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Announcing the Inaugural André Brink Memorial Lecture, to be delivered at this year's @FranLitFest

Archive for the ‘Academic’ Category

Oxford University Press to Sponsor National Literacy Conference in Cape Town

Oxford University Press Southern Africa will sponsor the ninth Pan-African Literacy for All and 10th Reading Association of South Africa (RASA) National Literacy Conference this year.

Richard IIPostcolonial EcologiesA New University Anthology of English PoetryBorn Free and Equal?African VoicesWilliam and Dorothy WordsworthEnglish for Academic Purposes

The conference will take place from 2 to 5 September in Cape Town, and the theme for this year’s event is Imagination and Literacy: Theory and Practice.

Keynote speakers will include International Literacy Association director Marcie Craig Post, Gcina Mhlophe, research professors Barbara Comber (Australia), Viv Edwards (UK) and Kieran Egan (Canada), as well as principal of the St Mary’s Junior School in Waverley, Johannesburg, Desiree Hugo.

The conference programme will be finalised by the 15 April, and the Saturday programme will be finalised by 1 August.

Press release

Oxford University Press to sponsor major African Literacy Conference

Oxford University Press Southern Africa today announced that it will sponsor a major African literacy conference in 2015. The 9th Pan-African Literacy for All and 10th Reading Association of South Africa (RASA) National Literacy Conference will host some of the leading thinkers on literacy in Cape Town from 2-5 September.

The conference theme is Imagination and Literacy: Theory and Practice. It will provide a forum for teachers, teacher educators, writers, librarians, researchers, academics, publishers, parents, children, and local and international development workers to showcase research, practice and innovative literacy strategies that imaginatively engage literacy development across Africa.

The event will begin with three days of talks, academic papers, and workshops on classroom practice. The final day will be open to the public and aimed at community involvement through a series of events including stalls, installations and practical sessions around the theme of igniting imagination.

Keynote speakers will include International Literacy Association Director Marcie Craig Post, South African activist and storyteller Gcina Mhlophe, research professors Barbara Comber (Australia), Viv Edwards (UK) and Kieran Egan (Canada), as well as principal of the St Mary’s Junior School in Waverley, Johannesburg, Desiree Hugo.

Oxford University Press Southern Africa is sponsoring the event in line with its commitment to education in Africa. The South African branch of OUP is celebrating its centenary this year – a 100 years of publishing for Southern Africa – through support to initiatives like this conference.

Steve Cilliers, Managing Director of Oxford University Press Southern Africa notes that: “South Africa’s continued challenge to turn the corner in improving literacy rates requires a redoubled commitment from all role-players which include curriculum developers, teachers and publishers. The challenge of preparing most South African learners for English as the language of learning while they are still mastering their mother tongue makes this particularly challenging. OUP is a global leader in emerging literacy and commit ourselves to sharing this expertise as widely as we can.”

Pan-African Literacy for All conferences, are important literacy events in Africa, providing a platform for literacy professionals and researchers to interface with policy makers in government and the donor community. They have taken place every two years since 1999 in countries including Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Swaziland and Uganda.

This year’s event will be run in association with the International Literacy Association (ILA) and the International Development Committee-Africa (IDC-A). It will be organised by RASA — a leading South African literacy organisation which regularly organises conferences that draw together most of the South African experts on literacy.

Associate Professor Karin Murris, Chair of the RASA/Pan-African 2015 Literacy Conference Committee, said: “To raise standards worldwide it is essential that everyone involved in teaching literacy learns how to engage the imagination systematically and to its full potential. The imagination is tied up with feelings and images, with wonder and excitement. From making learning engaging to making it possible to comprehend and critique a text, the imagination is an educational tool that needs to be nurtured, nourished and invested in. The conference will provide the theoretical and practical ideas to bring more imagination into your teaching, whether in school or at university.”

For further information about the conference go to


Some Oxford University book details

  • Born Free and Equal?: A Philosophical Inquiry Into the Nature of Discrimination by Lippert-Rasmussen Kasper
    EAN: 9780199796113
    Find this book with BOOK Finder!
  • A New University Anthology of English Poetry by M Anderson, edited by E Pereira, MC Andersen and SG Kossick
    EAN: 9780195708738
    Find this book with BOOK Finder!

