Patricia Schonstein

Patricia is an internationallly published, award winning novelist and poet whose works have been translated into five languages.

In 1984, in response to apartheid and the political violence in the Eastern Cape, she opened a non-racial pre-school. She wrote and self-published stories, poems and songs that had relevance to her pupils’ lives, and which were based on the same principles of peace she used in her classes.

After completing a Master’s Degree in creative writing at the University of Cape Town, she focused on full-time authorship. Although her novels are decorative, magical, opulent and richly furnished, they carry at core a deep, philosophical note as she exposes the emotional carnage caused by war and genocide.

Her novels reflect variously on the Holocaust, South Africa’s wars in Angola and Mozambique, Zimbabwe’s Chimurenga war and current dictatorship, the bombing of Dresden and apartheid.They also reflect on the way we ‘war’ against the earth and other species.Yet, despite these dark matters, her fictions are full of hope and joy and love.

Her poetry is another matter. Here she is blunt and to the point. She captures, in language that is at times paradoxically lyrical and beautiful, the full scale and horror of war, genocide, fratricide and our destruction of the natural world. Patricia’s is a voice for peace.