All that Jazz

Ruth HartleyAfrica, Apartheid, Jazz, Marciac,Leave a Comment

Monday 26th July Marciac Jazz Festival

At 10.30 am at La Chouette Qui Lit I will be signing my latest book When We Were Wicked.  Please come – I’d love to see you and I will have copies of all my other books with me as well.

La Chouette Qui Lit is a lovely bookshop where you can also get a cup of coffee. It is run by Gaëlle and Richard and can be found on Facebook here. The address is 2 Rue Saint-Pierre, 32230 Marciac. Marciac is a pretty village in the Gers with a Jazz Festival that has gone on for over 30 years though sadly not last year because of the Covid-19 pandemic. John and I will be going to enjoy Kool and the Gang and Ibrahim Maalouf. We have had some wonderful experiences at Marciac. We’ve seen Sting and Joan Baez.

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Helen Lieros and the Delta Gallery

Ruth HartleyAfrica, Art, Art Process, Mpapa Gallery, Zambia, Zimbabwe2 Comments

Honouring Helen Lieros

I heard yesterday the sad news that Helen Lieros had died after a short illness. Helen was an artist whose paintings and murals had a spiritual luminosity and beauty that made them unforgettable and inspiring. She was recently honoured by the government of Zimbabwe as one of the Living Legends of the Cultural and Creative Industries. In truth, both Helen and her husband Derek Huggins stand beside the National Gallery of Zimbabwe as people whose commitment was essential to the development and support of Zimbabwean artists through their wonderful Delta Gallery.

Wednesday 21st July is the funeral of Helen Lieros. There is an online link to it here. Sadly I must add that Derek Huggins died on Monday. Here is the announcement from Delta Gallery.

My connections to the Delta Gallery and Zimbabwean art

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My Alphabet

Ruth HartleyChildren's stories, Education, Learning, Reading, Storytelling, Writing, Writing Process4 Comments


A Bright Child who could Read at 5

I couldn’t Pronounce the Sounds I’d never Heard

Just because the Desks were Full

I was sent up a Grade from Class One

To Where the Kids were Big and Bold.

But I was much too Young

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International Albinism Awareness Day

Ruth HartleyAfrica, Albinism, Children's stories, Family, Human rights, identity, ZambiaLeave a Comment

I’m writing a new story titled The Colourless Child. It’s taking me on a new journey and I’m making new discoveries.

The International School of Lusaka -one of the photographs by Nick Murphy from the book ‘Zambia ‘ published by ANZ Grindlays Bank to commemorate 25 years of Independence

This Sunday 13th June is the United Nations International Albinism Awareness Day and the theme is Strength Beyond all Odds

When I lived in Zambia I taught art at the International School and this wonderful photo by Ian Murphy is of some of the pupils I knew. Among them is a young boy with albinism, As you can see he is wearing a judo outfit. He was a warrior and a hero and was also one of my best and most intelligent students.

It’s time for all of us to join together and end the discrimination against persons with albinism especially those in Africa who face terrible danger and even death from ignorance and fear. Albinos can also suffer illnesses caused by a lack of skin pigmentation and blindness.

What I find most inspiring about the stories of people with albinism are those of the love and support of mothers and of families and of the kindness and help of others. Please be kind enough to share this post and the links and to support the organisations.

Useful links

Here are links to various organisations that provide help, information and advocacy.

Under The Same Sun. International Albinism Awareness Day Action on Albinism Life in the shadows

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The Booklaunch of When We Were Wicked

Ruth HartleyAfrica, Books, Politics, Storytelling, When I Was Bad6 Comments

When We Were Wicked - book cover
When We Were Wicked Ruth Hartley

When We Were Wicked

My new short story and short memoir collection, When We Were Wicked has been published this January 2021 during the pandemic lockdown.

How on earth could I organise a book launch for it?

This is what happened: Celebration online, in print, and in person!

Here is the first answer – Booklaunch magazine!

I discovered Booklaunch through a friend Michael Holman who was featured in a previous edition for his book Postmark Africa – a collection of journalism from 50 years of reporting from Africa. (Michael was also a friend of Diana Mitchell whose memoir I featured in my last post.)

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