Human & Rousseau

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Author Focus

K. Sello Duiker

Biographical info

K. Sello Duiker was born in 1974 and grew up in Soweto and, later, East London. Sello studied at Rhodes University where, with a few friends, he started a poetry society called Seeds. A course called ‘English in Africa’ which dealt with African writers made a great impression on him, and at the same time he was very influenced by the Eastern Cape, as the birthplace of Biko, Madiba, Govan Mbeki and other black intellectuals.

After graduating with majors in Journalism and Art History, he moved to Cape Town, and it is there that he found his writing voice. Duiker studied copywriting and went on to work as an advertising copywriter, a script writer for e-tv’s popular show Backstage and later commissioning editor for SABC 1.

His first novel, Thirteen Cents, was awarded the 2001 Commonwealth Writer's Prize for Best First Book, Africa Region. Published the same year, The Quiet Violence of Dreams, was awarded the 2001 Herman Charles Bosman Prize for English Literature. Sello always said that his mother, an insatiable reader, inspired his decision to become a writer.

Sello passed away on 19 January 2005 – a great loss to South African writing.

Books still in print

Thirteen Cents (new edition, Kwela Books, 2013)
The Quiet Violence of Dreams
, Kwela Books (2001)

Awards

Commonwealth Writer's Prize for Best First Book, Africa Region (2001) – Thirteen Cents
Herman Charles Bosman Prize for English Literature (2002) – The Quiet Violence of Dreams

List of published titles

Prose
2000 Thirteen Cents, David Philip
2001 The Quiet Violence of Dreams, Kwela Boeke
2005 The Hidden Star, Umuzi/Random House

Translations

Thirteen Cents (2000)
• Italian (Tredici Centesimi: Traduzione di Sara Fruner, 2005)

The Quiet Violence of Dreams (2001)
• Dutch (Het stille geweld van dromen, 2003)

Books By This Author