The day had come! A celebration of African Literacy by afrokulcha was long overdue as our last event was end of October 2017. The authors on the panel were Fred Khumalo, Dr Tshidi Gule and Jackie Phamotse. It was a wonderful day of fascinating conversation, profound history, lessons in life and aha moments. Asanka restaurant served an afro fusion cuisine and Koni wines seduced us with their lovely wine. The pictures say it all… the Wakanda Kingdom!
This is a lovely story and a must read book. The story of Trevor Noah from birth but before he became famous. Trevor takes you through a series of his life stories as a child, with lessons he learnt about family, race, identity, love, business and more. Trevor comes from a religious family , his mother is African and his dad is white, German. Although, his parents never had a proper conventional relationship, Trevor still had the love of both his parents. The issue of identity comes in very strong in the book because from a young age, he had to decide if he fitted in with blacks, coloureds or white people.
His story is rich with humor and funny stories. He writes it in a witty, relatable way that young and adult readers can enjoy the book. The book is not just about his childhood but more about South Africa and life in South Africa in the past and present. He writes it like he is telling a foreign audience like USA and Europe about himself and his beloved country.
It’s well worth the read.
Reviewed by Nonkululeko Magi- Africa
Colour Me Yellow
Author: Thuli Nhlapho
Thulisile (Thuli) grew up knowing that her mother resented her, her mother would tell her that she hated carrying her in her stomach, hated being pregnant with her. Thuli knew there was something wrong with her but no one in the family told her why. She grew up being called different names because she looked different from other children, she was called Boesman, yellow and all other sorts of derogatory names. She hardly had friends because she was different even her cousins isolated her because she was different. Thuli vowed to study hard and be something in life to prove to everyone in her family that she was capable.
Her mother got married when she was still pregnant with her and she was told that her mother’s husband was her father but she knew it couldn’t be because she looked different from her younger siblings and her mother’s husband and his family always treated her like an outcast. She tried several times to ask her mother about her identity but the mother would be extremely upset and even tell her that she is ungrateful as her husband was feeding her and looking well after her even though they all knew this was a lie as Thuli was treated differently from the other kids.
She fell pregnant when in her final year and also had a difficult pregnancy but boyfriend’s family was very supportive, her family disowned her. She finished her tertiary studies, started working, got a place of her own to stay and decided to continue searching for her identity. One of the relatives gave her an address to a man’s house who she calls Mr O, the relative had said she will get answers when she gets there. She found incomplete answers there but her identity still haunted her. Her identity is later revealed, after searching and searching and She eventually found inner peace after this was revealed to her but devastated her uncle.
This memoir details the pain, struggles that one can go through because of family secrets. The horrible treatment also affected her health and also made her to develop a hard surface as she could not easy show feelings.
This is a sad story of how family secrets can actually harm the very same person that the secret is being kept from. Thuli Nhlapho went on to be a successful award winning journalist and a writer.
A review by Funeka Khumalo
We begin the year with our January sale from 25th January to 4nd February 2018 Take your time to peruse our selection of African books and you will not be disappointed. The sale is up to 40% off.
January is a good time to get back to the habit of reading! As many New Year Resolutions have been made and hopefully not already broken.
Look out for dates for our next book event : A celebration of African Literacy by #afrokulcha coming up in April 2018
Let me start by saying “every woman in a relationship should have this book”. Linda on women issues, he should be called Dr Linda and even the Love expert title he doesn’t like befits him. This is a brilliantly written book addressing almost every issue women have about us men. If you’re planning to get into a relationship, in a new relationship, in a troubled relationship, stagnant relationship, rebound, want nothing to do with men GET THIS BOOK. It will put a few things about you and relationships into perspective. Linda poured out his sense of humour but also left no stone unturned. His witty style of writing makes it a page turner.
The next time any woman presents me with her relationship issues I will point her to this book. A good relationship guide, even High school girls should have it. Only 131 pages of good advice from cover to cover.
Ntokozo Mondli Biyela
A Well written and a very interesting story into the life Chris Hani, the Hani Family through her daughter and the story of Lindiwe Hani’s as an addict. Family feuds, family mishaps, chaos etc. A thriller. One thing I liked about the book was that she told it all and was very truthful and sincere about everything she penned. It gave me an idea or a glimpse into many lives of politicians’ kids through her. I bet their stories are similar to hers. Zihlukumezekile and disorientated nazi izingane senkosi.
A great read, I must say it’s a page turner, you’ll find it hard to put down.
I still maintain biographies are the best reads.
Ntokozo Mondli Biyela
We are embarking on another event hosting a celebration of African Literacy. We are excited to be in partnership with black owned wine farm Jans Hamsgat to bring you a sophisticated relaxation event on the 1st July at an exclusive venue in Pretoria.
