The Author

(c) Daniel Schieben - used with permission

Anli Serfontein grew up in Johannesburg. Her rather unusual Afrikaner childhood began when her father, Hennie (JHP) Serfontein, joined the Sunday Times as a political correspondent in the early sixties and proceeded to very publically expose the Broederbond—the secret Afrikaner power group.

By the age of six she knew what was meant by exposé and scoop; by the age of ten she understood what a tapped phone was, and by twelve, was aware that “Big Brother” (the security police) was watching them.

In the late seventies, Anli went to study at the University of the Witwatersrand, known as Wits, in Johannesburg. She was secretary-general of SASPU (the South African Students Press Union) in 1979/1980. Extra-mural activities at the time included shouting down apartheid Cabinet Ministers, and learning to duck teargas canisters. In the early 1980's, she packed her bags and set off for the Netherlands, to receive her training as a documentary filmmaker from IKON Television.

Back in South Africa in 1986, she put her television and radio training to use working for the international press. Her assignments varied from covering states of emergency; the tribal coronation of the young Swazi king; independence in Namibia; experimenting with getting no sleep during Nelson Mandela’s release and standing outside his house in Soweto on the day in February 1990 when he returned from 27 years in jail. There was also coverage of the last white election and the first free multi-racial elections in 1994.

Anli's list of interviewees from those years reads like a who's who:

She has among others interviewed former German Chancellor Willy Brandt and former Namibian president Sam Nujoma;  South African Nobel laureates Nelson Mandela and Archbishop Desmond Tutu; authors Salman Rushdie and Athol Fugard and  sports stars Zola Budd, Hansie Cronje and Imran Khan.

In 1995 she moved to Germany, where she now lives with her family. She has worked as a television producer and researcher for the BBC in Germany and The Netherlands.

This is Anli's first book and she still has another three lying in her bottom drawer. The final product would however not have been possible without the help of a highly professional team.

Read an interview about writing the book.

Visit Anli's homepage:

Author portrait In German at BoD 

Anli's Blog : Tales From Germany

Anli Serfontein (Deutsch)

Anli Serfontein wuchs in Johannesburg auf. 1982 schloss sie ihr BA-Studium in Vergleichender Literaturwissenschaft und Film- und Theaterwissenschaft an der Universität Witwatersrand ab. In den 80ern arbeitete sie als Fernseh-Volontärin in den Niederlanden und kehrte 1986 nach Südafrika zurück.

Neun Jahre lang war sie als Journalistin und Fernsehproduzentin für die internationale Presse in Südafrika tätig, bis sie 1995 zu ihrem Ehemann nach Deutschland zog. Hier arbeitete sie unter anderem für die BBC. Sie lebt mit ihrer Familie in Trier. "Basteln, Wandern and Putzen" ist ihr erstes Buch, ihr zweites ist bereits in Arbeit.