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JC Kannemeyer

Kannemeyer lectured “Afrikaans en Nederlands” at the University of Cape Town, the RAU (now the University of Johannesburg) and the University of Stellenbosch. He was also a professor in “Afrikaans en Nederlands” at the University of the Wit- watersrand from 1982 to 1987.

John Christoffel (JC) Kannemeyer was born in Robertson on 31 March, 1939. In 1964 he obtained his doctorate, under D.J. Opperman, from the University of Stellenbosch. Kannemeyer lectured “Afrikaans en Nederlands” at the University of Cape Town, the RAU (now the University of Johannesburg) and the University of Stellenbosch. He was also a professor in “Afrikaans en Nederlands” at the University of the Wit- watersrand from 1982 to 1987. In 1993, together with Wium van Zyl, he began organising literature tours that focused on taking tour-goers along the footsteps of famous authors. From 2004 Kannemayer was an “Afrikaans en Neder- lands” professor at the University of Stellenbosch. He is known for his biographies about famous authors such as D.J. Opperman, C. Louis Leipoldt and C.J. Langenhoven. Also in 2004 the biography Jan Rabie was released by Tafelberg Publishers. Kannemeyer is further known for books on the history of Afrikaans Literature, for example Die Afrikaanse Literatuur: 1652 – 2004.

Other awards


1979 Recht Malan Prize – Geskiedenis van die Afrikaanse Literatuur I

1987 Ou Mutual Prize for non-fiction – D.J. Opperman: ’n biografie

1988 Gustav Preller Prize for Literêre Kritiek

1996 Recht Malan Prize – Langenhoven: ’n Lewe

2000 Recht Malan Prize – Leipoldt: ’n Lewensverhaal

2003 N.P. van Wyk Louw Medal

Biographies


1986
D.J. Opperman: ’n biografie

1993 Wat het geword van Peter Blum?

1994 Die bonkige Zoeloelander and Opperman se lewe in beeld

1995 Die dienswillige dienaar and Langenhoven: ’n Lewe 

1999 Uit die skatkis van die slampamperman and
So blomtuin-vol van kleure: Leipoldt oor Clanwilliam

2002 Die lewe en werk van Uys Krige: die goue seun and Uit die skatkis van die goue seun

2004 Jan Rabie: ’n biografie

2006 Hannes van der Merwe: argitek en skrywersvriend

2008 Leroux: ’n lewe

2009 Briewe van Peter Blum, (Edited and initiated by J.C. Kannemeyer)

Publications


1968
Prosakuns (’n inleiding tot die tegniek van die prosa) 

1970 Op weg na Welgevonden (oor Etienne Leroux) 

1973 Nederduitse digkuns (bloemlesing)

1978 Geskiedenis van die Afrikaanse Literatuur I

1979 Kroniek van klip en ster: ’n studie van die oeuvre van D.J. Opperman

1983 Geskiedenis van die Afrikaanse Literatuur II

1990 Die dokumente van Dertig

1992 Figuur en fluit

1993 Die Afrikaanse Literatuur: 1652 – 1987

1993 A History of Afrikaans Literature

1995 Die gespitste binneblik

1998 Op weg na 2000

1998 Verse vir die vraestel

2000 Kaap van skrywers: ’n literêre reisgids

2000 Sonklong oor Afrika

2005 Ek ken jou goed genoeg – Die briefwisseling tussen N.P. van Wyk Louw en W.E.G. Louw: 1936 – 1939

2005 Die Afrikaanse Literatuur: 1652 – 2004

The man of “charming nonsense”, the “Slampamper- man”, is described in JC Kannemeyer’s biography, Leipoldt: ’n Lewensverhaal, as a valuable and valued con- tribution to the series of publications that have received the Helgaard Steyn Award over the years. (The award represents the biggest prize value for publications in South Africa.)

It is a fact that the story of Leipoldt: ’n Lewensverhaal fits like a glove. It is the work of a respected and prominent literator in the person of John Kannemeyer. The work is about an artist and Afrikaans poet who has a prominent place in the Afrikaans Literature and still grabs the attention as a poet.

“It is true that biographies can create fuss and tarnish, but I think John Kannemeyer had no need to tarnish. He focused on the illustrious, but naturally eccentric figure. Where does one find so many capacities unified in one person: a poet, physician, philosopher, literator, cosmopolitan, actor, connoisseur/chef, wine expert and botanist?

The Helgaard Steyn Award pays homage to John Kannemeyer, who contributed greatly to the cultural treasures of Afrikaans with Leipoldt: ’n Lewensverhaal. It also honours Kannemeyer for other works that he delivered in this field, also in respect of Opperman, Langenhoven and Blum. (Commendatio 2000)