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Archive for the ‘Lifestyle’ Category

Lauren Beukes and Nechama Brodie’s #FeesMustFall-Flavoured Launch of Maverick and The Cape Town Book

Lauren Beukes and Nechama Brodie

Readers should expect the unexpected when approaching the fiction of Lauren Beukes. But the same applies to her non-fiction and, it would seem, to her book launches! Collaborating with the firebrand Nechama Brodie only escalates things.

The Cape Town BookMaverickThe Book Lounge was the venue for the recent double launch of Maverick: Extraordinary women from South Africa’s past by Beukes and Brodie and The Cape Town Book by Brodie. It is just a few hundred metres from Parliament, where the recent Fees Must Fall protests took place, and reflecting this important moment in South African history Beukes and Brodie treated those who attended the event to a different kind of book launch.

Lauren Beukes, Nechama Brodie, Pam Dhlamini and Thabo TshelaneBeukes and Brodie included some of the people involved in the Cape Town student protests in the discussion, and two authors and four activists made it an evening to remember. The six powerful personalities linked arms to raise awareness of how history is being written about even as it is being made on the streets outside. The activists described the tensions at UCT, where workers and management continued negotiations to end outsourcing. The seriousness of the situation was brought home when UWC erupted on the day following the launch, with the police reportedly dragging students out of their residences.

The night was remarkable in many ways. The launch of two terrific books, each one worthy of a solo launch, in combination with a bigger vision made for an event that afforded those present a rich opportunity to understand and engage with some of the issues currently dominating the country’s consciousness.

Earlier this year, Beukes teamed up with Brodie, insisting that she was the best person to co-author the expanded and updated edition of Maverick. The book, which features a number of the great and interesting women that populate South Africa’s past, was Beukes’ debut, first published in 2004. Brodie, who is the editor and co-author of the best-selling The Joburg Book and Inside Joburg, is the head of training, research and information at Africa Check, an independent fact-checking agency.

The gifted writer’s latest work is The Cape Town Book, which was also the raison d’etre for the unusual activities at the book launch. It was described by Louanne van Riet of The Book Lounge as “a beautifully rendered portrait of our strange and weird city that makes for essential reading for inhabitants and visitors to Cape Town”.

Readers will certainly find in the pages of these two books much to keep them thinking deeply about Cape Town and about South Africa’s powerful, feisty and courageous women.

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Liesl Jobson (@LieslJobson) tweeted live from the event using the hashtag #livebooks:


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Join Lauren Beukes and Nechama Brodie for the Launch of Maverick and The Cape Town Book at The Book Lounge

Invitation to the launch of Maverick and The Cape Town Book

Maverick: Extraordinary women from South Africa’s pastThe Cape Town BookUmuzi, Struik Lifestyle and The Book Lounge would like to invite you to the launch of Maverick: Extraordinary women from South Africa’s past by Lauren Beukes and Nechama Brodie and of The Cape Town Book by Brodie.

The event will take place at The Book Lounge on Friday, 6 November, at 5:30 for 6 PM. The two authors will be speaking about their new books.

See you there!

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Murder and Romance in the Karoo – Recipes for Love and Murder: A Tannie Maria Mystery by Sally Andrew

Recipes for Love and Murder: A Tannie Maria MysteryUmuzi is proud to present Sally Andrew’s debut novel, Recipes for Love and Murder: A Tannie Maria Mystery, coming in October:

Meet Tannie Maria: She’s 50-something, short and soft (perhaps a bit too soft in the wrong places) with brown curls and untidy Afrikaans. She is also the agony aunt for the local paper, the Klein Karoo Gazette. One day, her life takes a sinister turn when a woman in the area is murdered and she becomes entangled in the investigation … to the intense irritation of a handsome local policeman.

But what else will this amateur detective uncover in a small town marinated in secrets?

Warm, poignant and entertaining, Andrew’s delightful heroine blends together intrigue, romance and cooking in this irresistible new mystery, complete with a few mouth-watering recipes.

“A triumph.”Alexander McCall Smith

About the author

Sally Andrew lives in a mud-brick house on a nature reserve in the Klein Karoo with her artist partner, a giant eland, and a secretive leopard. She also spends time in the wilderness of southern Africa and the seaside suburb of Muizenberg. She has a master’s in Adult Education from the University of Cape Town. Before settling down to write full time, she was a social and environmental activist. Recipes for Love and Murder is her first novel.

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An Audience with Pieter-Dirk Eish: The Comedian Talks Satire, His Latest Show and His Favourite Characters

Evita's Kossie SikelelaEvita se Kossie SikelelaEvita's BlackBessieEvita se BlackBessieEvita se Bossie SikelelaEvita\'s Bossie Sikelela

Pieter-Dirk Uys AKA Evita Bezuidenhout’s latest show An Audience with Pieter-Dirk Eish opened at the Cape Town Theatre on the Bay last week and will be running until the 14th of March before it moves to Johannesburg’s Toerien Montecasino Theatre to show from 17 March to 12 April.