» read article

Amanda Esterhuysen Reviews Forgotten World Alex Schoeman, Peter Delius and Tim Maggs

Forgotten World: The Stone Walled Settlements of the Mpumalanga EscarpmentVerdict: carrot

Forgotten World offers information about and insight into the stone-walled archaeological sites that range across the Mpumalanga escarpment.These spectacular stone circles, terraces and pathways have inspired many exotic and fantastical tales of alien occupation, ancient temples and celestial observatories; romantic tales that take hold of the imagination easily because knowledge disseminated about the people who built the sites has been omitted from the extensive, but often biased, annals of South African history.

Book Details

  • Forgotten World: The Stone Walled Settlements of the Mpumalanga Escarpment by Alex Schoeman, Peter Delius and Tim Maggs
    EAN: 9781868147748
    Find this book with BOOK Finder!

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Helize van Vuuren resenseer Die mond vol vuur: Beskouings oor die werk van Breyten Breytenbach deur Louise Viljoen

Die mond vol vuur: Beskouings oor die werk van Breyten BreytenbachUitspraak: wortel

“Watter doel dien digters in nooddruftige tye?” (“Wozu Dichter in dürftiger Zeit?”) het Heidegger eenmaal gevra. Met Louise Viljoen se verhelderende studie van Breyten Breytenbach se digterlike oeuvre rys ‘n antwoord op dié vraag agter die woorde op: ‘n digter soos Breytenbach se werk funksioneer via die estetiese aard daarvan as die gewete van sy lesers. Want niks wat Breytenbach geskryf het, kan losgemaak word van die politieke bewussyn daarin ingebed nie. Júis omdat hy in Afrikaans skryf vir Afrikaanse lesers, vanaf 1964 (die hoogty van apartheid en Afrikanernasionalisme) tot 2014 (die hoogty van Afrikanasionalisme), is dit opvallend hoe die sosiopolitieke draad regdeur sy werk loop met ‘n bewussynsverruimende effek wat nimmer loslatend is, die leser in sy ban neem en ongeregtighede in die maatskappy bly uitwys.


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Writing Advice: Oxford University Press Teaches Students How to Study Smart through an Interactive Video Series

Starting your university career can be daunting, even more so when you walk through the hallowed halls of your dreams for the first time and realise: I don’t have a clue what I’m doing!

Oxford University Press Southern Africa, the Stellenbosch University Language Centre and A Blind Spot Productions have launched a fun, interactive video series to help students master the ins and outs of university life.

A New University Anthology of English PoetryBorn Free and Equal?African VoicesWilliam and Dorothy WordsworthEnglish for Academic Purposes

Starring Professor Bloom as a somewhat nutty South African version of Dumbledore (minus the white beard), the series follows the lives of three new students – Chris, Lloyd and Litha – who realise that to survive the wonderful world of university they will have to learn some magic tricks.

The first video, entitled “Bloom’s Taxonomy”, introduces the characters as they embark on their new adventure and learn to face their challenges head on. Professor Bloom shows them the ropes and teaches them the tips of the trade.

Watch the video:

YouTube Preview Image


The series focuses on the basics of learning – taking smart notes, where to start with assignments and how to reference their work correctly. Each episode is built around a specific theme and shows the students as they grapple with mind-blowing information in an entertaining way.


Press release


High school learners aspiring to enter tertiary education often see university or college acceptance as a finish line they need to cross. The issue is that once they arrive at their new institution, it becomes apparent that varsity or tech is itself a brand new starting line, with new rules and new demands. There are so many new and essential skills and learning paradigms beyond the content of a course, and they are often quite elusive to new students.

Oxford University Press Southern Africa, in partnership with the Stellenbosch University Language Centre and A Blind Spot Productions, has created a smart new video series as part of a campaign to help students learn more effectively and equip lecturers to teach better – how to negotiate the world of academia. The videos cover the cornerstones of academic practice such as Bloom’s Taxonomy, in the first video launched last year, and assignment writing, referencing and note taking, in a newly-launched trio.

