BookJol makes its mark

The 2008 BookJol formed part of the University of Pretoria’s centenary celebrations, but will become an annual event for Gauteng bibliophiles to mark in their diaries. To commemorate the centenary, the BookJol also included an exhibition of more than a thousand books, written by UP Alumni and academics.

“The purpose of the event is to celebrate reading and the writing of books as a way of life in the academic environment. It is also aimed at fostering a culture of reading and wishes to illustrate the slogan, Leading minds read,” explains Monica Hammes, Assistant Director of the Department of Library Services and organiser of the BookJol.

The BookJol also provided an excellent platform to showcase South African writers, current trends and developments in academic publishing as well as a hundred years of publishing at the University of Pretoria.

Opening the BookJol, well-known politician and poet, Dr Mathews Phosa spoke about the importance of language in South Africa. He stressed that Afrikaans was no longer the exclusive language of the Afrikaner, but that the language was there to be used and appreciated by everyone. “Vandag is Afrikaans die eiendom van beide FW de Klerk en Mathews Phosa en dit maak hom sterk en soepel,” he said.

He also encouraged South Africans to learn the languages of their fellow South Africans in order to build bridges between communities. “I urge you to reach across divides and literally hold the languages of your neighbours close to your chest; to learn those languages, to study them, to share them and to speak them. You can only hold me close to our heart if I find a way to communicate with you. Language is that instrument. Language is that medium, and language is the spear in our hands that we want to put to new use,” Dr Phosa said.

Click here for Dr Phosa’s full address.
Click here for a video clip of a part of Dr Phosa's address.

Phosa & Pistorius
Vice-Chancellor Prof Calie Pistorius & Dr Mathews Phosa

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