01 May 2011

The Hero by Murenga Joseph Chikowero

I really should have thrown away the crateful of eggs, walked off, and perhaps caught the first kombi(1) back to college. But I didn’t. I stood there and watched men and women run about like a million termites at work. There was something rotten about all this.

This story has been selected for the annual StoryTime anthology African Roar 2012, please go to the African Roar site for more info.

The Hero was written by Murenga Joseph Chikowero.

Copyright © Murenga Joseph Chikowero 2011.

Murenga Joseph ChikoweroMurenga Joseph Chikowero is a descendant of great Chief Chiwashira of whom many legends are told. Joseph was born in 1977 at the peak of the war in Mhondoro-Ngezi, Zimbabwe. Because of the intensity of the armed conflict, his family temporarily relocated to Harare’s Geneva Section of Highfield high density suburb where his father worked for a cotton ginnery.

He attended schools in both Mhondoro-Ngezi and Guruve in the extreme north of the country. He credits his interest in the power of the word, whether written or spoken, to his Grades 3-6 teacher, Mrs. Ncube. Later, he moved to Harare for high school.

At the University of Zimbabwe, Joseph had the unique opportunity of working with talented writer-scholar-philosophers such as the famed T.K. Tsodzo, Anthony Chennells, Maurice Vambe, Tim McLoughlin and Memory Chirere, among others. He graduated with an Honours degree in English before finishing an MA in English in 2002.

He taught Literature in English and English Language in high school and worked for the private media before joining the Zimbabwe Open University, teaching English and Communication studies.

Presently, Joseph is in the US where he is studying for a PhD in African Literature and Film at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Among a host of influences, Joseph cites Dambudzo Marechera, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Phaswane Mpe as a key sources of inspiration.

Joseph has a novel in progress which explores growing up in the 80s and 90s in Zimbabwe. His stories seek to pry open the silences of Zimbabwe’s post-independence history and the place of the individual and her community in what is often a violent situation. He believes there is enough talent in the ‘lost generation’ that was displaced by various forces in Zimbabwe’s recent past to produce the new Dambudzo Marechera.

Joseph can be contacted at chikowero@gmail.com


StoryTime: Weekly Fiction by African Writers.
All works published in StoryTime are
Copyrighted ©.
All rights reserved.