Crime is tearing South Africa apart. Whether it is hijacking or rape, a home robbery or a husband's explosion of rage, violence is so common that few lives have been left untouched by it. The result is a society deformed by its fears. Closeted behind locked doors and high walls, panic buttons at the ready, members of the middle class live lives haunted by fear. The poor, who are both more likely to be victimised and less able to secure themselves, are just as traumatised. A Country at War with Itself is a penetrating exploration of South Africa's crime problem. Getting behind the statistics to offer a sober and sobering account of the scale of the problem and its evolution, it describes how government has sometimes sought to deal with the crisis and sometimes sought to deny its existence. The book ends with some suggestions of what needs to be done to deal with this scourge.