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Censorship and the reading practices of political prisoners in South Africa, 1960-1990

A Dick


Political prisoners undermined censorship in apartheid jails. The jail diaries, authorised biographies, autobiographies, prison memoirs, interviews and prison letters of more than fifty political prisoners and two prison censors describe the reading practices of South African political prisoners. Political prisoners generated original thoughts from books that ended up in prison libraries and in their possession. They continued the political struggle and reconstructed news and life experiences from reading materials denied to them by prison authorities. Political prisoners regulated their own reading spaces.

Innovation Vol. 35 2007 pp. 24-55