Lidudumalingani has just been announced as the Caine Prize 2016 at a ceremony at Oxford in the United Kingdom. The South African win the prize for his story Memories We Lost which was published in Incredible Journey: Stories That Move You (Burnet Media, South Africa, 2015).
Memories We Lost is a story of two young South African girls who are growing up in a village in Rural Mzansi. The elder of the two young women is suffering from a mental illness that sees her losing it every so often and her younger goes on a mission to save her. It is a beautifully told story from a writer who is at the top of their game.
Lidudumanlingani joins Mary Watson (2006) and Henrietta Rose-Ines (2008) as the other South African to win this most sought out of prizes in African literature.
He beat out completion from four other shortlistees including 2013 Caine Prize winner Tope Folarin and Lesley Nneka Arimah both Nigerians, Bongani Kona a Zimbabwan and Abdul Adan from Somalia/Kenya). All the stories this year unlike in previous years seemed to touch on mental illness or disturbance.
Lidudumalingani goes home 10,000 UK pounds richer while those he was competing with go home with 500 quid.