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English Academy of Southern Africa announce 2015 prize winners – including Thomas Pringle Awards

Jill Nudelman and Imran Garda win 2015 Olive Schreiner Prize for Prose
The Thunder That RoarsInheriting the Earth

 
Alert! The English Academy of Southern Africa has announced the full list of prize winners for 2015.

In addition to the Olive Schreiner Prize for Prose, which was announced by Books LIVE last week, these include the Thomas Pringle Award for Poetry in Periodicals, the Thomas Pringle Award for Best Article on English in education and the teaching of English, the Thomas Pringle Award for ad hoc reviews.

This year the Olive Schreiner Prize for Prose was jointly awarded to Jill Nudelman, for Inheriting the Earth (University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, 2012) and Imran Garda, for The Thunder that Roars (Umuzi, 2014).

 

English Academy Southern Africa


 
2015 English Academy of Southern Africa award winners:

English Academy of Southern Africa Thomas Pringle Award for Poetry in Periodicals (awarded biennially in odd-numbered years)

Rethabile Masilo, for his poem, “Swimming” (New Coin, Vol. 49 Number (1), June 2013)

Thomas Pringle Award for Best Article on English in education and the teaching of English

Professor Suriamurthee Maistry, for his article “Education for Economic Growth: A Neoliberal Fallacy in South Africa”, published in the journal, Alternation, 2014, Vol 21 (1)

English Academy of Southern Africa Thomas Pringle Award for ad hoc reviews

Historian John Bojé
 

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Citations:

Thomas Pringle Award for Poetry in Periodicals

Panel of Adjudicators
Finuala Dowling
Beverly Rycroft
Tom Eaton

Citation: Rethabile Masilo’s poem “Swimming”, the judges’ unanimous choice, is a technically flawless and emotionally profound lyric that crosses borders with the universality of its message. The poem stands out for its economical construction, enticing voice, compelling story and poignancy. The power of the poem lies in the beautiful duet of its imagery, which balances nightfall and dawn, home and foreignness, family and alienation, swimming and flying. All of this in a poem of only 17 lines: a remarkable achievement.

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Thomas Pringle Award for Best Article on English in education and the teaching of English

Panel of Adjudicators
Dr Matthew Curr (Cape Peninsula University of Technology)
Dr Agnes Chigona (Cape Peninsula University of Technology)
Dr Candice Livingston (Cape Peninsula University of Technology)

Citation: Maistry’s article advocates vigilance about the trajectory of education in South Africa.

He cautions that “rural poor schools and their impoverished pupils are being left behind”. In the urban areas, on the other hand, a dichotomy exists between the urban poor and urban rich. “Ex-model C schools and private institutions are catering to a new multiracial elite.” He suggests that this “elite” and their offspring may create a plutocracy in future; a danger that must be guarded against. Urban poor “have their schools replaced by franchise type colleges which my well degrade opportunities”.

Maistry argues that “[t]his pattern of neo-liberal stratification is being replicated in many parts of the world”. Strong debate is taking place in the USA, Britain and as far afield as India between those that “welcome the commercialisation of schooling” and those who want to retain “community-controlled schools”. The result is a continuation of established class divisions so that the poor continue to be overlooked and the privileged wealthy remain a group entrenched in society’s structure. He concludes that the New South Africa cannot afford the continued separation of society along these class lines, especially in view of the expectation “of universal equality” in the late 1990s.

The adjudicators believe that “[Professor] Maistry’s warning should be essential reading for South African educators at all levels”.

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Thomas Pringle Award for ad hoc reviews

Panel of Adjudicators:
Dr Verna Brown
Dr Felicity Horne
Dr Jeanette Ferreira

Citation: According to the adjudicators, John Bojé is no ordinary critic. Reading his reviews, the reader recognises “his authoritative voice, breadth of knowledge and keen critical ability”. Bojé, himself explains that “well-written history is never monovocal but, becomes textured, multi-faceted, fragmented and ultimately inconclusive, as the disjuncture between events and the ideologically coloured perception of those events is brought to light”. He brings this sensitivity to his reviews.

In addition “to an informed and refined appraisal of his subject matter”, Bojé’s uses English precisely so that his style of writing is “scholarly yet accessible”.

He is a worthy recipient of the Thomas Pringle Award for ad hoc reviews.

John Bojé received his award at function on 5 May, 2016 hosted by the English Academy of Southern Africa and Unisa. The event, Africa Alive, was held to celebrate Africa month.

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