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- Imbizo : International Journal of African Literary and Comparative Studies
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- Volume 6, Issue 1, 2015
Imbizo : International Journal of African Literary and Comparative Studies - Volume 6, Issue 1, 2015
Volume 6, Issue 1, 2015
Author Tendayi SitholeSource: Imbizo : International Journal of African Literary and Comparative Studies 6, pp 1 –26 (2015)More Less
Aimé Césaire scandalised the question of the human subject by exposing the deceit and hypocrisy of the idea of Europe and its myth of civilisation. The question of the human is foundational and constitutive in Césaire's subjectivity, which originates from the site of the dehumanised and also railing against all forms of dehumanisation that plagued the colonised subject. The human is interrogated here in the light of the distance and proximity to the non-human. It is from the positionality of being non-human that Césaire opposes faux humanism, which presents a scandal and it having a tendency of preaching humanism while engaging in dehumanisation. In order for there to be the insurrection of the colonised subject to become human, Césaire's conception of 'the return' is re-engaged from the standpoint of Negritude as decolonial humanism and reconceptualising it in its complexity. This then serves as the launching pad to imagine the possibility of the emergence of another humanity coming into being through the end of the modern colonial world - the decolonised world.
Author Godwin MakaudzeSource: Imbizo : International Journal of African Literary and Comparative Studies 6, pp 27 –38 (2015)More Less
The relationship between literature and society has long been recognised. In light of this, African literature is viewed as partly a celebration and partly an expression of African values. Literature set in the past is to some degree seen as an attempt to unearth, convey and uphold socio-economic, political and religious values of the time. Using the Afrocentricity theory and epic texts, Sundiata: An Epic of Old Mali (Niane, 1965) and Emperor Shaka the Great: A Zulu Epic (Kunene, 1979), the article posits that a study of such epic texts indeed offers a glimpse of the people's philosophy of life and their values.
Author Solomon MwapangidzaSource: Imbizo : International Journal of African Literary and Comparative Studies 6, pp 39 –50 (2015)More Less
In this paper I use postmodernism to explore Antjie Krog's engagement with post-Apartheid identities in Country of My Skull. These identities, often complex and multiple, are mediated in the process of nation-building. I take the exercise of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) as metonymy for the nation-building project, and I argue that Krog quite deliberately chose an ambiguous and complex genre to represent equally ambiguous and complex identities. One of the salient features of postmodernism is its anti-systemic, anti-form impulse, and the form that Krog uses refuses to be conscripted into any single conventional form. Dominated by testimonies of victims and perpetrators of apartheid violence, the form also bears aspects of autobiography, novel, poetry and journalistic snippets interlaced with quotes from psychoanalysts and philosophers. From time to time, anecdotes, fairytales, myths and legends are interpolated into the narrative to remind the reader of the porous borders between fiction and reality.
Oral literature as carrier of education and aesthetics : examples from Diop's Tales of Amadou Koumba and Knappert's myths and legends of the CongoAuthor Aleck MapindaniSource: Imbizo : International Journal of African Literary and Comparative Studies 6, pp 51 –57 (2015)More Less
Oral literature has for African societies become the bank of knowledge that emerges from the historical past to present generations. In a sense, it has become instrumental in transmitting society's moral codes, beliefs and customs as well as its views on aesthetic phenomena. Thus, a remarkable array of animal characters, proverbs, songs and visual images play a pivotal role by indirectly attacking the nasty practices of society, and at the same time luring the current generation into extracting a wealth of wisdom that lies embedded in the values of its beautiful past. In this paper, a critical survey of Diop's Tales of Amadou Koumba and Knappert's Myths and Legends of the Congo shows how oral literature, through descriptions of either punishment for societal misbehavers or rewards for those who behave well, is instrumental in bringing to light not only the evil practices of society but also the accepted codes of communal behaviour.
Author Sikhululekile MkandlaSource: Imbizo : International Journal of African Literary and Comparative Studies 6, pp 58 –66 (2015)More Less
This article tries to unpack the complexities of reconciling an African, and particularly a Southern African identity in a globalising age. It departs by drawing parallels between one of Africa's first generation of literary giants, Chinua Achebe and one of post-independent Africa's most radical critics, Phaswane Mpe. The two, separated by at least 40 years, reveal how mediating African identity has transmuted over the years from the linear Achebean colonial era pursuit of an almost clearly defined and nearly homogenous sense of Africanness, to a more elusive and monolithic task in the post-independence Mpe-era. In this Mpe-era it is no longer possible to speak of identity, but identities, as 'identity' proves fluid, overlapping and evasive. In a departure from the seemingly stable Achebean quest for the restoration of African identity and masculinity, Mpe challenges the reader to the more complex reality of what may be termed 'a multi-identities individual'.
Author Ruby MagosvongweSource: Imbizo : International Journal of African Literary and Comparative Studies 6, pp 67 –79 (2015)More Less
The article critiques Mathias Mhere's gospel music from an Afrocentric perspective within the context of complexities and maladies that have impacted negatively on the majority's livelihoods in Zimbabwe's post-2000 period. The maladies have seen society marshalling different strategies and oral art forms to keep people's spirits buoyant. Oral art forms have always been at the centre of African experience, constituting a repository of the philosophy of life as desired, imagined, and treasured among most indigenous families and communities. In the absence of the oral folklore and oral art forms of yesteryear that were used to inculcate communal values and skills to self-define and safeguard cultural spaces, gospel music has made inroads and carved an indelible niche that needs critical attention. This strategy is not novel to Zimbabwe. Music as an oral and performance art has always been deeply ingrained in most social activities to raise and censure conduct across all ages for society's greater good, including cementing the social fabric, and fostering social cohesion and stability among most indigenous families and communities. In the recalcitrant environment, fraught with a myriad of maladies and many a family in dispersion, gospel music in the indigenous languages becomes critical in exhorting and censuring attitudes, conduct and desires in order to uphold treasured values. Family dispersions disrupted institutions and fractured relationships, further fanning insecurities and imbalances. It is from this angle that this article makes a critical analysis of Mathias Mhere's gospel lyrics. Mhere is one of the most popular young gospel artists whose albums have been hits on the Zimbabwean music charts. The article therefore examines the forte behind Mhere's gospel music in the Zimbabwean post-2000 maladies. It also interrogates Mhere's artistic creativity, sensitivity and commitment to sustainable livelihoods and survivalin post-2000 Zimbabwe's fractious environment.