Full Name: Hannah Tarindwa
Country Represented: Namibia
Why did you enter this storytelling contest?
Other than the prospects of edging further from poverty by winning a thousand U.S dollars? (LOL!) Seriously though, as an African writer, I get frustrated by being considered “not African enough” because I have urban experiences. Though I am urban, born and bred, my experience is just as African as that of someone who is rural bred. So, I felt as a proud African who has lived with electricity and running water all her life, I think my story is just as important as the story of those who traveled 10km ro collect water. It all happened in Africa and on the African soil. Also, this competition gives me the opportunity to prove the satement in my TEDx Talk in 2018 that I am Africa’s biggest story lover!
What does storytelling mean to you?
As a published writer, copy editor and the founder of the Writers Academy of Namibia I can confidently say that storytelling is a means of survival, literally and figuratively speaking. I believe that storytelling is not just an activity done to entertain but can significantly contribute to the improvement of people’s lives and livelihoods. Storytelling empowers the teller by allowing self expression and sharing of thoughts, insights, feelings, suspicions, visions and memories whilst triggering the listener to either understand, agree or even change their perception on life. Storytelling, I believe, brings out the image of God in each of us because in story telling there is creation and recreation of what was, is and is yet to come.
Why did you tell this story?
The story is about an event that occurred, orchestrated by my mother. I felt that it would be a great story to share about the communal nature of raising a child. This was quite typical exercise in Africa: whether in urban or rural setting. It is a story I actually share a lot with people to illustrate a number of points but mainly that whipping kids may be less effective in teaching children life lessons. My late mother, I like to say, was the Queen of Creative Punishments. The story also is a homage to my mother, who not only was a great story maker but also supported my literary and performance arts endeavors.
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