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Alan Wieder discusses Ruth First & Joe Slovo in the UK

Ruth First and Joe Slovo in the War Against Apartheid

"A truly remarkable work. Alan Wieder shows himself as a writer equal to their life story, their inspiring bravery in action and self-analysis."

—Nadine Gordimer, winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature

Join Alan Wieder, author of Ruth First and Joe Slovo in the War against Apartheid, for two upcoming events in London, UK

Wednesday 30th April, 7pm

a talk at Housmans Bookshop

Housmans Bookshop

5 Caledonian Road

King’s Cross

London N1 9DX

Tel: 020 7837 4473

Entry £3, redeemable against purchase.

Nearest tube: King’s Cross

Complimentary refreshments will be available.

Thursday May 1

Ruth First: Não Vamos Esquecer (We Will Not Forget)

Alan Wieder will present a talk at the launch of a special issue of the Review of African Political Economy dedicated to Ruth First, at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies

The South African revolutionary Ruth First made an extraordinary contribution to activism and radical writing and research on Africa. She worked as a journalist in South Africa from 1946 until her exile in the UK in 1964. She then became an editor, co-author and author of a large number of books, as well as a lecturer. She was also one of the founding members of the Review of African Political Economy (RoAPE) in 1974, a radical journal committed to transforming (and understanding) Africa’s political economy.

In the late 1970s First moved to Mozambique as Director of Research at the Centro de Estudos Africanos at the Universidade Eduardo Mondlane in Maputo. In 1982 she was murdered in Maputo by the apartheid state. Drawing on papers presented at the 2012 Ruth First Papers Project symposium, RoAPE has produced a special issue that includes contributions from Anne-Marie Gentili, Gavin Williams and Alpheus Manghezi. The special issue on Ruth First is the story of First’s life in Mozambique, and her broad and substantial contribution to radical African studies. Much of Ruth First’s work and life remains unknown to a new generation yet her work was of such impressive scope, her activism so courageous. Join us to celebrate the extraordinary life of Ruth First and the launch of the Ruth First Special Issue.


Senate Room

First floor, Senate House

Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU

Panel -17:00 –18:30

Ruth First: activism and research

Welcome by Gillian Slovo

‘Writing Ruth First’s biography’ Alan Wieder (Wieder is the author of Ruth First and Joe Slovo in the War Against Apartheid published to wide acclaim last year).

Gavin Williams

‘Setting up RoAPE: Ruth and the first years of the Review’


Professor Philip Murphy (Director of the Institute of Commonwealth Studies)

Launch -18.30 –20.00

Ruth First: Não Vamos Esquecer, Review of African Political Economy with Gary Littlejohn and Janet Bujra

Convenor: Dr Leo Zeilig, Project Manager

All Welcome

RSVP to olga.jimenez[at]

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