Gelfand, Michael. The genuine Shona: survival values of an African culture

Table of Contents

Publication Information

Chapter 1 Manners

The Place Of Manners


Greetings (kukwazisa Or Kumhoresa)

Form Of Address Between People

Kuombera (kuuchira)

Position Of Legs When Seated

Table Manners

Chapter 2 Learning Good Behaviour

Chapter 3 Household, Co-ordination And Subordination

The Importance Of Good Relations Within The Family Circle

Marriage Rites

Responsibility Of Wife For Children

The Duties Of A Father

The Duties Of A Wife

Shona Attitude Towards A Woman

The Vatete And Baba Mudiki

The Selection Of The Vatete

The Muzukuru

The Duties Of The Sekuru (grandfather)

Sons And Daughters

Respect Shown To A Father-in-law By A Son-in-law

Mukuwasha Haaperi Kudyiwa

Kuzvidza Vatezvara (disrespecting The Father-in-law)

Rubatsiro Rwomukuwasha (what Is Expected Of A Son-in-law)

Chapter 4 Ethics And Morality

A Good Person

A Bad Person

Right And Wrong

The Mind And Normality

Conscience (hana)

Chapter 5 The Cardinal Virtues Of Life

Truth (chokwadi)

Humility (kuzvidukupisa)

Love (rudo And Chido)

Sympathy (tsitsi)


Self-discipline (kuzvibata)

To Forgive


Ngoni And Nyasha

Pity (urombo)

Rectitude (ururami)

Sufficiency (zvakakwana)

Gladden (kufadza)

Repentance (kuregera Zvakaipa)

Purity (utsvene)

Trust (ruvimbo)

Giving And Taking

Strength (simba)

Patience (utiriri)

Courage (ushingi)

Hard Work (kurwisana Nebasa)


Chapter 6 Bad Qualities

Detraction (makuhwa)

Abuse (kunyomba)

Lying (kunyepa)

Deceit (munyengedzi, Kunyengedza, Unyengedzi)

Stealing (kuba)


Drinking (kunwa Doro)

Violent Quarreling (kupopotedzana)

Aberrations Of Personality

Pride (kuzvikudza)

Jealousy (shanje: Godo)

Covetousness (kuchiva)

Revenge (kutsividza)

Irreconcilable Hatred (daka)

Ingratitude (kusagutsikana)

Anger (hasha)

Negligence (kushaya Hanya)


Provocation (kudenha)

Assault (kurwisa)

Selfishness (kuzvida)

Chapter 7 The Teleology Of Shona Culture

Live Together

Chapter 8 The Cosmology And Religion Of The Shona

The Vadzimu (ancestral Spirits Of Spirit Elders)



The Mudzimu And Material Culture

The N'anga And The Witch

Patronal Spirits (mashave)

Chapter 9 The Spiritual Hierarchy Of The Shona

Possession And Mediumship

The Ritual Offering

Chapter 10 Character And Personality

Happiness (rufaro)

Peace (rugare)

Beauty (runako, Kunaka)

Kinship And Harmony (ukama Nokunzwana)

Harmony And The Tribal Hierarchy.

Kin (hama)

Friendship (usahwira)

The Visitor

Chapter 11 The Golden Mean


Chapter 12 Marriage


Marital Life (kugara Kwomurume Nomukadzi)

The Purpose Of Bridewealth

Principal Wife (vahosi)


The Status Of The First Wife

Chapter 13 The Urban Shona And The Degree Of Change From His Traditional Culture

Changes In The Urban African Who Has Lived 10 Or More Years In An African Urban Township





Informing The Parents

Marital Relationships



Customary Dietary Habits

The Change




Food And Bowel Habits


Final Thoughts

Publication Information

Paragraph Subjects (OCM)

Publication Information The main body of the Publication Information page contains all the metadata that HRAF holds for that document.

Author: Author's name as listed in Library of Congress records

Title: The genuine Shona: survival values of an African culture

Published By: Original publisher Gwelo, Rhodesia: Mambo Press. 1973. 205 p. ill.

By line: Author's name as appearing in the actual publication [by] Michael Gelfand

HRAF Publication Information: New Haven, Conn.: Human Relations Area Files, 2014. Computer File

Culture: Culture name from the Outline of World Cultures (OWC) with the alphanumberic OWC identifier in parenthesis. Shona (FS05)

Subjects: Document-level OCM identifiers given by the anthropology subject indexers at HRAF Ethics (577); Etiquette (576); Ethos (181); Cosmology (772); General character of religion (771); Eschatology (775); Magicians and diviners (791); Revelation and divination (787); Social personality (156); Urban and rural life (369); Acculturation and culture contact (177); Sociocultural trends (178); Shamans and psychotherapists (756);

Abstract: Brief abstract written by HRAF anthropologists who have done the subject indexing for the document This is a study of values, particularly the moral values, which have enabled the Shona to survive and to retain their basic identity over several centuries in a hostile environment. The author discusses etiquette, ethics, and morality as they are applied to concepts of brotherhood, family, and neighborliness. This book also contains information on cosmology, religion, the spirit world, character, personality, and marriage. The final chapter provides some interesting data on the urban Shona and the changes in their culture.

Document Number: HRAF's in-house numbering system derived from the processing order of documents 5

Document ID: HRAF's unique document identifier. The first part is the OWC identifier and the second part is the document number in three digits. fs05-005

Document Type: May include journal articles, essays, collections of essays, monographs or chapters/parts of monographs. Monograph

Language: Language that the document is written in English

Note: Includes index

Field Date: The date the researcher conducted the fieldwork or archival research that produced the document 1967-1972

Evaluation: In this alphanumeric code, the first part designates the type of person writing the document, e.g. Ethnographer, Missionary, Archaeologist, Folklorist, Linguist, Indigene, and so on. The second part is a ranking done by HRAF anthropologists based on the strength of the source material on a scale of 1 to 5, as follows: 1 - poor; 2 - fair; 3 - good, useful data, but not uniformly excellent; 4 - excellent secondary data; 5 - excellent primary data Physician-5

Analyst: The HRAF anthropologist who subject indexed the document and prepared other materials for the eHRAF culture/tradition collection. John Beierle; 1991

Coverage Date: The date or dates that the information in the document pertains to (often not the same as the field date). 1967-1972

Coverage Place: Location of the research culture or tradition (often a smaller unit such as a band, community, or archaeological site) northeastern Zimbabwe

LCSH: Library of Congress Subject Headings Shona (African people)--Social life and customs


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