Wole Soyinka Launches His Book In Johannesburg

By Novell Zwangendaba -JOHANNESBURG – I attendend the book launch, You Must Set Forth at Dawn: A Memoir by Wole Soyinka one of Africa’s greatest living writers, Wole Soyinka, at Xarra Books in Newtown.


Wole Soyinka & Zukiswa Wanner

It was an incredible experience to witness scores of prominent African scholars, journalist, critics, published writers and notable artists descend on the Jozi’s literature hotspot. Soyinka exhibited youthful energy and strength throughout the panel discussion on his book.

 A compelling memoir by Africa’s first Nobel laureate for literature continues the story that began in his childhood autobiography Ake as Soyinka describes the it in captivating detail.
As a political activist of prodigious energies, Wole Soyinka follows his modern classic Ake: The Years of Childhood with an equally important chronicle of his turbulent life as an adult in (and in exile from) his beloved, beleaguered homeland.
In the tough, humane, and lyrical language that has typified his plays and novels, Soyinka captures the indomitable spirit of Nigeria itself by bringing to life the friends and family who bolstered and inspired him, and by describing the pioneering theater works that defied censure and tradition. Soyinka not only recounts his exile and the terrible reign of General Sani Abacha, but shares vivid memories and playful anecdotes–including his improbable friendship with a prominent Nigerian businessman and the time he smuggled a frozen wildcat into America so that his students could experience a proper Nigerian barbecue.
More than a major figure in the world of literature, Wole Soyinka is a courageous voice for human rights, democracy, and freedom. You Must Set Forth at Dawn is an intimate chronicle of his thrilling public life, a meditation on justice and tyranny, and a mesmerizing testament to a ravaged yet hopeful land.