What is the difference between leba, lebelela & bona

August 28, 2014

That famous & overweight English lexicographer, Samuel Johnson, has defined a lexicographer as “a writer of dictionaries; a harmless drudge, that busies himself in tracing the original, and detailing the signification of words.” I must admit that detailing the signification of words is a most rewarding enterprise. Much has been done in this regard in the English language through a long impressive history of English lexicography and lexicology. A lot is however, yet to be done in Setswana, which is why in the last twenty years or so, there has been increased interest in the development and documentation of the Setswana language. As part of the larger interest in the development of the Setswana language, I wish to look at the seemingly similar Setswana verbs: leba, lebelela & bona. What is common about these verbs is that they refer to doing something with eyes. They are therefore what is known as perception verbs. Let’s start with a basic definition of what they mean. Leba is look in English. It suggests that you perceive something intentionally or for a specific reason. There is a sense that the perception happened for an unspecified length of time – that isn’t short though. Bona on the other hand is see in English. This verb suggests that what we perceive came into our range of vision without us intentionally seeking it. This explains why for instance we can ask somebody O ntibileng? and not O mponelang? This is because in the semantics of leba is embedded an intentional looking. One who raises the question O ntibileng? seeks the intentions or the purpose for which an act of perception is happening. Because of this, we better understand why a religious plea is made: Morena leba kwano! “Lord turn your face to us!”

The verb lebelela is watch in English. It suggests that you perceive something for a period of time, especially something that is moving. So someone o lebelela motshameko, because there is movement, o lebelela diphologolo, because there is movement. It is therefore most unusual to find someone a lebeletse an immovable object such as a stone, unless in the case where lebelela means something slightly different as in the case where it means to guard, care for or look after. Even in the case where someone o lebeletse tv, this is because there is activity on television. Lebelela is also used to idiomatically mean to leave something happen without your intervention – actually with you letting it happen.

I wish to consider these verbs in some detail. I begin with bona. Bona is a highly polysemous word. By that I mean it has multiple related meanings associated with it. It can mean to perceive using eyes. It can also refer to receive, make or earn something: O bona madi a mantsi ka go rekisa phane “He makes lots of money from selling mophane worm”. The word can also mean to understand something as in Jaanong ke a bona gore ga o nthate “Now I understand that you don’t like me”. We use bona to mean to meet somebody such as in Ke a go bona Kagiso kgantele “I am going to meet Kagiso later”. Finally bona is also used to mean to experience something as in O bone kotsi ya koloi “He has had a car accident”. Bona also collocates (co-occurs) with numerous words to generate multiple idiomatic expressions. For instance: bôna bontsho “fail to understand/have problems”, bona kgwedi “have a period” which is similar to “bôna setswalô. We say bona koo! as a warning to someone to flee from danger. Bôna kotsi “have an accident”, bôna kwa mmu wa sekara o tlaa wêlang teng “see where things will end”, bona molato “find guilty”, bôna molomo “get to speak”, bona motho ka legofi “to slap somebody”, bona motho molato “convict somebody”, bona nako “find time”, bôna pelo “understand what somebody is thinking”, bôna phatlha “get an opportunity”, bona phoso “find fault with”, bona sebaka “get a chance/opportunity”, bona tlhabo ya letsatsi “wake up”, bona tsela “depart”. There is more that we can say concerning bona especially when considering its various conjugations. For instance ipona is reflexive. It literally means see one’s self as when someone sees themselves on a mirror. However ipona can be used to mean to be proud, to be full of yourself or to be conceited.

We have observed that leba is an intentional perception verb. We however also use leba to refer to the verb face. To face somewhere (of an individual or an inanimate entity such as a car or house) is described using the verb leba. This is because an intention is assumed in its use. A person intentionally faces somewhere or makes something face a certain direction. Leba is also used to mean the verb go. Fa ke tswa fa ke leba Ramotswa this sentence doesn’t mean that one faces in the direction of Ramotswa. It instead means that one goes to Ramotswa.

