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Take a look at in-depth pieces and powerful narratives from some of South Africa's best literary minds and critical thinkers, as well as the latest Nal'ibali news and updates. 

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Nali'Bali in the media

In celebration of Mandela Day, we have joined forces with publisher Pan Macmillan to inspire more children with the picture book version of Nelson Mandela’s bestselling autobiography, 'Long Walk to Freedom'.  Abridged and revised for young children by late award-winning author Chris van Wyk, this version brings to life Madiba's  journey from his childhood days as a young village boy to his campaign for freedom across...
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Youth Month is a good time to reflect on the past. Our past. It is when we take a moment of silence to remember those who died to liberate us. It is important to remember. And stories are an essential part of remembering. Stories enable us to view past events as if we were part of it. As readers, we are able to step into...
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With US paediatricians now prescribing reading with children as part of their essential care, Malini Mohana speaks to local experts to see how they think the power of stories can shape children’s social, cognitive and emotional wellbeing. Storytelling is the primal way in which human beings organise and compartmentalise their experiences. We’re not just narrators of things that happen around us; we’re also the narrators...
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They're just words on a page, but books can take you places and open up worlds of wonder, enlightenment, and imagination for your children. This June, Gus Silber reflects on the role his own father played in shaping his future through books and stories and the power of parents to pass on this important tradition. I grew up in a house without walls, and a...
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Jonathan Jansen, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of the Free State, speaks to us about what PRAESA's Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award means for the literacy landscape of South Africa: Growing up amidst the poverty and hardship of the Cape Flats, I remember one thing from my childhood—it was how the presence of books would come to change my life forever. My mother was a nurse...
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The art of the spoken word

Posted on
June, 14th 2015
Sally Mills, Networks and Communications Co-ordinator at Nal’ibali, explores how the work of literacy activist Mpho Khosi inspires literacy: The streets are alive and so are the minds of the young people who walk them. Brisk with triumph, pounding with frustration, clumsy with desperation or tripping with excitement, the streets feel the beat and the urgency of the youth and give rise to a voice...
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Kgebetli Moele, a South African writer best known for his novels, Room 206, UNTITLED, and The Book of the Dead, writes about the effects of globalisation and the importance of engaging with our stories in this multi-faceted country: There was a man who once wrote a book and titled it Cry the Beloved Country, and then another man, amazed by our fake selves, said: “Oh! But...
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Telling stories from the heart

Posted on
June, 14th 2015
Acclaimed South African storyteller, poet, praise singer and actress, Andrea Dondolo speaks to us about the importance of storytelling mothers: Imagine the scene: It’s that magical and haunting time of day – sunset! Can you hear them? Listen carefully… Stories are like a thumping heart, begging to be allowed to live. Providing a pulse to humanity, our senses come alive with storytelling and, like animals...
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Nakanjani Sibiya is an award-winning author of a number of isiZulu books across various genres. Contributing most significantly to the short story category, his works often reflect the people of his rural KwaZulu-Natal hometown, depicting their sense of humour, despair, triumph and determination to survive. In this piece, Sibiya tackles just how crucial it is for South African writers to take on uncomfortable and taboo...
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Building bridges with books

Posted on
June, 14th 2015
Born in the Eastern Cape, Sonwabiso Ngcowa is an emergent young author. Passionate about literature and social development, he uses writing and stories to uplift those around him. In this article, Ngcowa explores how reading and books bridge a divide between all cultures: With life being as busy as it is in the modern world, our opportunities to meet new people and connect with each other...
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