The Jozi Book Fair took place at Museum Africa in Newtown on the 25th of October 2013. It was insightful and educational. There were different workshops which took place at different times throughout the entire day.
One of the workshops which intrigued me the most had to be the discussion about publishing in Africa, which was held by Walter Bgoya, Manana Stone and Anton Harber. Each of the speakers spoke about how vital it is for people to read. They also highlighted the different ways in which reading material can be accessible to the audience. Anton Harber mentioned that the internet is a great tool, because these days people can even download reading material from the different apps. “There’s a real need to find fresh new voices and to find a way to publish them,” he said.
A Marikana tribute was held at the auditorium, which consisted of a poetry performance and a book reading about the Marikana Massacre of 2012. It was emotional and it allowed the audience to place themselves in the position of all the people who went through this terrible ordeal.
The book fare was an eye opener to all the readers, writers and publishers. It’s important to realize the value of books. A nation which consists of illiterate people who are ignorant about reading is a nation that has no hope. Challenge yourself as a young person to take out a book from a Library or to buy one at a book shop, see how it will change your mindset.
If our nation understands the necessity of reading and parents teach their kids how to read from a young age, this will change their perspective of how they see the world. So instead of lazying around on our BBM or Facebook let’s take that time to read a book or two in order to empower our minds.