Emperor Shaka the Great - Wikipedia

Emperor Shaka the Great: A Zulu Epic by Anonymous



Emperor Shaka the Great: A Zulu Epic (UNESCO Collection of Representative Works African Authors Series) (English and Zulu Edition)

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Mazisi (Raymond) Kunene (12 May 1930 – 11 August 2006) was a South African poet best known for his poem Emperor Shaka the Great . While in exile from South Africa's apartheid regime, Kunene was an active supporter and organizer of the anti-apartheid movement in Europe and Africa. He would later teach at UCLA and become Africa's and South Africa's poet laureate.

Kunene wrote and published poetry from very early in his life. His works were written originally in Zulu and then translated into English. [3] In 1966, his works were banned by the Apartheid government of South Africa. [4] In 1970, Kunene published Zulu Poems, an anthology of poems ranging from "moral reflection to political commentary."

In Emperor Shaka the Great , published in English in 1979, Kunene tells the story of the rise of the Zulu under Shaka . World Literature Today contributor Christopher Larson described it as "a monumental undertaking and achievement by any standards." [3] This extremely nationalistic work charted the growth of the Zulu nation under Shaka, as he reforms the military and the nation and conquers many of the tribes around Zululand.

Anthem of the Decades:A Zulu Epic published in English in 1981 tells the Zulu legend of how death came to mankind. In 1982, Kunene published a second collection of poems titled The Ancestors and the Sacred Mountain: Poems containing 100 of his poems. [1] This collection had a particular emphasis on socio-political topics. [3]

Kunene returned to South Africa in 1992 where he taught at the University of Natal until his retirement. UNESCO made him Africa's poet laureate in 1993 and in 2005 he became South Africa's first poet laureate. [1] He died 11 August 2006 in Durban after a lengthy bout of cancer. [1] [5] He was survived by his wife and four children. [1]

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