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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If it is my homestead that you want, if it is me that you want, here are my
daughters!" So said this man. The king ... "Substantiate your desire to marry, my
fellow," said the father.8 "I want six head of cattle for my daughter." The father was
He said, "Select for yourself from among the daughters of my home. ... Just tell me
the number you want as far as this daughter is concerned." He said, "Do you
have eighty head of cattle that you can bring here for my daughter's dowry?
Her father said, "Wait, my daughter. Please wait. If you speak at too great length,
you won't recall what your first word was. Now then, did you say that this matter is
strange?" "Yes, Father, that's what I said— in my heart." "Well, Child, when you ...
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Time Passes the Baby Grows
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