Ndebele poem inspires postgrads

17 October 2011

Maintenance unit staff

Be Gentle is a short poem, just 16 lines. But students weighed down by the demands of academia can find plenty of inspiration from it when they visit UCT's Postgraduate Centre and Funding Office. The poem by former vice-chancellor Professor Njabulo S Ndebele, first published 40 years back in 1971, has been transcribed, framed and mounted in the centre.

It's an unusual choice, but, presented with money to purchase a piece of art for the centre, Ndebele's verse seemed ideal. "We wanted something relevant to both South Africa and UCT," explains Linda Vranas, the centre's director. Ndebele (second from left) was on hand when the work was unveiled, as were (from left) Vranas and deputy vice-chancellors Prof Thandabantu Nhlapo and Prof Danie Visser.

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