Who You Are is a series of podcast’s undertaken by Dutch journalist Fred de Vries with key figures and stakeholders engaging on the Transformation and Identity debate in both South Africa and the Netherlands. These podcasts will serve as a digital archive of first-hand recollections and perceptions on this debate.

What is this series about?


Fred de Vries (Rotterdam, 1959) is a highly experienced Dutch writer/journalist, who permanently moved to South Africa in 2003. He started his career as a journalist in Uganda and Kenya, working for Radio Netherlands International and Trouw daily. After completing the one year Post Doctoral Course in Journalism at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam in 1991, he went to South Africa for three years, where he earned a living as a freelancer. Upon his return to the Netherlands he started working for de Volkskrant newspaper as the Africa editor. In 2006 he published Club Risiko, a look at 80s underground music in six cities. His next work was The Fred de Vries Interviews; From Abdullah to Zille, for which he spoke with a huge number of South African cultural movers and shakers. In 2012 he wrote a book about the post-1994 fate of the Afrikaners, called Afrikaners, volk op drift, translated into Afrikaans as Rigtingbedonnerd, a book that has become a standard work on South Africa. That same year he published Gehavende Stad with Erik Brus, an overview of 50 years of literature and music in Rotterdam. In 2019 he completed Wiegelied voor de witte man, a journey into the roots of the blues and racism in America’s Deep South and South Africa.

Club Risiko was nominated for the Gouden Uil book award in 2007, while Afrikaners, volk op drift was nominated for Best Journalism Book and Best Travel Book in 2013. De Vries was nomi­nated for Correspondent of the Year in 2014 and 2015.