On 9 August 1956 one of the most historic events in the struggle for freedom and women’s rights in South Africa, took place in Pretoria. It was on this day that more than 20 000 women of different races staged a march on the Union Buildings in Pretoria to protest against the proposed amendments to the Urban Areas Act (commonly known as the pass laws) of 1950.
They left petitions containing more than 100 000 signatures at prime minister J.G. Strijdom’s office doors. Outside they stood silently for 30 minutes, many with their children on their backs. The women sang a protest song that was composed in honour of the occasion: Wathint’Abafazi Wathint’imbokodo!(Now you have touched the women, you have struck a rock.). In the 58 years since, the phrase (or its latest incarnation: “you strike a woman, you strike a rock“) has come to represent women’s courage and strength in South Africa.
The march was organised by the Federation of South African Women (FSAW) and was led by four remarkable women: Lilian Ngoyi, Helen Joseph, Rahima Moosa and Sophie Williams De Bruyn.
The march was a resounding success and South Africa recognises the bravery of these women who risked arrest, detention and banning by declaring 9 August National Women’s Day.
Today, we also use the public holiday to celebrate the remarkable achievements and the tenacious spirits of the fearless females who continue to advocate for change, defy norms and stand up for what they believe in.
…We are women from every part of South Africa.
We are women of every race, we come from the cities and the towns, from the reserves and the villages.
We come as women united in our purpose to save the African women from the degradation of passes…
In the name of women of South Africa, we say to you, each one of us, African, European, Indian, Coloured, that we are opposed to the pass system. We voters and voteless, call upon your Government not to issue passes to African women.
We shall not rest until ALL pass laws and all forms of permits restricting our freedom have been abolished.
We shall not rest until we have won for our children their fundamental rights of freedom, justice, and security.
– Taken from a Petition presented to the Prime Minister on 9 August 1956.
Join us on August 12th as we celebrate South African women
Prufrock is South Africa’s best magazine of new writing. In it you will find fiction, non-fiction and poetry in all of South Africa’s languages. It was first launched in May 2013 and continues to be an amazing source for new talent.
The latest edition is titled Sol Plaaitjie: Two articles and it includes the work of a few of the contributors mentioned below.
Andre Sales is a bookseller at Clarke’s Bookshop, and hosts occasional dinner parties at his home in the Bo-Kaap as La Petite Mort. To come to one of these dinner parties, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Genna Gardini is the author of Matric Rage (uHlanga, 2015), a collection of poetry from which her contribution in this issue is taken. She currently lives in Cape Town, where she works as a teacher and critic.
Phil Kramer is a musician, dj and very infrequent animator. he is currently at work on his first studio album, end of an era. you can reach him at email@example.com
Rosa Lyster is a writer living in Cape Town. Her first book of poems, Modern Rasputin, will be published later this year.
Helen sullivan is the editor of Prufrock and writes a monthly column at Casimirtv.com
Louisa Punt-Fouché holds a D.Phil Degree in Psychology and has more than 30 years experience as a clinical psychologist, researcher, and lecturer in the field of Jungian psychology.
Louisa is also an established visual artist, author, yoga instructor, canteadora (keeper of stories) and activist for animal rights. Three years ago she and her husband moved to the Prince Albert Valley where they live and work on the Kredouw Olive Farm. She also makes jewellery and environmentally friendly vegan olive oil products.
Some of her previous books include Webs of Enchantment and Daar is kewers in my ruggraat.
Click on the link below to learn more about this incredible author and artist.
Author Michael Smorenburg was recently interviewed about his incredible book ‘The Praying Nun’. Click on the link below to read about the writing process and research needed for this (true story) of the discovery and excavation of a slave ship across the backdrop of Clifton Bay!
The praying nun: an interview with Michael Smorenburg
For all those who have friends and family in the UK, this is one show you need to tell them about!!
Head to the Brighton Fringe Festival and see the Florence and Watson show performed by the hilarious Rob Van Vuuren and his amazing wife Danielle Bischoff.
For those missing home, this is the ultimate show-the journey of a tiny mouse (Petal) who is alone and misunderstood. She works hard to fit in and impress others, but in the end she becomes a hero by simply being herself.
The book will be available to buy, why not get Rob and Danielle to sign it for you after the show!
Please see the article extracts and links below reviewing the incredible book ‘Flora se geheime taal’ and get your copy TODAY!
Flora se geheime taal deur Madine Swart: ’n onderhoud
Christine Weir, the very talented performer and author of ‘Shut your trap and sing!’ was recently on Expresso.
Click on the links below to see the amazing interviews.
Part 1 – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s9mW8-8oFmc&feature=youtu.be
Part 2 – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eTlAPKk-BBY&feature=youtu.be
Last night the lifestyle program ‘Pasella’ featured an amazing interview with actress and children’s author Milan Murray.
The show follows Milan’s incredible acting career which began on the set of Isidingo in 1998 and reveals her theater production which is soon to be made into a film!
Watch the episode below to not only see Milan sandboard, but also to learn how her truly authentic South African children’s books were created, what the future has in store for her and why she is such a passionate writer.
Be sure to tune into VIA or better yet….head to Woordfees on Monday March 6th at 12 noon to catch Pienkes du Plessis- author of the very popular ‘Ons Camino’ being interviewed by Bibi Slippers during her ‘In die bed met Bibi’ broadcast!
Click on the link below to get your tickets TODAY.
R80 | R90 by die deur