Tswana language : Rare books

Tswana language : Rare books


The Africana library has a collection of rare African language books dating from the 1800s. These books are inaccessible because they were not the library catalogue and not shelved in the public areas as they are also somewhat fragile. These books provide a history of the development of various languages and provide varied orthography. We are now presenting the books for public access and use. We digitised the books as part of a preservation and language corpus creation project. corpora is one of the language resources that allow English to be so effective as an international scientific language. There is a lack of scientific and philosophical vocabulary to apply to research in other languages. We developed corpora to help fill in this lack.


We cannot determine copyright as this collection of books is written by Botswana and South African authors most of whom we cannot trace. The majority of the presses have also closed down. We are putting up this community as a notice to authors, families or presses. We hope that by putting up the collection which was done for language and preservation purposes that the rights holders will contact us so that we can either publish or remove the books. The copyright spreadsheet attached to this collection constitutes 104 Setswana books, 53 with authors recorded and (51) without authors or translators in the text. Out of 53 books with authors, we could only find information for y 7 authors online. We had to estimate the date of death based on the publication date. Those who published from 1893 to 1976 were assumed to be dead, whereas those who did from 1988 to 2007 were assumed to be alive. We intend to publish on that basis. We appeal to you, if you have further information on those authors or have contact details please email. nina.lewin@wits.ac.za, ca. Or malebogo.thabong@wits.ac.za.

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