ISBN 9781779223098
ePub ISBN 9781779223098
Pages 120
Dimensions 216 x 140mm
Published 2016
Publisher Weaver Press, Zimbabwe
Formats Paperback, eBook

Grace and Other Stories

by Bongani Sibanda

This collection of short stories explores the ‘survival of the fittest’ in the hardship and poverty of a remote village in Matabeleland. Bongani Sibanda draws his characters and their situations with a sardonic eye and caustic humour. Sibanda satirises churches which enrich their leaders with the tithes of the poor, and draws our attention to self-proclaimed pastors who use the ‘gospel of nationalism and patriotism’ to persuade their congregants to desist from supporting opposition politics. The church is also a source of the villagers’ weekly entertainment, with its cleansing ceremonies and the interrogation of witches: belief has a place, but so too does theatre. Patriarchy, family hierarchies, and the traditional position of women and children, all fall under Sibanda’s wry but compassionate scrutiny. We feel an intimacy with the villagers as we learn about how they cope: with no self-pity, little ambition, but a fierce determination to survive.

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About the Author

Bongani Sibanda

Bongani Sibanda was born in Mfila Village and attended Zwehamba and Nyashongwe Primary Schools, then Tshelanyemba and Shashane High Schools. He currently lives in Johannesburg. His stories have appeared in several online literary magazines, and have been included in two of Weaver Press' anthologies, Writing Lives (2014) and Writing Mystery and Mayhem (2015). Sibanda was long-listed for the 2015 ABR Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize for 'Musoke', a fictionalised account of Uganda's Dominic Ongwen. He is currently writing a novel.