Leba also collocates with multiple words to generate idiomatic expressions. These include: leba ka leitlhô le le mosoka “consider something suspiciously” leba ka leitlhô le le nchocho “to look at something in detail/intensely”, leba ka nyelolô “to despise somebody”, leba tsela “to depart/go”.

Looking at the meanings of words and how they function in context is a very ancient preoccupation which has recently benefitted much from advances in computational work in the areas of corpus and natural language processing (NLP) in general.

Quett Masire’s speech was about his dream of a perfect republic

August 17, 2014

In this column I consider Sir Ketumile Masire’s speech delivered at the Gomolemo Motswaledi’s funeral in Serowe. The speech has been a subject of much discussion, with some arguing that it was Quett Masire’s endorsement of the UDC. In this column I argue that Quett Masire’s principal message was about rediscovering the national ideals of democracy, unity and nation building. I argue that once he had made a strong case for Botswana-first, he did endorse Duma Boko of the UDC. Masire is a statesman. He is one of the few remaining founding fathers of Botswana. When he went to the funeral, he went there to bury his friend and a son he raised in the BDP. He says: “Motswaledi e ne e le tsala ya me…mo e bileng batho bagaetsho ba party ya gaetsho ba neng ba belaela gore e sere gongwe Quett le ene o setse a tsene kwa; A e seng gore Quett le ene o tsene mo bathong ba bangwe ba!” There had been concern from some in the BDP that Sir Masire was disgruntled with the leadership of the party he formed, to the extent that he was perceived as having gravitated more towards the UDC or more specifically towards the BMD. That was a gross mistake. Masire had not shifted, even a bit. His views have always remained core BDP values of democracy and a tolerance of divergent views. Instead, the BDP seems to have been the one that heeled away from where Masire and Seretse left it; a matter that has made Masire and many in the BDP frustrated and alienated from their party. Whether to his praise or criticism, Masire never shifted in his ideals. We must remember that Sir Masire was most impressed by Motswaledi who flourished under his presidency to the level that in his mid twenties, Motswaledi received the Presidential Meritorious Award for outstanding service to Botswana. So, when Masire went to Serowe, he went there to principally achieve one thing: go isa matshediso and not to make a political point. In his words “Ke ha, ke tsile jaaka chaba ya Botswana, re tsile go lo gomotsa Rre RaMotswaledi; re tsile go gomotsa beno; bagaeno, le chaba ya Botswana ka bophara” However, because Motswaledi was a political figure, it was inevitable that Masire would reflect on the political landscape of Botswana. Masire therefore as a statesman reminded Batswana some core values, in particular, the issue of democracy – not just the mere word, but the practice – which in real life plays out, in the Masire words, in the following manner: “Mme ha re re we are democratic re itse gore ha lo le goromente, lo itse gore lo goromente e e tlaa reng kamoso e bo e le opposition; ebile ha lo le opposition, lo itse gore you are a government in waiting.” It is these words which sadly were misconstrued as an endorsement of opposition parties. I don’t think that is what Sir Masire was doing here. I believe he was reaffirming and reasserting a national ideal of democracy. He was speaking in the best interest of Botswana. Batswana