Three University of Botswana academics are part of a team of 60 women writers that has published a book titled Botswana Women Write which was launched in Gaborone on September 19, 2019.
The trio is Professor Maitseo Bolaane, Dr Loloba Molema and Professor Connie Rapoo, all from the Faculty of Humanities. Professor Bolaane is history lecturer while Dr Molema teaches English and African Literature. Professor Rapoo is a lecturer in Visual and Performing Arts. Bessie Head Scholar and Author of Novels of Botswana English, Ms Marry Lederer, was also part of the team.
The book was launched at a glittering ceremony attended by among others First Lady, Mrs Neo Masisi, Kgosi Mosadi Seboko of Balete, University of Botswana deans and directors as well as members of the community.
The first of its kind in Botswana, the book aims at projecting and asserting women’s voices in various social, political and cultural settings in Botswana.
It also challenges existing stereotypes while addressing the ever present sex and gender imbalance in authorship. Topics covered range from creative writing, traditional songs and poetry, drama, letters and memories to interviews, court statements, journalism and other non- fiction material.
Speaking at the launch organised by Gaborone Book Festival Trust at Maitisong Hall, Professor Bolaane said the anthology covers a wide range issues that affected women in Botswana. She said it establishes for the first time, a record of how Botswana women think and live while simultaneously reflecting issues women face not only in Botswana but globally.
Professor Bolaane further noted that it also reflects sexual freedom and pleasure, intellectual engagement, expressions of joy, playfulness and assertions of political presence. She explained that it features woman from all walks of life and features authors such as Bessie Head, Unity Dow, Lauri Kubuitsile and Tjawangwa Dema.
Dr Molema on the other hand said the book took 15 years to complete because the authors were searching for quality and wanted a true representation of woman voices in Botswana.