2018 Sol Plaatje European Union Poetry Award shortlist announced, including poetry in isiZulu and Tshivenda

The shortlist for the 2018 Sol Plaatje European Union Poetry Award has been announced!

Head judge Professor Mongane Wally Serote (chair of the Jacana Literary Foundation) has selected three finalists from the longlist of poems selected by this year’s judging panel.

Entries this year included poems in 10 of the 11 official languages, and the shortlisted poems include a representation of isiZulu and Tshivenda poetry.

This year Makosazana Xaba and Rustum Kozain joined the panel as co-judges reviewing English entries. Goodenough Mashego along with various talented language practitioners reviewed the indigenous-language entries and Pieter Odendaal reviewed the Afrikaans entries.

Serote says: ‘The poems have penetrated the South African heart, feelings and statistics – the one plus one is two of South Africa, plus its mystery, beauty and insanity.’

2018 Sol Plaatje European Union Poetry Award shortlist 

  • ‘Lufuno A Si Tserere’ by Mushayathoni Nwovhe
  • ‘Mina Ngiyadideka’ by Albert Sipho Ntombela
  • ‘Obab’ Abangebaba’ by Bukelani Mmelly Shangase


The winner will be announced at a private launch at the Sol Plaatje University in Kimberley on 26 September 2018. R6000 will be awarded for first place, R4000 for second place and R2000 for third place.

The anthology will be launched at Poetic Thursdays on 27 September 2018 and can be described as a truly democratic as well as creative effort, in keeping with the spirit of the legendary intellectual giant, Sol Plaatje – activist, linguist, translator, novelist, journalist and leader.

About the award

Each year the Jacana Literary Foundation (JLF) invites South African poets, young and old, debut or previously published, to submit for consideration up to three works in any of the official languages of South Africa. Makhosazana Xaba, Goodenough Mashego, Wally Serote, Pieter Odendaal and Rustum Kozain are on this year’s judging panel. Judging blind, they selected a longlist of poems for publication in the anthology with the help of language practioners. The project is funded by the European Union.

For more information, contact the Jacana Literary Foundation at awards@jacana.co.za

Categories South Africa

Tags Albert Sipho Ntombela Awards Bukelani Mmelly Shangase Jacana Literary Foundation Jacana Media Mushayathoni Nwovhe News Poetry Sol Plaatje European Union Poetry Award

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