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Year of fire

Category: Poetry
ISBN:   9780868522517
Publisher:  Jonathan Ball Publishers
On sale: March 2021
List price: R250
Format: Paperback
eBook ISBN

Year of fire, year of ash: South African Poems of Decolonisation


Wamuwi Mbao


In Years of Fire and Ash: South African Poems of Decolonisation, fifty years of protest poetry are brought together in one volume by literary critic and lecturer Dr Wamuwi Mbao. The animating impulse behind this collection of old and new voices is ‘decolonisation’, a term which has regained prominence over the last few years. It allows us to perceive how different South African poets have placed their work in the world, and how that work might relate to the struggle for radical social transformation. How, then, does decolonization look like in the world of South African poetry? This anthology is an attempt to answer that question.

The poems express the thoughts and experiences of poets who experienced Apartheid, but also of those who address current political realities. This collection includes established voices such as HIE Dhlomo, Oswald Mtshali, Mongane Serote, Sipho Sepamla, and Eskia Mphahlele, as well as prominent contemporary poets such as Vangile Gantsho, Adrian van Wyk and Lebohang Masango.


Andrew Pike is one of the most senior maritime lawyers in South Africa, with over 30 years’ experience in the industry. He is the head of law firm Bowmans’ Ports, Transport and Logistics sector. Pike is a past president of the Maritime Law Association of South Africa and past board member of the Ports Regulator of South Africa. He is the author of two books, People Risks: A People-based Strategy for Business Success and The Talking Stick: Exploring Life’s Possibilities. In his free time, Pike is a blogger, avid photographer and traveller. He lives in Durban.

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