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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Specific information on the dates, locations, and audiences for each of Mrs.
Zenani's performances can be found preceding each commentary and following
the headnote for each tale, and occasionally in the notes. xii The World and the
The genius of the storyteller is to be discovered in her ability to work within the
tradition, the imitative part of her art, as she simultaneously gives her audiences
new insights into ancient images by using them to give form to their contemporary
THE ART OF THE STORYTELLER Performance Note Time: 3 August 1972 in the
afternoon. Place: Outside, near Mrs. Zenani's home in Nkanga, Gatyana District,
the Transkei. Audience: Six women and twelve teenagers and children. (NS-22.)
With the culture's most deeply felt, enduring fears and hopes compressed within
them, they have the capacity to elicit strong emotional responses from members
of audiences: it is the task of the storyteller, Mrs. Zenani contended, to forge the ...
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The End of the Affair