Just Defiance by Peter Harris
The Bombmakers, the Insurgents and a Legendary Treason Trial

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 1 Critic Review



1987, Pretoria. Four young black men have just been arrested for a horrific string of political murders. There's no doubt that they're guilty of everything they're accused of - and more. But in a society riven by brutal repression and racial tensions, are they assassins or freedom fighters? Peter Harris is the lawyer called upon to defend them and, as he constructs his case to save them from the death penalty, he comes to understand the violence they encountered growing up in the townships and the chain of events that led them to join the ANC, undergo training at Zuma's camps in Angola, and return to their homeland to execute some of the apartheid regime's most notorious commanders and collaborators. In gripping prose, Harris intercuts the story of their trial with flashbacks to the squad's operations to reveal a campaign planned with cold-blooded brilliance and carried out with deadly efficiency. A Just Defiance is both a high-stakes courtroom drama and a fascinating a tale of men driven to extremes for an ideal. It paints a picture of ordinary people caught up in extraordinary events. Of people with unwavering commitment to their cause; and of a mother who never loses hope. This is a story of the foot soldiers, and of the terrible price they paid.

About Peter Harris

See more books from this Author
Peter Harris is a Senior Lecturer at the Faculty of Law of the University of Cambridge, Deputy Director of the Faculty's Centre for Tax Law, and a Tutor, Director of Studies and Fellow of Churchill College. He is also a practising solicitor.
Published March 1, 2011 by Portobello Books. 320 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Just Defiance

The Guardian

See more reviews from this publication

This was a first in South Africa, and would set the territory for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission that would grant both them and Coetzee amnesty a few years later (another weakness in Harris's book is that he does not mention the commission, which was one of his major sources).

Apr 01 2011 | Read Full Review of Just Defiance: The Bombmakers...

Rate this book!

Add Review