[The JRB Daily] Nthikeng Mohlele and Mohale Mashigo win the UJ Prizes for South African Writing

The winners of the 2016 University of Johannesburg Prizes for South African Writing in English have been announced.

Nthikeng Mohlele has won the Main Prize for his novel Pleasure (Picador Africa), while Mohale Mashigo has been awarded the Debut Prize for her novel The Yearning (Picador Africa).

Mohlele wins prize money of R75 000, while Mashigo receives R35 000. A formal prize-giving ceremony will be held later in the year.

The UJ prizes are not linked to a specific genre, and this year over sixty works of fiction, poetry, short stories, essays and biography were under consideration.

The UJ Prize shortlists were:

Main Prize

  • Pleasure by Nthikeng Mohlele (Picador Africa)
  • The Woman Next Door by Yewande Omotoso (Penguin Random House)
  • Sigh the Beloved Country by Bongani Madondo (Picador Africa)

Debut Prize

  • The Yearning by Mohale Mashigo (Picador Africa)
  • Loud and Yellow Laughter by Sindiswa Busuku-Mathese (Botsotso)
  • Tjieng Tjang Tjerries and other stories by Jolyn Phillips (Modjaji Books)
  • The Keeper of the Kumm by Sylvia Vollenhoven (Tafelberg)

Last year Craig Higginson won the Main Prize for his novel The Dream House, with the Debut Prize being shared by Eliza Kentridge, for her poetry collection Signs for an Exhibition, and Nkosinathi Sithole, for his novel Hunger Eats a Man.

Previous winners include Zakes Mda, Penny Busetto, Lauren Beukes, Dominique Botha, Ken Barris and Steven Boykey Sidley.

The adjudication panel this year was:

  • Sikumbuzo Mngadi (UJ)
  • Ronit Frenkel (UJ)
  • Danyela Demir (UJ)
  • Nyasha Mboti (UJ)
  • Michael Titlestad (Wits)
  • Rebecca Fasselt (UP)

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