Tlou Setumu


Tlou Setumu was born, grew up and went to school in the rural, impoverished Makgabeng area in the north-western part of Limpopo Province, South Africa. He started Sub-A at Noko-Tlou lower primary in 1972, and proceeded to Mogohlong higher primary, then matriculated in 1983 at GH Franz high school.
Owing to his poor family background (he was raised by a single, sickly mother), he did not have funds to continue with higher education studies. He became private teacher and was self-taught as he studied privately until obtaining BA degree in 1993 with University of South Africa (UNISA).
In 1994 he enrolled and completed Higher Education Diploma at the University of the North (current University of Limpopo). He obtained BA Honours at UNISA in 1998, and in 2001 completed MA degree at the University of Pretoria. He enrolled for PhD degree in History at Rand Afrikaanse Universiteit (currently University of Johannesburg), but later moved the programme to the University of Limpopo, where the programme was completed in 2010.
He had started as a volunteer for the South African Heritage Resources Agency (SAHRA), and then worked as researcher from 2001. He established Limpopo Heritage Resources Authority (LIHRA) in 2004 while employed in the Limpopo Department of Sport, Arts and Culture. He later worked at the Robben Island museum as Head of the Department of Public Heritage Education. He is currently heritage practitioner in Limpopo Province, specialising mainly on the Blouberg-Makgabeng-Senwabarwana (BMS) area. (

Smashwords Interview

What are your five favorite books, and why?
1. Things fall apart - Chinua Achebe
2. When Rainclouds Gather - Bessie Head
3. Until Lions Document Their Heritage - Tlou Setumu
4. Let My People Go - Chief Albert Luthuli
5. Biography of Bob Marley
What do you read for pleasure?
Mostly biographies - like the one on BRA IKE MAPHOTO - MK/ANC veteran.
Read more of this interview.

Where to find Tlou Setumu online

Where to buy in print


Footsteps of Our Ancestors
Price: $8.00 USD. Words: 5,670. Language: English. Published: July 1, 2019. Categories: Nonfiction » History » Africa
This book uses the Blouberg-Makgabeng-Senwabarwana (BMS) area as reference point to trace South Africa’s past from its indigenous communities, the San, the Khoikhoi and the Bantu-speaking people. Later in the area came the early European travelers, traders, hunters and explorers – then came the missionaries, followed by the Boer and British colonial settlers.
Until Lions Document Their Heritage
Price: $29.00 USD. Words: 47,360. Language: English. Published: June 28, 2019. Categories: Nonfiction » History » Africa
“Until lions document their past stories, preservation of their heritage will always be dictated by the hunters”. This metaphoric maxim is used in this book to chronicle a historical epoch of the encounter between the colonial forces and the indigenous kingdoms and communities in southern Africa from about the beginning of the 19th century up to the early years of the 20th century.
"Free Black People"
Price: $10.10 USD. Words: 20,270. Language: English. Published: June 14, 2019. Categories: Nonfiction » History » Africa
It has been widely historically documented that regions such as Africa had been used by external forces as sources of free labour in the form of slaves, as well as free raw materials of minerals.
His Story is History
Price: $25.00 USD. Words: 127,300. Language: English. Published: June 9, 2019. Categories: Nonfiction » Biography » Autobiographies & Memoirs
This is an Autobiography (real life story) of Tlou Setumu. From the rural poor, he eventually obtained a PhD in 2010 after a long struggle. Tlou Setumu wrote this personal account to demonstrate and to prove that “you may be born poor, but you were not born to become poor"