must live and practice democracy and not attempt to win elections by all means possible. Instead, democracy must be given, not just a chance, but the ultimate priority in the interest of the nation. What Masire was doing was putting Botswana first, ahead of anything else. He was neither being BDP, nor was he being pro-opposition. He was non-partisan, expressing a very important national ideal that must be protected. This explains why Masire acknowledges political brilliance from both the rulling and opposition ranks: “Mme go a re itumedisa ha re bona mo maphateng oo-mabedi – a a mo pusong le a a seng mo pusong – ba na le batho ba ba nonohileng ba ekareng kamoso ha re latlha ba bangwe, ra bo re itse gore re ba latlhela mo go ba bangwe” Again, Masire wasn’t saying: “Ke eletsa gore bangwe ba latlhwe”. Instead he spoke as a statesman acknowledging the pool of political talent that exists across the political divide such that in the event that there was a change of government, the country will still be in good hands. This presence of outstanding leaders across the political divide is most gratifying for Masire because the absence of a viable alternative party can lead to a revolution. He observes this when he says: “Ha go sa nne jalo – ra nna le kgotsohalo le tsholohelo mo baneng ba rona – e tlaa re kamoso ha e le gore ga re na tsone di party tseo, tse e leng gore di na le botho; dina le kelelelo… e tlaa re kamoso re bo re nna le direvolution ka go re go tlhobogwa batho mme ga gona sepe se sengwe se se ka dirwang.”
Masire also tried to demonstrate that Motswaledi’s dream of a better Botswana was not unique to him. The dream for a better Botswana was to be found in Motswaledi and his team of political partners. This is why Masire says: “gatwe ga a swa motho, go sale motho – a a tlogele bomonnawe, a a tlogele matlhogela.” He develops this point further when he says “..o ntse a se nosi, o na le ba gagabo. Ga go na se a se dirileng kana se a neng a ka se dira, se a neng a sa se amusanye nabo. Megopolo, ha a ne a na le mengwe ya go tsweledisa bokamoso ja sechaba se, o e amoganye le bakaulengwe ba gagwe. Mme re a ba rotloetsa le bone gore, borra le bomma, e tla re kamoso ha lo re latlha, re itse gore lo ne lo sa sekegela se Motswaledi a neng a lekile go se amusanya le lona.”
I am therefore convinced that Masire’s speech was principally about national sacrifice; about putting Botswana first. He says: “Re tlhoka batho… Re tlhoka batho ba ba nang le tebelopele ya bokamoso ja lehatshe…Re tlhoka batho ba ba sa batleng go itirela leina ka bo bone, ba lebile leina ja lehatshe la Botswana.” In his speech Masire also expresses the need for opposition unity. He says: “mathata a lehatshe la Botswana a tlhoka badiredi – se iphatlalatseng, ya tla ya re re re re a lo bua ra hitlhela motho a le mongwe hela hela, ele party ya motho le bana ba gagwe.”
I believe that having made the national case, Masire made an argument for Duma Boko, and indirectly endorsed the UDC. I believe that his speech was not principally about the UDC but about national ideals. I however believe Sir Masire did endorse the UDC president Duma Boko and by extension the UDC party. Masire says: “Jaaka Rre Boko a rile “Motho ke yo”, le nna ka re mme go na le motho mo, mo bathong ba ba ha ba!” I believe what Masire was saying was Ecce homo back at Duma Boko. Motho ke yo! If my analysis is right, I agree with Masire that where we are as a nation there is no better political party leader to take Botswana forward than Mr Duma Boko.

