OluTimehin Adegbeye is the winner of the Gerald Kraak Prize 2019 announced on May 23, 2019.
Gerald Kraak was a South African writer, film-maker, and human rights activist who passed on in 2014. He was most well known in the literary space for his book Ice in the Lungs (2005) which explores South African politics; he won the EU Book trophy for that work of art.
His former publisher Jacana alongside The Other Foundation came together and set up the Gerald Kraak Award and anthology in his honour. It focuses on the topics of gender, human rights and sexuality, for writers and photographers across Africa. Previous winners of the award include Farah Ahamed and Sarah Waiswa (2017) as well as Pwaangulongii Daoud (2018).
The prize organisers announced a 19-strong shortlist for the R25,000 Gerald Kraak Prize, selected from over 500 entries on April 3. These 23 pieces of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction by the 19 writers are set to appear in the third Gerald Kraak Anthology, titled The Heart of the Matter, forthcoming from Jacana Media in May 2019.
Selecting a winner from this list were South African memoirist and activist Sisonke Msimang, Makerere University law professor and feminist thinker Sylvia Tamale, South African journalist and nonfiction writer Mark Gevisser, and Nigerian writer and literary journalist Otosirieze Obi-Young.
The overall winner OluTimehin Adegbeye was announced at an award ceremony hosted by The Other Foundation in Johannesburg for her nonfiction entry Of Mothers and Men. Adegbeye is a Nigerian writer, speaker, and activist whose work focuses on gender, women’s rights, sex, sexuality and sexual violence, urban poverty, and sustainable development.
Also getting commendations for their writing were Chukwuebuka Ibeh for the fiction entry A Sickness Called Longing and Chisom Okafor for the poetry entry On My Coming Out.