The series follows the story of three students, each facing their own academic difficulties and learning to #studysmart.

Each video uses a unique, thematic approach to contextualise its subject matter: whether it’s turning assignment writing into a hyper stylised videogame challenge, or portraying the process of managing references by personifying source material as guests at a dinner party. Each theme adds an element of surprise and humour to engage students – while seamlessly illustrating how to “do” each of the study activities. To ensure that students’ learning is entrenched, each video is also accompanied by a visually appealing set of PDF notes.

The video series combines poignant content with stylish delivery and results in the best of both worlds – something that’s educational and entertaining. Lecturers and students will be sure to benefit.

Discover Professor Bloom’s adventures and learn with Chris, Lloyd and Litha at:


Some Oxford University book details

  • Born Free and Equal?: A Philosophical Inquiry Into the Nature of Discrimination by Lippert-Rasmussen Kasper
    EAN: 9780199796113
    Find this book with BOOK Finder!

» read article

2015 Franschhoek Literary Festival: Confirmed International Authors

FLF 2015

Alert! The Franschhoek Literary Festival organisers have allowed Books LIVE to share a sneak preview of the updated list of international authors confirmed to attend this year’s event.

The 2015 Franschhoek Literary Festival takes place from Friday, 15 May, to Sunday, 17 May, and there are a number of big names to look forward to.

Books LIVE revealed the provisional list of authors for FLF 2015 in December last year, but we can now share a more complete list of authors from overseas.

The list includes Nigerian writer Helon Habila, who was announced last night as a winner of this year’s Windham Campbell Literature Prize for Fiction, along with Ivan Vladislavić, who will also be at the festival to talk about his new book of short stories, 101 Detectives.

Keep an eye on Books LIVE over the next few weeks for the full list of local authors!

* * * * *

Updated list of international authors for Franschhoek Literary Festival 2015

David Attwell, University of York academic, whose critical biography JM Coetzee and the life of writing, face to face with time is to be published in April.

JM Coetzee
Belinda Bauer, a British crime writer who grew up in South Africa and England. Her debut novel Blacklands won the British Crime Writers’ Association’s Gold Dagger award for the best crime novel of 2010. Read an interview with Bauer here.

The Facts of Life and DeathRubberneckerFinders KeepersBlacklands
Martin Bossenbroek, Dutch historian whose book De Boerenoorlog has been translated into English and Afrikaans by Jacana Media.

Die BoereoorlogThe Boer War
Chris Bradford, English author, professional musician and black belt martial artist, here for the Book Week for Young Readers programme, and an event for schools at the main festival, on Friday.

GamerBodyguardThe Way of the Warrior
Tim Butcher, English journalist and war-correspondent, and author of the critically acclaimed Blood River, Chasing the Devil and, most recently, The Trigger.

Blood RiverChasing the DevilThe Trigger
Mark Connelly, Professor of Modern British Military History, based at Stellenbosch University, from the University of Kent.

Dorothy Driver, born in South Africa and now Professor of English at the University of Adelaide, Australia. She is also Emerita Professor at the University of Cape Town, where she retains an Honorary Research Associateship. Driver will be visiting as part of a focus on the 150th anniversary of Olive Schreiner’s birth.

Gavin Evans, born in London but grew up in Cape Town. Returned to London in 1993, where he worked as a freelance journalist (for The Guardian, Esquire, Men’s Health). His memoir Dancing Shoes is Dead was shortlisted for the Alan Paton Prize. His latest book is Black Brain, White Brain.

Dancing Shoes is DeadBlack Brain, White Brain
Eshkol Nevo, Israeli author of the Book Publishers Association Gold Prize and FFI-Raymond Wallier Prize-winning novel Homesick, as well as World Cup Wishes, and most recently Neuland.

HomesickWorld Cup WishesNeuland
Fiona Forde, an Irish journalist based in Cape Town who has for a number of years covered politics and current affairs in South Africa and abroad for print and radio media. Her first book on Malema, An Inconvenient Youth: Julius Malema and the ‘New’ ANC, was released in 2011, and an update version, Still an Inconvenient Youth: Julius Malema Carries On, was published last year.