Words are like people

June 20, 2014

Words are like people. There are interesting correlations between people and words. The two behave very similarly. People are rarely found in isolation. They live in makgotla, villages, cities, principalities, countries and nations. Rarely do you find a loner living in a forest or on top of a tree somewhere. That is atypical of people. Human beings are principally communal beings. We live in families. Words behave in a similar manner. Words don’t occur in isolation. They are found as part of clauses or phrases. They are part of sentences, paragraphs, chapters and large chunks such as books and reports. Words also are found certain semantic domains. For instance medical terms include hospital, doctor, nurse, injection, wound, patient, medicine, tablets, and many others. Christian religious terms include Jesus, spirit, angel, Bible, believe, belief, baptism, and convert.

Just as persons are usually found around certain kinds of people and rarely around others, words also cluster around certain words. This is in linguistics is collocation. In language we usually say strong tea & not powerful tea. We however say strong tea and not powerful tea. The word chips is usually found in the company fish in the expression fish and chips.

Some people are tall others are short. Some are ugly others are beautiful. So are* the words. There are long words and short words. There are ugly words and beautiful words. Just because a person is tall or big, that doesn’t make them the smartest, the toughest or the most educated. And so it is with words. Just because a word is long, that doesn’t make it the most challenging or the most appropriate in a situation. Some communities are full of pretentious individuals who appear important. There are also words which appear important or give a piece of writing an air of seriousness. George Orwell has struggled with this matter in his essay Politics and the English language. Here I quote from this essay extensively. He says “Words like phenomenon, element, individual (as noun), objective, categorical, effective, virtual, basic, primary, promote, constitute, exhibit, exploit, utilize, eliminate, liquidate, are used to dress up a simple statement and give an air of scientific impartiality to biased judgements. Adjectives like epoch-making, epic, historic, unforgettable, triumphant, age-old, inevitable, inexorable, veritable, are used to dignify the sordid process of international politics, while writing that aims at glorifying war usually takes on an archaic colour, its characteristic words being: realm, throne, chariot, mailed fist, trident, sword, shield, buckler, banner, jackboot, clarion. Foreign words and expressions such as cul de sac, ancien regime, deus ex machina, mutatis mutandis, status quo, gleichschaltung, weltanschauung, are used to give an air of culture and elegance. Except for the useful abbreviations i. e., e. g. and etc., there is no real need for any of the hundreds of foreign phrases now current in the English language. Bad writers, and especially scientific, political, and sociological writers, are nearly always haunted by the notion that Latin or Greek words are grander than Saxon ones, and unnecessary words like expedite, ameliorate, predict, extraneous, deracinated, clandestine, subaqueous, and hundreds of others constantly gain ground from their Anglo-Saxon numbers. The jargon peculiar to Marxist writing (hyena, hangman, cannibal, petty bourgeois, these gentry, lackey, flunkey, mad dog, White Guard, etc.) consists largely of words translated from Russian, German, or French; but the normal way of coining a new word is to use Latin or Greek root with the appropriate affix and, where necessary, the size formation.” Richard Chenevix Trench has also grappled with the matter of words, especially how words are entered in dictionaries. He has argued that “A dictionary….is an inventory of the language… It is no task of the maker of it to select the good words of a language. If he fancies that it is so, and begins to pick and choose, to leave this and to take that, he will at once go astray. The business which he has undertaken is to collect and arrange all the words, whether good or bad, whether they do or do not commend themselves to his judgment, which, with certain exceptions hereafter to be specified, those writing in the language have employed. He is an historian of it not a critic… There is a constant confusion here in men’s minds. There are many who conceive of a Dictionary as though it had this function, to be a standard of the language; and the pretensions to be this which the French Dictionary of the Academy sets up, may have helped this confusion. It is nothing of the kind” (Trench 1860: 7).

To this end, national census officers are therefore like lexicographers. They record people while lexicographers record words. Their aim is to record all people whether good or bad. They don’t just document good citizens. So do dictionary makers. They record all the words, whether good or bad. It is strange though that dictionary makers are sometimes expected to document only good words and not record rude words, insults, or obscenities. This is obviously a bizarre expectation. It would be unthinkable for a census person to document only pleasant and well behaved individuals and leave the rude, rough and the criminal. 

Just like people, words live breath and move and finally die. When they die and nobody uses them we no longer list them in our dictionaries. In the same way that people when they die they are no longer counted in a national census, words will only become a memory in certain people’s minds or occur in some old texts. Some words are archaic.

