Alert! The African Poetry Book Fund, in partnership with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s literary journal Prairie Schooner, has revealed the finalists for the 2015 Glenna Luschei Prize for African Poetry.
This year’s finalists are:
- A Book of Rooms by Kobus Moolman (South Africa, Deep South)
- Gumiguru by Togara Muzanenhamo (Zimbabwe, Carcanet Press)
- Now the World Takes These Breaths by Joan Metelerkamp (South Africa, Modjaji Books)
Moolman, a University of KwaZulu-Natal academic and playwright, was a finalist in the inaugural Glenna Luschei Prize for African Poetry, for his 2013 collection Left Over. He was also the winner of the 2013 Sol Plaatje Europrean Union Award.
Muzanenhamo was recently announced as a finalist for this year’s Artists In Residency (AIR) programme.
The Glenna Luschei Prize is worth $5 000 (about R75 000), and the winner will be announced on 18 January, 2016.
About the Glenna Luschei Prize for African Poetry:
This pan-African poetry prize, funded by literary philanthropist and poet Glenna Luschei, is the only one of its kind in the world. Established to promote African poetry written in English or in translation, it recognizes a significant book published each year by an African poet. Entries came from Zimbabwe, Cameroon, Nigeria and South Africa.
Each year, an internationally renowned poet judges the prize. Now in its second year, the number of entries has more than doubled, and the quality and diversity of books received provided the judge, South African poet Gabeba Baderoon, with a challenging yet enjoyable task.
This year’s judge is Gabeba Baderoon, author of a number of poetry collections including The Dream in the Next Body and A Hundred Silences. She received the Daimler Chrysler Award for South African Poetry in 2005, and is Associate Professor of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and African Studies at Pennsylvania State University in the United States.
Baderoon says: “I read these books and many of the poems again and again. The [finalist books] feel thoughtfully shaped, rivetingly intelligent and superbly crafted. I found them a pleasure and an education to read. Indeed, my horizons were vastly expanded by the extraordinarily well-realised poems in these collections.”
Keep an eye on the African Poetry Book Fund website during the first two weeks of January, as each finalist will be featured in a special series celebrating their work.