The Mwindo Epic from the Banyanga (World Literature in Translation) (Paperback)
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A dynamic translation of the timeless African epic.
The feats of the hero Mwindo are glorified in this epic work, sung and narrated in a Bantu language and acted out by a member of the Nyanga tribe in the remote forest regions of what is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Beautifully structured and richly poetic, the epic is in prose form, interspersed with song and proverbs in verse. As an example of the classic tradition of oral folk literature, the tale provides profound insights into the social structure, values, and cosmology of this African people.
About the Author
Daniel Biebuyck was H. Rodney Sharp Professor of Anthropology and the Humanities at the University of Delaware.
Kahombo C. Mateene was Head of the Division of Language Policy of the Organization of African Unity / Center for Linguistic and Historical Studies by Oral Tradition.
“This book is a must for students of literature about Africa.”
— Jan Vansina,
“A work of art in its own right, in which the Africanist, the literary critic, and the general reader will all find pleasure and profit.”
"The richness of content and the variety of literary forms of this epic are quite amazing. . . . It is a macrocosm of Nyanga life and culture. . . . A classic of African oral literature."
— Research in African Literature
"...Biebuyck's deep understanding of Nyanga society and his sensitivity to poetic form are constantly in evidence. The work will therefore be of interest to the anthropologist and historian as well as the specialist in folklore."
— Canadian Journal of African Studies / Revue Canadienne des Études Africaines