Koleka Putuma

Poet and rhapsodist

Poet and rhapsodist, graduate in Theatre and Performance from the University of Cape Town. Stage baggage, she says, influences her more in writing and reading her texts than books do. Her poem Water, which won her the PEN Student Writing Prize in 2016, is used in schools as a reminder that access to water is political, historical and racialised. She won the African Poetry Book Fund's Luschei Prize for her poetry collection Collective Amnesia.

Love, queerness, decolonial struggle, race, the legacy of apartheid, and the intersection between patriarchy and these identities are some of the recurring themes in her work.