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Why we are not a nation, by Christine Qunta

R225.00

Essays on race and transition in South Africa

Forthcoming: This book will be published on 9 May 2016. Preorder now, and the first 100 orders will receive a copy personally signed by the author. Preorders are only available in South Africa.

South Africa faces increasing public debates around institutional racism and exclusion, language and culture, social cohesion, reconciliation and the rainbow nation. In three incisive essays, Christine Qunta offers a welcome intervention, not simply analysing the problems but positing solutions for how we can truly become a nation.

Sorry, this product is not available in your country SKU: 9780994677013

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Essays on race and transition in South Africa

Forthcoming: This book will be published on 9 May 2016. Preorder now, and the first 100 orders will receive a copy personally signed by the author. Preorders are only available in South Africa.

The last year in South Africa has seen an upsurge of protests and public debates around issues of institutional racism and exclusion, language and culture and their role in lack of social cohesion as well as questioning concepts such as reconciliation and the rainbow nation.

The 3 essays deal with different aspects of these issues in a frank, incisive and well- argued manner. It will therefore be a welcome intervention in these debates when they resume in 2016. But the book does not simply analyse the problems, it also posits solutions about how we can truly become a nation. Both the protagonists and opponents in these debates will therefore find the book of interest. The 3rd essay is a personal account of the author’s experiences practicing law at the dawn of democracy and the battles and triumphs as a Black woman in a profession dominated by men especially in the area of corporate law. It is filled with anecdotes of a few high profile national events interspersed with humour.

The topics she deals in with in the essays are not new. They are topical and intractable. Yet In her skillful hands, fresh perspectives are introduced thus enriching their understanding beyond the sometimes loud and circular debates generated in public spaces. This makes the book unique.The author is a well-known attorney and former newspaper columnist. She is direct, insightful and elevates these issues in a manner that everyone can understand. It will create lots of talk, some discomfort, even controversy but it will also be regarded as a seminal contribution to the important debates of the nation not only for the present but in future.

About the author

Christine Qunta is an attorney and author. She was an activist in the Black Consciousness Movement during the 1970s and spent 17 years in exile returning in 1993. She obtained a BA LLB from the University of New South Wales in Sydney Australia in 1981. She has served on several public and private boards and was a member of the Competition Tribunal in its early years. She has been a columnist for various newspapers. Her first literary works were published during her years in exile, a poetry collection Hoyi Na! Azania: Poems of an African Struggle in 1979. She edited the prose anthology Women in Southern Africa on the legal and socio- political status of women in 1987. Her volume, Heroes & Other Treasures: A Collection of Poems followed in 1990. Her book Who’s Afraid Of Affirmative Action: A Survival Guide For Black Professionals was published in 1995 by Kwela Books.

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Chasing the Tails of My Father’s Cattle, by Sindiwe Magona

The story of Shumikazi, a wry, tragic, funny, scathing, rich new novel from Sindiwe Magona, one of South Africa’s most beloved storytellers.

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SKU: 9780994677006

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“He reached down, softly laid a hand on the swaddling and said, ‘Here’s Shumikazi, Miseka.’ In that moment of sacred oneness, he beheld the dead-still lips, bent down to her ear, and whispered, ‘Miseka … here is Shumikazi.’”

This is the story of Shumikazi, the only surviving child of Jojo and Miseka. She grows up in a small village nestling among the rolling hills of the Eastern Cape during the days of white rule – from the outside, an apparently unremarkable life. And yet Shumi is marked for extraordinary things from the moment of her birth. But then she faces an unspeakable betrayal that changes everything. Wry, tragic, funny, scathing, this rich new novel from Sindiwe Magona, one of South Africa’s most beloved storytellers, underscores the dignity of those often rendered invisible. Her characters crackle with life and verve as they step into the centre of the national narrative in Magona’s skilled hands. A powerful meditation on the vulnerability of women, it is also a series of overlapping love stories – above all, the love a father has for his daughter.

“Chasing the Tails of My Father’s Cattle is not like anything else I have seen. A little story about little, invisible people. Such a huge story, about such timeless, recognisable people. It has the feel of a Greek tragedy, complete with clucking chorus, but with more optimism. And what an extraordinary tale of the vast majority of women’s lives in this country. What a powerful, non-preachy meditation on the vulnerability of rural women in traditional cultures.” – Helen Moffett

“Magona’s new novel is not a story in a hurry; it is one to be savoured. There are moments of intense lyricism and playful idiom – and in the end, Shumi will return to chase the tails of her father’s cattle. Her story is both a testament to the inherent capacity for goodness in people and a warning: ‘What you tolerate, you perpetuate.’ The choice is ours.” – Jacqui L’Ange, BooksLIVE

“The power of Magona’s story lies in her depiction of the tiniest details of everyday life in an Eastern Cape village — from the number of nails pounded into a hut’s wall to hang a scant wardrobe, to animal husbandry and the rituals of traditional ceremonies. Every character in the village comes to life under her penetrating gaze, all their foibles and all their fears.” – Rehana Rossouw, Business Day

 

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