Uys joined Jennifer Sanasie in the News24 studio to discuss what people can expect from this new production:

“The point of the show is it’s live, meaning it’s what’s happening now,” says Uys, explaining the concept of this production, which sees 20 numbered boxes placed on stage from which his beloved characters will entertain the audience as they are chosen.

“Evita Bezuidenhout is the most famous one. If she hasn’t been chosen by 80 minutes I will say to the audience that there is something I must do otherwise they will throw stones at me at the end,” Uys tells Sanasie.

Watch the video to find out more about An Audience with Pieter-Dirk Eish:

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Uys also discussed the role of satire in South Africa:

“I don’t think it is important. You know, satire is a flavour of criticism, a flavour of highlighting. It’s like a bright yellow Koki pen that you highlight with,” the comedian says. He elaborates by saying that the shocking nature of our reality has taken away from the original intentions of satire (to shock) and shares the basic principles of modern satire.

“It is important to make people sit up and think hey, you are not allowed to say that. Are you allowed to say that? Am I allowed to think that?” Uys says and emphasises that “entertainment is the most important part” of this branch of comedy:

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“I get a great reaction from Desmond Tutu because he is the voice in the wilderness of free speech. I mean, he is so important and so funny – and he loves humour!” Uys replied to the question which of his characters get the strongest reaction. He says he especially enjoys playing to “born-frees” (under 20s) who have no idea what he is talking about most of the time.

Watch the video for more on his other characters, including Tannie Evita, and his advice to young South Africans:

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Watch: Tannie Evita’s “Song For Tomorrow” with Karen Zoid, Zolani Mahola and Hemelbesem

Evita Bezuidenhout’s #CommitYourSelfie campaign now has a anthem, with lyrics written by the tannie herself and music by Karen Zoid and Paul Morrissey.

The video for the song, which is called “Song for Tomorrow”, starts with Tannie Evita playing the national anthem on the piano and features footage of the artists singing in the Woodstock recording studio, shots of Evita dancing and, of course, selfies collected during the campaign, showing what people want President Jacob Zuma to commit himself to doing with the money he is supposed to pay back after Nkandla.

The #CommitYourSelfie and #PayBackTheMoney campaigns were started in anticipation of the 2015 State of the Nation (SONA) which will take place in Cape Town tomorrow, 12 February.

Zolani Mahola and Hemelbesem join Zoid on the vocals, with Zion Zuke, Geran Steyn, Bianca Wood, Rheinaldt Moagi, Monika Voysey, Martin Venter, Shannon Devy, Paul Morrissey and the Bergvliet High School Choir providing backing vocals.

Watch Tannie Evita’s video:

Evita's Kossie SikelelaEvita se Kossie SikelelaEvita's BlackBessieEvita se BlackBessieEvita se Bossie SikelelaEvita\'s Bossie Sikelela

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Image courtesy of the “Song for Tomorrow” music video

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Tannie Evita Invites You to #CommitYourSelfie in a Campaign Against Corruption and Pessimism

Evita's Kossie SikelelaEvita se Kossie SikelelaEvita's BlackBessieEvita se BlackBessieEvita se Bossie SikelelaEvita\'s Bossie Sikelela


Evita Bezuidenhout has invited the Twittersphere to join her in a new campaign against corruption and pessimism titled #CommitYourSelfie.

In an official declaration shared on Tannie Evita’s website the idea behind the campaign is explained as follows:

#CommitYourselfie: the national twitter to action

Unchartered territory is a phrase used now more than ever. On 12th February 2015 South Africa’s Parliament reopens with President Jacob Zuma’s State of the Nation address. This time round there are expectations of disorder. Slogans may be shouted and brandished. Red costumes could overshadow the dignity and importance of this start to a new season of lawmaking and governance of the people, for the people and by the people. Recent happenings in world politics have shown the huge significance of civil unity and democrats willing to stand up and be counted against threats of chaos and corruption. In some cases far worse. Humour is still a unique weapon against in onslaughts of arrogance, dishonesty, carelessness and fear.

In short, Tannie Evita hopes that this campaign will bring forth ideas of what could be done with the money should President Jacob Zuma decide to #PayBackTheMoney. She writes on her website:

“If we the people lead, the government will follow. Commit yourselfie to a better future!”

Tannie Evita led the masses by tweeting her own beautiful selfie:

Many tweeters have since joined in, including Western Cape Premier Helen Zille, comedian John Vlismas, the East Coast Radio breakfast team and Karen Zoid:

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Pieter-Dirk Uys on Charlie Hebdo: “The Relatively Unchartered Territory of Satire has Always Been a Minefield”

Evita se Bossie SikelelaEvita\'s Bossie SikelelaEvita's BlackBessieEvita's Kossie SikelelaEvita se Kossie Sikelela

Pieter-Dirk Uys, who often writes and performs satirical material under the pseudonym Evita Bezuidenhout, has responded to the tragic event which saw 12 people killed in an apparent militant Islamist attack on the Paris-based office of the French satire magazine Charlie Hebdo.

