The Shape-Shifter on the Borderlands: The Trickster Figure and the Relationship between Twentieth Century Oral Narrative in Xhosa Speaking Communties in South Africa and their Socio-Political and Spiritual Context

By Felicity Wood.

Published by The Humanities Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

South African oral narratives concerning the legendary South African inyanga (medicine man) Khotso Sethuntsa, analysing the connections between these stories and African oral narratives featuring the trickster figure.

Keywords: Indigenous Beliefs, Xhosa-speaking Peoples, South African Supernatural, Oral Narrative, Khotso Sethuntsa, Trickster Figure

The International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 4, Issue 7, pp.19-26. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.830MB).

Prof. Felicity Wood

Dr Felicity Wood is a senior lecturer in the English Department of the University of Fort Hare in the Eastern Cape, South Africa. Her primary research interest is South African oral narratives, particularly those from the Eastern Cape and adjacent regions which engage with and rework aspects of the indigenous South African supernatural. She has published a number of articles relating to this field. In her research she has focused, especially, on oral narratives dealing with mystical and magical snakes. She is at present completing the biography of the renowned South African inyanga (medicine man) Khotso Sethuntsa, whose wealth and fame was based, especially, on his reputed control over such serpents. Other research interests include literary explorations of the socio-political, which is connected, in part, to her interest in aspects of South African oral narrative. She has published articles dealing with this issue and her PhD was also on this subject. Felicity Wood has had a number of her own short stories published and she is co-ordinates and facilitates the Fort Hare English Department's Creative Writing course. She is interested in poetry teaching at first year level. (This often involves teaching poetry to students who have never studied a poem before.) She has co-published a book on this subject with Dr Brian Walter, formerly of Fort Hare.

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