Graceland vs the South African cultural boycott

I enjoyed a PBS (US) broadcast this week of Joe Berlinger‘s documentary Under African Skies (2012). It centers on the 25th anniversary of Paul Simon‘s release of the Graceland record album.

From Lucy Jones in The Telegraph:

The current of the film is a conversation between Dali Tambo, founder of Artists Against Apartheid and son of the late African National Congress (ANC) president Oliver Tambo, and Paul Simon. Berlinger presents both sides of the story, with Tambo speaking honestly about what many saw as a white man violating and pillaging South African culture for his own gain.

Like many of my age I love the music (and find it hard to believe that it came out in LP format over a quarter century ago), but I also remember the political controsversy regarding the cultural boycott. After the film ended I couldn’t believe that Sun City and the role of the Apartheid regime‘s use of the Bophuthatswana casino to undermine the boycott (Beaubien 1982) was left unmentioned.

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