Power of words

Victor Mecoamere

Victor Mecoamere

Honouring established and emerging writers continues through the South African Literary Awards, which encourages the development of literature and literary awareness.

The awards, a part of the nation-building partnership project of the Arts and Culture Department, Sowetan, Nutrend Publishers and wRite Associates, were held in Johannesburg recently. They encourage the telling of stories about our past and present to inspire, inform, educate, motivate and enthrall present and future generations.

A special feature was the launch by Arts and Culture Minister Pallo Jordan of Band of Troubadours, a compilation of prose, fiction, poetry and essays by the 43 writers who were honoured from 2005 to 2007.

Jordan said: "Literacy has a vital and empowering capacity for both the individual and society. Not surprisingly, illiteracy was a means to render people powerless. During the Atlantic slave trade, it was considered essential that slaves be denied the skills of reading and writing."