“I think we are well advised to keep on nodding terms with the people we used to be, whether we find them attractive company or not. Otherwise they turn up unannounced and surprise us, come hammering on the mind’s door at 4 a.m. of a bad night and demand to know who deserted them, who betrayed them, who is going to make amends.”

“That is one last thing to remember: writers are always selling somebody out.”

― Joan Didion, Slouching Towards Bethlehem, 1968


“I felt no need to record those situations and moments of extremity that were the stuff of the media. It was to the quiet and commonplace where nothing ‘happened’ and yet all was contained and immanent that I was most drawn.”

― Photographer David Goldblatt, in a Mail & Guardian interview with Sean O’Toole, December 2013



Tanya imageTanya Pampalone has more than 20 years experience living and working as a writer, columnist and editor for magazines, newspapers and online publications in Los Angeles, Prague, San Francisco and Johannesburg. More than half of that time has been spent in senior editorial management roles, including strategic planning and new project management.

Currently, she is the managing editor for the Global Investigative Journalism Network, a Washington DC-based nonprofit which supports investigative journalists around the world. From her base in Johannesburg, Tanya oversees the organization’s website and heads up the group’s audience engagement, as well as contributors from around the world and GIJN’s regional editors who cover the US and Europe, China, Russia, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America. Tanya’s most recent book, I Want To Go Home Forever: Stories of Becoming and Belonging in South Africa’s Great Metropolis, which was co-edited with international migration expert Loren Landau, was published by Wits Press in September.  Continue reading “About”

Published Work

In South Africa, Anger in a Hashtag

JOHANNESBURG – Early one morning last year a handful of students gathered to block the main entrance to the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg to protest the university’s proposed 10 percent tuition fee hike. Their intention: to physically illustrate the economic barriers faced by those attempting to get into the South Africa’s institutions of …

Fear and Loathing at South Africa’s Public Broadcaster

JOHANNESBURG — Sometimes the most acute afflictions present in the simplest forms – like the rusted machine that once spit out parking tickets for visitors to the hulking concrete and steel towers of the South African Broadcasting Corporation’s Johannesburg studios, or the escalators meant to glide employees from the ground floor to the lobby. On …