“Oh, for the days when censorship was just funny!” Uys writes in an article for LitNet, sharing his own history of censorship and how he challenged “the great love of my life, a diversion that made me famous: the Publications Control Board”. He asks, “So where are we today?” and calls on writers to write, cartoonists to cartoon and readers to read without fear of censorship.

Read the article:

So where are we today? Je suis Charlie. The relatively unchartered territory of satire has always been a minefield. More often than not, democratic freedoms of speech and expression have offered a safe passage, but those who tiptoe through this unknown known, armed only with humour as their weapon of mass distraction, must understand how badly it could end. Today, urban terror as a career-move for fanatics, shows how Andy Warhol’s fifteen minutes of bling-fame congeals into hours of bloody infamy.

Our world has morphed into a stunned neighbourhood as social media reflects the opinions, prejudice and common sense of people not yet used to the fact that bombs and news can break in the palm of our hands.

Censorship now happens in many subtle ways. The bigger concern is self-censorship where the fear of violent retaliation, no matter how small, mutes the voice and cripples the word.

Nothing is beyond satire. There are a million ways to find the target without igniting the mines under our feet. Writers must write. Cartoonists must cartoon. Readers must read. And everyone must stand up and be counted. Then there will be more exclamation marks of question than question marks of fear.

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Win a Mother’s Day Book Hamper, Including An Imperfect Blessing by Nadia Davids

In celebration of Mother’s Day on 11 May, Random House Struik is giving away a hamper of book including An Imperfect Blessing by Nadia Davids, Arctic Summer by Damon Galgut, and Bake Happy by Gail Bussi.

An Imperfect BlessingArctic SummerBake Happy

To enter and stand a chance of winning simply fill in you details on Random House Struik’s website and answer the following easy question:

Q: One of the books to be won is

A. Happy Bake
B. Bake Happy
C. Home Bake

The competition closes 15 May 2014. Good luck!

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Evita Bezuidenhout’s 2014 Predictions: Robert Mugabe Clones and an ANC/EFF Coalition

Evita\'s Bossie SikelelaEvita se Bossie SikelelaEvita Bezuidenhout has written an article for the Cape Times predicting some of the events that will define 2014.

“The world will be shocked and confused to hear that the president of Zimbabwe died in 2007. A series of cloned Robert Mugabes has managed to hoodwink the world media,” Bezuidenhout writes. With the elections coming up she predicts that although the ANC will win the election it “will be badly shaken by the lack of expected support at the ballot box, a secret deal with the Economic Freedom Fighters will allow them to go into coalition with this new radical party of the left.”

Read Bezuidenhout’s predictions:

I have always believed we don’t need a crystal ball to see what will happen to South Africa tomorrow – 2014, probably the most important new year in our history because for the first time, every young voter will vote without the baggage of apartheid on their back.

The born-frees are a force to be reckoned with, especially as we will be celebrating the 20th anniversary of our democracy. And the sadness starts there: Madiba will not be with us to blow out the candles. He took us on a final long and slow walk to his next freedom and blew out his own candles.

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Pieter-Dirk Uys Launches South Africa’s Democratic National Alternative (Plus: Videos)

Evita se Bossie SikelelaOn World Press Freedom Day, satirist Pieter Dirk-Uys, creator of the famous character Evita Bezuidenhout, launched a “political movement” titled South Africa’s Democratic National Alternative (SA-DNA).

eNCA calls it a “social platform” aimed at getting South Africans involved in big decisions that affect them. The SABC reported that SA-DNA is a body, which smaller opposition parties can use (with Uys’ permission) to campaign. According to Sowetan LIVE, SA-DNA’s goal is to support freedom of choice running up to the 2014 general elections.

Uys is advising parties to target the “born-frees”, born after the end of apartheid, who will be able to vote for the first time in next year’s election. He warns that if things do not change in South Africa, we might see an uprising by dissatisfied young people – a “Mzansi Spring”.

Speaking as a citizen, not as a satirist, he said South Africa’s Democratic National Alternative (SA-Dna) was a concept he wanted smaller political parties to adopt and take forward with their own ideas.

“We have a very strong government, a strong ruling party, and in theatrical terms they are the most successful show on the block. It is a political soap opera with a democratically elected star, doing a show called ANC’s Got Talent.”

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Read Uys’ full World Press Freedom Day speech:

It is pertinent to welcome you all here today on World Press Freedom Day. Long may we be part of it. And we are here in the Fugard Theatre. I have been associated with theatre for the past forty years, so I feel safe here. You are also safe here. We don’t have to prove anything. We must improve everything.

Within a year we will have our 2014 general election, probably the most important election in our democracy – and yes, I have said that about each of the last four. But this fifth election, in 2014, is unique. For the first time in our history we will have citizens voting who have no experience of legalised racism, no experience of separate development, no experience of official apartheid. A generation of born-free South Africans with no baggage, no guilt, no sentiment about the Struggle or a commitment to support a former liberation movement. These young people, born after Nelson Mandela was released from prison, are exercising their constitutional rights for the first time – a vote that is secret, sacred and based on freedom of choice.

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