Dumela Thapelo J Otlogetswe

June 4, 2014

Leboko le le latelang le kwadilwe ke Stephanus Arnoldus Swanepoel. ‘Ina la gagwe la Setswana ke Rralebelo. O goletse kwa GaSeleka gautshwane le Lephalale. O ithutile, Sesulu, Sepedi le Setswana. PhD ya gagwe kwa UNISA e ne e le ka Dinaane tsa Setswana. O dirile jaaka motlhatlheledi e le moporofesara wa Setswana kwa Yunibesething ya Bokone Bophirima kwa Potchefstroom. Prof Swanepoel o tlogetse tiro ka bogodi, jaanong o nna gaufi le toropo ya Kapa kwa Kleinmond. Ke leboogela leboko le a le ntlhametseng.

Khunou ya maralladithota ka re dumela
Dumela setswatharing-ya-Batlogetswe
Ga re a go tlogela moritsana wa rona
Re ne re go beile fela
Ra go bipa ka dikakanyo tsa rona
Ra go tlhakatlhakanya le botlhe
Kana o lekalana la rona koo legaeng la Morena
Ra inama
Ra khubama ka mangole
Ra lebisa difatlhego koo tlase ra rapela
Ra di tsholela lefatshe dithapelo tsa rona
Modimo ako o re gopole tlhe
Wa goroga mo gae
Ra go baya matlho
Ba ba itseng ba simolola ba go bitsa Thapelo
Ra dumela le rona

Se bone ngwana wa go kopiwa jaana ka thapelo
Thapelo o tla di wetsa mo bophelong ba gagwe
Ke ene makgona tsotlhe
Kana Batswana ba re:
Se bone nonyane go rakalla kwa godimo go ya tlase ke ga yone.

Ke e gamile bagaetsho e bidiwa Penologa.

30 meanings of the word “tshwara”

June 3, 2014

In the study of words – let’s fancifully call it lexical analysis, a distinction is made between a word that has multiple related meanings and multiple words which have the same spelling. When a single word has multiple related meanings, we say such a word is polysemous. Polysemy is a lexical relationship in which one word has multiple related meanings. This is usually exemplified by the word head in English. The word head means “the top part of your body that has your brain, eyes, mouth etc in it”. This meaning of the word head refers to the physical object that is usually seen and touched in animals. However when someone says: “A thought suddenly came to my head” here the word head refers to the mind and thoughts. The word head can also be used to refer to a leader as in a school head. All these meanings are related to the original head-meaning, making the word head polysemous. A distinction must however be made between a word that has multiple related meanings and words which share the same spelling but which have absolutely unrelated meanings. For instance in English we have bank meaning “a financial institution that people or businesses can keep their money in or borrow money from.” There is also another word “bank” which means “a raised area of land along the side of a river”. These two words happen to share the same spelling. They are unrelated. We also have the word bear meaning “to accept a difficult or unpleasant situation, especially without complaining”. A different word bear can mean “to give birth to a child”. There is yet a different word bear meaning “a large wild animal with thick fur.” This state of affairs in linguistics, where different words happen to share the same spelling is called homography [homo meaning same; graphy meaning writing].

In this column we wish to discuss the polysemous meanings of tshwara. It is a peculiar word in that it has a very wide scope of usage. We use tshwara to mean to physically touch something. In this way it is synonymous with the Setswana word kgoma. You can therefore say Ga ke batle a tshwara ngwanake (I don’t want him to touch my child). The sense can be extended to included touching or dealing with a certain topic. Thus you can say: Kgang eo ga o a tshwanela go e tshwara (You are not supposed to touch (deal) with that matter). Tshwara can be used to mean to hold as in to hold a pole (go tshwara pale). This is certainly more than just touching something but it deals with holding something firmly. We use tshwara to mean catch and this is in a variety of ways. If I throw a ball to you, I expect you to catch it – ke solofela gore o e tshware. I can therefore say catch! Tshwara! But we also use Tshwara! when we are not throwing anything to anybody. We instead use it when we are handing something to somebody. Therefore when someone gives you an orange they can say: tshwara! almost synonymous with the English expression: here! or take! Tshwara can also be used mean to work somewhere as in O tshwere kwa Lobatse – “He works in Lobatse”. Sometimes tshwara is repeated into tshwaratshwara as in O tshweretshwere kwa Lobatse. Used in this way there is a sense of diminution in tshwara almost suggesting that the job is nothing much, or is of little value or significance.

