In literature, Zimbabwe can boast some of the continent's most eminent English-language writers such as Dambudzo Marechera, Chenjerai Hove, Yvonne Vera, Charles Mungoshi, Tsitsi Dangarembga, and Shimmer Chinodya. Less known writers' activities are encouraged and cultivated by the Zimbabwe Writers' Union , and the Budding Writers organisations. Zimbabwe can also take pride in a vibrant literature in local languages, dating back to the 1950s.

After independence, Zimbabwe made substantial progress in developing educational opportunities for black people, and until recently could boast a higher literacy rate than, for example, England. It is no coincidence that, after its inception in 1983, the Zimbabwe International Book Fair grew to be Africa 's biggest book fair, a position only threatened by the crisis, which keeps foreign visitors and business away.

Charles Mungoshi, writes both in Shona, (the language spoken by about 80 per cent of the Zimbabwean population), and in English. His writing deals with the many conflicts and clashes between tradition and modernity. 

The Zimbabwe Women's Writers (ZWW), has local chapters in a great number of rural communities, and is an important tool for encouraging women to add their stories to the written literature and records. ZWW has also published books on women's experiences, one of them on women ex-combatants' memories. Virginia Phiri was part of this project, and has also written her own fictional report on prostitutes in Zimbabwe.


A list of the Zimbabwean Literature.

Brian Chikwava

  • Writing the Story of Zimbabwe (article available online)

  • Dancing to the Jazz Goblin and his Rhythm (Short Story available online)

  • Rigor Mortis of the Tongue and other earthly things (Short Story available online)

  • Free Speech in Zimbabwe: Story of a blue-stomached lizard (Article available online)

  • Blasting the Poet: Reflections on Dambudzo Marechera (Article available online)

  • Moto (Article available online)

  • Reflections on the context of Chikwava’s novel Harare North (Article available online)

  • Interview (2009) in African Writing available online

  • Interview (2009) in The Scotsman available online

  • Interview (2009) in Pambazuka available online


Shimmer Chinodya

  • Harvest of Thorns (Novel)


Tsitsi Dangarembga

  • Nervous  Conditions (Novel)

  • The Book of Not (Novel)

  • Trapped and Troping: Allegories of the Transnational Intellectual in Tsitsi Dangarembga’s “Nervous Conditions” by Biman Basu (essay available online)


Petina Gappah

  • An Elegy for Easterly (Short Stories)
  • The Website of Petina Gappah


Chenjerai Hove

  • Bones (Novel)

  • Shebeen Tales (Memoir)

  • The Sacrifice (Short Story available online)

  • A Letter to My Mother (Letter available online)

  • Interview with Africultures available online

  • “A journey without maps” (Article available online)


Dambudzo Marechera

  • The House of Hunger (Novella and Short Stories)

  • Nigerian Writer Helon Habila’s article “On Dambudzo Marechera: The Life and Times of an African Writer” available online

  • Blasting the Poet: Reflections on Dambudzo Marechera by B. Chikwava (Article available online)

  • Interview with Professor Memory Chirere about Dambudzo Marechera available online at


J. Nozipo Maraire

  • ZenZele: A Letter for My Daughter (Novel)

  • Article about Writer and Neurosurgeon J. Nozipo Maraire in Yale Medicine


Christopher Mlalazi

  • Dearest Sender of the Bulldozers (Short Story available online)

  • The River of Life (Short Story available online)

  • King of Bums (Short Story available online)

  • Interview (2008) available online

  • Audio Interview (2005) available online


Dickson A. Mungazi

  • The Cross Between Rhodesia and Zimbabwe: Racial Conflict in Rhodesia 1962-1979 (History)


Charles Mungoshi

  • Waiting for the Rain (Novel)

  • The Setting Sun and the Rolling World (Selected Short Stories)

  • Interview with the Nordic Africa Institute available online

  • Charles Mungoshi’s Waiting for the Rain by Florence Stratton (book review available online)


Bishop Abel T. Muzorewa

  • Rise up and Walk (Autobiography)

  • Obituary in the Guardian available online

  • Profile available online

  • Bishop A. T. Muzorewa Evangelism Foundation (BATMEF) Website


Sabelo J. Ndlovu-Gatsheni

  • Can Women’s Voices be recovered from the Past? Grappling with the Absence of Women Voices in Pre-Colonial History of Zimbabwe (Essay available online)

  • Who Ruled by the Spear? Rethinking the Form of Governance in the Ndebele State (Essay available online)

  • Reaping the Bitter Fruits of Stalinist Tendencies in Zimbabwe (Essay available online)

  • Giving Africa Voice within Global Governance: Oral History, Human Rights and the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council (Essay available online)

  • Nativism and the Debate on African Public Sphere in Postcolonial Africa: Reflections on a Problematic ‘Reverse-Discourse’ (Essay available online)

  • Africa for Africans or Africa for “Natives” Only? New Nationalism and Nativism in Zimbabwe and South Africa (Essay available online)

  • Africa at 50, Zimbabwe at 30, and South Africa at 16 (Article available online)

  • Profile available online

  • Profile from the South African Institute on International Affairs available online


Irene Sabatini

  • The Boy Next Door (Novel) Reading Group Guide available online

  • Origins of The Boy Next Door (Article available online)

  • Video Interview (2009) available online

  • Interview (2010) with Belinda Otas available online

  • Video Interview (2011) available online


Stanlake Samkange

  • Year of the Uprising (Novel)

  • Obituary in the New York Times available online


Farai Sevenzo

  • On Revolutions and Resolutions (Article available online)

  • Colonel’s Continent (Article available online)

  • Flirting with Fiction (Article available online)

  • The Death of a Zimbabwean Activist (Article available online)

  • Day of Drama in Harare (Article available online)

  • Seveno’s Diary at FESTACO (Articles available online)

  • BBC Network Africa Presenter Profile available online


Lutanga Shaba

  • Secrets of a Woman’s Soul (Novel) Website for the Novel

  • Article about Lutanga Shaba on


Ndabaningi Sithole

  • The  Polygamist (Novel)


Valerie Tagwira

  • The Uncertainty of Hope (Novel) Excerpt available online

  • Mainini Grace’s Promises (Short Story available online)

  • A Walk in the Night (Short Story available online)

  • Interview (2010) available online

  • Interview (2009) available online

  • Interview (2009) with World Press Review available online

  • Interview (2007) available online

  • Interview (2007) with BBC Africa Beyond available online

  • Pragmatic Morality in Valerie Tagwira’s ‘The Uncertainty of Hope’: A Book Café Discussion with available online

  • Valerie Tagwira’s Blog


Lawrence Vambe

  • From Rhodesia to Zimbabwe (Memoir)
  • Interview (2007) available online


Yvonne Vera

  • Nehanda (Novel)

  • Without a Name and Under the Tongue  (Novellas)

  • Butterfly Burning  (Novel)  Excerpt from the novel available online at Barcelona Review

  • The Stone Virgins (Novel)

  • Not a scintilla of light: Darkness and despondency in Yvonne Vera’s Butterfly Burning by Chioma Opara (essay available online)