Reading by Keorapetse Kgositsile (Poet Laureate of South Africa)

The Writers Series is presented as part of the MFA Program in Writing
March 16, 2012, 6:00–7:00 pm

Reception to follow
150 De Haro at 15th Street

Free and open to the public
More info: Teresa Walsh,

Please note the special time for this event.

Keorapetse Kgositsile is one of the most internationally acclaimed and widely published South African poets. His poetry collections include My Name is Afrika, Heartprints, To the Bitter End, If I Could Sing, and This Way I Salute You.

He has been the recipient of a number of literary awards including the Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Prize, the Harlem Cultural Council Poetry Award, the Conrad Kent Rivers Memorial Poetry Award, the Herman Charles Bosman Prize, and others. In 2008 he was awarded the National Order of Ikhamanga: Silver (OIS).

In 1961 Kgositsile was one of the first young members of the African National Congress (ANC) instructed to leave the country by the leadership of the national liberation movement.

After a year in Tanganyika (now Tanzania), where he worked on Spearhead magazine as Frene Ginwala’s editorial assistant, he got a scholarship to study literature and creative writing in the United States.

Since his first post at Sarah Lawrence College in New York in 1969, he has taught at the University of Denver, Wayne State University, New School for Social Research, University of California at Los Angeles, and the universities of Dar es Salaam, Nairobi, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia and, in the mid-1990s, Fort Hare.

Between 2004 and 2009 professor Kgositsile was the special adviser to the Minister of Arts and Culture, a position held at the time by Dr. Z. Pallo Jordan. Kgositsile is, again, the special adviser to the current Minister of Arts and Culture, Paul Mashatile. Kgositsile is a founding member of the ANC Veterans League and a member of the ANC National Centenary Task Team.