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Fools And Other Stories

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  172 ratings  ·  13 reviews
These stories from the closing days of apartheid rule in South Africa won the Noma Award, Africa's highest literary award, and announced Njabulo Ndebele as an assured and impressive literary voice. He has gone on to become one of the most powerful voices for cultural freedom on the whole of the African continent today. Ndebele evokes township life with humor and subtlety, ...more
Published by Readers International (first published June 1st 1986)
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3.88  · 
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 ·  172 ratings  ·  13 reviews

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David McDannald
May 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is a charming collection of stories. "Uncle" was particularly good, as the visiting uncle of the young protagonist teaches the boy about life in a series of funny situations. When Uncle faces a man in the street who's armed with a club and shield, he starts throwing rocks. Later, he tells the boy that if there hadn't been rocks, he would have thrown sand. He says, "when one does fight one must do it very well.” Poignant and recommended.
Oct 07, 2007 rated it really liked it
Fools and Other Stories is a collection of five short stories set in black townships created by the apartheid goverment of South Africa. Unlike some of the more explicitly political literature of its time and place, these stories focus deeply on individual characters, relationships, and daily experiences, both ordinary and extraordinary. Despite the absence of overt political content, the stories reflect the limitations and sufferings caused by the governing and social structure.

The first four
Nhlanhla Dube
May 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Really nice to read this and find its not all politics in your face. Njabulo Ndebele writes beautifully. It's so lacking in pompous posturing. He's really truthful and faithful to his characters and the subject matter. His language is so erudite and real and there are passages that are very moving. There's too much obsessive discussion about obvious things in SA literature - politics, etc. - which of course is understandable. But here we see real people in real situations and the politics takes ...more
Sibo Majola
Jul 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Brilliant, Njabulo. Life as it is. A clear lens, and no sentimentality. You really are one of the sharp observers of the southern half of the continent. Lovely writing, clear philosophy. Beautiful words.
Nov 06, 2009 rated it really liked it
Njabulo Ndebele writes an essay in “Turkish Tales and Some Thoughts on South African Fiction” that proposes an approach to literature that challenges conventions. In his short story “Fools”, he incorporates the dynamic Zamani, an example of a character comprised of many social processes. Ndebele also shows how his criticisms of superficial characters can be creatively broken; he includes stock characters that act as surface symbols and sets his story in an implicitly political climate. However, ...more
Zinhle Ngidi
Mar 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Fools & other stories by Njabulo Ndebele

About the book
The book consists of 5 short stories, some related to each other and some totally different. The first part has characters of youngsters growing up in locations as they were designed for them by apartheid government while the last ones are written from the perspective of an adult. All the stories share common themes which are struggles and limitations that were caused by apartheid government. The author shares ordinary lives that Blacks
Horace Barrington
Jun 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
Very nice. From the blurb there is a useful summary, quoting the author where he says that South African writing needs to "move away from an easy preoccupation with demonstrating the obvious existence of oppression. It exists. The task is to explore how and why people can survive under such harsh conditions." That's refreshing. I'm bored with protest literature or continually angry exhortations. I'm interested in the way people react under those conditions. This book does that. Must read more So ...more
Oct 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book evoked memories of growing up in dusty streets,playing football, first crushes, streetwise uncles, street fights,township burgeoise and generally brought me tons and tons of nostalgia. Ilove this book, i love the stories it tells, i love the raw real feel f all the stories, i wished they would go on and on..
Sep 18, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
stories about young men coming of age in a culture of masculinity, families rising to middle-class in a colonized country, and finally two fools, a young-revolutionary and a middle-aged amoral loser. a totally pleasurable read written by an sensitive insightful author.
Apr 28, 2010 rated it really liked it
amazing book. explores human flaws and aspirations in an incredible way.
a must-read if your'e in an intellectual mood
Aug 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
If "Fools" and "Uncle" were the only stories in this compilation, it would be a five-star read.
Sep 30, 2012 rated it liked it
Good about boys and young men growing up in Soweto.
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Professor Njabulo Simakahle Ndebele an academic, a literary and a writer of fiction, is the former Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of Cape Town.

Ndebele's father was Nimrod Njabulo Ndebele and his mother was Makhosazana Regina Tshabangu. He married Mpho Kathleen Malebo on 30 July 1971. They have one son and two daughters. Ndebele was awarded a Bachelor of Arts in English and Philoso
“My silence was my salvation; the silence of years of trying to say something without much understanding; the silence of desperate action. This would be the first silence that would carry meaning.” 2 likes
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