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@ Sunday Times Books LIVE

‘One of the most important voices and writers in the country’ – Eusebius McKaiser on Richard Pithouse

Writing the DeclineRichard Pithouse’s forthcoming book, Writing the Decline: On the Struggle for South Africa’s Democracy, comes recommended by Eusebius McKaiser.

McKaiser, a political analyst and writer whose most recent book is Run Racist Run, calls Pithouse “one of the most important voices and writers in the country”.

Pithouse teaches politics at Rhodes University, lecturing on contemporary political theory and urban studies. He writes regularly for journals and newspapers, and his previous publications include Fanon: A Critical Reader (contributor, 1999), Asinamali: University Struggles in Post-apartheid South Africa (editor, 2006), Fanonian Practices in South Africa: From Steve Biko to Abahlali baseMjondolo (contributor, 2011), The New South Africa at Twenty (contributor, 2014).

Writing the Decline is due for publication in March.

Read McKaiser’s piece, as shared on his Facebook Page:

A book to look forward to coming out soon is ‘Writing the Decline’ by Richard Pithouse.

I read the manuscript over December and it’s good. It’s an overdue collection of his writing that was not published in mainstream media and before he finally accepted that social media can be used as a platform for effective engagement if you set your own rules and stick to them.

I usually – as Richard knows – chuckle at columnists who Google their past columns and stick them in a book.

But this collection isn’t quite that. Besides a very thoughtful first entry that pulls it all together, Richard has not been as widely read as he should.

He is one of the most important voices and writers in the country but also has a humility that robs us of ‘hearing’ his writing voice as often as we should because he is not into self-promotion.

In terms of content: this collection shows the design flaws in liberal institutions set up at the dawn of democracy to deal with our justice challenges; it shows how Richard, long before some of us caught up (and are still catching up), understood early on the neocolonial tendencies and features of the post-apartheid state with detailed case studies of how popular movements have for a long time now been violently repressed by our democratic state; Richard shows off, too, urgent moral probing of popular movements, civil society and the left despite overlapping agreement with some of their goals; and a broader range of thematic analysis.

The collection is a fantastic interplay of activist writing, political analysis and showing off the importance of historicism when approaching contemporary problems in our society that have, not just proximate apartheid causes, but colonial roots.
And the writing is beautiful. He pens a lyrical sentence.

Watch out for this anthology, friends!

‪#‎ForTheLoveOfReading‬ ‪#‎ForTheLoveOfBooks‬

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