The Hidden Voices project emerged out of an interest in left intellectual contributions towards discussions on race, class, ethnicity and nationalism in South Africa. Specifically, the project seeks to examine and make available writings on left thought under apartheid.
The aim is to look at ‘hidden voices’ – voices outside of the university system, or academic voices suppressed by apartheid pressures. Before and during the apartheid years, many universities were closed to existing local ideas and debates, and critical intellectual debates, ideas, texts, poetry and songs often originated outside academia during the period of the struggle for liberation.
The Hidden Voices series seeks to publish key texts, books, documents and other materials that were never published under apartheid, or seminal books that have gone out of print.
The most recent book in the series A Working Life, Cruel Beyond Belief, by Alfred Temba Qabula, is released with a new foreword by the original translator, BE Nzimande. Qabula was a central figure in the cultural movement among working people that emerged in and around Durban in the 1980s. It was an innovative attempt to draw on the oral poetry developed among the Nguni people over many centuries.
Alfred Temba Qabula was a forklift driver in the Dunlop tyre factory in Durban at the time this book was developed.
- A Working Life : Cruel Beyond Belief by Alfred Temba Qabula
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