The Johannesburg Review of Books Vol. 2, Issue 4 (April 2018)

JohannesburgWelcome to the fourth issue of Volume 2 of The Johannesburg Review of Books.

In our April 2018 edition, we’re proud to feature an interview with Paul Gilroy, whose 1995 book The Black Atlantic: Modernity and Double-Consciousness is a seminal work on the emergence of a black cultures and identity. He chatted to The JRB Academic Editor Simon van Schalkwyk.

Also in this issue, the JRB Patron Makhosazana Xaba contributes a review of Nomavenda Mathiane’s Eyes in the Night: An Untold Zulu Story, a book that illuminates the hidden story of an ordinary woman who asserted her freedom during a tumultuous period in amaZulu history.

The JRB Editorial Advisory Panel member Nozizwe Cynthia Jele has a new novel out in April: The Ones with Purpose. She chats to The JRB Editor Jennifer Malec about the book, and we also have an exclusive excerpt for you to read ahead of its publication.

William Kentridge and Denis Hirson were in Johannesburg in February to launch their book of conversations, Footnotes for the Panther. The full, fascinating discussion is available to read in this issue.

In our reviews section this month, Wamuwi Mbao assesses Mohsin Hamid’s latest novel, Exit West, Bwesigye bwa Mwesigire looks at language and ‘Africanness’ in Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi’s Kintu, and Imraan Coovadia considers considers Blackness, Black Panther and Achille Mbembe’s Critique of Black Reason. In this issue’s ‘anti-review’, Richard Poplak rails against Jordan B Peterson’s 12 Rules For Life, ‘a self-help book for assholes’.

Our poetry this month is from Sarah Johnson, who published a collection, Personae, in 2004, and began writing again last year after a hiatus of nearly a decade.

From our Photo Editor Victor Dlamini, we feature two portraits of poet and performer Natalia Molebatsi, which evoke the spirit of Wakanda, although they were in fact taken in mid-2017.

City Editor Niq Mhlongo contributes an image of himself under the famous tree that lent its name to his new collection of short stories, Soweto, Under the Apricot Tree.

Zukiswa Wanner launched her latest book, Hardly Working: A Travel Memoir of Sorts, in Johannesburg recently, and we’re pleased to present a short clip from the event that illustrates the trials of being a writer in Africa.

In a JRB exclusive from our Francophone section, read an excerpt from An Eternity in Tangiers, a graphic novel that evokes the mental and physical limbo of migrancy, by Faustin Titi and Eyoum Nganguè.

In other Francophone news, Rwandese author and genocide survivor Scholastique Mukasonga chronicles her quest for an education in a new book, Un si beau diplôme !

Finally, we publish correspondence from Christine Chiosi, who responds to Wamuwi Mbao’s report from an exhibition of JM Coetzee’s boyhood photographs in our February 2018 issue.

Enjoy the issue, and let us know what you think on Facebook or Twitter.

Here’s the complete breakdown of Vol. 2, Issue 4, which you will also find on our issue archive page:









In Memoriam, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela

The JRB Daily

Header image: Jennifer Malec


One thought on “The Johannesburg Review of Books Vol. 2, Issue 4 (April 2018)”

  1. Good Morning
    My name is Helene Thomas & I am writing my biography as a trilogy. Part 1 will be ready for release in May & part 2 is in its final stages of editing. My biography is about life during the apartheid era as a Colored & deals will many unpublished secrets. Part 2 is about why the poor people are getting poorer while the rich are becoming richer. I realized this in my profession as a shareholder of a debt collecting company

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