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Archive for the ‘Non-fiction’ Category

Don’t miss a celebration of the life and work of Solomon T Plaatje with the launch of a new book at Wits

Invitation to the launch of Sol Plaatje's Native Life in South Africa: Past and Present

 
Sol Plaatje's Native Life in South Africa: Past and PresentWits University Press and WiSER invite you to a celebration of the life and work of Solomon T Plaatje with the launch of a new book, Sol Plaatje’s Native Life in South Africa: Past and Present edited by Janet Remmington, Brian Willan and Bhekizizwe Peterson.

Sol Plaatje’s Native Life in South Africa was written by one of the South Africa’s most talented early 20th-century black intellectuals and journalists. Plaatje’s pioneering book arose out of an early African National Congress campaign to protest against the discriminatory 1913 Natives Land Act.

Join us for a discussion on how and why Native Life came into being at a critical historical juncture, and how it can be read in relation to South Africa’s heightened challenges today.

Brian Willan, Keith Breckenridge, Khwezi Mkhize and Khumisho Moguerane will speak at the event, which which be chaired by Catherine Burns.

Event Details

  • Date: Wednesday, 16 November 2016
  • Time: 5:30 PM for 6:00 PM
  • Venue: WiSER Seminar Room
    6th Floor Richard Ward Building
    East Campus
    Wits University | Map
  • Chair: Catherine Burns
  • Refreshments: Drinks and snacks will be served.
  • RSVP: info.witspress@wits.ac.za

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Don’t miss the launch of Fees Must Fall: Student Revolt, Decolonisation and Governance in South Africa

Invitation to the launch of Fees Must Fall: Student Revolt, Decolonisation and Governance in South Africa

 
Fees Must Fall: Student Revolt, Decolonisation and Governance in South AfricaCity Press and Wits University Press have the pleasure of inviting you to the launch of a new book, Fees Must Fall: Student Revolt, Decolonisation and Governance in South Africa, edited by Susan Booysen.

#FeesMustFall, the student revolt that began in October 2015, was an uprising against lack of access to, and financial exclusion from, higher education in South Africa. More broadly, it radically questioned the sociopolitical dispensation resulting from the 1994 social pact between big business, the ruling elite and the liberation movement.

Join us for a discussion with Booysen and some of the contributors to the book, Darlene Miller, Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh, Vishwas Satgar and Refiloe Lepere.

City Press lifestyle editor and columnist Gugulethu Mhlungu will be moderating the discussion.

Event Details

  • Date: Tuesday, 15 November 2016
  • Time: 5:30 PM for 6:00 PM
  • Venue: Wits School of Governance
    2 St David’s Place,
    Donald Gordon Auditorium,
    Parktown
    Joburg | Map
  • Moderator: Gugulethu Mhlungu
  • RSVP: info.witspress@wits.ac.za

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Don’t miss the launch of Sol Plaatje’s Native Life in South Africa: Past and Present at Clarke’s Bookshop

Invitation to the launch of Sol Plaatje's Native Life in South Africa: Past and Present

 
Sol Plaatje's Native Life in South Africa: Past and PresentWits University Press and Clarke’s Bookshop invite you to the launch of Sol Plaatje’s Native Life in South Africa: Past and Present, edited by Janet Remmington, Brian Willan and Bhekizizwe Peterson, this evening.

What were the local and global intellectual and cultural influences on Plaatje when he wrote Native Life? Sean O’Toole, contributor to the book will be in conversation with Bheki Peterson (co-editor), and contributors Khwezi Mkhize and André Odendaal reflecting on how Plaatje’s Native Life came into being and how it can be read in relation to South Africa’s heightened challenges today.

Not to be missed!

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Don’t miss the launch of Leon de Kock’s Losing the Plot: Crime, Reality and Fiction in Postapartheid Writing at Love Books

Invitation to the launch of Losing the Plot: Crime, Reality and Fiction in Postapartheid Writing by Leon de Kock

 
Losing the Plot: Crime, Reality and Fiction in Postapartheid WritingWits University Press and Love Books have the pleasure of inviting you to the launch of Leon de Kock’s new book, Losing the Plot: Crime, Reality and Fiction in Postapartheid Writing.

What does South African writing look like in the “post-postapartheid” era, the period in which the high expectations of 1994 and the golden era of the Mandela presidency turned sour? What is a “Postapartheid Writer”?

Poet, novelist and literary critic Leon de Kock will be in conversation with Simon van Schalkwyk, literature scholar and lecturer at Wits University.

