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Notes from Zimbabwe

Where have all the Women Gone?

Prespone Matawira

2009-04-02, Issue 426

http://pambazuka.org/en/category/zimnotes/55318

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Zimbabwean activist Prespone Matawira has devised a board game representing the game Zimbabwean women play every day, that of health, life and death.

A rusted wire fence divides the old Zimbabwe from the new.

On the one side lies Effie Malamba, born in 1901 she was buried beneath a granite headstone 90 years later. On the other is Sylvia Ncube, born in 1974 she was laid to rest just 35 years later.

The wire separates Bulawayo's old Hyde Park cemetery from its extension.
Effie lies amid ordered ranks of stone epitaphs. Sylvia lies in a chaos of churned earth. All around her the mounds of mud and stones, garlanded with plastic flowers, tell the story.

Zimbabwe now has the lowest life expectancy for women anywhere in the world: 34.
A forest of black metal plates mark the mounting death toll and their hand-painted white numbers record the birth dates of a missing generation. Irene Phiri born 1972, Gugu Hlanbangana in 1971, Lulu Olomo in 1975, are just three of thousands.

This cull is not an act of God. It is Zimbabwe’s game of health, of life, of death.

To play the game you will need:

Dice
Minimum of two players
Tiddleywink for each player.

Instructions:

Roll six on the dice to start.
Move along the game board and follow the instructions
Try to avoid finishing

Get PDF copy of the board game [PDF: 60kb].

(Inspired by the game ‘Alternatives to Globalisation’ designed by RW)

* Prespone Matawira is a Zimbabwean feminist and activist who contributes to the new Chii Chirikuita: What’s up?blog.
* Please send comments to editor@pambazuka.org or comment online at http://www.pambazuka.org/.


Readers' Comments

Let your voice be heard. Comment on this article.

I am a Zimbabwean and it cannot be said that i am not suffering. However there should be a clear understanding that there is no sweet revolution my brother. Wherever the is a revolution people suffer. but now because the European had theirs before ours they want to preach to us how bad we are governing ourselves. really this kind of chronological hypocrisy should just be ignored and left to rot.they had their war they term world war, napoleon era and revolutions all over Europe which were characterised by Babaric behavior. Takambotii we dont care about that.

gmak

I am completely scandalised by the daily, preventable trials zimbabwean women have to face - know that there are members of worldwide community finding out about what is happening to you sisters who will do what we can to help you. Thoughts and prayers from Australia.

Kristy S




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