Panashe Chigumadzi reacts to winning the 2016 K Sello Duiker Memorial Literary Award
Sweet Medicine, the debut novel by Panashe Chigumadzi, won the 2016 South African Literary Awards K Sello Duiker Memorial Literary Award recently.
The winners were announced on 7 November 2016 at a gala dinner at Unisa. Chigumadzi shared her award with Willem Anker, who was honoured for his book Buys.
On receiving the award, Panashe had this to say:
It is deeply affirming whenever you receive external validation for what is most often a solitary and isolating experience. This award in particular is an honour because it bears the name of one of South Africa’s literary greats. Over and above that, as someone with Pan-Africanist ideals, I’m deeply humbled that South African readers were able to find resonance with a story set in Zimbabwe, despite what many prospective publishers had said to me. I’m truly grateful to be a writer who has been allowed the space to bring all of herself and her experiences and to have that appreciated by a reading audience.
Sweet Medicine is a thorough and evocative attempt at grappling with a variety of important issues in the postcolonial context: tradition and modernity,
feminism and patriarchy, spiritual and political freedoms and responsibilities, poverty and desperation, and wealth and abundance.
- Sweet Medicine by Panashe Chigumadzi
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