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Doctoral Degrees (African Languages)

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    Feminist discourse analysis in four selected Zulu literary texts beyond 'woman as a victim'.
    (2018) Gumede, Hendry Sifiso.; Mathonsi, Nhlanhla Naphtal.
    The study’s hypothesis was that the condition of women in Zulu patriarchal society as reflected in the selected Zulu literary texts is still intolerable. Some female and male authors tend to echo social tendencies and trends, wanting to maintain the status quo of the system of patriarchy. The study surfaces the traditional patriarchal views on marriage, ukungena (taking over of the responsibilities of the late brother) and other gender inequities. The research qualitatively examines these traditional issues and approaches in the four selected literary texts from a literary feminist discourse perspective. The study has managed to portray various situations in which women discover their potential by focusing on the various major problems they have to face in the patriarchal society. The four literary texts analyzed depict women characters as victims. For instance, the novels Ifa Lenkululeko and Umshado portray the widows’ world as a hybrid space characterized by forces of tradition and modernity. Both novels show how widows are usually trodden upon and least protected by the society from patriarchal interpretations, and expectations of the tradition. The plays, Ngiyazisa Ngomtanami and Ngiwafunge AmaBomvu, on the other hand, depict flaws and failures of the patriarchal system. Both plays expose these flaws and failures in a subtle manner that an inattentive reader may not be able to observe. They both reflect women’s maturity in challenging the stereotypes of the patriarchal system. These literary texts display some transformed approaches in the portrayal of female characters. The study calls for a change of mindsets from members of society who still endorse patriarchal stereotypes of women. It makes it clear that, only by affording full consideration to women’s needs and contributions, can the civilization grow and mature.
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    Naming of the informal settlements in Pietermaritzburg and Durban.
    (2018) Ngcobo, Tholakele Ruth.; Ndimande-Hlongwa, Nobuhle Purity.; Mazibuko, Gugulethu Brightness.
    Abstract available in both English and isiZulu in pdf.
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    Ucwaningo lokuqhathanisa amanoveli omlando ka R.R.R. Dhlomo kanye nezibongo zamakhosi akwazulu ezaqoqwa uNyembezi (1958).
    (2008) Mazibuko, Gugulethu Brightness.; Ngwenya, Thengani Harold.; Nhlongwa, Nobuhle P.
    This study aims to do a comparative analysis of the historical depiction of the Zulu kings namely: King Shaka, King Dingane, King Mpande and King Cetshwayo. In this study comparison is drawn between Dhlomo's historical novels and Nyembezi 's anthology of praise poetry. This research is based on Interpretive paradigm because it emphasizes a need for in-depth reading and analysis of the oral presentation. That is why qualitative research methodology has been employed because it has allowed the researcher to analytical skills on the content and interviews with community members. In the analysis of these books; the researcher read; interpreted, compared and contrasted the contents thereof. In the researchers comparative study; the researcher discovered that there are some similarities and differences of content in the historical novels and praise poetry writings. This research examined the publication (relevant to this study) written by other authors about Zulu kings (these as deemed relevant for this research). The study went on to verify authenticity around the contents of praise poetry regarding these kings. Structured interviews were arranged and conducted; wherein it emerged that most of king Shaka's, king Dingane's and king Mpande's history has somewhat faded from the interviewee's memories. A lot of information was gathered around king Cetshwayo. This study also revealed that most of Zulu king's history is somehow distorted.Theories of Post-Colonialism and Orality were greatly employed during this research. Post-Colonialism theory was deemed relevant because most of these writings were done after the Zulus had been robbed of their land. Since praise poetry is oral art; an oral historian had to be consulted to emphasize the rich heritage contained in orality or oral art. It clearly emerged from this research that there is a lot of deliberate distortions of Zulu kings' history. This distortion is not only by Whites but also some Black African writers who still continue distorting the kings' history. It is suggested that there be a revisitation and rewriting of the Zulu kings' history and this be done taking into consideration past writings and interviews with knowledgeable historians. A lot of knowledge is contained in this thesis that can be helpful to all and sundry interested in historical writings and other literary genres.
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    Oral strategies for conflict expression and articulation of criticism in Zulu social discourse.
    (2003) Turner, Noleen Sheila.; Conolly, Joan Lucy.; Coullie, Judith Lutge.; Zungu, Phyllis Jane Nonhlanhla.
    This study examines the oral strategies employed by Zulu speaking people in the expression of conflict and criticism in their social discourse. These oral discourses, viz. izibongo and naming practices, are analysed to ascertain the socially acceptable ways in which Zulus articulate their frustrations and discontent in various social settings. These are commonly used in rural communities, but they also echo in urban social settings. Hostility and ill-feelings are thus channelled through the sanctioned form of these various oral expressions either as a means of merely airing one's dissatisfaction or as a means of seeking personal redress. The study also reveals that these particular forms of oral expression with critical content, do not exist for their own intrinsic value simply to artfully describe a particular individual. They are composed primarily to serve a particular social function of conflict articulation and expression in non-conflictual ways. The function of these oral forms is that of a "socio-cultural archive" (Conolly 2001), which is vested in the memory of those who can express in performance, their renditions of personal and group identity. The aesthetic beauty of these forms must be regarded as a secondary function and a direct by-product of the primary function, which is personal identity expressed in a way which ensures that issues which could cause conflict are highlighted so as to diminish their conflictual potential. The reason for this is that in order to fulfill the first function, which is conflict reduction, Jousse (1990) states there has to be a form (rhythm, balance and formula) which makes the expressions memorisable - which literate people equate to 'poetry'.
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    Izigiyo as performed by Zulu women in the KwaQwabe community in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
    (2009) Gumede, Mzuyabonga Amon.; Meyiwa, Thenjiwe.; Turner, Noleen Sheila.
    This study investigates the content of izigiyo (specified personified solo dance songs) texts that Zulu women perform at social occasions in KwaQwabe, a rural area near KwaDukuza (Stanger) in Northern KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Though this study focuses on izigiyo, the KwaQwabe have different oral performances that are performed at specific social occasions. In the KwaQwabe area there lives people who practise subsistence farming. The common crops that they (especially women) grow are maize, beans, groundnuts and imifino (herbs). The cattle and goats that the KwaQwabe men keep are mostly slaughtered for the amadlozi rituals. The study proposes that izigiyo as oral texts are largely responses to issues of heritage, culture, women abuse and domestic violence that lead to pent-up emotions, envy, witchery, gossip, and malpractices that can destroy a community-oriented life-style (Turner, 1998) that features in most African communities. The study hypothesises that Zulu women of KwaQwabe need to be treated with dignity and inhlonipho (respect) within the parameters of the Zulu tradition (Msimang, 1975). The study explores issues surrounding the izigiyo performance in order to establish whether Zulu women have always been silent (Bukenya, 2001) when it comes to issues that affect their lives, pertaining to issues that impinge negatively on their lives (Gunner and Gwala, 1991). The intended receivers of the messages (Ndoleriire, 2000) are always implied in the izigiyo texts and aim at serving as social regulators (Gumede, 2000). The language of izigiyo is in most cases metaphorical so as to avoid confrontation. In the midst of the izigiyo expression men and women relay their perceptions, experiences, and feelings about the way of life in their families and communities at large. This study, however, limits itself to the izigiyo texts that are enacted by Zulu women and does not include men’s.