It was a devastating weekend for African letters as both Myesha Jenkins and Achmat Dangor passed away.
It has been a horrible weekend. On Saturday evening, word filtered through that activist and poet Myesha Jenkins had passed away. Jenkins moved to South Africa from Los Angeles in 1993, after many years as an anti-apartheid activist. She published two poetry collections, Breaking the Surface (2005) and Dreams of Flight (2011). She edited the 2017 collection To Breathe Into Another Voice: A South African Anthology of Jazz Poetry, and has been anthologised in Isis X (2006) and We Are (2010). Jenkins received the Mbokodo Award for Women in the Arts in the Poetry category in 2013.
Please read more about Myesha Jenkins at our friends at Johannesburg Review of Books.
While we were reeling from this death, word came through that Achmat Dangor had passed away on Sunday, September 6. Dangor was one of the founding members of the Congress of South African Writers, COSAW. He was born in Johannesburg in 1948 and published some ten works, including the novel Bitter Fruit (2001), which was shortlisted for both the prestigious International Dublin Award and the Booker Prize. In 2015 he received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the South African Literary Awards (SALA). His latest novel, Dikeledi: Child of Tears, No More was published in 2017.
Read more about the late Dangor from Johannesburg Review of Books where he was a founding patron.