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Chenjerai Hove Biography

(1956– ), Up in Arms, Red Hills of Home, Bones, Shadows, Shebeen Tales: Messages from Harare

Zimbabwean poet and novelist, born near Zvishavane in central Zimbabwe, educated at the University of Zimbabwe. He was Chairman of the Zimbabwe Writers' Union. In the late 1970s, he taught at rural schools and witnessed horrific aspects of the war of liberation, an experience registered in the anger and compassion pervading Up in Arms (1982), his first collection of poetry. In Red Hills of Home (1985), he extends the range of his verse to include celebratory and critical responses to conditions among the rural population in the immediate aftermath of Independence. The war of liberation is also central to Bones (1988), Hove's highly regarded first novel; its poetically experimental narrative evokes unrest in pre- and post-Independence Zimbabwe through acutely psychological characterization. A subsequent novel, Shadows (1991), also adopts an imaginatively internalized approach to the struggles of ordinary Zimbabweans in both urban and rural settings. Hove's other works include the stories of Shebeen Tales: Messages from Harare (1995). He has also published a body of fiction in the Shona language.

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Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Honest Ulsterman to Douglas Hyde Biography