Original Research

Teaching Creative Writing at South African universities: An overview

Henning J. Pieterse
Literator | Vol 34, No 2 | a421 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v34i2.421 | © 2013 Henning J. Pieterse | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 24 January 2013 | Published: 22 November 2013

About the author(s)

Henning J. Pieterse, Unit for Creative Writing, Department of Afrikaans, University of Pretoria, South Africa


Creative Writing is a relatively new subject at South African universities. The scope and methodologies of teaching this subject locally have not yet been investigated properly. In this article the teaching of Creative Writing as subject, course and/or programme at South African universities is probed with regard to course content, methodological and pedagogical questions and outcomes. A semistructured questionnaire dealing with course content, didactic aspects of teaching Creative Writing and manuscript outcomes was sent to course co-ordinators of Creative Writing at 11 South African universities. The findings of this inquiry are discussed with regard to each participating university. Creative Writing is mainly taught at postgraduate level, with the focus on MA level. Although there are differences in teaching approaches, it is evident that the workshop serves as the core teaching method for most respondents. Creative Writing at South African universities has grown tremendously in terms of student numbers and published outputs – some figures are provided as illustrations. This increase links South African Creative Writing to a world-wide trend which reflects continuous growth in Creative Writing as university subject. Through published (and often award-winning) outcomes Creative Writing programmes contribute to the varied South African literary landscape.


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Crossref Citations

1. The PhD in Creative Writing and the Teaching thereof at South African Universities
Henning Pieterse
Current Writing: Text and Reception in Southern Africa  vol: 27  issue: 2  first page: 181  year: 2015  
doi: 10.1080/1013929X.2015.1088278