The People’s PaperA Centenary History and Anthology of Abantu-Batho
Contributor(s): Chris Lowe, Chris Saunders, Grant Christison, Jeff Opland, Les Switzer, Paul S. Landau, Peter Limb, Robert Vinson, Sarah Mkhonza, Sifiso Ndlovu
- Publication Date: 2012
- Dimensions and Pages: 240 x 170 mm, 592 pp
- EAN: 978 1 86814 571 3
- Rights: World
- Recommended Price (ZAR): 340.00
- Recommended Price (USD): 37.95
A fascinating and … pioneering volume. For the first time the story of the Abantu-Batho newspaper is told here, based on a massive amount of research. The book not only tells the story of a key newspaper, but also sheds entirely new light on the early history of the ANC and the hitherto largely neglected social, economic and political history of Africans on the Rand. An important, radical voice had been missing: here it is restored. A timely and salutary reminder of the struggles in the face of great odds to expose and to challenge the injustices of early twentieth century South Africa.
— Brian Willan, Honorary Senior Research Fellow, Rhodes University
Once this material is in the public domain, it will be impossible to write about this era of popular politics in South Africa without making reference to Abantu-Batho and the key role it played. The many gems in this book peel away the layers in the story of the paper. It deals with a much occluded aspect of South African politics, history and culture about which many scholars have commented over the years but which no one has addressed.
— Heather Hughes, Principal Teaching Fellow, University of Lincoln
This much-awaited volume uncovers the long-lost pages of the major African multi-lingual newspaper, Abantu-Batho. Founded in 1912 by African National Congress convener Pixley Seme, with assistance from the Swazi Queen, it was published until 1931, attracting the cream of African politicians, journalists, and poets S.E.K Mqhayi, Nontsizi Mgqwetho and Robert Grendon. In its pages burning issues of the day were articulated alongside cultural by-ways. Comprising both essays on and texts from the paper, it explores the complex movements and individuals that emerged. The essays contribute rich, new material to provide clearer insights into South African politics and intellectual life. The Anthology unveils a judicious selection of never-before-published columns from the paper spanning every year of its life, drawn from repositories on three continents. Abantu-Batho also had a regional and international focus, and by examining all these dynamics across boundaries and disciplines the book transcends established historiographical frontiers to fill a lacuna that scholars have long lamented.
Distinguished historians and literary scholars, together with exciting young scholars, plumb the lives and ideas of editors, writers, readers and allied movements. Sharing the considerable interest in the ANC centenary, this unique book will have a strong appeal and secure audience among all interested in history, politics, culture, literature, gender, biography and journalism studies, from academics and students to a general public interested in knowing about this early ANC newspaper, its people and the stories that once captivated South Africans.