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Among the current crop of writers in South Africa, Kopano Matlwa stands uniquely head and shoulders above the rest. This grounded twenty two year old author of provocative novel Coconut about black South African youths’ loss of identity in their highly Westernised nation highlights what can happen to African children when they realize that in a world that is black-and-white, life can be cruel when one is not black enough to be black but too black to be white.

Matlwa is not only the youngest European Literary Award winner to come out of South Africa but in addition, continues to manage a hectic writer’s schedule of book readings, literary fairs et al, with a full-time schedule as a medical student at University of Cape Town.

She cites Zimbabwean Tsitsi Dangarembgwa’s Nervous Conditions as one of her favourite books. (source:


::bows in reverence:: Fuck ALL the people who think there are no “good role models” for ANY WoC. Unglue your eyes from your television set and see the truth, fuckers.

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