“…It is not difference which immobilizes us but silence. And there are so many silences to be broken.” – Audre Lorde 
My name is Maneo Refiloe Mohale, and I was born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa.
I relocated to the country commonly known as Canada to complete my Bachelor of Arts degree, and later learned, and continue to learn, through the patient guidance of many mentors, elders and friends that I was actually located on the unceded territories on the Coast Salish people, specifically the sḵwx̱wú7mesh, sel̓íl̓witulh, and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm nations.
I was raised to love and respect history, family, language, literature, jazz, theatre, poetry, curiosity and silliness.
One of the many, many books that continues to shape how I view the world is Nervous Conditions by Tsitsi Dangarembga. When I nicked it off of my older sister’s wondrous bookshelf, I was not prepared for how powerful it would be for me.
Through reading the story of two very different young women growing up in colonial Zimbabwe, I was shocked to recognise unacknowledged facets of myself within the novel’s pages. Through Dangarembga’s remarkable book, I realised the power of representation, and the importance of speaking truth to power – both by dipping back into our own histories, as well as by learning and listening to the stories of others.
I’m so excited to be a part of such an incredible team, and look forward to all of the silences we’ll be breaking together.
 Audre Lorde, “The Transformation of Silence into Language and Action”, Sister Outsider, (New York: Ten Speed Press, 2007), 44