Sunday Times Books LIVE Community Sign up

Login to Sunday Times Books LIVE

Forgotten password?

Forgotten your password?

Enter your username or email address and we'll send you reset instructions

Sunday Times Books LIVE

Craig Higginson, Eliza Kentridge and Nkosinathi Sithole win the 2015/16 University of Johannesburg Prizes

Craig Higginson, Eliza Kentridge and Nkosinathi Sithole win the 2015/16 University of Johannesburg Prizes
The Dream HouseSigns for an ExhibitionHunger Eats a Man

 
Alert! Craig Higginson has been announced as the winner of the University of Johannesburg Prize for South African Writing in English, with the Debut Prize being shared by Eliza Kentridge and Nkosinathi Sithole.

Higginson won the Main Prize for his third novel, The Dream House, while Kentridge and Sithole shared the Debut Prize for her poetry collection Signs for an Exhibition and his novel Hunger Eats a Man.

The UJ Main Prize comes with prize money of R75 000, the Debut Prize with R30 000.

The UJ Prize for South African Writing in English is awarded to the writer of the best South African work in English published in the previous calendar year. The UJ Debut Prize is awarded to the writer of the best debut South African work in English published in the previous calendar year.

Last year’s winner of the Main Prize was Zakes Mda for Rachel’s Blue, while the Debut Prize was awarded to Penny Busetto for The Story of Anna P, As Told By Herself.

Sithole, meanwhile, was also the winner of this year’s Sunday Times Barry Ronge Fiction Prize.

 

The 2015/16 University of Johannesburg Prizes shortlists, also announced today, were:

Main Prize

The Dream House101 DetectivesThe Magistrate of Gower

 

 
Debut Prize

Signs for an ExhibitionHunger Eats a ManBest White and Other Anxious Delusions

 

 

This year’s judges were Craig MacKenzie (UJ, Chair), Karen Scherzinger (UJ), Jane Starfield (UJ), Chris Ouma (UCT) and Meg Samuelson (UCT).

The judges decided not to link the prizes to a specific genre this year, saying: “This may make the evaluation more difficult in the sense that, for example, a volume of poetry, a novel and a biographical work must be measured against one another, but the idea was to open the prize to as many forms of writing as possible.”

See the judges’ remarks, as printed in today’s Mail & Guardian:

Main Prize winner: The Dream House by Craig Higginson:

Entrancing and compellingly readable, The Dream House puts a contemporary and unconventional spin on the plaasroman (farm novel) genre, showing Craig Higginson at a new peak of his already considerable narrative powers.

 
Debut Prize co-winner: Signs for an Exhibition by Eliza Kentridge:

The enigmatic title of Kentridge’s collection refers to a series of numbered, autobiographical “Sign Poems” in which she gives expression to visual images from her childhood and later. It is as if the poems were written to be placed alongside paintings, to magically become word-paintings themselves.

 
Debut Prize co-winner: Hunger Eats a Man by Nkosinathi Sithole:

This debut novel by Nkosinathi Sithole, a lecturer in the English department at the University of Zululand, approaches the farm novel genre in a different way. It explores the debilitating effects of hunger and joblessness in a northern KwaZulu-Natal community. This powerful postmodern novel is as much about storytelling as it is about the characters inhabiting the eponymous town, Ndlalidlindoda (“hunger eats a man”).

 
Congratulations to the winners and their publishers!
 
Related news:

Book details

 

Please register or log in to comment