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Author Focus

Dolf van Niekerk
Biographical info

Rudolf Johannes van Niekerk (Dolf) was born on 22 February 1929 in Edenburg in the Free State. He matriculated at Edenburg High School. In 1949 he completed a BA Degree at the University College of the Orange Free State, after which he also completed his Honours Degree in philosophical studies at Unisa. He joined the SABC in 1950 as a radio presenter and director. In 1957 he became a radio official at the Department of Agriculture's radio service, where he later became the head of the radio service. He completed an MA Degree in philosophical studies with honours at the University of Pretoria in 1967. In 1978 he became the director of the Agriculture Information Directorate, where he remained until his retirement in 1994.

He made his writing debut in 1953 in the literary magazine Standpunte. After this, he began writing prose, as well as various works for radio which included dramas and serial broadcasts. His first book, Gannavlei: novelle, was published in 1958. He was awarded the Eugène Marais Prize in 1963 for his collection of novellas entitled Skepsels. He received the MER Prize as well as the Scheepers Prize in 1963 for his youth book Die haasvanger.

Did you know?

   
  • Dolf's youth novella, Die haasvanger, was adapted for the stage in 1991. It was performed at the Nico Malan Theatre (as it was known at the time) in Cape Town and starred actor Jan Ellis.

Awards

Eugène Marais Prize (1964) - Skepsels
SABC Academy Prize (1965) - Land van ons vaders
SABC Academy Prize (1971) - Kamer 99
MER Prize for Youth Literature (1986) - Die haasvanger
Scheepers Prize for Youth Literature (1984-1986) - Die haasvanger
Ruiterbeeld Award (1984) - Niemand se dag nie

List of published works

Prose
1958 Gannavlei: novelle, Dagbreek-Boekhandel
1960 Die son struikel, Dagbreek-Boekhandel
1963 Skepsels, Afrikaanse Pers Boekhandel
1965 Die moeder, Nasionale Boekhandel
1978 Woord in die môre, Perskor
1979 Kort lewe van 'n reisiger, Tafelberg
1983 'n Bietjie luisterkuier, Folio
1994 Koms van die hyreën, Tafelberg
1997 Koors, Tafelberg
1998 Brandoffer: vertellings uit die Tweede Vryheidsoorlog, Tafelberg
2003 Die aarde waarop ek loop, Lapa

Drama (stage, television and radio)
1961 Kwart voor dagbreek: 'n verhoogspel in drie bedrywe, Afrikaanse Pers Boekhandel
1968 Die paddas: satiriese eenakter, Dalro
1972 Kamer 99, Perskor
1976 Die nagloper: twee tekste vir televisie, Human & Rousseau
1982 Niemand se dag nie, Perskor

Youth Literature
1968 Skrik kom huis toe, Nasionale Boekhandel
1985 Karel Kousop, Tafelberg
1985 Die haasvanger, Tafelberg

Poetry
1975 Karoosange, Tafelberg
1996 Dubbelster, Tafelberg
2006 Nag op 'n kaal plein, Human & Rousseau