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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Rethinking African sexualities in the context of HIV and AIDS: the life and death discourse of 'modernised polygamy' in Sue Nyathi's The polygamist
Author:Mangena, Tendai
Periodical:International Journal of African Renaissance Studies (ISSN 1753-7274)
Geographic term:Zimbabwe
About person:Sue NyathiISNI
External link:https://doi.org/10.1080/18186874.2015.1050226
Abstract:This article is a study of Sue Nyathi's novel 'The polygamist' as a cultural production dealing with African 'modern polygamy' in the context of HIV and AIDS. What is termed modern polygamy in this article is a practice where men have several 'wives' but not in the African traditional sense, especially within the Shona culture, but in the sense of what is popularised as a 'small house' phenomenon. Nyathi's novel is discussed within the following frameworks corresponding to the three distinct parts of the article. In the first part of the discussion, the dichotomy between economic / social status and modern polygamy is explored. The second part of the discussion is a gendered perspective of modern polygamy and particularly highlights gender constructions in Nyathi's representation of modern polygamy. In the last section, multiple sexual relations and HIV and AIDS are discussed. Significantly, the article demonstrates that imaginative literature is a cultural site that can help us understand human behaviour and HIV and AIDS; particularly in what in religious terms would be referred to as 'old testament'polygamy that poses a danger to health and the social fabric in its new form in modern Zimbabwean society. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]