Intwasa publishes folklore anthology

BULAWAYO - Intwasa Arts  Festival koBulawayo has published an anthology of Zimbabwean folktales titled Around the Fire which will be part of the festival’s 10th anniversary celebrations this year.

Raisedon Baya, the Intwasa director, confirmed the publication whose aim is to document and preserve folk stories in book format.

“I am happy to say that an anthology of Zimbabwean folktales is published and this is the second one to come under Intwasa,” said Baya.

“It comes after Intwasa Poetry which was edited by Jane Morris.

“The project activities included research and collection of the stories from different communities and a skills-sharing workshop with local storytellers.”

The Intwasa director also revealed that they were exploring other ways of preserving the folk tales.

“We decided to collect different stories and put them in a book so that it can be easy for readers but there were also plans to upload the stories on the festival website and preserve them in other forms,” he said.

  The anthology includes 15 stories that were written by among others award-winning writers Siongile Mkandla and Christopher Mlalazi.

Baya said folktales are facing a threat of extinction in most communities.

“We noticed that folktales are slowly being shut out and people are losing interest in them therefore the coming of this anthology is meant to resuscitate the telling of folklore in our communities.

“Some of the stories to look forward to are Bekezela Dube’s A Hare Meets His Match, Sibongile Mkandla’s The Chief’s Son and Thabani H Moyo’s How Mbinjana Lost Her Leg,” Baya said.

The Intwasa director is convinced that the anthology eloquently showcases the value, belief and knowledge systems of indigenous people.

“The book also tackles people’s myths, diplomacy, justice systems and the ability to co-exist peacefully with elements and the ecosystem in its entirety.

“Our readers should know that Intwasa is planning another collection of short stories.”

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