You also use the word tshwara to mean to catch up with something. This is in the sense of chasing after something, trapping something or catching up with something in the sense of just catching up with something as you move along. Therefore O ka leleka mmutla o bo o tshwara (chase after a rabbit and catch it) or o ka thaisa nonyane o bo e tshwara (you can set a trap for a bird and catch it) or o ka tshwara motho mo tseleng e e yang masimo (you can find a person on the way to the farms). Tshwara can also be used to mean to possess a skill or knowledge that has been taught to you. Ke ntse ke mo ruta go thaepa jaanong o tshwere (I have been teaching him to type and now he has got it). Tshwara in a related sense means to understand. So if you say ga ke mo tshware you mean I don’t get (understand) him. Tshwara also means to receive a signal by an electronic equipment such as a radio, television or phone. So we can say “the phone cannot receive a signal from here” Mogala o gana go tshwara fa. When someone offers you much needed help o a go tshwara. It is common to hear a sentence such as Re ne re le mo mathateng mme Karabo a re tshwara “We were facing serious problems and Karabo helped us”. When you join things and they hold we say di tshwere. However when we join things and the joint fails to hold we say ga di a tshwara. In Setswana if you are leading an event either as its organiser or as a master of ceremony, ra re o e tshwere, e mo diatleng tsa gago. This could apply to a wedding ke tshwere nyalo ya ga nnake “I am working on my younger brother’s wedding.” We also use tshwara to refer to keeping something to yourself such as a secret and not passing it on. O tshwere sephiri “He is keeping a secret”. We use the word tshwara to refer to taking a certain mode of transport to a place. O ne a tshwara terena a ya Francistown “He took a train to Francistown”. Tshwara is also used to express a general estimate when expressing numbers as in bana ba ka tshwara lesome “about ten children”. Tshwara is used to mean to connect with someone on the phone; to get someone. Ke ne ka mo leletsa mme ka se ka ka mo tshwara “I called his number but I did not get him”. Tshwara can also mean to have a certain illness: as in sehuba se ne sa mo tshwara “he got a flu.” We can also use tshwara to mean to discover an illness or disease in someone. Go ne ga tshwarwa TB mo go ene kwa sepatela “At the hospital they found out that he had TB”. To find someone in the middle of a crime o a mo tshwara, you find them out. This is different from arresting which is also expressed by tshwara. When you get an answer in a test or a class exercise…o a tshwara. I must stop here. There is much to be written about tshwara. I haven’t even started on the idiomatic expressions such as go tshwarwa ke tlala, tshwarwa ke kgakge,tshwara ka letsogo la molema, tshwarisa motho logaga, tshwara logaba, tshwara matletlesi, tshwara mogoma, tshwara motho ka ntsogotlho, tshwara phage ka mangana, tshwara poo, tshwara pelo, tshwara mala ka lebogo and many others. Such is the lexical richness of our tongue.

How a Limkokwing student transformed Setswana studies forever

May 14, 2014

In my job as a language practitioner and linguist I have been fortunate to meet some committed and gifted individuals. Many of these are persons in other disciplines such as History, Computer Science or Law. In some cases some of these are actually students who work with me in some of my projects. Many of the students who participate in my projects are keen but they lack the focus, commitment, discipline and passion to stay with a project for long. They usually start with great enthusiasm that usually fizzles away after a week or a few days. This is in part because many of the projects that I embark on, though important, attract no salary. They are volunteer-driven. I believe there is much that can be achieved with minimum sponsorship. However, in this harsh economic climate, many find volunteerism quite a challenge.

