It is not only the lives of the illustrious monirity who achieve greatness that have much to teach us, but also those less famous who inspire and help to bulid a nation. This volumes offers biographies of journalists Percy Qoboza, Nata Nakasa and George Heard, composers such as Todd Matshikiza, writers such as Bloke Modisane. Community leaders, social scientists, educationists and many more.
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"Salt comes from the north, gold from the south, but the word of God and the treasures of wisdom are only to be found in Timbuktu." 15th-century Malian proverb
In a joint project between South Africa and Mali, a library to preserve more than 200 000 Arabic and West African manuscripts dating from the 13th to the 19th centuries is currently under construction. It is the first official cultural project of the New Partnership for Africa's Development (Nepad), the socio-economic development plan of the African Union, and when the library is built, the cultural role of Timbuktu will be revived, as it becomes the safehaven for the treasured manuscripts. The manuscripts prove that Africa had a rich legacy of written history, long before western colonisers set foot on the continent.
Fatima Meer was an intellectual, academic, writer and activist – a tireless fighter for social justice and human rights. Her intellectual work sought to intertwine place, identity, and ethical commitment. In 1994 Fatima declined a parliamentary seat due to her preference to work in the non-governmental sector. She did however serve the ANC government in several capacities. In 2010, at the age of 81, Fatima Meer died after a stroke.