We look forward to hearing from writers such as:
Malebo Sephodi of Miss Behave
Ekow Duker of The God who made mistakes, White Wahala and Dying in New York
Lerato Tshabalala of The way I see it
and many more surprises!
Book your seat by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s winter time in South Africa and many of us book lovers like the thought of cosying up with a good book in your warm bed. The Afrokulcha team has put together a list of books to read this winter!
We love this book! African-born poet Lola Shoneyin makes her fiction debut with a perceptive, entertaining, and eye-opening novel of polygamy in modern-day Nigeria. If you have read Sue Nyathi’s The Polygamist then you will find this book equally entertaining.
African fiction at its best!! We learn so much about history when we read books. This compelling African story touches the mind, heart & soul. So many aha moments 👀 , tears in the eyes 😪& heartbreak 💔 Well, The chances of you not sleeping until you finish reading this book, will not be a regret.
When women write, great thoughts & words give you life. Upon encountering Historian, Laurel Thatcher Ulrich’s quote “Well behaved women seldom make history” – Malebo knew that she was tired of everyone else but herself having a say on who and what she should be. Appropriating this quote, Malebo boldly renounces societal expectations placed on her as a Black woman and shares her journey towards misbehaviour.
Currently one of the best selling books in South Africa. A memorior of a daughter of a struggle hero Chris Hani. Many years after his death, this story needed to be heard. You will not be disappointed.
Ben Okri, a beautiful African writer. Dangerous love is a book needing to be read. Follow it by reading his 3 book sequel: The Famished Road, Songs of Enchantment & Infinite Riches, you will love his use of words and his story telling.
Stay warm, and Happy Reading
After the success of the #100daysofAfricanReads campaign. Join us once again as we celebrate african literacy, we are bringing you African books, african stories, authors & the like. The kids will have their own entertainment area focused on African literacy. We look forward to hosting you! #whenreadingisfun
We are Celebrating African Literacy on Sat 28th January 2017 📚📚📚 at 12h30 at Shades of Summer boutique hotel
Festivities on the day:
– African books on sale
– Authors talk
– Interaction with publishers
– Music ensemble by Ancestral Collective
– Children’s literacy engagement by ReaderLympics
– Locally produced african lifestyle items by selected vendors
– Fun & games for all ages!
Will you be there??
Love it, its African 🌺🌻🌼
The afrokulcha team has put together a number of book titles that are great to purchase as a Xmas gift for your loved ones. These are books which are enjoyed by many and their stories transcend from old to young. These are books that are not too much fiction but not just non finction also. These are stories that many identify with and are a pleasure to read during the holidays.
Get these at www.afrokulcha.com
Born 15 October 1938
Died 2 August 1997 (aged 58)
Fela was born Olufela Olusegun Oludotun Ransome-Kuti on 15 October 1938 in Abeokuta, Ogun State, Nigeria into an upper-middle-class family. He attended the Abeokuta Grammar School in Abeokuta. Later he was sent to London in 1958 to study medicine but decided to study music instead at the Trinity College of Music, the trumpet being his preferred instrument.While there, he formed the band Koola Lobitos, playing a fusion of jazz and highlife.In 1960, Fela married his first wife, Remilekun (Remi) Taylor, with whom he would have three children (Femi, Yeni, and Sola). In 1963, Fela moved back to Nigeria, re-formed Koola Lobitos and trained as a radio producer for the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation. He played for some time with Victor Olaiya and his All Stars.
In 1967, he went to Ghana to think up a new musical direction.That was when Kuti first called his music Afrobeat. In 1969, Fela took the band to the United States where they spent 10 months in Los Angeles. While there, Fela discovered the Black Power movement through Sandra Smith (now Sandra Izsadore), a partisan of the Black Panther Party. The experience would heavily influence his music and political views.He renamed the band Nigeria ’70. Soon afterwards, the Immigration and Naturalization Service was tipped off by a promoter that Fela and his band were in the US without work permits. The band immediately performed a quick recording session in Los Angeles that would later be released as The ’69 Los Angeles Sessions.
He also changed his middle name to Anikulapo (meaning “He who carries death in his pouch”, with the interpretation: “I will be the master of my own destiny and will decide when it is time for death to take me”),stating that his original middle name of Ransome was a slave name.
Fela’s music was popular among the Nigerian public and Africans in general.In fact, he made the decision to sing in Pidgin English so that his music could be enjoyed by individuals all over Africa, where the local languages spoken are very diverse and numerous. As popular as Fela’s music had become in Nigeria and elsewhere, it was also very unpopular with the ruling government, and raids on the Kalakuta Republic were frequent. During 1972, Ginger Baker recorded Stratavarious with Fela appearing alongside Bobby Tench.Around this time, Kuti became even more involved in the Yoruba religion.
