Mpho MAtsepo Nthunya { kindle Pdf } Singing Away the HungerThe Autobiography of an African Woman

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Almost never heard in literature or history a voice from within the struggle of ordinary African women to negotiate a world which incorporates ancient pastoral ways and t. This book is unusual in several respects it is a type of memoirautobiography as told to someone but it is non linear The point of view is that of a poor black woman from Lesotho who only finished primary school yet speaks EIGHT languages not the typical memoir from the educated or even elite class of Africans to which we in the West have become accustomed when trying to learn about life in Africa Also it was translated by the author Mpho Nthunya in the sense that she translated all her stories and experiences from Sesotho into English as she told them to K Limakatso Kendall her transcriber and editor they worked on the editing togetherMpho is clearly gifted intellectually and worked hard her entire life whilst dealing with multiple tragedies and set backs all the while living or less hand to mouth and often going without food for days in a row She was a keen observer of people in telling her stories about her life she often reflected on the changes that were occurring in society She was also perfectly aware of political changes that affected Lesotho and South Africa When she grasped that Kendall wanted to write an actual book of her life she was keen to participate In the Afterword Kendall described Mpho s enthusiasm upon seeing her words typed onto paper I laughed when I saw it was real that my words could look like words in a book and maybe my stories could be a book that other people could read I hope many people do read her book I think there is a lot that all kinds of readers can take from it

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Singing Away the HungerThe Autobiography of an African Woman

He congestion brutality and racist violence of city life It is also the voice of a born storyteller who has a subject worthy of her gifts a story for all the world to hea. Singing Away the Hunger The Autobiography of an African Woman is or a nice look at Lesotho through the eyes of a Basothan lady The means available to Lesothans to provide for their families is limited work in hazardous mines or seek work in South Africa Mpho M atsepo chronicles the story of her life the loves hardships hunger and heartbreaksThe narration alternates between different periods of her life which confused at times She also changes tenses freuently during her telling However both lend a sense of credibility to this autobiography because as explained by the editor she transcribed Mpho s words almost verbatimThis is a good book for Around the World readers35 stars

Mpho MAtsepo Nthunya × 2 Summary

A compelling and uniue autobiography by an African woman with little formal education less privilege and almost no experience of books or writing Mpho's voice is a voice. I dream that this book will go far and tell people about the Basotho how it is with us how poor we are and how we go on with life anyway This is an unusual memoir consisting of the stories of a poor woman from Lesotho matriarch of a large family who works as a cleaning lady to feed her many children and grandchildren Though she speaks seven or eight languages and attended some school as a teenager she spent all of her adult life busy with manual labor and raising children and is essentially illiterate She wrote this book in collaboration with an American professor by telling her stories orally having them read back to her and dictating changesIt s a fascinating book in that it offers a window on a sort of life rarely encountered even in books not only the lives of a ordinary African woman and her family but the lives of people so poor they often go hungry or inadeuately clothed and may not even have a home large enough for the entire household to sleep on the floor When you do encounter characters living so hand to mouth they populate a book that ends in triumph usually through education But the lives of Nthunya and her family always feel precarious even when they re doing well working in South Africa or farming in the Maluti Mountains This isn t a relentlessly depressing book life always goes on but it isn t a feel good story eitherNthunya s isn t simply a story of poverty though Born in 1930 she remembers a Lesotho that has largely disappeared with customs that might surprise many readers She describes what we would call an open relationship with her husband both were comfortable with the other having outside sexual relationships and this appears to have been normal She also talks about what seems to be a romantic friendship with another woman which is celebrated by the community through multiple feasts Meanwhile Christianity mixes easily with traditional beliefs including several episodes of visiting sangomas traditional healers for sickness which is not from God usually involving a curse from a jealous relative or neighborOverall I found this short memoir very engaging Nthunya s way of speaking is distinctive and I m not entirely convinced that having her tell her stories in English was the best choice She makes several references to being much comfortable in her native tongue and her English grammar is idiosyncratic The book contains a somewhat defensive afterward by the professor who turned these stories into a book I got the impression that zealously ideological social justice oriented acuaintances gave her a hard time for being involved at all in which she explains that they tried having a bilingual friend take down Nthunya s stories in Sesotho and translate them but that this translation was much less powerful than Nthunya s English Maybe they just needed a better translator But regardless the stories flow well and offer a great window into a world rarely seen in print This is the sort of experience I m always looking for in my world books challenge and I m glad to have read it


10 thoughts on “Singing Away the HungerThe Autobiography of an African Woman

  1. says:

    I created this book collaboratively with Mpho Nthunya who does not actually read and write She dictated the story to me and I wrote it down for her read it back to her and edited it according to her instructions I think it's the best thing I've done so far

  2. says:

    “I dream that this book will go far and tell people about the Basotho how it is with us how poor we are and how we go on with life anyway”This is an unusual memoir consisting of the stories of a poor woman from Lesotho matriarch of a large family who works as a cleaning lady to feed her many children and grandchildren Though she speaks seven or eight languages and attended some school as a teenager she spent all of

  3. says:

    The land was uiet peaceful and very pleasing to my eyes I liked the colours the shapes of the mountain tops the way the shadows from the clouds fall and move across the mountains so everything is always changing Everywhere I could s

  4. says:

    This book is unusual in several respects it is a type of memoirautobiography as told to someone but it is non linear The point of view is tha

  5. says:

    Pretty amazing that women's lives are so different around the world the author lives they way millions of unseen unheard women live It really puts my problems in perspective she feels rich during those times in her life when she has enough food for all her children and a nice blanket to wearsleep under Have to try to remember this next time the slowness of my computer at work is frustrating me

  6. says:

    This book contains wonderful and heart breaking stories about life in Lesotho Africa The storyteller M'pho creat

  7. says:

    One of the best books I have ever read I never thought an autobiography would be so interesting One of the best life stories out there I lear

  8. says:

    Singing Away the Hunger The Autobiography of an African Woman is or a nice look at Lesotho through the eyes of a Basothan lady The means available to Lesothans to provide for their families is limited work in hazardous mines or seek work in South Africa Mpho M'atsepo chronicles the story of her life the loves hardships h

  9. says:

    I have a bias in reviewing this book as the editor Kathryn Kendall is a friend of mine While on a Fulbright in Lesotho she became friendly with one of the local women and took notes as the woman told stories of what her life had been like while eking out a living in Africa Care was taken to preserve the stories as told and one gains an appreciation of the hardships as well as the joys A uick read of a couple of hours but well wort

  10. says:

    So powerful I believe God puts exactly who we need in our lives exactly when we need it As the book is about Africa I didn’t go into it with an expectation of eye surgery Don’t twist this my meaning is that I chose this book to read about Africa Not Bc of Eye surgery which is also a topic of interest to me Bc I will be