The Wonder Known as Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh

2016-09-11 01:15

Congratulations to Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh for his manuscript Democracy and Delusion: 10 Myths in South African Politics winning Tafelberg City Press Nonfiction Award. The manuscript is geared to shaping our society, and is worth consideration.

Sizwe is an encyclopedia covering the arts, scholarship, social, economic and political activism.

The constant seeking of a balance between art, social discourse and political engagement has always been Sizwe's conjuncture. It is something of an odd situation, but wholly understandable.There’s no contradiction, whatsoever. All these impulses are not incompatible.

Sizwe works as an artist, poet, dancer, singer, song writer, scholar, politician to change hearts as well as minds. His works spring from the premise that recognizes the broad gulf between South Africa's founding dream and today's reality. He abhor the climate of unreason that darkness our space and deadens every facet of our society. But in the end he is hopeful, positive and focused on solutions.

This kind of scholarship is what is needed, scholarship that connects with the grassroots and sparking change. I am thinking also of EFF's national spokesperson Mbuyeseni Ndlozi, a doctoral student, who has reproduced the masterpiece song Azania rebuilding pride in the hearts of the African people.

I am also thinking of Cornel West, the great American philosopher, academic, social activist, and past Harvard and Princeton professor. While being a professor at Harvard Cornel West produced hip hop music album Sketches of My Culture. That was followed by Street Knowledge.

Sizwe has already said that Democracy and Delusion as a book will be followed by a music album, that each chapter of the book will have a song.

Sweeping changes in the politics of one’s existence are often not a matter of new policies or passing of new laws. Sweeping changes comes through the use of music, literature, art and theatre to win the people’s hearts and minds away from the status quo. By speaking truth to power and bearing witness against injustice, activists throughout our history have transformed society. Only then, after the cultural ground had shifted underfoot, did sweeping political and policy changes follow.

The biennial City Press Tafelberg Nonfiction Award is South Africa’s largest award for the development of manuscripts for publication.

Sizwe is the son of Dali Mpofu, the national chairman of Economic Freedom Fighters. He was student representative council president at the university of Cape Town where he graduated with honours degree in Politics‚ Philosophy and Economics before proceeding to Oxford University where he is currently a PhD student, having gotten his master's degree with distinction.


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