Paul Murray

Paul Murray is a retired history teacher, having taught at schools in Johannesburg and Cape Town. He holds an MA degree (cum laude) in literary fiction, as well as a DPhil degree in the historical sciences from the University of Pretoria. He writes on topics such as food, travel, politics and art. A specific area of interest is South African history and politics.

Merrydown Farm, a Karoo novel by Michael King

Paul Murray Books and writers 2022-01-05

"He wants to be alone to remake himself in conditions of aloneness, of brief solitariness. Here begins his exploration. He is a tabula rasa on which he can rewrite his story. He explores the place geographically, establishes a frame within which to live his life. He discovers new ways, new routines, sees new things."

The passing of Desmond Tutu, 26 December 2021: A few memories

Paul Murray Opinion 2021-12-27

"He was one of the greatest the country has ever seen, iconic beyond description, who stood up for the rights of all South Africans, and whose legendary status reached the rooms, offices, courts of monarchs, heads of nations and spiritual leaders of virtually every country in the world."

FW: Sentiments about our past are strong, well founded and entrenched

Jan-Jan Joubert, Paul Murray Interviews 2021-11-18

"De Klerk was never trusted by the securocrats – they preferred the old boys’ club of PW Botha, Magnus Malan, Kobie Coetsee, Louis le Grange and Adriaan Vlok. They saw him as a softie, a weakling, a goody two shoes, a bluestocking."

Hidden Johannesburg by Paul Duncan and Alain Proust, a review

Paul Murray Books and writers 2021-03-16

"Duncan and Proust have compiled a magnificent book, a feast for the eye. In it, they have captured numerous buildings, each with its own intriguing story."

Lanzerac Wine Estate: a treasured Cape Winelands experience

Paul Murray Kos en wyn 2019-04-18

"The big question stands: how did it get its name, the Lanzerac? How did she come upon the name?"

Murray’s food trails: Kalk Bay

Paul Murray Kos en wyn 2019-03-08

"Spacious walkways stretch from one side of Kalk Bay to the other, offering excellent facilities for recreational walking or just sight-seeing – at places, with sight-seeing of the harbour and the mountains. Or, just come and enjoy fresh fish and chips from some of the local venues, such as Kalky’s, which is reasonably priced."

Murray’s food trails: Andringa Street, Stellenbosch

Paul Murray Kos en wyn 2019-02-28

"Stellenbosch’s visitors, tourists and residents will certainly find a great deal of attraction in the area of Andringa Street, Stellenbosch, particularly the leg between Dorp and Plein Streets. There is a great deal to discover there, and lots to do  ̶  everything from ice cream parlours, fashion boutiques, a book shop, to antique stores and a range of restaurants/eateries."

Hermann Giliomee speaks about his latest book, Die Afrikaners

Paul Murray Books and writers 2018-07-04

"There was a hard-hitting question about the future of Afrikaans."

In memoriam: JC (Kay) de Villiers, 7 March 1928 – 5 June 2018

Paul Murray In memoriam 2018-06-11

"Out of all the great accomplishments in De Villiers’s career that reached universal proportions, the historical medical aspects of the South African Anglo-Boer War stand out as some of the supreme achievements of this genius and intellectual giant."

Eulogy to Raymond Danowski – in sacred memory

Paul Murray In memoriam 2018-02-13

"[I]n the mid-70s as he [Raymond] was putting together his collection of 20th-century English poetry ... From this initial stage, today the final product amounts to what is now known as the Danowski Poetry Library – a 75 000-volume collection of rare and first editions of modern and contemporary poetry at Emory University. It includes every poetry volume in English published world-wide in the 20th century."

An entirely different world: Russian visitors to the Cape, 1797–1870, edited by Boris Gorelik – a book review

Paul Murray Books and writers 2017-07-12

"As with several other cases of travellers rounding the Cape, Russian travellers saw it as a convenient stopover, although it became more than that – a place worthy of a visit."

Roughing it – 1820 settlers in their own words by Ralph Goldswain: a book review

Paul Murray Books and writers 2017-02-03

"Ralph Goldswain, in his work on Jeremiah Goldswain in The chronicle of Jeremiah Goldswain (2014), and now in Roughing it, has made a considerable contribution to South African settler historiography."

History Matters by Bill Nasson – a book review

Paul Murray Books and writers 2017-02-01

"If Dudley was never meant to wave the magical fairy wand, to turn Nasson from a self-confessed numerical and scientific dunce into an Einstein, then he definitely succeeded in inspiring him to become a formidable historian. History matters is scientific proof!"

Book review: Emily Hobhouse – Beloved Traitor by Elsabé Brits

Paul Murray Books and writers 2016-10-26

"Brits has brought the persona of a remarkable person fully to life in the text. South African Hobhousian historiography has become unspeakably enriched from her writing."

Murray's Food Trails: The Tomato Trail

Paul Murray Kos en wyn 2016-07-07

"Tomato is a capricious food form, its virtuosity never in dispute. A true gift of nature. Much like the perfect tamatiebredie!"