In the Baba Indaba Children’s Series, you will find a whole library of old and forgotten folklore, fairy tales, myths, legends and other children’s stories from around the world, all narrated by Baba Indaba. So who is Baba Indaba, well read on………
BABA INDABA, pronounced Baaba Indaaba, lived in Africa a long-long time ago in a place on the South East Coast of Africa called Zululand, which is now called KwaZulu-Natal in the country of South Africa.
In olden times the Zulu’s did not have computers, or iPhones, or paper, or even pens and pencils. So, someone was assigned to be the Wenxoxi Indaba (pronounced Wensosi Indaaba) – the tribal storyteller. It was his, or her, job to memorise all the tribe’s history, stories and folklore, which had been passed down from generation to generation for thousands of years. So, from the time he was a young boy, Baba Indaba had been apprenticed to the tribe’s Wenxoxi Indaba to learn the stories.
Every day the Wenxoxi Indaba would narrate the stories and Baba Indaba would have to recite them back to the Wenxoxi Indaba, word for word. In this manner he learned the stories of the Zulu nation.
In time the Wenxoxi Indaba grew old and when he could no longer see or hear, Baba Indaba became the next in a long line of Wenxoxi Indabas to the Zulu nation. So fond were the children of him that they continued to call him Baba Indaba, which means the Father of Stories.
When the British arrived in South Africa, he made it his job to also learn their stories. He did this by going to work at the docks at the Point in Port Natal at a place the Zulu people call Ethekwene (Eh-tek-weh-nee), also known as Durban. Here he spoke to many sailors and ships captains, the crewe on ships that sailed to the far reaches of the British Empire – Canada, Australia, New Zealand, India, Mauritius, the Caribbean and beyond.
In turn the British settlers recorded Baba’s stories down and they were brought back to England on sailing ships. From England they were in turn spread to all corners of the old British Empire, and then to the world.
He became so well known that ship’s crew would bring him a story every time they visited Port Natal. If they couldn’t, they would arrange to have someone bring it to him. This way his library of stories grew and grew until he was known far and wide as the keeper of stories – a true Wenxoxi Indaba of the world.
Baba Indaba believes the tales he tells in his books, and all the others he has learned, are the common property of Umntwana (Children) of every nation in the world - and so they are and have been ever since men and women began telling stories, thousands and thousands of years ago.
Each story contains an educational challenge for young readers in the WHERE IN THE WORLD – LOOK IT UP! section. As each story is from a particular part of the world, Baba Indaba challenges young readers to find a town or city in the part of the world the story originates from. All the places can be found using Google Maps.
DONATING TO CHARITY
10% of the profit from the sale from each Baba Indaba story will be donated to charity. So in buying a copy of a Baba Indaba story, you will also be donating to a charity somewhere in the world.
We hope you will enjoy the stories retold by Baba Indaba.
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