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Nelson Mandela

A night of violence that shattered a South African's view of her white privilege

A night of violence that shattered a South African's view of her white privilege

On a lazy summer's night, a South African family drifted indoors after arriving home. A gunshot rang out and the evening flipped.

Gunmen materialized in the low light. A second shot, and Tracey Lomax saw her husband fall.

"You're not the boss!" one of them kept yelling furiously at him.

Lomax didn't betray her terror. Quite the opposite.

She was a liberal white lawyer, known for taking on pro bono work for poor blacks. Yet she found herself, instantly and uneasily, assuming the apartheid-era role of the "white madam": calm, firm, in control and used to telling black people what to do, even if they had guns.

As the ordeal wore on, the...

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