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Redemptive or Grotesque Nationalism

Rethinking Contemporary Politics in Zimbabwe


Edited By Sabelo J. Ndlovu-Gatsheni and James Muzondidya

At the beginning of 2000, with the launch of the so-called Third Chimurenga, Zimbabwean nationalism revealed some of its most grotesque aspects, resulting in a polarisation of the nation into ‘patriots’ and ‘sell-outs’ and dividing academics into groups such as ‘regime intellectuals’, left-nationalists, left-internationalists, ‘nativists’ and ‘neo-liberals’. Drawing upon the arguments and insights of an array of scholars, many based in Zimbabwe, this book offers a new analysis of the grotesque character of Zimbabwean nationalism, a nationalism that has provoked ambivalent responses locally, regionally and internationally.

«This collection casts a fresh eye on Zimbabwean nationalism past and present. This is important reading for anyone interested in understanding the perilous interplay of ‘dismantling and building’ that has shaped Zimbabwean nationalism’s many transformations.» (Jocelyn Alexander, Professor of Commonwealth Studies, University of Oxford)
«This volume, with a significant number of Zimbabweans writing of their own nationalism(s), will be both controversial but hugely rewarding for those open-minded enough to move beyond simplicities and reductions. This is a valuable book.» (Stephen Chan OBE, Professor of International Relations, School of Oriental & African Studies, University of London)
«This provocative book, charting and examining the manifestations of Zimbabwe’s extraordinary ruling ideologies, from mass media, music and history perspectives, helps us to rethink the nature of nationalism all over Africa and the rest of the world.» (David Moore, Professor and Head of Department of Anthropology and Development Studies, University of Johannesburg)