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Critiquing the Male Writing of Female Izibongo: A Feminist Approach

Nompumelelo Zondi
Agenda: Empowering Women for Gender Equity
No. 68, Culture (2006), pp. 30-38
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. on behalf of Agenda Feminist Media
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4066760
Page Count: 9
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Critiquing the Male Writing of Female Izibongo: A Feminist Approach
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Abstract

Patriarchy seems to have had a similar effect the world over; that of subjugation of women. Male and female are seen as evaluative categories, even though there is no factual or inherent reason why the male should be valued more than the female. The notion of the newly empowered South African women that has been emerging since the '90s motivated me to examine a dimension which, to my knowledge, has never been explored; that of critiquing the male writing of female izibongo with regards to the two royal women; Nandi, King Shaka's mother and Mkabayi, his paternal aunt. In this focus an effort will be made to affirm that which promotes women power rather than uncritically entertaining the socially accepted aspects of their lives as influenced by the izimbongi, (traditional bards) of old as well as later scholars with specific reference to a historian.

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