Apartheid to Democracy: South African Consul General Vuyiswa Tulelo

The Consul General of South Africa, Vuyiswa Tulelo, opened our season of special events marking the 20th anniversary of the end of Apartheid by speaking at the opening reception of our Apartheid to Democracy exhibit. Her lecture was entitled “20 years of Democracy: Locating the voice of the Youth in the Struggles for Freedom”.

Consul General Tulelo hails from Kimberley in the Northern Cape province of South Africa. She started her schooling in Kimberley and graduated from grade 12 in Kimberley.

She had her political awakening during her high school years, when she questioned the payment of examination fees by Grade 12 learners, although it was evident from her community that most of the parents could not afford the money required.

She joined the Department of International Relations and Cooperation in November 2011 and was heading the Youth and Gender Chief Directorate, until she took up her responsibility as Head of Mission in Chicago on 21 July 2012.

Esmeralda Kale is the new Herskovits Library curator

David Easterbrook, Esmeralda Kale

L-R: David Easterbrook, Esmeralda Kale

Esmeralda Kale has been named George and Mary LeCron Foster Curator of the Melville J. Herskovits Library of African Studies. Her appointment is effective July 1, 2014. Below is the text of Northwestern University Library Dean Sarah Pritchard’s official announcement.

To Library and faculty colleagues,

I am pleased to announce that, following a national search, Esmeralda Kale has accepted the position of George and Mary LeCron Foster Curator of the Melville J. Herskovits Library of African Studies and will start July 1. Esmeralda is currently the Bibliographer of Africana in the Melville J. Herskovits Library of African Studies and has served in that capacity for over 11 years. Esmeralda has an M.A. in Library and Information Science from University College London and as well as postgraduate studies in the information needs of women in Africa also at University College London. Her undergraduate degree in sociology is from Trent University in Canada. In her previous experience Esmeralda has served as Reference Librarian at Zayed University in Abu Dhabi, Assistant Systems Librarian for the Tri-College Consortium (Bryn Mawr, Haverford, Swarthmore), Acting Head of the Department of Library & Information Science at the University of Fort Hare in South Africa, and head of periodicals at the University of Swaziland.

Among her achievements at NUL, Esmeralda was the principle investigator of the CLIR grant to catalogue the “Africana Posters: Hidden Collections of Northwestern and Michigan State University Libraries” in 2009. She also secured two acquisitions grants from the Illinois Cooperative Collection Management Program. She has curated many exhibitions including most notably “Apartheid to Democracy” and the accompanying film series currently showing at Northwestern University Library.

In 2012-13 Esmeralda served as Chair of the Africana Librarians Council, a coordinate organization of the African Studies Association (ASA). The ALC stands at the center of all major cooperative activities in African studies librarianship. She is a member of the ALA International Relations Committee and has served on numerous other professional association committees. Last summer Esmeralda participated in IFLA’s African Library Summit 2013 at the University of South Africa. In 2010 she was selected as one of 30 participants in Synergy, a competitive statewide library leadership program. She has a long record of teaching, presentations, reviews and special projects.

I would like to thank D. J. Hoek (NUL Music Library) and the members of the search committee (Carolyn Caizzi, Digital Collections; Harriet Lightman, Research & Information Services; Crystal Martin, Africana; Prof. Evan Mwangi, Dept of English; and Marcia Tiede, Bibliographic Services), for their very thorough work in recruiting and assessing candidates.

Please join me in congratulating Esmeralda on this honor. I look forward to collaborating with Esmeralda in her new leadership role.


Sarah M. Pritchard
Dean of Libraries and
Charles Deering McCormick University Librarian
Northwestern University

Remembering Hans E. Panofsky

Hans E. Panofsky, Curator of the Herskovits Library, 1959 - 1991
A new exhibition highlighting publications of Hans E. Panofsky, Herskovits Library Curator, 1959-1991, has opened in the Herskovits Library exhibition cases. The exhibition, curated by Librarian of Africana Patricia Ogedengbe, includes not only publications but photographs and other memorabilia.

Panofsky, who died in July, will be remembered at a memorial service in NU’s Alice Millar Chapel, Saturday November 2 at 10 a.m. All are welcome.

The exhibition continues through December 31, 2013. A tribute to Hans was published in the fall quarter issue of PAS News and Events.

Herskovits Library welcomes Dr. Johnnetta B. Cole

Dr. Johnnetta B. Cole reviewing some materials from the Herskovits Library's Africa Embracing Obama collection.

Dr. Johnnetta B. Cole reviewing some materials from the Herskovits Library’s Africa Embracing Obama collection.

The last of Melville J. Herskovits’ anthropology students at Northwestern, Johnnetta B. Cole visited the library today while in town to receive the 2013 Alumnae Award from the Alumnae of Northwestern University. Dr. Cole, the current director of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African Art, joined members of the Alumnae for a presentation by curator David Easterbrook of many items from our collections.

