The World and the Word: Tales and Observations from the Xhosa Oral Tradition
A master storyteller of the Xhosa people of South Africa, Nongenile Masithathu Zenani gives us an unprecedented view of an oral society from within. Twenty-four of her complex and beautiful tales about birth, puberty, marriage, and work, as told to the renowned collector of African oral tradition, Harold Scheub, are gathered here. Accompanying the stories are Zenani’s detailed commentaries and analyses and Scheub’s striking photographs of her in performance. The combination of these historical and cultural observations with a richly symbolic collection of tales from a single traditional storyteller make The World and the Word a remarkable document.
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Tale 12 SIKHULUMA , THE BOY WHO DID NOT SPEAK Masithathu Zenani ' s
Analysis : " Sikhuluma " is a tale that treats a boy ' s movement through puberty
and beyond , to his marriage . Rites of passage always emphasize crises in
Sikhuluma doesn ' t know what he ' s talking about . He ' s talking nonsense again
! How can he say that the food on these dishes is not meant to be eaten ? These
are clearly our dishes ! Eat ! " He said this , then took one of the dishes and ate ...
After a time , Sikhuluma stepped on a place that had soil , even though he had
been warned by the mouse that he should never tread on earth , that he should
always walk on a place that had grass . If he walked on earth , he had been
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The Start Is a Man and a Man Takes a Wife
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