The danger of the wrong story

As we grow, we learn the importance of telling a story. This importance is of course nothing new. It is one of the most ancient practices, just as old as culture itself, which function to entertain and educate.

I grew up in a time where normal was go tlhaba mainane around the evening fire at my grandmother’s masimo. The stories were always in Setswana. With the benefit of hindsight, I see how stories are the ways we keep things alive. They are the ways we remember things. Stories are the photographs of culture. They are, in many cases, intended to preserve a people’s history, and to keep alive certain notions and principles as well as beliefs. The ways in which the stories are framed, and the times they are presented, including the ways they are elaborated on is quite deliberate in every culture and for every community and people. Setswana stories were often told at night, right before we went to sleep, as an anecdote for the mind. Almost like a meditation for your time of sleep and dream. In our society, our stories are not solely limited to the narration of chronological events. It is almost a succession of language. It connects people with each other and with those who have gone as well as the ones who are yet to come. In many families, I have observed how the stories or our memories are what keep the deceased alive in our hearts, even as they continue to rest in eternal peace.

Storytelling has tremendously evolved in our lifetime.

Editor's Comment
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