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Nobel Prize-Winning Author And Anti-Apartheid Activist Nadine Gordimer Dead At 90


Controversial South African author and crusader for equality Nadine Gordimer passed away Sunday at 90 years old. In a statement Monday the writer’s family honored the difficult work she accomplished during her lifetime, saying “She cared most deeply about South Africa, its culture, its people and its ongoing struggle to realize its new democracy.”

Gordimer, a self-described “white African,” was a member of Mandela’s African National Congress and wrote novels and short stories that confronted the realities of race relations in South Africa. Due to her condemnation of racial segregation, Gordimer’s novels such as Burger’s Daughter and A World of Strangers were banned under apartheid. Gordimer was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1991, three years before apartheid was finally lifted, but she never stopped scrutinizing the class of South African elite that she herself belonged to. In her later years, Gordimer campaigned to provide free drugs to HIV/AIDS sufferers, and spoke out against current South African president Jacob Zuma as recently as last month, saying “the reintroduction of censorship is unthinkable when you think how people suffered to get rid of censorship in all its forms.”

In the wake of her passing, the African National Congress has praised Gordimer, calling her an “unmatched literary giant whose life’s work was our mirror and an unending quest for humanity”.

(via The New York Times and Ben Williams on Flickr)

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