I was rather pleasantly surprised when earlier this year I received an intern from Limkokwing University who wanted to work for three months on one of my language projects. Her name was Warona Makhafu. Two projects were running at the time. First, it was the development of the Setswana dictionary project, whose publication will coincide with Botswana’s 50th independence celebrations in 2016. The second project was the Tlatlana project that we had just launched at www.tlatlana.com. The Tlatlana project is a groundbreaking project that attempts to make Setswana book analyses available to Setswana language and literature users. The site also comprises educational material on Setswana grammar and culture. While English has Sparknotes and other sites, Setswana has nothing. Warona was a Creative Writing student. She therefore chose the Tlatlana project since it was closer to her training compared to a project in lexicography. It made sense. Her job was straightforward. She had to read as many novels, plays and poems as possible and deliver to me critical analyses of such pieces of work. I would then assess and polish them before returning them for correction and improvement. Makhafu, though trained in creative writing, she was trained in Creative Writing in English and not in Setswana. This posed a great challenge conceptually. There was before her a terminology hurdle to dispose of. She knew of characters, mood, theme, conflict, persona, a playwright, novel, novella, short story, stanza, rhyme, alliteration, assonance, and many such terms that are a student of literature’s building blocks of critical discourse. What were these terms in Setswana? She had no clue. How was she to provide critical analyses of Setswana texts when she lacked the basic terminology to deal with the subject? She attempted a solution. She suggested that she would write her criticism in English and that I would translate it into Setswana for publication in Tlatlana. Her suggestion was rejected outright! She was thrown into the deep end. She had to deal with Setswana texts, something that she was unfamiliar with, in the Setswana language, which she lacked the requisite analysis terminology of.

Warona agreed. She wasn’t fazed. Instead she demonstrated great determination, focus and passion in her work. Her challenges were enormous. Like many who unfamiliar with writing in Setswana there were numerous spelling challenges. Many Setswana writers struggle with basic word divisions. And this challenge confronted Warona. Is it gore or go re; e sele or esele; e rile or erile; sale or sa le. There were also challenges with words such as kwa and not ko; logong and not legong. I was impressed by Warona’s love for reading – a rare quality amongst many of our students whose greatest read is brief text messages and Facebook messages. She read voraciously and with insatiable delight. To have a student with a passion for reading extensively is rare and greatly gratifying for one working with text. It is even rarer to meet one who delights in reading Setswana since many Batswana are semi-literate in the Setswana language. This is in part because many never read or write Setswana beyond their senior secondary school level. There is also a second problem. The Setswana language isn’t associated with educatedness and career progress. This makes it unattractive for many learners, schools and teachers.

I was however delighted that Warona took her work seriously and professionally. Within a short time she had delivered her first short story analysis and was keen on working on a different piece. From there Warona produced impressive analyses of all the literature texts that are done at junior secondary school. All these analyses have been published at www.tlatlana.com and are supporting Setswana classes across the country and beyond the Botswana borders. What impressed me most is that Warona came to me industry-ready and needed minimum training. Additionally, her skills are transferrable from English training to Setswana. This is important since the publishing industry in Africa is largely multilingual. Therefore, anyone who can apply skills learnt in one language to a different language scenario is destined to go rather far in their career. This was my view of Warona Makhafu. Her training at Limkokwing has prepared her for a highly competitive and demanding career in publishing or the media. Her individual personal traits that include amongst others calmness, focus, passion, commitment will ensure that she goes far in her career. Students with her unique qualities are rare. I was fortunate to meet her and she will go down in history as one of the individuals who has contributed meaningfully to studies in Setswana. The Tlatlana project has attracted much interest across the border in South Africa amongst Setswana educationalist at the North West University and amongst the Bafokeng at Lebone school. The collaboration between Setswana educationalist across different nations will go a long way to building a body of Setswana training information which will advance Setswana education.

self pity

May 12, 2014

I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself.
A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough
without ever having felt sorry for itself

— D.H. Lawrence


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,807 other followers