Oprah: One reason I hold you and your comrades in such high reverence is that you maintained your dignity in the face of oppression. You must be proud of yourself for that.

Nelson Mandela: You are very generous, Oprah. All I can tell you is that if I am the person you say I am, I was not always that man.

Oprah: At the end of the magazine each month, I write a column called "What I Know for Sure". What do you know for sure?

Nelson Mandela: I know that my wife will always support me. And I know that, throughout the world, there are good men and women concerned with the greatest challenges facing society today—poverty, illiteracy, and disease.

Oprah: Do you fear death?

Nelson Mandela: No. Shakespeare put it very well: "Cowards die many times before their deaths; the valiant never taste of death but once. Of all the wonders that I yet have heard, it seems to me most strange that men should fear; seeing that death, a necessary end, will come when it will come." When you believe that, you disappear under a cloud of glory. Your name lives beyond the grave—and that is my approach.

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