J.R.L. van Bruggen

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J.R.L. van Bruggen (1895-1948) was an Afrikaans poet, author, school teacher, publisher and university lecturer.

Also found as Jan van Bruggen or as Kleinjan van Bruggen (his occasional pen name).


Born Jan Reinder Leonard van Bruggen in Johannesburg on op 15 September 1895, he was widely known by his popular nickname of "Kleinjan" ("Little Jan"), probably because he was just under two metres tall, and he was the youngest of the seven Van Bruggen children. His one elder brother was the writer Jochem van Bruggen.

He graduated from the Transvaal University College (later the University of Pretoria) in 1919 with a MA-degree in Dutch and in 1922 he got his D.Phil-degree from the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands.

Contribution to SA theatre, film, media and/or performance

Besides his poems, novels and short stories, he wrote (and apparently produced) a number of plays - most of them, except for his first play, (Gebroke Drade, i.e. "Broken wires/fences") dealing with The Great Trek: Die Vooraand ("The evening before", 1934), Hans Dons (upublished) a collection of 10 short plays about The Great Trek, collectively known as Bakens (1938).



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