03 Censorship and arrests

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Excerpt from: “Death of a little magazine” by Stephen Gray in the journal Contrast Vol. 11 No. 2 April 1977 by Stephen Gray.

“Wilma Stockenström wrote about censorship, that we were to fear. Wilma didn’t know that as she collated one long passage-length of pages for the first number, and as Casper Schmidt silk-screened a cover, taking one day into the next into the next, that at our launching party no less than eleven of our guests were to be arrested. We didn’t know that Jenny Frazer was to leave the country; that Jeremy Cronin was to get seven years for terrorism; that Don Mattera who led our frequent poetry readings was to be banned. We weren’t to know that. Nor that one Jacobsen twin was to be taken after that party, and Vicky Cassirer was making a last public appearance. And when the cops came, they took the mine manager next door, too, because they’d spied from a tree that he was banging a black girl. We weren’t to know any of that.”

Read more from Wilma Stockenstrom’s article on censorship: “Nog Woorde Gebreek oor die Sensuur”, Izwi 1;44 – 45


About “Nog Woorde Gebreek oor die Sensuur” Izwi 1;44-45

In this piece Stockenström argues against writers falling into the cowardly trap of self-censorship when facing state censorship.
Wilma Johanna Stockenström (born 1933), was one of Izwi’s editors and is a South African writer, translator, and actor. She writes in the Afrikaans language, and along with Sheila Cussons, Elisabeth Eybers, Antjie Krog and Ina Rousseau, is one of the leading female writers in the language.

  • 1977 Hertzog Prize for Poetry for Van vergetelheid en van glans
  • 1984 CNA, Louis Luyt and Ou Mutual Prizes for Monsterverse
  • 1988 Grinzane Cavour Prize for Spedizione al Baobab
  • 1991 WA Hofmeyr and Hertzog Prizes for Abjater wat so lag
  • 2008 SALA Literary Lifetime Award

Jeremy Cronin

An Extract from the poem “Rising” by Jeremy Cronin, published in Izwi August 1st, 1972, vol.1 no.5 p. 27.
© Izwi
Jeremy Cronin is the South African Deputy Minister of Public Works. He is also a writer, author, and poet. A long-time activist in politics, Cronin is a member of the South African Communist Party and a member of the National Executive Committee of the African National Congress.