Fela and his band then took residence in Crossroads Hotel, as the Shrine had been destroyed along with his commune. In 1978, Fela married 27 women, many of whom were his dancers, composers, and singers to mark the anniversary of the attack on the Kalakuta Republic. Later, he was to adopt a rotation system of keeping only 12 simultaneous wives. The year was also marked by two notorious concerts, the first in Accra in which riots broke out during the song “Zombie”, which led to Fela being banned from entering Ghana. The second was at the Berlin Jazz Festival after which most of Fela’s musicians deserted him, due to rumours that Fela was planning to use the entire proceeds to fund his presidential campaign.
Despite the massive setbacks, Fela was determined to come back. He formed his own political party, which he called Movement of the People (MOP), in order to “clean up society like a mop”. In 1979, he put himself forward for President in Nigeria’s first elections for more than a decade, but his candidature was refused. At this time, Fela created a new band called Egypt ’80 (reflecting his reading of pan-African literature) and continued to record albums and tour the country. He further infuriated the political establishment by dropping the names of ITT Corporation vice-president Moshood Abiola and then General Olusegun Obasanjo at the end of a hot-selling 25-minute political screed entitled.
In 1984, Muhammadu Buhari’s government, of which Kuti was a vocal opponent, jailed him on a charge of currency smuggling which Amnesty International and others denounced as politically motivated.Amnesty designated him a prisoner of conscience,and his case was also taken up by other human rights groups. After 20 months, he was released from prison by General Ibrahim Babangida. On his release he divorced his 12 remaining wives, saying that “marriage brings jealousy and selfishness”.
Once again, Fela continued to release albums with Egypt ’80, made a number of successful tours of the United States and Europe and also continued to be politically active. In 1986, Fela performed in Giants Stadium in New Jersey as part of the Amnesty International A Conspiracy of Hope concert, sharing the bill with Bono, Carlos Santana, and The Neville Brothers. In 1989, Fela and Egypt ’80 released the anti-apartheid Beasts of No Nation that depicts on its cover U.S. President Ronald Reagan, UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and South African State President Pieter Willem Botha, that title of the composition, as Barrett notes, having evolved out of a statement by Botha: “This uprising [against the apartheid system] will bring out the beast in us.”
Fela’s album output slowed in the 1990s, and eventually he stopped releasing albums altogether. In 1993, he and four members of the Afrika ’70 organization were arrested for murder. The battle against military corruption in Nigeria was taking its toll, especially during the rise of dictator Sani Abacha. Rumours were also spreading that he was suffering from an illness for which he was refusing treatment.
On 3 August 1997, Olikoye Ransome-Kuti, already a prominent AIDS activist and former Minister of Health, announced his younger brother’s death a day earlier from Kaposi’s sarcoma brought on by AIDS. More than a million people attended Fela’s funeral at the site of the old Shrine compound. The New Afrika Shrine has opened since Fela’s death in a different section of Lagos under the supervision of his son Femi Kuti.
The Afrokulcha team has once again put together a few books that we think are a must-read this month. We are super excited because there is so much African content to select from and we encourage you to take it one day at a time, you will eventually read them all, as long as you keep on, keeping on…
On the recommendation list for October:
The Hairdresser of Harare by Tendai Hunchu
Sometimes you need to go back before you go forward! This is Tendai’s first book before he wrote the Maestro, the Magistrate and the Mathematician. We love this book! It’s a beautiful story based in Zimbabwe. Think Hairdresser- Think Drama – Think so African!
Black Diamond by Zakes Mda
If you struggle to read this amazing authors very deep books, then start here because you can not live without reading Zakes Mda. This is an oldie but one of the best. A story based in South Africa, a bit freaky (read: scary) but one that you will love!
Dark Continent my Black Arse by Sihle Khumalo
Travelling in Africa can be exciting, nerve racking and absolute bliss at the same time! This book inspired us to start travelling Africa many years ago. Still relevant to this day, as author concurs The Cape to Cairo route and gives you a witty memoir of his travels.
Fela: This bitch of a life
on the 15th October we celebrate this legend’s birth! This is one autobiography you should not live without reading. If you enjoyed Hugh Masekela’s autobiography then you are sure to enjoy this one. Fela Kuti was a musician, pan Africanist, polygamist, activist, and political maverick.
Reading is an amazing journey.
It takes one thru a million experiences all in one novel.
From opening the cover you experience various emotions.
You fantacise to a point you want to live the characters lifestyle.
You fall inlove with some characters and hate others.
– Kerstin Kinsey