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Hack with a Grenade: An Editor’s Backstories of SA News

Gasant Abarder
Hack with a Grenade: An Editor’s Backstories of SA News
ISBN: 978-1-928246-38-1
2020/151 pages
Distributed for Best Red, an imprint of HSRC Press
"This book reminds us why the news media must survive, not for the overburdened journalists at the wheel but for the people whose stories they carry."—Khadija Patel, former editor in chief of Mail & Guardian

"An enthralling collection ... and a timely reminder of the enduring importance of great journalism."—Kevin Ritchie, former editor of The Star (South Africa)


Hack with a Grenade offers a newspaper editor's perspective on the characters that shape South Africa's psyche.

In a book that is one part humor and one part social commentary, Gasant Abarder draws on his broad experiences as a journalist to tackle such issues as religion, prejudice, and injustice. Sharing tales of his encounters with people from all walks of life, he slyly encourages readers to leave behind their preconceptions and focus on the traits that are common to all humanity.


Gasant Abarder, currently the media, marketing, and communications manager for the University of the Western Cape, worked for more than two decades as a reporter and editor in print, radio, and television newsrooms in Cape Town and Johannesburg.


  • Foreword—Patricia de Lille.
  • Preface.
  • Introduction.
  • Ramona Finds Jesus in Her Toilet.
  • Danny and the Invisible People.
  • Magadien Wentzel's Quest for Redemption.
  • Missing.
  • Gentrification.
  • #The Fees Must Fall Special Edition.
  • Injustice.
  • Trailblazers.
  • The Forgotten Heroes.
  • Coloured or Too Coy to be Khoi?