Still an Inconvenient Youth
Helon Habila, Nigerian novelist and poet, and winner of the 2001 Caine Prize for African Writing.

Oil on WaterMeasuring TimeWaiting for an AngelThe Granta Book of the African Short Story
Jackie Kay, Scottish award-winning poet and novelist, with Nigerian heritage, who will judge the Poetry for Life finals at the FLF (see for more information).

Red Dust RoadReality, realityAdoption PapersTrumpet
John Boyne, Irish novelist, whose most recent book A History of Loneliness. Boyne will also be at the Book Week for Young Readers with The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas.

A History of LonelinessThe Boy in the Striped Pajamas
Lyndall Gordon, Cape Town-born award-winning biographer of Emily Dickinson, TS Eliot, Charlotte Brontë and Mary Wollstonecraft, among others, has recently published a memoir Divided Lives. (She may also be presenting a life-writing masterclass/workshop.)

Divided Lives: Dreams of a Mother and DaughterTS EliotCharlotte Brontë
Romain Puertolas, a former French border guard, who then wrote the smash hit The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir Who got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe.

Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir Who Got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe
Morag Styles, Cambridge Professor of Children’s Poetry, who has spent a professional lifetime exploring children’s poetry from every angle.

From the Garden to the StreetBy the Pricking of my ThumbsOpening the Nursery Door
Sarah Waters, bestselling Welsh author of six novels, the most recent of which is The Paying Guests.

Tipping the VelvetThe Night WatchFingersmithThe Paying Guests


Book details

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The Sunday Times Bestseller List for February 2015

Jodi Picoult’s latest novel tops the fiction list for February, while Money Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom, by Tony Robbins, tops the non-fiction list.

Best-selling American author Picoult was in South Africa recently to promote her latest book, Leaving Time, and the tour looks to have boosted sales of her book, which comes in at number one a few months after being published.

Other notable titles on the list include Fortunes of Africa: A 5000 Year History of Wealth, Greed and Endeavour, by Martin Meredith, and Robin Renwick’s Mission to South Africa: Diary of a Revolution.

Zelda la Grange’s Good Morning, Mr Mandela is on the non-fiction bestseller list yet again, coming in at number two.

View the South African bestsellers for February:

The Sunday Times Bestseller List for February 2015

The information for this list comes from SAPnet/Nielsen, bookseller data and publisher data.

No list for December

Book details

Leaving Time

Gray Mountain

Die Again

The Italian Wife

Be Careful What You Wish for


Money Master the Game

Good Morning, Mr Mandela

Mission to South Africa

The Uncomfortable Truth

Fortunes of Africa

» read article

Eva Hunter Reviews The World’s Great Question: Olive Schreiner’s South African Letters 1889–1920 by Liz Stanley and Andrea Salter

The World’s Great Question: Olive Schreiner’s South African Letters 1889–1920Verdict: carrot

The editors, Liz Stanley and Andrea Salter, both of Edinburgh University, spoke movingly and in detail about their task – an enormous one. As pointed out in the foreword, Schreiner’s poor health forced her to pass much of her life in isolated farms and villages in South Africa, so that letters were her means of communication with her wide circle of friends, acquaintances, political allies and opponents.

Book Details

  • The World’s Great Question: Olive Schreiner’s South African Letters 1889–1920 by Olive Schreiner, edited by Liz Stanley and Andrea Salter
    EAN: 9780981426457
    Find this book with BOOK Finder!

» read article

Public Memorial for Andre Brink To be Hosted by University of Cape Town

André P Brink

Penguin Random House and NB Publishers have announced the details regarding the public memorial in honour of André Brink who passed away earlier this month.

The event will be hosted by the University of Cape Town, where Brink was an Honorary Professor until the time of his death, on Monday, 2 March, in the Wilfred and Jules Kramer Law Building on Middle Campus.

