Biography & Memoir

‘The beginning of an adventure’—Read the late George Bizos’s account of his escape from Nazi-occupied Greece as a child, from his memoir Odyssey To Freedom

The JRB presents an excerpt from Odyssey To Freedom, the memoir of the late George Bizos. Bizos passed away in…

International

‘A tour de force of scholarship’—Arja Salafranca reviews The Pink Line: Journeys Across the World’s Queer Frontiers by Mark Gevisser

Arja Salafranca reviews Mark Gevisser’s new book The Pink Line: Journeys Across the World’s Queer Frontiers. The Pink Line: Journeys…

Academic

‘Bessie Head’s work jolted me awake … I had not thought it possible that a black woman could be a writer’—Read an excerpt from Barbara Boswell’s new book, And Wrote My Story Anyway

The JRB presents an excerpt from the Author’s Preface of And Wrote My Story Anyway: Black South African Women’s Novels…

Africa

‘We didn’t fight a revolution to stay inside’—Read an excerpt from Mark Gevisser’s new book The Pink Line: Journeys Across the World’s Queer Frontiers

The JRB presents an excerpt from The Pink Line: Journeys Across the World’s Queer Frontiers, the new book by Mark…

Academic

‘The idea of literary imagination as a kind of violation’—Imraan Coovadia considers JM Coetzee’s Disgrace, excerpted from his new book Revolution and Non-Violence in Tolstoy, Gandhi, and Mandela

The JRB presents an excerpt from Imraan Coovadia’s new book Revolution and Non-Violence in Tolstoy, Gandhi, and Mandela. Revolution and…

Biography & Memoir

‘The whole wide world could see what South Africa was truly like’—Read an excerpt from Heart of a Strong Woman: A Memoir by Xoliswa Nduneni-Ngema, as told to Fred Khumalo

The JRB presents an excerpt from Heart of a Strong Woman: A Memoir by Xoliswa Nduneni-Ngema, as told to Fred…

Creative non-fiction

What continuities can be drawn from the murder of Ahmed Timol in apartheid Joburg to the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis? Wamuwi Mbao unpacks the debased tradition of police murdering civilians

The abolition of slavery, formalised gender discrimination, apartheid and other reprehensible ways of being did not occur simply through continued…

Academic

Philosophy in Africa, or Africa in Philosophy? Mary Carman reviews Debating African Philosophy: Perspectives on Identity, Decolonial Ethics and Comparative Philosophy

Mary Carman reviews Debating African Philosophy, a new collection of essays that originated during student protests and demands for the…

Academic

‘Race matters. It matters because of the meanings we give to it.’ Read an excerpt from Race Otherwise: Forging a New Humanism for South Africa by Zimitri Erasmus

This excerpt is based on a chapter from a Zimitri Erasmus’s book Race Otherwise: Forging a New Humanism for South…

Book excerpts

[Sampler issue] Read an exclusive excerpt from Jacob Dlamini’s new book The Terrorist Album: Apartheid’s Insurgents, Collaborators, and the Security Police

The JRB presents an exclusive excerpt from The Terrorist Album: Apartheid’s Insurgents, Collaborators, and the Security Police by Jacob Dlamini….

Africa

[Sampler issue] Read an excerpt from the first South African edition of the previously banned book Malibongwe: Poems from the Struggle by ANC Women, including poetry by Baleka Mbete

The JRB presents an excerpt from Malibongwe: Poems from the Struggle by ANC Women—a new edition of a lost piece…

Africa

[Sampler issue] ‘At the beginning, it wasn’t called feminism. It was called an attitude problem.’—Read Neliswa Tshazi’s essay from Living While Feminist

The JRB presents an excerpt from Living While Feminist: Our Bodies, Our Truths, a new collection of essays edited by…

Academic

[Sampler issue] Read an excerpt from a new edition of DDT Jabavu’s travelogue In India and East Africa / E-Indiya nase East Africa, in isiXhosa and English

The JRB presents an excerpt, in isiXhosa and English, from DDT Jabavu’s travelogue In India and East Africa / E-Indiya…

Book excerpts

[Sampler issue] ‘The last moments before the downfall of any dictator are all surprisingly similar’—Read an excerpt from The Dictatorship Syndrome by Alaa Al Aswany

The JRB presents an excerpt from The Dictatorship Syndrome by noted author Alaa Al Aswany. Alaa Aswany first and foremost…

Biography & Memoir

[Sampler issue] ‘I was outed before I was ready, but there was nothing I could do’—Read an excerpt from Jamil F Khan’s new book Khamr: The Makings of a Waterslams

The JRB presents an excerpt from Khamr: The Makings of a Waterslams, the forthcoming book by Jamil F Khan. Khamr:…

Academic

[Sampler issue] ‘I would stare at this monstrous building trying to visualise my uncle falling to his death’—Read an excerpt from The Murder of Ahmed Timol by Imtiaz A Cajee

The JRB presents an excerpt from The Murder of Ahmed Timol: My Search for the Truth by Imtiaz A Cajee….

Academic

[The JRB Daily] 2020 Humanities and Social Sciences Awards winners announced, including Fiona Snyckers for Lacuna and Gabeba Baderoon for The History of Intimacy

The winners of the 2020 Humanities and Social Sciences Awards (HSS Awards) have been announced. The awards, now in their…

Art & Architecture

[City Editor] Conjuring his images out of darkness—Lidudumalingani reflects on how the late Santu Mofokeng’s photographs are a kind of visual metaphor for Johannesburg

Johannesburg is a city that dances on the edges of elusive, and yet somehow Santu Mofokeng managed to contain it…

Africa

[Conversation Issue] ‘I won’t be polite, because there’s nothing polite about patriarchy’—Mona Eltahawy inspires (and triggers) at the Abantu Book Festival, reports Itumeleng Molefi

As part of our January Conversation Issue, Itumeleng Molefi reflects on Mona Eltahawy’s keynote address and conversation with Pumla Dineo…

Africa

[Conversation Issue] ‘Appropriation is not in and of itself a bad thing, but the way it’s invoked in the culture makes it seem like it is’—Lauren Michele Jackson talks to Khanya Mtshali about her book, White Negroes

As part of our January Conversation Issue, Lauren Michele Jackson talks to Khanya Mtshali about her new book, White Negroes:…

Academic

How Hip Hop is helping a new generation to ‘read the world’—Read an excerpt from Neva Again: Hip Hop Art, Activism and Education in Post-Apartheid South Africa

Hip Hop is producing a new generation of readers and writers in a world that operates in diverse literary forms,…

Africa

[The JRB Daily] How is the Nobel Prize in Literature decided? The Nobel Committee reveals new, less ‘Eurocentric’ and ‘male-centred’ criteria

Every year, speculation abounds about which author will win the Nobel Prize in Literature. This year, the Nobel Committee have…

Biography & Memoir

Jia Tolentino is a moral voice for the secular world—Khanya Mtshali reviews Trick Mirror: Reflections on Self-Delusion, a collection of essays that explores how we survive our late-capitalist hellscape

In Trick Mirror: Reflections on Self-Delusion, Jia Tolentino presents her cosmopolitan obsessions with piercing insight and authority, writes Khanya Mtshali. Trick…

Africa

‘I will always love Africa, because from the minute I arrived it treated me like a white girl.’—Author Adam Smyer reflects on his visit to the Open Book Festival

The following is an edited excerpt from a work in progress by American author Adam Smyer, whose debut novel, Knucklehead,…