Land, Labour & the Grapes of Wrath

  The farmworkers’ cottages outside Robertson, when viewed from a moving vehicle and a vantage point of sufficient privilege, are easy surfaces on which to project fantasies of rural idyll. Wooden doors open onto small, tended gardens with bougainvillea shrubs climbing the whitewashed walls. The sun is out; laundry hangs drying on wire fences. Barelegged [...]

Books for Everyone

  Mongane Wally Serote recently said young writers should write in African languages, and that they abandon African languages at their “peril”. His sentiments touch on an important and ongoing challenge in the publishing industry: diversity.  But accessibility is another huge challenge. DiBookeng, which means “where the books are” in Setswana, is an initiative founded [...]

The Banality of Evil

  Constellations     Broken Monsters Lauren Beukes Umuzi   Horribly bloody crime fiction seems to come in two varieties: misogynist slash-fest and feminist slash-fest. The first is offensively obvious in its lip-smacking relish for the plight of women in jeopardy and worse. In the second, progressive writers of both sexes (think of Steig Larsson’s [...]

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