A Man Who Is Not a Man by Thando Mgqolozana
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A Man Who Is Not a Man by Thando Mgqolozana

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A Man Who Is Not A Man recounts the personal trauma of a young Xhosa initiate after a rite-of-passage circumcision goes wrong.

With frankness and courage, this powerful novel details the pain and lifelong shame this protagonist experiences as a result not only of the physical trauma, but the social ostracism from being labelled 'a failed man.' He decodes the mysteries of this long-standing cultural tradition and calls to account the elders for the disintegrating support systems that allow such tragic outcomes.

But it is also through this life-changing experience that the protagonist is forced to find his strength and humanity, and reassess what it really means to be a man.