n Shakespeare in Southern Africa - Thuthula : Heart of the Labyrinth, Chris Zithulele Mann : book review

Volume 21, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1011-582X



This attractively presented play script, which includes a number of photographs taken at the 2003 Grahamstown National Arts Festival production, is intended (according to the informative Introduction by Laurence Wright) to fulfil the request which went out from the Royal House of Rharabe to "take the play to the grass roots" (xviii). This was gracious acceptance after initial qualms and controversy, and vindicates the cultural tact of the author and the generally restrained delicacy of his writing. Mann's drama recalls and reenacts a period of intense internal conflict among the AmaXhosa of the Ciskei during the early 1800s, when the Crown Prince of the Rharabe people, Ngqika (sometimes referred to as Gaika by white historians), had begun to chafe against the prolonged rule of his uncle the Regent, Ndlambe.

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