Nelson Mandela’s Book of Quotes released to coincide with Mandela International Day
Nelson Mandela is one of the most quoted people in the world. At least that is how Sello Hatang and Sahm Venter see it. They are the editors of Nelson Mandela By Himself, a book of accurate quotes from the anti-apartheid figurehead of South Africa. The Associated Press reports that while the apartheid government still held power in South Africa, quoting Mandela was illegal. Now that there are no legal restrictions, many people reference the 92-year-old freedom fighter, but they often misquote him.
“We can all honor Nelson Mandela by quoting him correctly and accurately,” the editors write in the book’s introduction.
The book divides Mandela’s statements into 317 separate groups, such as Zionism, victorious quotations and his time in prison. Hatang and Venter organized the quotes chronologically, so readers can see how Mandela’s ideas and thoughts developed and changed throughout his life. Many people will wire money to their friends and relatives who live in other countries so they can purchase the book or celebrate Mandela International Day.
First Lady Michelle Obama recently visited South Africa to spread her message of the global importance of education. During the week-long visit, Mrs. Obama, her mother, two daughters and two of her nieces had the opportunity to meet briefly with Nelson Mandela, the Agence France-Presse reports.
They shared in a reading of a new book of Mandela’s quotes while photographers captured the moment that would grace nearly every South African news publication shortly thereafter. The First Lady also received a copy of the book a few days before its official release, and Mr. Mandela signed it for her.
The book’s release comes just a few weeks before Nelson Mandela International Day, which takes place annually on the figurehead’s birthday, July 18. The holiday was made official in 2009 by the United Nations (UN) General Assembly in recognition of Mandela’s achievements for humanity, race relations, gender equality and the rights of children.
“Take action. Inspire change. Make every day a Mandela Day,” is the slogan of the new holiday.
Many South African people will participate in community service to honor the man who dedicated 67 years of his life to making his nation and the world a better place. The Nelson Mandela Foundation asks that people spend at least 67 minutes on this day doing anything that contributes to the betterment of humanity. People who are working or attending school in other countries will send remittances to their families so they can take time from their regular routines to give back to their communities.
“The world has taken a position, including the United Nations, to mark this important day,” Toyko Sexwale, the trustee of the foundation, told BuaNews. “But what it also means, we are beginning to say everyday people must dedicate time to show love for your fellow citizens – not just Mandela.”
Last year, the UN’s General Assembly gathered to honor Mandela’s lifetime of accomplishment with speeches, discussions and film screenings. South African photographer Dr. Peter Maguabane captured Mandela on film throughout his life and his photos were put on exhibit for a week at the UN headquarters in New York.
This year, the Nelson Mandela Foundation is calling for people around the world to participate in Mandela Mondays by finding a little bit of time each week to do a good deed or help out their fellow man in some way.
“We can change the world and make of it a better place,” Mandela said in 2009. “It is in your hands to make a difference.”