This week I saw on Twitter that Dan Roodt was visiting London. I tweeted it and was Retweeted by Murray Hunter:
RT @wildebees SA right organising, Dan Roodt now in London after Belgian visit. <- jesus, I thought I felt a chill
Herman Wasserman immediately followed up with:
I smelled sulphur RT @muzhunter:RT @wildebees SA right organising, Dan Roodt in London after Belgian visit.<- jesus, thought I felt a chill
I have met sulpher smelling Dan Roodt before.
Kameraad Mhambi met Dan Roodt at the house of Tienie du Plessis. Tienie who? Tienie, ex graphic designer of Die Vrye Weekblad and of Hond fame.
Tienie started the first graphic novel/ magazine in Afrikaans – Stet. It was virulently against the Afrikaner establishment.
And it was to inspire people like Anton Kannemeyer, and later feature the first graphic strips that became Bitterkomix. Dan Roodt’s wife, Karen Konsentrasiekamp, a graphic artist herself and Roodt was a contributer to this magazine.
Dan Roodt struck me then as an odd right winger. Besides his past he did not look like an Afrikaner at all, but could easily be mistaken for a posh Frenchman.
Dan if you don’t know – wrote books himself laden full of sex and violence, the first being Sonneskyn en Chevrolet.
And since 2000 he has been campaigning for the right wing cause. (He incidentally claims he is not right-wing, but that the government is.)
Still he surprised in 2004 when he – after nobody else would – published Kontrei, a book by Kleinboer documenting Kleinboer’s visits to black prostitutes in bordellos in Hillbrow. It won the Jan Rabie prize.
I shot him an email to see if he was up for an interview. He was. And here is sneak preview. This bit is about Die Antwoord.
He does not rate Die Antwoord and does not think they will become popular in South Africa. Which is the odd thing about Roodt. He has a great analytical mind, but then at times he gets stuff sooo wrong.
Funny thing is, the interview was conducted at the house of young Roodt supporters. Just after the interview we joined them and we told them they we were talking about Die Antwoord. Unprompted their faces lit up and we were told how much they like Die Antwoord.
Unfazed Dan reconsidered his answer. Yes he said, “Many of the most eccentric people in South Africa are Afrikaners”. Thats because Afrikaners are so stereo-typed he continued. And some want to break that mold. Breyten Breytenbach is another example of this eccentric streak. And after the customary few seconds of silence, so was he in his youth.
So is Dan Roodt the devil reincarnated? I’m not sure. I admire the breath of his knowledge and his worldliness, a quality severely lacking in many Afrikaner conservatives. In some ways Roodt is more open minded, and less dogmatic than most lefties. You get the impression that almost no question would be left unconsidered, let alone refused.
I think he over-romanticizes Afrikaners, their history and their place in the world. Much like I do at times. But he is worse.
On the other hand Roodt strikes me as a man that thinks we live in a amoral world. I asked him what he thought of NP van Wyk-Louw’s statement that its better for a people to cease to exist that to live on in injustice. He dismissed it out of hand with reference to Darwin. Roodt I think would not mind a violent conflagration in South Africa. Provided his side gets out on top. He believes and strives for a Volkstaat (not Orania) which is in my opinion not only unrealistic in its scope and location, but would necessarily cause much hardship & even war if he and his fellows tried to achieve it. I asked him about this, and he maintained it won’t.
I currently sit on op of quite allot of interesting video material. I still have about an hour of material from my great interview with Gavin Evans. And I’ll start publishing that again soon. Then I have an interview with the World News Editor of the Financial Times, and thats what I will publish next.