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  Monday, April 12, 1999
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SA writer honoured by Rhodes

GRAHAMSTOWN -- One of South Africa's foremost writers, Professor John M Coetzee, was awarded an honorary degree of literature here at a Rhodes University graduation ceremony at the weekend.

In presenting him, Rhodes University public orator Professor Vivian de Klerk said the author, scholar and critic was widely recognised as being one of the leading writers of fiction.

De Klerk has written 13 books, many of which have won major literary awards both in South Africa and abroad, as well as many widely acclaimed critical essays.

"His writings have been the subject of five books, two collections of essays and numerous special issues of journals. Indeed, the fact that he holds honorary degrees from five universities already bears eloquent testimony to his status internationally,'' said De Klerk.

His international renown as a leading writer of the late 20th century comes both from his critical essays and from novels such as Dusklands, In the heart of the Country, and Waiting for the Barbarians.

"In his writing, he goes to the heart of the most profound ethical and political issues of our time.

"He captures the urgency and the difficulty of the demand that we acknowledge the worth of and take responsibility for the "other'' human being, especially where barriers and blinkers exist.' -- DDR.

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