FEATURING - Tau, the Chieftain's Son by Gottfried Heinrich Franz

Posted on October 04, 2021

The Special Collections Book of the Week this week is:

Tau, the Chieftain's Son by Gottfried Heinrich Franz.

Gottfried Franz (1896 - 1956) was an Afrikaans author who focused on the indigenous people of South Africa , especially the Basotho. In his novels, he described aspects of Basotho culture, way of life and mythology. He also wrote textbooks, prose and dramas in Northern Sotho.

‘Tau, the Chieftain's Son’, was the first South African ethnographical novel in English. It is the life sketch of a Mosotho boy. From the preface: “The reader may rest assured that this charming story is fact throughout and not fiction. Tau's childhood games, the sombre initiation rites, the hard bargaining over the Iobola or bride price are true, not only of the Basuto, but of many other South African tribes as well.”

UPSpace Access: hdl.handle.net/2263/19002

This book is available at Special Collections, housed on level 5 of the Merensky 2 Library, and is part of our Africana (ZA) Collection.

The Special Collections unit of the Department of Library Services plays a stewardship role in the acquisition and preservation of the Library's rare and valuable information resources, making them accessible to students, staff and researchers, as well as safeguarding them for future generations.

- Author Nikki Haw

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