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Vonani Bila

Switzerland | Literature

June - July | Lavigny — Literature

Author Vonani Bila will be on a month-long residency at the Chateau de Lavigny , a writer’s residency in the Vaud, Switzerland, located between Lausanne and Geneva.

Bila is the author of five books of poems in English, namely No Free Sleeping – with Alan Finlay and Donald Parenzee (Botsotso Publishing, 1998), In the name of Amandla (Timbila Poetry, 2004), Magicstan Fires (Timbila Poetry, 2006), Handsome Jita (University of KwaZulu Natal Press, 2007) and Bilakhulu (Deep South, 2015).

He is also the author of eight story-books for newly literate adult readers in Northern Sotho, Xitsonga and English. His forthcoming poetry collections to be published in 2017 are ‘Minkenyengwani’- a Xitsonga poetry book, and ‘Grieving Forests’.

Bila was born in 1972 in Shirley village, Limpopo, South Africa, where he still lives.  He teaches in the Department of English Studies at the University of Limpopo and holds an MA in Creative Writing from Rhodes University. Besides writing poems, he has deep interest in visual art, especially woodcarving, African music, rural development and heritage studies.

The Chateau de Lavigny has been in operation for 20 years and welcomes 20 international writers per summer. Former residents include writers such as Ben Okri, Denis Hirson, Monique Ilboudo and Anton Kruger.

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