Ronelda Kamfer

Ronelda Kamfer (born 1981 in Blackheath, near Cape Town[1] ) is an Afrikaans-speaking South African poet.

Ronelda Kamfer
Blackheath, near Cape Town, South Africa
Alma materUniversity of the Western Cape
SpouseNathan Trantraal


She grew up with her grandparents, farm workers in Grabouw, in a region known for its orchards and vineyards, located a good sixty kilometers from Cape Town and its townships. She then returned to her parents, who, when she was 13, settled in Eersterivier, a suburb which had many social problems - poverty, violence, drugs, gang warfare. This experience profoundly marked her life and her writing.[2][3]

She gained a bachelor's degree in 1999; she held various jobs: waitress, office worker, nurse, while writing and pursuing studies at the University of the Western Cape, where she obtained a Master of Letters (Afrikaans and Dutch ).[4]

Ronelda Kamfer published first poems in anthologies and magazines in South Africa and the Netherlands. Among the authors whose influence, she mentions Derek Walcott, Charles Bukowski and Antjie Krog.

Ronelda Kamfer is married to poet and comic-strip creator Nathan Trantraal; they have one child.


In 2009, Ronelda Kamfer won - with Loftus Marais - Eugene Marais prize (Eugene Maraisprys) awarded by the South African Academy.[5] In 2016, she was awarded the Jan Rabie en Marjorie Wallace-writers prize.[6]


  • Ronelda S Kamfer (21 June 2011). Noudat slapende honde. Kwela. ISBN 978-0-7957-0362-1.(now that the dog is sleeping)
  • Ronelda S Kamfer (15 July 2011). grond/Santekraam. Kwela. ISBN 978-0-7957-0380-5.

Poems in journalsEdit

  • Missives n° 253, Littératures d'Afrique du Sud, juin 2009, Paris
  • Confluences Poétiques n° 4, avril 2011, Paris
  • Po&sie n° 143, juin 2013, Éditions Belin, Paris
  • Zone sensible n°1, juin 2014, "Poésie et événement", Biennale internationale des poètes en Val-de-Marne, Ivry

Poèmes in anthologies

  • Denise Coussy, Denis Hirson et Joan Metelerkamp, Afrique du Sud - Une traversée littéraire, Philippe Rey Éditeur, collection Cultures Sud, Paris 2011
  • Poésie au cœur du monde, Biennale Internationale des Poètes en Val-de-Marne, juin 2013
  • Pas de blessure, pas d'histoire: Poèmes d'Afrique du Sud 1996-2013, édition dirigée par Denis Hirson, Bacchanales n° 50, Maison de la poésie Rhône-Alpes, 2013

in EnglishEdit

Extracts from two collections of poems Ronelda Kamfer, Charl JF Cilliers translated, are included in the online anthology of contemporary Afrikaans poetry titled In a burning sea - Contemporary Afrikaans poetry in translation.


Burger's critique places Kamfer's use of the water as a literary device within the context of other South African poets, such as Koleka Putuma.[7]


  1. ^ "Ronelda Kamfer (South Africa, 1981)". Poetry International. Retrieved 31 August 2021.
  2. ^ "Ronelda Kamfer (poet) - South Africa - Poetry International". Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  3. ^ "Ronelda, raconte moi les townships". Maze Magazine. 4 January 2014. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  4. ^ "Ronelda Kamfer". Biennale des poetes en Val de Marne (in French). Retrieved 19 January 2016.
  5. ^ "Ronelda Kamfer - Artist - citybooks". Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  6. ^ "Ronelda Kamfer ontvang Jan Rabie en Marjorie Wallace-skrywersbeurs 2016".
  7. ^ Burger, Bibi (18 December 2019). "'Our respect for water is what you have termed fear': The Ocean in the Poetry of Ronelda S. Kamfer and Koleka Putuma". Journal of Southern African Studies. 46: 23–38. doi:10.1080/03057070.2020.1697552. ISSN 0305-7070. S2CID 213424553.

External linksEdit