Original Articles

Tsonga literatures: past, present and future

Published in: South African Journal of African Languages
Volume 21, issue 3-4, 2001 , pages: 348–365
DOI: 10.1080/02572117.2001.10587484


In this paper, we aim firstly to make sense of the historical, social and political factors that have influenced the development of the literary texts of the languages of the Tsonga language group. Secondly, we will try to understand these texts as a literary system—or systems. Focus will also fall on the people who initiated and created these literary texts. As the title of this paper suggests, we will explore the memories of the past, and consider present developments within this literary system. Thirdly, we will try to discover what—if anything—the future holds for Tsonga literatures.

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