The Miriam Tlali Reading & Book Club (MTR&BC), founded by the wRite associates, is a Legacy Programme of the South African Literary Awards (SALA). The Club, named after the veteran author and activist, Ms Miriam Masoli Tlali, who is a recipient of the SALA’s 2005 Lifetime Achievement Literary Award, was established in her honour in June 2009 in order to profile, promote and explore the literary jewels that South Africa has.
The Club has hosted literary giants with prolific talents like our National Poet Laureate, Prof. Keorapetse Kgositsile, Novel Laureate, Nadine Gordimer, Dr. Gomolemo Mokae, Prof.Pitika Ntuli, the late Professor Lewis Nkosi, Prof. Andries Oliphant, Ms Lauretta Ngcobo, Wanguyi wa Goro, a Kenyan writer and scholar, and many more. Its primary goal has always been to cultivate the reading and writing culture in the country.
How the programme works
The Club invites writers, readers and the general public to discuss books, literary topical issues and to take part in other interactive platforms to promote the culture of writing and reading. The Club also hosts literary talks, workshops and supports book launches. The sessions take place one Saturday a month from 14H00 – 16H30.
Who is Miriam Tlali?
Miriam Tlali is a scholar, novelist, short story writer and activist. She has written many novels and short stories, including Between the Two Worlds, Amandla, Footprints in the Quag, and Mihloti, a collection of short stories and essays. Miriam has also written a play, Crimen Injuria. She has received many awards internationally and domestically, including the inaugural S.A Literary Awards’ category of Lifetime Achievement Literary Award in 2005 and the Presidential Award Ikhamanga Silver in 2008.
Tlali has eloquently spoken and written of numerous difficulties facing black women writers in South Africa. Her own life has been a determined struggle to fulfill what she sees as her role as a writer, “to conscientise the masses…”
The members of the Club comprise young and old people, published and unpublished writers, poets, artists and people who are generally interested in South Africa’s reading and writing culture. The programme has also attracted non-South Africans who are literature lovers.
The programme is free as there is no membership fee required at this stage.
The programme varies with each session. Topics that have been covered thus far have been relevant and the programme participants range from veterans to newcomers, old, young, male and female. The programme history is attached below.
Book exhibitions of participants and other literary work are always featured at the Club sessions.
Kiddies’ and Teens’ programmes
This is one of the milestones of the Miriam Tlali Reading & Book Club. The programme was launched in April 2010. We are pleased to announce that the response has gradually shown significant growth and appreciation.
The kiddies’ programme accommodates age 2 -12 year olds whilst the teens’ programme accommodates 13 – 18 year olds.
Kiddies programme support structure
In delivering this programme, the wRite associates is working with the following professionals:
- Keleketla, an organisation specialising in kids’ mental development
- Marcia Tladi, a poet and author
- Thembi Mkhizwane, a librarian and storyteller
- Toto Mubenga, a poet and author
- Maserame Madingwane, a poet and kiddies’ author
- Solane Mlambo, a poet and author