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13 March 2018 Photo Edwin Mthimkhulu
Solomon Mahlangu inspires UFS alumnus first Sesotho book
Ace Moloi questions and delves into the concept of freedomin Tholwana Tsa Tokoloho

Tholwana Tsa Tokoloho is the title of Ace Moloi’s anthology of short stories and the name of one of the 14 stories in the book. The anthology is the first book in Sesotho published by the three-time author.

On Friday, 16 March 2018, Tholwana Tsa Tokoloho, an Art Fusion Literature product, will make its debut public appearance during a public reading at the University of the Free State’s Equitas Auditorium at 17:30.

Moloi’s first literary offering was In Her Fall Rose A Nation which was published in 2013 during his final-year as a Communication Science student at the university. In 2016, Moloi published Holding My Breath, which was praised widely for stirring emotions in readers who related to the heart-wrenching narrative of losing a mother. It was only this year that the author managed to achieve his teenage goal of establishing himself as a vernacular author.

Solomon Mahlangu, an African National Congress freedom fighter and Umkhonto we Sizwe militant who was convicted of murder and hanged in 1979, was the inspiration behind the anthology. Mahlangu inspired the Tholwana Tsa Tokoloho story, which is the story of the selflessness of a captured guerrilla hero in the face of police torture and his eventual death by hanging. It represents Mahlangu and those who suffered during the struggle for liberation. 

“My blood will nourish the tree that will bear the fruits of freedom,” are the supposed last words uttered by Mahlangu that inspired the book’s title. Tholwana Tsa Tokoloho means “the fruits of freedom” in Sesotho. For Moloi, writing in the vernacular symbolises the fruits of freedom. “I’m trying to write in a revolutionary spirit, in Sesotho, because we haven’t done that. We have not seriously interrogated political concepts in Sesotho or in any native language,” he said.

Graduate unemployment, violent crime, and sports are some of the other topics tackled in the book. These act as a catalyst for debates over the evidence of ‘the fruits of freedom’ in post-1994 South Africa. 

News Archive

Workplace bullying can cause a toxic teaching environment
2014-04-15

A study done by the University of the Free State’s Faculty of Education exposed how teachers in South Africa fall victim to bullying in the workplace on a daily basis.

This study by Prof Corene de Wet from our School of Open Learning and Dr Lynette Jacobs from our School of Education Studies, exposed the commonness of workplace bullying (WPB) among teachers.

More than 2 700 teachers, from all school levels in urban, township, informal settlements, rural and farm schools, took part in a 43-question survey. Teachers from eight provinces were included in the study.

About 90% of the respondents were victims of WPB by school colleagues and/or management during the 12 months that preceded the study.

These acts included direct shunning, having untrue things said about them, verbal abuse, threats and ridicule, insults and teasing, damaging of possessions as well as physical violence.

Dr Jacobs says WPB is an extremely serious problem in some South African schools, compared to the occurrence in other countries.

“South African teachers are working in ‘toxic’ environments characterised by disgruntled, overworked and stressed teachers. There often are high levels of learner-on-learner and learner-on-educator violence and bullying, communities fraught with moral degradation, racial conflict, violence, lawlessness and economic despair. In schools where despair and disrespect prevail, teachers often turn on one another,” she says.

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