Below you will find a short video followed by a bio whose limited capacity could not fully capture the life of the South African activist poet Dennis Brutus.
I have included a video of him speaking on his poetry and the Copenhagen climate conference (cop-15) that is fast approaching, and in the words of Dennis Brutus “we have to get ready for the fight for the survival of the planet… and Copenhagen has to be the place where the fight begins.”
Another compelling interview with Dennis Brutus HERE
Dennis Brutus, poet, scholar and famous anti-apartheid activist, shot in the back by the white controlling regime of South Africa, who served time with Nelson Mandela at Robben Island, recently encouraged that we should all ‘Seattle Copenhagen’.
While still in South Africa, Brutus was forbidden to teach, write and publish there.. Sirens, Knuckles and Boots, his first collection of poetry, was published in Nigeria while he was in prison. The book was awarded the Mbari Poetry Prize, awarded to a black poet of distinction, but Brutus turned it down on the grounds of its racial exclusivity.
After he was released, Brutus fled South Africa. In 1983, Brutus won the right to stay in the United States as a political refugee, after a protracted legal struggle. He was “unbanned” in 1990. He is the Professor Emeritus of University of Pittsburgh. He has now returned to South Africa and is based at the University of KwaZulu-Natal where he often contributes to the annual Poetry Africa Festival hosted by the University. He continues to support activism against neo-liberal policies in contemporary South Africa through working with NGOs.