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BOTSWANA

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smiley_face
255366.  Wed Jan 09, 2008 7:15 pm Reply with quote

In Botswana, it is possible to pay for things in rain. The name of the currency, the "Pula", means "Rain" in Setswana, and is so called because of the scarcity of rain in the country.

 
Jenny
255598.  Thu Jan 10, 2008 9:46 am Reply with quote

Almost everything I know about Botswana comes out of Alexander McCall Smith's stories so I await further details with interest.

 
Sobriquet
255976.  Thu Jan 10, 2008 9:16 pm Reply with quote

Jenny wrote:
Almost everything I know about Botswana comes out of Alexander McCall Smith's stories so I await further details with interest.


Exactly what I was about to say. I swear, they should pay him to write tourism ads. His books made me want to go to Botswana more than identify with any of the characters. Apparently they're making a film, which I'm sure will be awful, as all books based on films are, but I will reserve judgement until it is actually made.

 
dr.bob
256064.  Fri Jan 11, 2008 5:08 am Reply with quote

Sobriquet wrote:
Apparently they're making a film, which I'm sure will be awful, as all books based on films are


*cough*Blade Runner!*cough*

Everyone knows all generalisations are wrong :)

 
samivel
256250.  Fri Jan 11, 2008 8:34 am Reply with quote

Blade Runner isn't a very faithful adaptation, though, you must admit.

 
dr.bob
256316.  Fri Jan 11, 2008 9:38 am Reply with quote

Which is probably why it's much better than the book.

 
samivel
256354.  Fri Jan 11, 2008 10:40 am Reply with quote

Well, yeah, that's a fair point.

:)

 
Sobriquet
256723.  Fri Jan 11, 2008 6:02 pm Reply with quote

dr.bob wrote:
Sobriquet wrote:
Apparently they're making a film, which I'm sure will be awful, as all books based on films are


*cough*Blade Runner!*cough*

Everyone knows all generalisations are wrong :)


I was going to mention Bladerunner, because I've heard it's a very good movie (According to my father, at least, who keeps trying to get me to see it. I refuse to watch it until I get around to reading Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?) but decided against it because we're always taught that the secret to a good argument is not to point out exceptions to what you say or doubt in you argument. Oh well, American curriculums suck. What I really meant though is that people who have read the book version of a story and then see the movie are often dissapointed at plot points which are lost to suit the format, not that they are actually bad movies as far as movies go.

As far as the Number. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series goes, though, I don't think the plots are compelling enough for a movie. Either it's going to be a horrible movie, or completely different from the book(s).


Last edited by Sobriquet on Fri Jan 11, 2008 7:07 pm; edited 1 time in total

 
Andromache
256735.  Fri Jan 11, 2008 6:25 pm Reply with quote

Aha, well Anthony Minghella's been working on the film for the last two years, and I have every confidence it's going to be very beautiful.

 
notgeoff
520079.  Tue Mar 10, 2009 11:38 pm Reply with quote

Botswana's second highest source of income is interest on foreign reserves. Almost 25% of the country is protected nature reserve.

 
CB27
970390.  Thu Feb 07, 2013 11:11 am Reply with quote

Part of the history of Modern Botswana reveals a shameful chapter in the history of Britain and South Africa.

In 1921 the heir to the throne of Bechuanaland, Sekgoma, had a son, and he called him Seretse Khama. In 1923 Sekgoma ascended to throne to become Sekgoma II, but died just two years later.

Seretse was only 4 years old and too young to rule, so his uncle, Tshekedi Khama, became regent and sent the young boy off to South Africa and then England to gain a modern education.

In was while in London that Seretse met and married an English woman called Ruth Williams in 1948. On hearing of this interracial marriage, Tshekedi demanded the anulment of the marriage and then tried to force Seretse out from his throne. Having returned to Bechuanaland with his wide, Seretse managed to convince the elders that he should remain the rightful king, and Ruth gained popularity and Tshekedi fled to the UK where he died a decade later. Seretse returned to London with his wife to continue his studies.

South Africa's parliament were incensed at the prospect of an interracial ruling couple on their doorstep when it was illegal for coules from different racial backgrounds to marry in their country, and exerted pressure on Britain to remove Seretse from the throne with threats of economic sanctions and direct military action against Bechuanaland.

Britain was in a weak position at the time because of their heavy debts after WWII and were relying on gold and uranium supplies from South Africa, so they set up a parliamentary enquiry into Seretse's fitness to rule. Despite ruling that he was certainly fit to rule, the enquiry also noted that the opposition to his rule might hinder relations with their neighbours. This report would not be made public for 30 years, and the British Government decided that the couple be exiled from Bechuanaland in 1951.

5 years later, through pressure from various groups, Seretse and Ruth were allowed to return if he renounced his throne and they returned as private citizens.

Seretse tried his hand as a rancher at first, but soon turned to politics and founded the Bechuanaland Democratic Party, becoming Prime Minister of the protectorate in 1965. Botswana finally gained independence under his leadership in 1966 and he became the first president of the country, and was relected again and again, dying in office in 1980. He was knighted by the Queen in 1966 and became Sir Seretse Khama.

Under his presidentship Botswana's economy grew, became seen as the least corrupt country in Africa, and resisted allowing military groups to operate in the country.

Although the monarchy has been replaced with a modern democracy, Seretse's son, Ian Khama, was voted in as Botswana's fouth Prime Minister in 2008.

 
Zebra57
970562.  Thu Feb 07, 2013 7:54 pm Reply with quote

The former colony of British Bechuanaland is now part of the Republic of South Africa. The British declared what is now Botswana as the Bechuanaland Protectorate and for a time its capital was Mafeking (in South Africa). Initially the Protectorate was declared to thwart a German takeover.

Prior to independence a new capital was sought as the newly independent country did not want their capital in the RSA. Initially Lobatse was considered but in 1965 the small railway town of Gaborone on the line from Mafeking to Bulawayo was selected.

 
PDR
970604.  Fri Feb 08, 2013 4:20 am Reply with quote

Sobriquet wrote:
What I really meant though is that people who have read the book version of a story and then see the movie are often dissapointed at plot points which are lost to suit the format, not that they are actually bad movies as far as movies go.


That doesn't really apply to Blade Runner IMHO - the book and the film are best considered to be completely unrelated stories. The book is a typical Philip Dick book, not about plot so much as painting a landscape study of a decaying world (it always seems to be decaying in PKD books!). The film is more about character and plot than context.

I would agree your point applies to the Clancy books like Red October (where the film is possibly better than the book but the balance of characters is different), Clear and Present Danger (where the book is actually rather good and the film is rubbish), or Sum of all Fears (where the book is fairly readable, but the film contains more horseshit than the effluent pipe of the Findus canteen).

PDR

 

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