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Ari Sitas

Ari Sitas is a South African sociologist, writer, dramatist and civic activist. Apart from his plays and dramatic collaborations Sitas has been celebrated as a poet. His poetry is demanding- from the exuberant collection of poems in Tropical Scars (1989) with its surreal (and political) vision of Durban and its jazz-like crescendos to his latest The RDP Poems (2004) with its stripped-to-the bone lines. The most demanding is his Slave Trades (2000) which is a panoramic reconstruction of Arthur Rimbaud’s Ethiopian years. Sitas was one of the founder members of the celebrated Junction Avenue Theatre Company. In 1978 he received the ‘Olive Schreiner Award’ for his play Randlords and Rotgut, and in 1981 won an award for his video “Howl at the Moon”. He is of the left and has been described as a democratic socialist, a neo-Gandhian and a non-reductionist Marxist – both a dreamer and a doer.