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Print Culture and Publishing
in Southern Africa

Print Cultures South Africa

4th annual Book History and Print culture seminar

23 May 2016

University of Pretoria

The fourth annual seminar on Book History and Print Culture was held at the University of Pretoria on 23 May 2016.



9:15-10:45           Session 1: Publishing and literature

Chair: Samantha Buitendach


David Johnson

Literary Theory v Book History in the Reading of African Literature: The Case of Tayeb Salih’s Season of Migration to the North

David Johnson is a Professor of Literature at the Open University in the UK. He has a law degree and MA in English from the University of Cape Town, and a PhD from Sussex University. He has published two monographs, Shakespeare and South Africa (Oxford University Press, 1996) and Imagining the Cape Colony: History, Literature and the South African Nation (Edinburgh University Press/ UCT Press, 2012).


Caroline Davis

A Question of Power: Bessie Head and her Publishers

Dr Caroline Davis is a Senior Lecturer at Oxford Brookes University, UK, in the Oxford International Centre for Publishing Studies, where she teaches courses in book history, print culture and publishing studies. Her research has focused on British publishing in Africa, and she is the author of Creating Postcolonial Literature: African Writers and British Publishers (Palgrave, 2013) and the co-editor with David Johnson of The Book in Africa: Critical Debates (Palgrave, 2015).


Charlene Herselman

On Tour with Literature: a Brief Historical Overview of Literary Tourism

Charlene Herselman is a lecturer in the Department of Historical and Heritage Studies at the University of Pretoria. She holds an undergraduate degree in Journalism, two Honours degrees in Heritage and Cultural Tourism and Ancient Languages and Cultures, and a Masters degree in Heritage and Cultural Tourism. Her dissertation looked at contemporary forms of literary tourism, with Twilight tourism in Forks as the main case study. She is currently working on a PhD, focusing on film tourism in the Commonwealth.  She is also involved in two research projects, funded by the National Department of Tourism, investigating how to improve cross-border tourist guiding in Southern Africa and film tourism in South Africa respectively.

10:45-11:00         Tea break


11:00-13:00         Session 2: Publishing and print

Chair: Laetitia Cassells


Mackenzie Chibambo

Take it or leave: Agile business models and value addition in the publishing sector

Mackenzie Chibambo holds a Master of Arts in Publishing from Kingston University, London. He also has a B. Ed from the University of Malawi. He has worked with various publishing houses as Editor and Manager. He is currently working at Mzuzu University as an Assistant Director responsible for Publishing. He is also a Lecturer in the Languages and Literature Department. He is a published author of many books and papers.


Jeanne van Eeden

Postcards and Conjugal Life: A case study from the 1930s

Jeanne van Eeden has been in the Department of Visual Arts at the University of Pretoria since 1990. She was Head of the Department between March 2007 and February 2015 and is currently a Professor in the department. She has published almost thirty articles in peer-reviewed journals and twelve chapters in national and international scholarly books, including most recently a contribution on Southern African design to the Bloomsbury Encyclopaedia of Design (2015). She was the co-editor of the book South Africa visual culture (Van Schaik, 2005) that established the relevance of the study of visual culture in South Africa. Her current research focusses mainly on South African postcards as a neglected channel of ideological discourse.


Kyle Rath

The history and use of the German Fraktur typeface

Kyle Rath holds an MA degree in Information Design. His research explores the relationships between iconic design and experiential form in the selection and application of type. He currently lectures both undergraduate and postgraduate Information Design students in the Department of Visual Arts, University of Pretoria. Kyle has a particular passion for typographic and editorial design, although he also works extensively in broadcast design, motion graphics and branding as a freelance designer. He has received several design awards including Loeries, Promax BDAs as well as a Cannes Silver and is also a member of ISTD (the International Society of Typographic Design).


13:00-14:00         Lunch


14:00-16:00         Session 3: Reading

Chair: Liam Borgstrom


Archie Dick

Authors of the Enlightenment at the Cape of Good Hope, ca. 1778-1829

Archie Dick is a Professor in the Department of Information Science at the University of Pretoria. He previously taught at the University of the Western Cape, and the University of South Africa. From 2009 to 2011 he was Deputy Chairperson of the IFLA committee of Freedom of Access to Information and Freedom of Expression. From 2012 to 2014 he was the Chairperson of the National Council of Library and Information Services (NCLIS) in South Africa. He has been a Visiting Professor at Wayne State University and the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, and an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Centre for the History of Print and Digital Culture. His most recent book is The Hidden History of South Africa's Book and Reading Cultures (University of Toronto Press, 2013).


Lize Kriel

Reading in South Africa as visualised in a selection of illustrated missionary periodicals, late 19th - 20th century

Lize Kriel is a Professor of Visual Culture Studies in the Department of Visual Arts at the University of Pretoria. She previously taught in the Department of Historical and Heritage Studies, and has a D.Phil in History. She is interested in knowledge production in colonial contexts, and the ensuing cultures of reading, writing and printing. She is a fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. Her most recent book is The Malaboch Books: Kgaluši in the “civilization of the written word (Franz Steiner, Stuttgart, 2009).


Corinne Sandwith

The Appearance of the Book: Early Twentieth Century Black Reading Cultures in South Africa

Corinne Sandwith is an Associate Professor in the Department of English at the University of Pretoria, and worked previously at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Her research interests include a history of reading, readers and cultural debates in early apartheid South Africa with a particular focus on dissident newspapers, debating societies and little magazines. Her most recent book is World of Letters: Reading Communities and Cultural Debates in Early Apartheid South Africa (Pietermaritzburg: UKZN Press, 2014), which recently won the UP Vice Chancellor’s Book Award.


Matthew Keaney

Training Librarians, Teaching Readers: Realizing ‘a Vision of Librarianship’ in South Africa, c.1930s– 1970s

Matt Keaney is a PhD candidate in history at Yale University, and he is here in South Africa on a Fulbright-Hays fellowship conducting dissertation research for the year.


16:00                     Closing

Tea break


16:30                     Wine reception and book launch – in department tea room (IT Building, 6th floor)