Strife by Shimmer Chinodya is a rich and densely written novel that provides a dark exposé of the tension between modernity and tradition, and deep insights into culture in Zimbabwe in the 21st century.
Strife is a rich and densely written novel that provides a dark exposé of the tension between modernity and tradition, and deep insights into culture in Zimbabwe in the 21st century. Chinodya explores the powerful draw that conflicting ideologies exercise over an emerging middle-class that at once yearns for autonomy and unconsciously desires the irresponsibility of an all-pervading destiny. Tracing the Gwanagara’s roots back over a century, Chinodya interweaves past and the present, juxtaposing incidents never forgotten or resolved, revealing how memory becomes an actor in lived time.
A large family grows up in Gweru. Their father aspires to be an enlightened Christian man; he sees his children through school and college where they do well. But as adults, they are struck by illness. Who is to blame? Who is to cure these ailments? What wrongs have they committed to offend the ancestors? How can atonement be made? Can education, science and medicine provide any solution? Their mother, the moon huntress, seeks out the answers and the cures in traditional beliefs and customs.
Shimmer Chinodya is one of Zimbabwe’s most celebrated post-independence literary writers. He won The Commonwealth Writers Prize, Africa region in 1990, for his critically acclaimed novel, Harvest of Thorns. His works of fi ction include Chairman of Fools (Weaver Press 2005) Dew in the Morning (1982), Tale of Tamari (2004) and Can we Talk and Other Stories (1998), which was shortlisted for the Caine Prize for African Writing in 2000. Chinodya has received numerous writing fellowships. From 1995- 1997, he was visiting professor in creative writing and African literature at the University of St Lawrence.