"The legend of poet extraordinaire Farouk Asvat: ... like vintage wine, proper poetry matures with time, and like vintage art the voice and wisdom of a poet worth the name is timeless."
Mphutlane wa Bofelo, kagablog
" ... a guided tour of the souls of the South Africans he writes about and cares about. ... Hauntingly universal ..."
Thomas Rome, New York
"The Wind Still Sings Sad Songs ... is an important addition to any discerning reader's literary collection."
Victor Metsoamere, Sowetan
"Like hesitating snowflakes ... his words are fascinating in their capricious wilfulness ... like unexpected strokes of a whip."
Susanne Baackmann, University Of Albuquerque, USA
"Farouk Asvat ... writes about love and suffering, about individualism, snobbishness, pretence and pride, about human and environmental beauty and about opposing oppression, and who deploys metaphysical, lyrical and colloquial language, slang and standard diction, all with equal strength and ease."
Cosmo Pieterse, Culture In Another South Africa
"Since he has been in the line of fire as both a victim of Apartheid and as a political voice in the struggle for liberation, his evocation of the contemporary South African battlefield and his testimony of the humiliation, isolation, deprivation, degradation and murder, the collective weapons of Apartheid, are chillingly authentic."
Herbert Steyn, English Olympiad, King Edward VII School.
"His love poetry soars with an intense sensitivity, it celebrates lyrically the joys of a most exquisite sensuousness."
Marcia Leveson, University Of The Witwatersrand, The Indicator
"... you almost catch your breath at some of the stanzas ... you can re-read it several times and be struck by new ideas, metaphors, elegiac surprises, and the heartfelt poignancy ..."
Aggrey Klaaste, editor Sowetan
"Out of an angry silence, a polished poet is born."
Anton Harber, editor Weekly Mail
"This anthology contains some of the finest political poems published in the past two decades ...."
Heather Mackie, Business Day
"... a love imagery entwined with pain, blood and violence ..."
Josefa Salmón, Loyola University, USA
"A common feature of the volume is the mingling of internal and external reality into internal psychological disturbance."
Duncan Brown, English Academy Review
"... Farouk Asvat regards the honed word as a means of interrogating the slogans and dreams of the revolution."
Michael Chapman, Southern African Review
" ... carries conviction and conveys a mounting tension which can be glancingly lyrical and simultaneously politically authoritative."
Peter Wilhelm, Financial Mail
"Asvat's distrust of rhetorical formulas produces a language that is capable of interrogating the dreams and slogans of the revolution."
Julia Martin, Upstream
"... ringing celebrations and criticisms of recent political events ... this collection is an important addition to South African poetry."
Francis Faller, Johannesburg College of Education, Tribute
"Poetry is not viewed primarily as an art form, but rather as the vital expression of a people struggling to voice its soul ..."
Phyllis Bischof, University of California, Berkeley
"He conveys a vivid sense of the country's agony, of the brutalization of all those involved in political conflict."
Amrit Manga, New Nation
"Here is the poetry which in its very contradictions explores accurately the emotional terrain and tensions of life in the townships today."
Kelwyn Sole, University Of Cape Town, Staffrider
"... one of the most prolific - and controversial - South African poets "
Jon Qwelane, editor Sunday Star
"A Celebration of Flames is so near to the bone, so full of despair and sanity. There is such gentleness and sadness in the love poetry ..."
Debbie Arends, University Of Witwatersrand
"Asvat ... explores ... the turbulence and fragility of life under apartheid and the sustaining power of love in these times."
Andrew Martin, National English Literary Museum News
|Product dimensions:||5.06(w) x 7.81(h) x 0.30(d)|
About the Author
He won the Vita Literary Award for southern Africa for his anthology, A Celebration of Flames. He was awarded the Fulbright Scholarship to the University of California at Berkeley, for creative writing and post graduate work in English literature; and the EOC Scholarship to the Vrije Universiteit in the Netherlands. He was awarded the Kwanzaa Honors Certificate by the Africa Network in the United States for his contribution to Horses: Athlone. His poem, "Possibilities for a Man Hunted by SBs" was selected to represent South Africa in the International Portland Review.
Farouk Asvat's writings have been published in:
UNITED STATES: International Portland Review, Berkeley Poetry Review, Gar, Saasm News, Screens And Tasted Parallels; Processed World; Illuminations; Culture In Another South Africa; African Literature In The Eighties; WherePoetry24; Requiem magazine & ¡poetry! on Goodreads. CANADA: Descant. BRAZIL: Cadernos Do Terceiro Mundo. TURKEY: Contemporary South African Poetry Anthology. SWITZERLAND: Geneve-Afrique. NETHERLANDS: Vrije Azania, O Nag, Kom Gou, Bly Weg!; Zuid; and the poems from his anthology A Celebration of Flames, translated into Dutch as Een Feest Van Vlammen, are published on the blogspot: faroukasvat - poems. FRANCE: Notre Libraire; Europe: Afrique de Sud. GERMANY: Matatu; Awa-Finnaba; Englisch Amerikanische Studien; Dokumente Texte Und Tendenzen: South African Literature; Crisis and Conflict: essays on southern African literature; Sudafrika-Stipendienfonds; Perspectives 5: South Africa; South Africa: the privileged and the dispossessed. ENGLAND: Index on Censorship, The Race Today Review, Wasafiri; & SOUTH AFRICA.
His poems have been translated into French, Dutch, Portuguese and Turkish.
He has presented papers at the National English Literary Museum; the XIth Conference on Commonwealth Literature in Aachen and Liege, the 7th Third World and Radical Black Book Fair in London, the 2nd Bad Boll Conference on South African Literature in Germany, and at the University of California, Berkeley.
He has been interviewed by BBC Book World, BBC Arts and Africa, BBC Topical Tapes, BBC London Calling; Radio Antilles; Deutsche Welle.