Dr. Pumla Gqola and other local authors talk book rights and royalties

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South African feminist writer Pumla Dineo Gqola, pictured at the Edinburgh International Book Festival  (Photo by Colin McPherson/Corbis via Getty Images)
South African feminist writer Pumla Dineo Gqola, pictured at the Edinburgh International Book Festival (Photo by Colin McPherson/Corbis via Getty Images)

To mark World Book and Copyright Day last week, the South African Book Fair announced an important online discussion on free books and the value of copyright in providing writers with life-sustaining royalties.

Dudu Busani-Dube, Flow Wellington, Michelle Constant, Pamela Power, Dr. Pumla Dineo Gqola and Thabiso Mahlape, will take part in a panel discussion live via the South African Book Fair Facebook page from 19:00 to 20:00 on Tuesday, 28 April 2020. 

The line-up of award-winning and acclaimed authors and participants will discuss the economic value of books as an intrinsic part of their social, educational and cultural value. 

The South African Book Fair panel

The panel, the first in a series of online discussions to follow, will tackle ways of ensuring writers, and the broader book industry, are able to thrive and tell South African stories, in all the country's different languages, and improve access to books in communities that are struggling for survival. It will also address - head-on - the growing circulation of free books during COVID-19, within even the traditional book-buying community. 

The World Book and Copyright Day event is part of South African Book Fair’s commitment to bringing the power of reading to all South Africans.

"It’s important for authors to continue writing during this time of Covid-19 so that we have diverse interpretations and stories of the biggest challenge our country (and world) has faced to date," says Elitha van der Sandt, CEO of the South African Book Development Council (SABDC) which runs the annual South African Book Fair as part of National Book Week. 

"The country relies on the book industry to record this moment and share it with generations to come."

Compiled by Lindokuhle Nkosi.

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