Event Details

  • Date: Thursday, 13 October 2016
  • Time: 5:30 PM for 6:00 PM
  • Venue: Love Books
    The Bamboo Centre
    53 Rustenburg Road
    Melville
    Johannesburg | Map
  • Interviewer: Simon van Schalkwyk
  • Refreshments: Come and join us for a glass of wine
  • RSVP: Corina van der Spoel, Corina.vanderspoel@wits.ac.za

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2016 Mail & Guardian Literary Festival celebrates the life and work of Sol Plaatje

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Lover of His PeopleSol Plaatje's Native Life in South AfricaSol PlaatjeThree PlaysThe Spirit of Marikana

 
The seventh annual Mail & Guardian Literary Festival will take place on 8 and 9 October in Newtown, Johannesburg at the Sci-Bono Discovery Centre.

The festival will mark the 140th anniversary of the birth of Sol Plaatje, novelist, poet, translator, chronicler and founder member of what is now the African National Congress (9 October, 1876).

Find the full programme and all info about the venue and tickets below.

Event Details

Have a look at the programme:

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Join Mark Sanders, Hlonipha Mokoena and Dilip Menon for the launch of Learning Zulu: A Secret History of Language in South Africa

Invitation to the launch of Learning Zulu: A Secret History of Language in South Africa

 
Learning Zulu: A Secret History of Language in South AfricaWits University Press has the pleasure of inviting you to the launch of Mark Sanders’s new book, Learning Zulu: A Secret History of Language in South Africa.

This book, with its extraordinary mix of linguistics, literary criticism, cultural studies, psychoanalytic theory, and autobiography/memoir analysis will be discussed in conversation with the author, as well as Hlonipha Mokoena (historian and researcher – WiSER) and Dilip Menon (Director of the Centre for Indian Studies in Africa [CISA] at Wits).

Ostensibly about one man’s quest to acquire a language, Learning Zulu is a clever, surprising, and enlightening journey into 150 years of South African history. Nobody has written quite this subtly about race and language in South Africa in a long while.

- Jonny Steinberg, University of Oxford

Sanders is professor of comparative literature at New York University. His books include Complicities: The Intellectual and Apartheid and Ambiguities of Witnessing: Law and Literature in the Time of a Truth Commission.

This event is hosted in association with The Wits City Institute and the Johannesburg Institute for Advanced Study (JIAS).

Space is limited and RSVP is essential – see details below. See you there!

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A lively and wide-ranging analysis of postapartheid South African writing: Losing the Plot by Leon de Kock

De Kock has a strong story to tell about writing in the postapartheid era and, more especially, the ‘post-postapartheid’ era, the period in which the high expectations of 1994 and the golden era of the Mandela presidency turned sour. It is detailed, lively, and full of sharp observation.

– Derek Attrridge, professor of English, University of York and co-editor of the Cambridge History of South African Literature

De Kock is concerned both with drawing lines of continuity and mapping trajectories of difference between apartheid and postapartheid fiction … the intervention Losing the Plot makes in the field of South African literary and cultural studies is substantial.

– Harry Garuba, author, poet and Associate Professor at the Centre for African Studies, University of Cape Town

Losing the PlotIn Losing the Plot: Crime, Reality and Fiction in Postapartheid Writing, well-known scholar and writer Leon de Kock offers a lively and wide-ranging analysis of postapartheid South African writing which, he contends, has morphed into a far more flexible and multifaceted entity than its predecessor:

If postapartheid literature’s founding moment was the “transition” to democracy, writing over the ensuing years has viewed the Mandelan project with increasing doubt. Instead, authors from all quarters are seen to be reporting, in different ways and from divergent points of view, on what is perceived to be a pathological public sphere in which the plot – the mapping and making of social betterment – appears to have been lost.

The compulsion to forensically detect the actual causes of such loss of direction has resulted in the prominence of creative nonfiction. A significant adjunct in the rise of this is the new media, which sets up a “wounded” space within which a “cult of commiseration” compulsively and repeatedly plays out the facts of the day on people’s screens; this, De Kock argues, is reproduced in much postapartheid writing. And, although fictional forms persist in genres such as crime fiction, with their tendency to overplot, more serious fiction underplots, yielding to the imprint of real conditions to determine the narrative construction.

About the author

Leon de Kock is senior research associate in the Department of English at the University of Johannesburg. He is a poet, translator, essayist and occasional writer of fiction. His writing includes the novel Bad Sex (2011); three volumes of poetry: Bloodsong (1997), gone to the edges (2006) and Bodyhood (2010); several works of literary translation; and academic books.

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Don’t miss Thiven Reddy discussing nationalism and the geography of power after apartheid at WiSER

Invitation to the launch of South Africa, Settler Colonialism and the Failures of Liberal Democracy

 
South Africa, Settler Colonialism and the Failures of Liberal DemocracyWiSER and Wits University Press invite you to a book launch and discussion of nationalism and the geography of power after apartheid.

