Frederik van Zyl Slabbert

Each one of us who has attempted to take intellectual life seriously can quite easily reflect on moments of insight and remarkable individuals who helped one to experience them. No matter how busy one is, there are those quiet moments during the course of a day when one can nurse back into memory the excitement of such encounters . Such a person in my life was Daantjie Oosthuizen. He was one of the very important reasons I came to Rhodes University as a young lecturer in 1969. A gentle, humorous, kind person with an extraordinary compelling intellect .

He had a seminal influence on my own intellectual development. From him I learnt that intellectual life is about the non-stop subversion of orthodoxy and dogmatism, whether in politics, academia and civil life.

(Taken from the 1975 Academic Freedom Lecture at Rhodes University, and the  2003 Academic Freedom Lecture at the University of Cape Town).

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