answer one of the 4 questions

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Compare and contrast Dingiswayo’s and Chaka’s leadership styles in Thomas Mafolo’s Chaka.

Which of the two would you identify with?


Discuss the portrayal of and the roles women played in pre-colonial African/Third World culture

as portrayed in Thomas Mafolo’s Chaka.


To what extent and in what ways does the novel Chaka contest of affirm Eurocentric myths about

Africa or the Third World as a place of backwardness?


In what ways does Chaka’s background/upbringing contribute to his rise to heroism?


I don't have a copy of the book but there many sources online and summaries for it: Chaka (African Writers Series) by Thomas Mofolo plus this source you can use outside sources too

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Eurocentric Approaches to African History One • “At this point, we leave Africa not to mention it again, for it is no part of the historical world and without any movement to exhibit. From the earliest historical times, Africa has remained cut off from all contacts with the rest of the world. At is the land of gold, forever pressing in upon itself, and the land of childhood, removed from the light of self-conscious history and wrapped in the dark mantle of night.” – George Hegel. • “Perhaps, in the future, there will be some African history to teach. But at present there is none, or very little: there is only the history of the Europeans in Africa. The rest is largely darkness, like the history of pre-European, pre-Columbian America. And darkness is not a subject for history…I do not deny that men existed even in dark countries and dark centuries, nor that they had political life and culture, but history, Two • The social, moral, and political as well as the physical history of the Negro race, bears strong testimony against them; it furnishes the most undeniable proof of their mental inferiority. In no age or condition has the real negro shown a capacity to throw off the chains of barbarism and brutality that have bound down the nations of that race: or to rise above the common cloud of darkness that still broods over them.” – Harry Elmer Barnes. • It is vain to deny that Black people are an inferior race – very far inferior to Europeans. They have learned in slavery all that they know in civilization. When first brought from the country of their origin, they were naked savages and where they have been left to their own Two • “If their understanding is not of a different nature from ours, it is at least greatly inferior. They are not capable of any great application, or association of ideas, and seem formed neither for the advantages nor abuses of philosophy” – Francois-Marie Arouet (Voltaire), 1756. • “The blacks, whether originally a distinct race or made distinct by time and circumstances, are naturally inferior to the whites in the endowments of both the body and the mind. There never was a civilized nation of that complexion…nor even any individual eminent either in action or speculation, no ingenious manufacturers among them, no arts, no sciences” – David Hume, 1761. • “Our assailants are numerous, and it is indispensable that we should meet the assault with vigor and activity. Nothing is wanting but manly discussion to convince our own people at least, that in continuing to command the services of the slaves, they violate no law, divine or human” Edgar Allen Poe, 1836. • “It is vain to deny that the Blacks are an inferior race – very far inferior to Three • “I will say then, that I am not or ever have been in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races. That I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of making jurors or voters of Negroes, not of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people, and I will say in addition to this, that there is a physical difference between the white and black races, which will ever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And as such as they cannot so live, while they do remain together, there must be a position of Superior and Inferior, and I as much as any other man, am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race – Abraham Lincoln, 1858. • “The Negro is incapable of contemplating any objective entity such as God or Law. Nothing remotely human is to be found in the Negro’s character” – George Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, 1820. • “The social, moral, and political as well as the physical history of the Negro race bears strong testimony against them: it furnishes the most undeniable proof of their mental inferiority. In no age or condition has the real Negro shown a capacity to throw off the chains of barbarism and brutality that have long bound down the nations of that race, or to rise above the common cloud of darkness that still broods over them…The blacks are a race of children, requiring assistance, industrial training, and the development of selfcontrol” – Harry Elmer Barnes, 1925. Four • “My original convictions upon this subject have been confirmed by the course of events for several years, and experience is every day adding to their strength. That those tribes cannot exist surrounded by our settlements and in continual contact with our citizens is certain. They have neither the intelligence, the industry, the moral habits, nor the desire of improvement which are essential to any favorable change in their condition. Established in the midst of another and a superior race, and without appreciating the causes of their inferiority or seeking to control them, they must necessarily yield to the force of circumstances” – Andrew Jackson, US President, 1829-1837. • “Ours is one continual struggle against a degradation sought to be inflicted upon us by the Europeans, who desire to degrade us to the level of the Kaffir whose occupation is hunting, and whose sole ambition is to collect a certain number of cattle to buy a wife with and, then, pass his life in indolence and nakedness.” — Mahatma Gandhi, 1896. Five • “The yellow race is the exact opposite of the Negroid variety. The yellow man has little physical energy, and is inclined to apathy…His desires are feeble, and his will-power rather obstinate than violent. He tends to mediocrity in everything. He does not dream or theorize; he invents little, but can appreciate and take over what is useful to him. The yellow races are thus superior to the black. Every founder of a civilization would wish his middle class to consist of such men. But no civilized society would be created by them; they cannot supply its nerve force, or set in motion the springs of beauty and action” – Joseph Arthur Comte de Gobineau, 1848. • “We come now to the white peoples. These are gifted with reflective energy, or rather with an energetic intelligence. They have a feeling for utility, but in a sense far wider and higher, more courageous and ideal, than the yellow races; a perseverance that takes account of obstacles and ultimately finds a means of overcoming them; a greater physical power, an extraordinary instinct for order, not merely as a guarantee of peace and tranquility but as an indispensable means of self-preservation. At the same time, they have remarkable, even extreme love of liberty, and are openly hostile to the formalism under which the Chinese are glad to vegetate, as well as the strict despotism which is the only way of governing the Negro” – Joseph Arthur Comte de Gobineau, 1848. THOMAS MOFOLO X CHAIKA A new translationby Daniel P.Kunene of the famous novel
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Chaka’s Background History and His Rise to Heroism
Chaka, son of the great leader of Mazulu, Senzangakhona was known to be both a hero and
an anti-hero. Chaka was the first son of his father who had many wives but conceived him with
Nandi who he had met in a feast. Being the first son of his father made him marry his mother but
his elder wives made him neglect his son and Nandi for breaching the local code and threatened to
expose him which would cause his downfall. He grew-up in as a miserable youth. It is written that,
“Truly there never was a child in the face of the earth who’s growing up was as painful as
The constant beating and harassment by other kids taught him how to fight and defend is told that he experienced untold suffering (Attwell and David pg. 52). Boys older than
him harassed and beat him for no reason at all. Even after killing a lion and rescued a girl who
had been taken by hyenas, he received minimal gratitude and he got the impression that people
were out to kill him. He decided to flee from his home and ever since he realized that man lives
by hi...

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