Pumla Dineo Gqola

Pumla Dineo Gqola is a South African professor, author, and feminist. She is known for her work on gender and postcolonial studies.

Gqola grew up in Alice, Eastern Cape. Her education includes degrees from the University of Cape Town. She holds a BA(Hons) and MA. She also has an MA from the University of Warwick. Her DPhil is from Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich.

From 1997 until 2005, Pumla Dineo Gqola worked at the University of the Free State. Gqola then joined the University of the Witwatersrand. She served as associate professor and later full professor.

Her focus was on literary, media, and gender studies. In 2018, she became Dean of Research at the University of Fort Hare. She has also worked with the Human Sciences Research Council.

Gqola was a patron of the Etisalat Prize for Literature. The prize started in 2013. It celebrates African writers of fiction. In May 2020, she joined Nelson Mandela University. She is a professor of literature there. Her work covers African and postcolonial literature, African feminism, and slave memory.

In 2020, she received a Research Chair in African Feminist Imagination.

Gqola's first book was What is Slavery to Me? (2010), which was longlisted for the 2011 Alan Paton Award. A Renegade Called Simphiwe (2013), the story about singer Simphiwe Dana, followed.

Her book, Rape: A South African Nightmare (2015), won the 2016 Alan Paton Award. It examines sexual violence in South Africa. The book introduces the "female fear factory" concept. A similar concept is also at the heart of her 2021 book Female Fear Factory, which explores gender and patriarchy under racial capitalism.

Gqola also published Reflecting Rogue (2018). This collection of essays was on the longlist for the 2018 Alan Paton Award.

Her work has appeared in the New Frame and the New York Times.

Photo credit: X @feminist_rogue
years of life: 3 December 1972 present
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