, of earning my keep, of marrying and having a family - the freedom not to be obstructed in a lawful life.
but then i slowly saw that not only was i not free, but my brothers and sisters were not free. i saw that it was not just my freedom that was curtailed, but the freedom of everyone who looked like i did.
[...]
the hunger for my own freedom became the greater hunger for the freedom of my people. it was this desire for the freedom of my people to live their lives with dignity and self-respect that animated my life, that transformed a frightened young man into a bold one [...] i am no more virtuous or self-sacrificing than the next man, but i found that i could not even enjoy the poor and limited freedoms i was allowed when i knew my people were not free. freedom is indivisible; the chains on any one of my people were the chains on all of them, the chains on all of my people were the chains on me.
it was during those long and lonely years that my hunger for the freedom of my own people became a hunger for the freedom of all people, white and black. i knew as well as i knew anything that the oppressor must be liberated just as surely as the oppressed. a man who takes away another man's freedom is a prisoner of hatered, he is locked behind the bards of prejudice and narrow-mindedness. i am not trul free if i am taking away someones else's freedom, just as surely as i am not free when my freedom is taken from me. the oppressed and the oppressor alike are robbed of their humanity
when i walked out of prison, that was my mission, to liberate the oppressed and the oppressor both. some say that has now been achieved. but in know that that is not the case. the truth is that we are not yet free; we have merely achieved the freedom to be free, the right not to be oppressed. we have not taken the final step of our journey, but the first step on a longer and even more difficult road. for to be free is not merely to cast off one's chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others. the true test of our devotion to freedom is just beginning"

(nelson mandela, vol. 2 1962-1994. long walk to freedom, S. 436ff)

ein bemerkenswerter mann, von dem ich nicht viel wusste. der pathos in den zeilen (es sind mehr oder minder die letzten des buches), die ich hier anführe, hält sich über die vielen seiten hinweg in grenzen und die bescheidene, ehrlich wirkende und schmucklose erzählweise lässt die mittelbarkeit seiner worte zu einer unmittelbarkeit der intensität der ereignisse in südafrika werden.
schwer empfehlenswert jedenfalls. übrigens: kein copy und paste hier in diesem eintrag, alles handgetippt, falls das für mein tatsächliches bedürfnis spricht, dies hier zugänglich zu machen.

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