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Public Lecture by Nobel laureate Prof Abdulrazak Gurnah

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Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) Humanities Lecture in partnership with the Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Study (STIAS)


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Professor Abdulrazak Gurnah is the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature 2021. He is the author of ten novels: Memory of Departure, Pilgrims Way, Dottie, Paradise (shortlisted for the Booker Prize and the Whitbread Award), Admiring Silence, By the Sea (longlisted for the Booker Prize and shortlisted for the Los Angeles Times Book Award), Desertion (shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize) The Last Gift, Gravel Heart, and Afterlives, which was shortlisted for the Orwell Prize for Fiction 2021 and longlisted for the Walter Scott Prize. He was Professor of English at the University of Kent, and was a Man Booker Prize judge in 2016. He is a STIAS Fellow and was in residence at STIAS in 2018 when he was working on his novel Afterlives. Professor Gurnah lives in Canterbury.

About the Lecture
Rereading: It seems, at times, that literary texts are only too quickly neglected, or go out of print, and disappear from the conversation. This may be because the moment of their impact has changed
or circumstances have forced other issues into the foreground. Abdulrazak Gurnah will reflect on this sometimes undeserved obsolescence and will discuss the revival of texts through re-reading.

Download the announcement here


Date and time

Thursday, 3 November 2022

16:00 – 17:30​

All times are in SAST (UTC+2)


STIAS Wallenberg Research Centre

STIAS, Marais Road, Mostertsdrift

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United Kingdom


I am in the early stages of this project but my expectation is that it will become a novel. The planned outline of the narrative is as follows. A young man arrives in a town without money and without work....


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