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Read Excerpted Chapters from Archie L Dick’s The Hidden History of South Africa’s Book and Reading Cultures

	The Hidden History of South Africa’s Book and Reading CulturesSouth African History Online has shared a preview of Archie L Dick’s The Hidden History of South Africa’s Book and Reading Cultures, including the introduction and two chapters.

In the introduction Dick discusses “The Significance of Common Readers in South Africa” and in the shared chapters he writes about “Early Readers at the Cape, 1658 – 1800″ and “Books for Troops in the Second World War”. Read these fascinating excerpts on the country’s early reading cultures:

In the 1950s, when Prue Smith was a teenager in South Africa, she was a reader for the illiterate black servants in her parents’ household. Though their memories and mental discipline enabled them to carry out their duties, it was the written word as conveyed by Prue that fed their imagination and offered them leisure. She remembers reading out the letters written by a postmaster or storekeeper on behalf of the sender (always in English – how else would Prue have been turned into their willing servant?).

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