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The girls in the baobab: Venda stories from the Limpopo valley




Jaco Kruger (ed.)

A collection of Venda ngano stories from South Africa’s Limpopo Valley. These ancient stories integrate prose with chants and songs. Their meanings link with universal images as well as the lives of narrators that have been swept along almost unnoticed by currents of modern history. The stories reveal complex inner worlds saturated with tight, often conflicting social relations expressed in lavishly metaphorical forms at odds with the hot bareness of the land. They comprise a virtual timeless cultural space in which older values are affirmed. However, their images, chants and songs increasingly are becoming dim, fragmented recollection in a world shaped by new ideals and narrative forms: ngano are fading with a last generation of narrators. The collection includes an introduction, song transcriptions, a guide to pronunciation and performance instructions.