Lover of His People: A Biography of Sol Plaatje

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Wits University Press, 2012 - Biography & Autobiography - 122 pages
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Adopted from a manuscript that had long been housed in the Wits Historical Papers and was accessible only to scholars, editors D. S. Matjila and Karen Haire have mined the archive to produce the first English translation of Seetsele Modiri Molema’s biography, Lover of His People: Sol Plaatje. In this account, Molema balances Plaatje’s public and political persona—as a pioneer black politician and man of letters—with an intimate account, illuminating the spirit of Plaatje by painting a personal portrait of this leading South African figure and his impact on South Africa’s political and cultural landscape. In shaping this manuscript into a book, the editors and translators have included a preface that elaborates on the uniqueness of Molema’s biography, and on the relationship between these two prominent Africans and the value of this text within the broader ambit of revisioning South African historiography. Recognizing that Molema was an extraordinary scholar, intellectual, and politician in his own right, the book includes an essay on the life and legacy of Seetsele Modiri Molema and his contribution to South Africa’s black intellectual heritage.

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About the author (2012)

Seetsele Modiri Molema (1891–1965) was a doctor and surgeon who wrote and published the landmark history, Bantu Past and Present: An Ethnographic and History Study of the Native Races of South Africa. D. S. Matjila is an associate professor in the department of African languages at University of South Africa. Karen Haire is a senior lecturer at the University of Johannesburg where she teaches academic writing.

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