Queen of the Ndebele
In 1999, a defiant 76-year old Mr Stanley Mhlanga confronted the Zimbabwean Forestry Commission. He claimed that Queen Lozikeyi had given his people the land from which they had been evicted. Who was this woman, an inspiration to an old man 80 years after her death? Queen Lozikeyi was the senior queen of Lobhengula, king of the Ndebele people in what is now Zimbabwe. Her early life has been wreathed in mystery, but now at last her story can be told.
This book is one of the first studies of a woman who led her people while the British colonial power occupied her country. She was the intellect behind one of the most effective anti-colonial revolts. Queen Lozikeyi continues to be an inspiration to Zimbabweans today. Queen Lozikeyi, as an Ndebele royal woman, interited a strong constitutional position from Nguni royal foremothers in Zululand. This study shows how Lobhengula's senoir queen and other Ndebele royal women uses their power.
Read an article about the book in the Oxford Mail here.
ISBN 9780797442665 | 364 pages | 210 x 148 mm | B/W Illustrations and Maps | 2011 | AmaGugu Publishers, Zimbabwe | Paperback
"Overall, I feel Marieke Clarke has succeeded in her aim of restoring Queen Lozikeyi to her rightful place in the history of the Ndebele nation, and in doing so she has also made a major contribution to the study of gender in the politics of 19th century southern Africa."
- John Pinfold,
“…offers a welcome addition; first because it is largely set in the years prior to 1918. Secondly, as the biography of a prominent Ndebele woman, this book brings forward valuable and little-acknowledged elements about women in a kingdom long viewed as male-dominated and militaristic…Clarke offers a fine-grained and suspenseful retelling of the events of the 1890; the unfolding of the 1893 war, the disappearance of the King, the dispossession and grievances against the British South Africa Company (BSAC), Rhodes’ indabas (meetings) with the Ndebele izinduna (chiefs) that brough the 1896 war to an end. Glinting along this re-told pathway are the crucial bits where the role of Lozikeyi figures into the narrative.”
- Journal of South African Studies, vol.38, no.1, March 2012
"Lozikeyi Dlodlo Queen of the Ndebele is a must read for all those interested in knowing the minute details of Ndebele history and social formation. The book is based on a superb combination of rich archival, secondary and oral sources to yield a very readable and enlightening book."
- Sabelo J. Ndlovu-Gatsheni, South African Historical Journal