K. Sello Duiker

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K. Sello Duiker
Born (1974-04-13)13 April 1974
Orlando, Soweto, South Africa
Died 19 January 2005(2005-01-19) (aged 30)
Occupation Novelist
Nationality South African

Kabelo "Sello" Duiker, (13 April 1974 – 19 January 2005), was a South African novelist. His debut novel, Thirteen Cents, won the 2001 Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best First Book, Africa Region. Furthermore, his second and final novel, The Quiet Violence of Dreams, won the 2002 Herman Charles Bosman Prize. He also worked in advertising and as a screenwriter, at the time of his death he was working as an editor of drama for SABC1.


Duiker, the eldest of three brothers,[1] was born in Orlando, Soweto and raised in Soweto at the height of apartheid by middle-class university-educated parents. Sent out of the township to attend a Catholic primary school, he was sent on to Redhill School, an elite institution where he was one of the very few black pupils.[2] During his school-years the schools in South Africa were very much at the centre of the anti-apartheid movement. This personal experience of the social-struggles influenced Duiker greatly, his novels treated racial difference as largely immaterial, being basically cosmetic. He spent 2 years in England as a sixth form student at Huntington School, York before returning to South Africa to attend university.

Duiker received a degree in journalism from Rhodes University, he also briefly studied at the University of Cape Town. He suffered a nervous breakdown in 2004 prior to committing suicide by hanging himself in Northcliff, Johannesburg, in January 2005. His death came a month after that of his contemporary Phaswane Mpe.[3][4]



  1. ^ van der Merwe, Annari. "K Sello Duiker: 13 April 1974 – 19 January 2005". OuLitNet. Retrieved 2008-01-18. 
  2. ^ Rachel Donadio, 'Post-Apartheid Fiction', The New York Times, 3 December 2006
  3. ^ Raditlhalo, Sam. "The Travelling Salesman , A Tribute to K. Sello Duiker: 1974–2005". Feminist Africa. Retrieved 2008-01-17. 
  4. ^ MATSHIKIZA, JOHN. "To burn so bright and die so young". Mail&Guardian Online. Retrieved 2008-01-18.