Independent Lens: Winnie

About This Episode


Most globally known as the wife of Nelson Mandela, the overshadowed Winnie Madikizela-Mandela is one of the most misunderstood and intriguing of contemporary female political figures. Her rise and seeming fall from grace in South Africa bear the hallmarks of epic tragedy. For the first time on screen, Winnie explores her life and contribution to the struggle to bring down apartheid from the inside, with intimate insight from Winnie herself, those who were closest to her and the enemies who sought to extinguish her radical capacity to shake up the order of things.

Working chronologically through influential events and important memories, along with interviews with Winnie herself, as well as her daughter Zindzi, biographers, journalists, lawyers, police and other involved parties among her family, allies and opponents alike, coupled with rare and striking archival clips, the film shows the multi-layered journey that Winnie went on for her personal and societal freedom.