Strong programme for Wordfest 2017



Boasting its strongest programme yet, Wordfest South Africa will run from 1-7 July during the National Arts Festival, allowing audiences to interact with authors.

Helen Zille and Justice Dikgang Moseneke will launch their autobiographies, along with a biography on the life and tenure of Thuli Madonsela.

The programme boasts several books that have won literary awards or are currently short listed for national literary awards, such as Darwin’s Hunch, Hunger Eats a Man and My Own Liberator.  Wordfest will also host a discussion on The Book of Joy, currently 9th on The New York Times best seller list.


Tax guru Matthew Lester will host a workshop, and the launch of Fees Must Fall will be followed by an in-depth and nuanced discussion on this contentious issue.


An impressive array of thought-provoking and extensively researched issues will be discussed, primarily around book launches with topics as diverse as the legislation of marijuana, gender identity, Ghandi’s role in South Africa, the Mendi disaster, and the socially constructed silence around the military conscription of the apartheid government.

Sharing their perspectives from considerable personal experience will be advocate and reservist Andrew Brown, launching Good Cop, Bad Cop: Confessions of a Reluctant Policeman, and Justice Albie Sachs discussing We, the People.


Newcomer Thando Zono’s rise above debilitating odds in rural South Africa to excel as a competitive hockey player abroad will draw compelling parallels between the mind-set of success required to succeed in the competitive worlds on and off the sports field.

On offer will be number of writing workshops, notably in poetry and narrative non-fiction writing, by visiting writers and academics.

As Wordfest continues to expand, they welcome the National Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences on board as a new funder this year.

All events will take place in the Eden Grove building, where a restaurant will offer steaming, wholesome home cooked dishes, delivered from a local farm kitchen, and a Van Schaik retail outlet will stock books related to the programme.

With Cue published online this year, Wordfest has followed suit. The programme is on the National Arts Festival website on pages 148 and 149;  for the more detailed and up-to-date programme visit the link is  Wordfest will also offer up to date information on their Facebook page, Wordfest South Africa

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