Story collection translated into Ndebele

BULAWAYO - Amabooks have translated a short story collection  Where to Now? Short Stories from Zimbabwe from English to Ndebele.

The Ndebele version of the short story collection, originally published three years ago by the Bulawayo-based publisher, has been titled Siqondephi Manje? Indatshana zaseZimbabwe.

Thabisani Ndlovu, who holds a doctorate in African Literature from Witwatersrand University in South Africa, translated the collection which is composed of 16 writers based in Zimbabwe and in the Diaspora.

The new translated version is set to be launched during the Bulawayo Book Fair set for the Large City Hall from March 28 to 29.

Amabooks co-director Brian Jones believes the new Ndebele version will fit in well with the book fair’s theme — ‘Indigenous Languages, Literature, Art and Knowledge Systems of Africa’.

“There are some very good writers in indigenous languages in Zimbabwe, but many of the best known Zimbabwean writers write in English and we felt that their work should be available to be enjoyed by those who are more at ease reading in their first language,” said Jones.

“Within the pages of the book, readers will meet the sex worker who gets the better of her brothers when they try to marry her off; the wife who is absolved of the charge of adultery; the hero who drowns in a bowser of cheap beer; the poetry slammer who does not get to perform his final poem, and many more charawcters.”

Jones added that Siqondephi Manje? Indatshana zaseZimbabwe that was published with the assistance of the Open

Society Initiative for Southern Africa involved a lot of consultation.

“There have been some lively discussions between Dr Ndlovu and several of the writers — especially those whose first language is Ndebele. It is interesting, and challenging, for a literary translator to translate back into the mother tongue of the original writer, but the contributors have all been impressed by the quality and originality of Ndlovu’s work,” he said.

Ndlovu is convinced that his experience on the project will help to explore the current state of isiNdebele literature and language.

Comments (1)

Siqondephi Manje? wawutsho umqondo mfanami Isindebele esqondileyo siyaswelakala -well done Jaha

mariyeti mpala - 12 March 2014

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