Event Details

  • Date: Monday, 2 March 2015
  • Time: 6:30 for 7 PM
  • Venue: Wilfred and Jules Kramer Law Building, Lecture Theatre 1,
    UCT Middle Campus (parking details attached below) | Map
  • Guest Speaker: To be confirmed
  • RSVP: Seating is limited, please confirm if you will be attending by sending an email to



PhilidaDevil's ValleyLooking on DarknessAn Instant in the WindThe Other Side of SilenceA Chain of VoicesOther Lives

Mediterreense herinneringeBidsprinkaanPhilidaDie eerste lewe van AdamastorBidsprinkaanDonkermaanHoud-Den-Bek


Press release

André Philippus Brink (29 May 1935 – 6 February 2015) was born in Vrede in the Free State. He matriculated in 1952 at the Lydenburg High School and studied BA at Potchefstroom University. He obtained his MA degree in both English (1958) and Afrikaans (1959) cum laude. He then left for Paris, where he studied comparative literature at the Sorbonne University. In 1961 he was appointed as lecturer at the Department of Afrikaans-Nederlands at Rhodes University in Grahamstown.

In 1962 Lobola vir die lewe appeared and is considered to be his debut. With Breyten Breytenbach, he was one of the key figures in the Sestiger movement. He was head of the Afrikaans-Nederlands Department at Rhodes University from 1980 to 1990. He was then appointed to the English Department at the University of Cape Town, and later became professor emeritus in English at the university.

André P Brink was one of the most versatile figures in the South African literary industry: novelist, dramatist, travel writer, translator, littérateur, critic and academic. His novels were translated in more than 30 languages, including Serbo-Croatian, Japanese, isiXhosa and Vietnamese. He has been awarded the Hertzog Prize twice (2000 and 2001).

His novel Kennis van die aand (1973) was the first Afrikaans book to be banned by the South African government. Thereafter a number of his books in English and in Afrikaans were banned. He was shortlisted twice for the Booker Prize: in 1976 for An Instant in the Wind and in 1978 for Rumours of Rain, as well as the Nobel Prize for literature several times since 1979. A Dry, White Season was filmed starring in the leading roles Donald Sutherland and Marlon Brando. He translated over 60 books from world literature into Afrikaans. He was knighted by the French government as a Chevalier (and later Commandeur) de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. He held honorary doctorates from the Universities of the Witwatersrand (1985), Free State (1997), Pretoria (2003), and the Belgian Francophone Université catholique de Louvain (2015). On the flight back to South Africa, a few days after receiving the latter, and while flying over Africa, André P Brink passed away.

“André Brink did much more than pen haunting novels set in apartheid South Africa, beautifully – he was a gentle pathfinder whose stories coaxed his readers to challenge the racial enclaves in their minds.” Anglican Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu.


Book details

  • Rise and Fall of Apartheid: Photography and the Bureaucracy of Everyday Life edited by Okwui Enwezor, Rory Bester
    EAN: 9783791352800
    Find this book with BOOK Finder!

Top photograph courtesy Victor Dlamini

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Reinhardt Fourie resenseer Contrary: Critical Responses to the Novels of Andre Brink deur Karina M Szczurek

Contrary: Critical Responses to the Novels of Andre BrinkUitspraak: wortel

Die verskeidenheid van die bydraes bewys die belang van Brink se oeuvre in die Suid-Afrikaanse letterkunde, en enigeen wat Brink se werk as bloot “epiese romanses” wil afmaak, word gou verkeerd bewys deur die kompleksiteit van die skrywer se oeuvre.


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Sean O’Toole Reviews Three Books, Including Transformations by Imraan Coovadia

Transformations: EssaysPostcolonial Artists and Global AestheticsGlobalecticsVerdict: carrots

Coovadia’s discoveries in relation to Coetzee have been the subject of some discussion in South African literary circles. Although he denies it, Coovadia – an elegant, ranging, sometimes-argumentative prose stylist – has been in a protracted argument with Coetzee.

Following the publication of Transformations, which includes his meditation on “Coetzeean shame”, Coovadia wrote a feisty newspaper review of JC Kannemeyer’s “star-struck” biography, Coetzee: A Life in Writing (2012). Its forthrightness caused a brief literary commotion, including the strategic deployment of Pierre Bourdieu – like a consultant from McKinsey & Co sent to an ailing corporation or government department – by one antagonist. Similar to Adesokan, Coovadia is a university-bound novelist – the Yale-trained writer is head of creative writing at the University of Cape Town.

Book Details

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