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Dreaming of Freedom in South AfricaLiterature Between Critique and Utopia$
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David Johnson

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781474430210

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474430210.001.0001

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Pan-Africanism: Freedom for Africa

Pan-Africanism: Freedom for Africa

(p.133) 5 Pan-Africanism: Freedom for Africa
Dreaming of Freedom in South Africa

David Johnson

Edinburgh University Press

The Pan-Africanist dream of freedom as expressed in South African political writings and literature from the 1940s to 1970s is the focus of the final chapter. The Pan-Africanist dreams expressed in political discourse that are discussed include: the ANC Youth League’s Manifesto (1944); the ANC’s Programme of Action (1949); the political writings of Muziwakhe Anton Lembede, A. P. Mda and Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe; the PAC’s Manifesto of the Africanist Movement (1959); and the articles and reviews in PAC publications like The Africanist and Mafube. Pan-Africanist dreams of freedom expressed in literary terms are discussed in sections on Lembede’s thoughts on individual literary works; Mda’s prescriptions for literature; Sobukwe’s wide reading and eclectic literary tastes; Melikhaya Mbutumu’s praise poems; novels hostile to the PAC by Peter Abrahams, Richard Rive and Alex la Guma; and novels sympathetic to the PAC by Lauretta Ngcobo and Bessie Head. The popularity within the PAC of Howard Fast’s novels My Glorious Brothers (1948) and Spartacus (1951) is also assessed.

Keywords:   PAC (Pan-Africanist Congress), Africanism, Black consciousness, A.P. Mda, Anton Muziwakhe Lembede, Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe, Bessie Head, Spartacus

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