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The Heart of Redness (Paperback) Loot Price: R244
Discovery Miles 2 440
You Save: R80 (25%)

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The Heart of Redness (Paperback)

Zakes Mda

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List price R324 Loot Price R244 Discovery Miles 2 440 You Save R80 (25%)

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Mda is fascinated with how the past influences the future - and this is especially illustrated in Heart of Redness (parts of which, incidentally, were quoted by Valli Moosa in parliament!)

The book is based on a well-known fact-based Xhosa myth: In the 1800s the Xhosa Prophetess Nongqawuse told the Xhosa people that the only way to stave off the scourge of the white people was to slaughter their cattle. In desperation they did just that, only to find that the white settlers still arrived in their droves. Close to starvation, the people split into two groups, the believers (who still subscribed to Prophetess Nongqawuse's prophecy) and the unbelievers (who had more of a 'proof is in the pudding attitude'). With this tradition in mind, the descendants of the believers are brought into sharp 'modern-day' focus, revealing a deep-seated dilemma: The village in which the 'believers' live is polarised between the older generation who wish to preserve the 'old ways' and the younger generation, who wish to get out of the confines of the village and 'experience life'. For example, there's Xoliswa Ximiya who has been educated in America and can't wait to escape the stifling confines of her native village; and there is the polar opposite of her parents - direct descendants of the believers and part of a generation desperately clinging to the tenets of tradition.

As with all of his novels, the book is packed full of rich description, irony and dichotomy. For example, there are the vignettes telling the tale of the exile who returns to Africa after thirty years abroad, only to find it impossible to find work under the 'new regime' where nepotism opens doors to the description of the descendant of a vicious colonialist who speaks and lives a Xhosa existence.
Camugu, recently returned to Johannesburg and disillusioned by the new democracy, moves to the remote Eastern Cape. There, in the nineteenth century, a teenage prophetess commanded the Xhosa people to kill their cattle and burn their crops, promising that the spirits of their ancestors would rise and drive the English into the ocean. The failed prophecy split the people in two, with devastating consequences. One hundred and fifty years later, the two groups’ decendants are at odds over plans to build a vast casino and tourist resort, and Camugu is soon drawn into their heritage and their future—and into a bizarre love triangle as well.


Imprint: Picador USA
Country of origin: United States
Release date: August 2003
First published: August 2003
Authors: Zakes Mda
Dimensions: 210 x 140 x 18mm (L x W x T)
Format: Paperback
Pages: 277
ISBN-13: 978-0-312-42174-8
Categories: Books > Language & Literature > Literature: history & criticism > Literary studies
Books > Language & Literature > Literature: history & criticism > Literary studies > General
Books > Language & Literature > Literature: texts > Essays, journals, letters & other prose works
Books > Language & Literature > Literature: texts > Essays, journals, letters & other prose works > General
Books > Fiction > General & literary fiction > Modern fiction
Books > Local Author Showcase > Fiction - adults
Books > Local Author Showcase > Fiction - adults > Zakes Mda
LSN: 0-312-42174-5
Barcode: 9780312421748

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