ICORN Residency

Felix Kaputu

Felix Kaputu (born 1959 in Congo) – Congolese writer, academic, literary critic, social activist, and Fulbright scholar, Prof. Felix Kaputu. Felix Kaputu is a specialist in the field of African Studies, art and philosophy. In his academic work, he also studied issues of gender, African mythology and literature. He conducted research and taught in the US, Japan, Belgium. In 2003, he was awarded a Fulbright scholarship as well as one at the University of California. He is the author of six books and nearly 60 publications concerning, among others topics, the difficult situation of women in Africa, HIV and AIDS. In May 2005, Kaputu was arrested without a warrant by the National Security Agency (ANR). He was accused of being responsible for the secession movement of 20 000 soldiers in the province of Katanga, smuggling weapons and inciting rebellion. According to official report he was to be sentenced to 30 years in prison or death. He was detained for 10 days and was in custody, where he was denied food and threatened with death. He witnessed the use of physical violence and mysterious disappearances of other detainees. Moved to the correctional facility of Makala in Kinasha, Kaputu was finally released thanks to the intervention of Amnesty International, pressure from the media and academia. After his release from prison he was under constant supervision, which made it impossible for him to return to the university. In 2006, he left the country on a Scholars at Risk scholarship.

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