oa South African Journal of Cultural History - Sangiro: 'n lewenskets van A.A. Pienaar

Volume 8, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1011-3053



This article deals with the life and work of the well-known Afrikaans author, AA Pienaar, who wrote under the pseudonym of Sangiro. Emphasis is placed on his first and best-known book Uit oerwoud en vlakte (translated into English as The story of a lion family) and its place in Afrikaans literature. In an effort to clarify the controversy surrounding this work and its alleged indebtedness to the work of a virtually unknown German author, the whole question is treated in more detail. Sangiro's works are favourably reviewed in all Afrikaans literature studies and recent editions of his best-known books are evidence of his enduring popularity. Because his best-known books were inspired by the diverse fauna and flora of east Africa special attention has been given to the family's stay in German East Africa. Other books by Sangiro, such as Simba and Op Safari (On Safari), are also discussed. During his adventurous life Sangiro also made a living as a teacher, reporter, film producer, digger, farmer, and game warden. In spite of numerous newspaper reports and articles as well as an extensive collection of personal documents in the National Afrikaans Literature Museum and Research Centre there are still parts of his life, such as his stay in Germany, of which virtually nothing is known.

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