BARBARA C NKALA's PUBLICATIONS
Barbara C Nkala - Nee Makhalisa Moyo - Books Before 1996
The theme of Barbara Makhalisa’s collection of short stories is women – the Zimbabwean woman-in-the-street. Makhalisa digs deeply into the mind and heart of the ordinary Zimbabwean woman who is struggling to deal with a family problem, domestic tragedy, discrimination, or simply a difficult situation.
Nothing is too commonplace or unworthy as we meet the wife deserted by her husband , the privileged girl who sees the real world for the first time, the grandmother bereft of all her possessions, the business woman whose promotion is in the hands of men, and many others, the situations are real, often painful, and we share the struggles of those women fighting often lone battles to cope with the complexities of real life in Zimbabwe.
THE UNDERDOG AND OTHER STORIES
‘I hastened to add that I had come to look for work and would be very thankful for a roof over my head. I knew that although he went about the “my wife” business in a jocular manner, one could not put it past him to put all that into practice! Was it not well-known to my people that he was razor-sharp where the fair sex was concerned? And he did not pick and choose his partners. That is why I was glad that Many-Coloured-Affair guarded him jealously even as we talked. She hovered in the background, pouted and pulled her face, but when Baba vaMurenga looked directly at her, she quickly worn her come-on smile.’ – The Underdog.
Umendo (Marriage) is summary of a Ndebele proverb, Umendo awuthunyelwa gundwane, meaning a woman cannot send a mouse to go check what the situation is where she is betrothed. In other words, marriage is a gamble – a win or lose situation. There are always lessons to learn either way.
Umhlaba Lo! (What A World!) is a play based on current events of the 1970s, where young bright girls faced very few opportunities for academic and professional pursuit. This play shows the challenging trials and tribulations Sibongile went through in the city while she waited for an opportunity to pursue further education.
Impilo Yinkinga (Life is a Mystery) – Despite the numerous challenges in life, a person’s strong personality is not destroyed but strengthened by perseverance and hope. Meanwhile, carefree indulgence has unpalatable consequences. Everyday events become a mystery to unravel.