In 2000, Thiven Reddy published Hegemony and Resistance: Contesting Identities in South Africa. His new book, South Africa, Settler Colonialism and the Failures of Liberal Democracy, deepens his earlier critique of conventional approaches to democratisation. In particular, he reinterprets South African political dynamics in reference to two “publics” – the formal constitutional arena of modernist institutions, regular elections, political parties and social rights; and the domains of what he terms “the extraordinary”, that is, the infatuation with threats and actual use of violence, the re-racialisation of identities and the proliferation of various forms of protest.

To debate his hypothesis and to assess the pertinence of his findings in the context of the ongoing shifts and realignment within the South African polity, the author will be in conversation with Achille Mbembe, Research Professor in History and Politics (WiSER), and Zimitri Erasmus, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology, University of the Witwatersrand. Chaired by Shireen Ally, Associate Professor, Wits Department of Sociology.

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Thiven Reddy examines post-apartheid politics in South Africa, Settler Colonialism and the Failures of Liberal Democracy

South Africa, Settler Colonialism and the Failures of Liberal DemocracyWits University Press is proud to present South Africa, Settler Colonialism and the Failures of Liberal Democracy by Thiven Reddy:

In South Africa, two unmistakable features describe post-apartheid politics. The first is the formal framework of liberal democracy, including regular elections, multiple political parties and a range of progressive social rights. The second is the politics of the “extraordinary”, which includes a political discourse that relies on threats and the use of violence, the crude re-racialisation of numerous conflicts, and protests over various popular grievances.

In this highly original work, Thiven Reddy shows how conventional approaches to understanding democratisation have failed to capture the complexities of South Africa’s post-apartheid transition. Rather, as a product of imperial expansion, the South African state, capitalism and citizen identities have been uniquely shaped by a particular mode of domination, namely settler colonialism.

South Africa, Settler Colonialism and the Failures of Liberal Democracy is an important work that sheds light on the nature of modernity, democracy and the complex politics of contemporary South Africa.

Offers a radical, dissenting and original analysis of contemporary South Africa.

- Colin Bundy, Oxford University (Emeritus)

With impressive theoretical sophistication, Reddy draws upon ideas from a range of theorists and scholars to create a conceptual toolkit for an empirically grounded analysis of contemporary South African politics. This is a book that South African political studies has been waiting for.”

- Harry Garuba, University of Cape Town

Reddy’s book is an important attempt to provide us with a framework for understanding present-day South African politics. Working critically and productively against conventional political science paradigms, this work comes at a crucial junction in the afterlife of apartheid.”

- Anthony Bogues, Brown University

About the author

Thiven Reddy is a senior lecturer in the Department of Political Studies, University of Cape Town. His previous publications include Hegemony and Resistance: Contesting Identities in South Africa.

Contents

Introduction

Chapter 1. Modernity: Civil Society, Political Society and the Vulnerable
Chapter 2. The Limits of the Conventional Paradigm, Modernity and South African Democracy
Chapter 3. The Fanonian Paradigm, Settler Colonialism and South African Democracy
Chapter 4. The Colonial State and Settler-Colonial Modernism
Chapter 5. Nationalism, ANC and Domination Without Hegemony
Chapter 6. Elites, Masses and Democratic Change
Chapter 7. Crisis of the National Modern: Democracy, the State and ANC Dominance

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Mineworkers gather at Marikana koppie to remember the massacre

The Spirit of MarikanaHundreds of mineworkers and supporters began gathering in Marikana on Tuesday‚ ahead of the fourth commemoration of those who died when a labour protest turned violent on August 16, 2012.

The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) has erected a stage below a koppie near Lonmin’s Marikana mine‚ where 34 people died when police opened fire. 10 others‚ including police officers‚ also died during the labour dispute over a R12 500 minimum wage‚ precipitating events that led to soul-searching over labour laws‚ inequality and the conduct of the police.

Small groups of mineworkers sang as people continued to gather at the site‚ with AMCU arranging music and entertainment ahead of commemorative addresses and messages of support later on Thursday.

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema and AMCU president Joseph Mathunjwa are expected to address the crowd.

The messages are expected to focus on the impact of the event on the lives of mineworkers and their families after they occupied the koppie during the dispute‚ as well as outstanding questions and lack of closure. Criminal and civil proceedings are still pending.

An inquiry chaired by Judge Neels Claassen is investigating suspended national police commissioner Riah Phiyega’s fitness to hold office and is expected to deliver its findings in August. Phiyega has, meanwhile, approached the North Gauteng High Court to challenge the findings of the Farlam commission of inquiry.

TMG Digital

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