A few months ago, author William Gumede described Zuma as someone with a narcissistic personality disorder — a set of traits defined by Austrian psychoanalyst Heinz Kohut as “including an exaggerated sense of superiority, a lack of self-awareness about the impact of their behaviour and having a disdain for others, who they devalue to validate their own grandiosity”. These people lack empathy, have a distorted sense of reality and are incapable of seeing anything from anyone else’s perspective. Narcissists like Zuma, Gumede argues, can’t accept responsibility and don’t care if they take down entire countries with them. The events at Nkandla, sadly for Zuma, only reinforced that perspective.
History cannot be written (or spoken about) to make the current generation feel good about the present. Societies cannot live in peace unless they are prepared to delve into all that has gone before — to ask the uncomfortable question, point the accusing finger, challenge the sacred myth. This is why, sadly, during this, the country’s centenary year, we have lost an opportunity to build deeper understanding of each other. – Prof Peter Vale in Business DayBACK TO TOP