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Saying to a POC 'but you speak so well' is quite an insult, says Ivan Johnson

17 October 2021 12:12 PM
Tags:
books
NB Publishers
Sara-Jayne King
Ivan Johnson
But He Speaks So Well: Memoir of a South African identity crisis

Sara-Jayne King speaks to Ivan Johnson about his memoir But He Speaks So Well: Memoir of a South African identity crisis.

- Ivan Johnson's debut is a coming-of-age memoir detailing an identity struggle set against the backdrop of 'The Struggle'

- Ivan Johnson is a multi-award-winning creative director and founder of ad agency 3Verse


Creative director and well-known South African ad man Ivan Johnson released his book But He Speaks So Well: Memoir of a South African identity crisis, earlier this year.

In it, Johnson retells with irreverence and humor the stories of his life - from a childhood on the Cape Flats to the face-paced and lily-white world of advertising.

It's a book, he says, about fitting in everywhere but belonging nowhere.

Johnson joined Sara-Jayne King on Weekend Breakfast, where he told her that in reference to the book's title, it's something he's heard throughout his life:

It was something I heard, the more successful I became.

Ivan Johnson, Author - But He Speaks So Well: Memoir of a South African identity crisis

Any little bit of success would always be discounted with 'how can you be doing that because you're coloured', and then what followed was 'you speak so well'

Ivan Johnson, Author - But He Speaks So Well: Memoir of a South African identity crisis

It's quite an insult!

Ivan Johnson, Author - But He Speaks So Well: Memoir of a South African identity crisis

You know, you could not do anything well unless you were white...

Ivan Johnson, Author - But He Speaks So Well: Memoir of a South African identity crisis

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17 October 2021 12:12 PM
Tags:
books
NB Publishers
Sara-Jayne King
Ivan Johnson
But He Speaks So Well: Memoir of a South African identity crisis

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