Nelson Mandela is well known throughout the world as a heroic leader who symbolizes freedom and moral authority. He is fixed in the public mind as the worlds elder statesmanthe grayhaired man with a kindly smile who spent twentyseven years in prison before becoming the first black president of South Africa. But Nelson Mandela was not always elderly or benign. In Young Mandela, David James Smith takes us deep into the heart of racist South Africa to paint a portrait of the Mandela that many have forgotten: the committed revolutionary who left his family behind to live on the run, adopting false names, and organizing the first strikes to overthrow the apartheid state. Young Mandela lifts the curtain on an icons first steps to greatness.