Dikgang Moseneke visits the Herskovits Library

Dikgang Moseneke, Deputy Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court of South Africa, paid a visit to the Herskovits Library this afternoon.

Moseneke is on a week-long visit to Northwestern University where he will receive the Global Jurist of the Year Award from Northwestern’s School of Law Center for International Human Rights.

While visiting the Herskovits Library he met with Curator David Easterbrook, Bibliographer Esmeralda Kale and User Space Evening Supervisor Erik Ponder to review examples of research materials related to South Africa including posters from the Independent Election Commission for the 1994 South African election on which he served.

In addition, Esmeralda and Erik described the planning underway for the exhibition “Apartheid to Democracy: Twenty Years of Freedom in South Africa” opening in April 2014.

Tukufu Zuberi visits the Herskovits Library

Today the Herskovits Library received a visit from Tukufu Zuberi, historian, documentary filmmaker, and new co-host of the PBS television show The History Detectives Herskovits Library Curator David Easterbrook gave Prof. Zuberi a tour, as well as a showing of some special collection items including many objects from our “Africa EMbraces Obama” collection.

Zapiro: Jiving with Madiba on the iPad

Zapiro: Jiving with Madiba, a new iPad app by Berg + Bach.

Zapiro: Jiving with Madiba, a new iPad app by Berg + Bach.

Digital publishers Berg + Bach have released a new iPad app that uses the political cartoons of South African artist Zapiro to tell the story of Nelson Mandela’s life.

From the press release:

“This is not just another tribute to Nelson Mandela, the app brings the global giant together with a giant of cartooning each ‘shaping’ the other. With over 330 of Zapiro’s cartoons, video and audio footage, Zapiro: Jiving with Madiba traces the life of Nelson Mandela from Prisoner to President to Pensioner. In addition to the cartoons published in several of the largest newspapers in South Africa, Zapiro’s struggle era work for the UDF and ANC from the eighties is also on display, as are dozens of drawings from his original sketchbooks including sketches for a 70th birthday card Zapiro made for Madiba while being detained at Pollsmoor Prison during Madiba’s 6-year imprisonment there.

“The app is based on a popular exhibition about Mandela held at the Jewish Museum in Cape Town in 2011 and the now out-of-print publication, Zapiro’s Mandela Files.”

The app costs R79.99 in South Africa and $9.99 in the United States. It can be purchased on the iTunes store.

Waiting for Obama’s speech at the University of Cape Town

Waiting for Obama's speech at the University of Cape Town (photo acquired by Esmeralda Kale).

Waiting for Obama’s speech at the University of Cape Town (photo acquired by Esmeralda Kale).

While visiting South Africa during president Obama’s visit in July, Bibliographer of Africana at the Herskovits Library Esmeralda Kale collected opinions during conversations with locals about the president’s African tour. Below is a sampling of some of the comments she heard:

  • “He has been inspirational and motivational. We didn’t see enough of him.”
  • “He is our guest. We must welcome him. It is not his responsibility to solve our problems. He should not be concerned with an Africa legacy. He is not our President.”
  • “Africa has to overcome its beggar mentality. We seem to think that assistance and aid has to be funded by other countries with very little buy-in and funding from the recipients. We can only sustain projects if we have invested in them financially.”
  • “The U.S. should give, but with a commitment from the recipients.”
  • “Africa seems to be under the impression that America is rolling in money.”
  • “There seems to be an impression that Africans are entitled to something from him.”
  • “We Africans can only help ourselves once we start to help our communities. Development is our responsibility.”
  • “Obama has made Africa extremely unstable and is going to leave us worse off than we were before he came to office.”
  • “Financially, Obama has not been as supportive of Africa as his predecessors.”
  • “Obama really should have included a visit to Nigeria.”

Ticket from President Obama’s speech at University of Cape Town added to Herskovits Library Collections

Invitation to President Obama's speech at the University of Cape Town, now part of the The Herskovits Library's collections [photo by Esmeralda Kale].

Invitation to President Obama’s speech at the University of Cape Town, now part of the The Herskovits Library’s collections [photo by Esmeralda Kale].

The Herskovits Library’s Bibliographer of Africana, Esmeralda Kale, reports from Cape Town that she has acquired a new item for our Obama collection: an entry ticket from President Obama’s speech to students at the University of Cape Town on June 30, 2013, while on his tour of Africa.

Items from Obama’s visit to Tanzania added to Herskovits Library collection

Erik Ponder, Northwestern University Library staff member, has just returned from Tanzania with documentation for the Herskovits Library collections that supplements his blog posts here about President Obama’s visit to that country last week.