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The 6th International African Women Writers’ Symposium:

The 6th International African Women Writers’ Symposium: Presented by the Department of Arts and Culture, Joburg Theatre, Hillbrow Theatre and Afro Arts SA.

Programme: 29th November – 6th December 2018

Keynote Address, Panel discussions, Music, Poetry Performance and Workshops.

Joburg Theatre (Loveday Str, Civic Boulevard, Braamfontein) and Hillbrow Theatre (30 Edith Cavell Str, Hillbrow)

The African Women Writers Symposium (AWWS) aims to promote and develop writing within the continent and its diaspora. Over the years, the Symposium has hosted significant writers including the late Nadine Gordimer (SA), Willie Kgositsile (SA) and poet Jayne Cortez (USA), Aminata Forna (Sierra Leone/UK), Sapphire (USA), Gillian Slovo (SA), Lorna Goodison (Jamaica), Linton Kwesi Johnson (Jamaica), Tsitsi Dangarembga (Zimbabwe), Vangi Gantsho (SA) to name a few.

This year we once again present an exciting programme of writers of fiction and non – fiction including international award winning author Leila Aboulela (Sudan/Egypt). Leila Aboulela will deliver the 4th In Memoriam Lecture for Nadine Gordimer at the Joburg Theatre at on Thurs 6th Dec at 6.30pm. Leila Aboulela is the author of The Kindness of Enemies, The Translator, a New York Times 100 Notable Books of the Year, Minaret and Lyrics Alley, Fiction Winner of the Scottish Book Awards. She was the first winner of the Caine Prize for African Writing.

The Symposium will launch on Thursday 29th November at 6.30 pm at Joburg Theatre, The Fringe featuring writers on a panel exploring Racism and Marginalisation with Malaika Mahlatsi (author of Memoirs of a Born Free, Reflections on the Rainbow Nation), Nosipho Mthembu (former teacher from Rustenburg Girls in Cape Town), Willie Perdomo (USA, Afro Latino, award winning poet, publisher and academic) and Prof J Ndlovu Gatsheni (Unisa) .

On the Friday 30th November at 6.30 pm at Joburg Theatre, The Fringe, there will be a special panel on ‘’Writing the truth in contested times’’ with journalist, radio host and award winning author Redi Tlhabi, recipient of the 2013 Alan Paton award for Endings and Beginnings . Her latest best seller Khwezi is a remarkable account of the life of President Jacob Zuma’s rape accuser Fezekile Kuzwayo. Featured on the same panel is Chris Steyn, author of the The Lost Boys of Bird lsland, which looks at the abuse of young boys by senior members of the Nationalist Party. The book is co-authored by the Mark Minnie, who tragically died recently. The panel will be convened by researcher and activist on land and gender issues Nomboniso Gasa.

The symposium will also feature women musicians and poets after the panel discussions. There will be a strong and enriching programme of master class workshops on script writing, poetry, photography and the writing of music and hip hop, which will take place at the Joburg Theatre and the Hillbrow Theatre.

For more information on the 6th International African Women Writers’ Symposium programme, please visit:
FB: African Women Writers Network
FB: Arts Alive, Joburg International Arts Festival

Light Refreshments will be served. Admission is free. Booking in advance is essential for space and catering purposes. Please send an email to and

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