Know your author: Wiseman Magwa
At the time of his birth, the Magwa family and the Nyajena community did not imagine that one of their own would blossom into a great writer who would put not only their family and district on the map, but also Masvingo Province as well as Zimbabwe on the international map in the field of academia due to his prolific writing skills.
It is this passion for writing that saw him scoring a first in Zimbabwe by becoming a full Professor at a young age of 48 (a record achievement in Zimbabwe).
He is the founding Vice Chancellor of the Reformed Church University and a member of the National Advisory Council, Ministry of Tourism and Hospitality. He was also appointed faculty dean at the largest University in Zimbabwe — ZOU in 2010. He an external Examiner at five
The Professor is also no push over in terms of academic and professional qualifications as he holds the following:
Doctor of Literature and Philosophy (UNISA), Master of Education (UZ), Post Graduate Diploma in Education (UZ), Graduate Certificate in Education (UZ) and a Bachelor of Arts Degree (UZ).
At present his publications stand at 102, among them poems, 23 books and monographs. He has also penned academic texts such as Dudziramutauro reChiShona: Bhuku romudzidzi, Mhenenguro Bhuku romudzidzi(both A-level),Manyorerwe eChiShona and the Ravai ChiShona and Verengai ChiShona Primary Series. He is also author of a number of plays including Mafaro, Haasiye Wandinoda, Njuzu, Mune Shanje Amaiguru and Jemedza. The last two have been O- Level set books.
Professor Magwa has 12 articles in peer reviewed journals to his credit, has translated 16 books into Shona, produced eight consultancy reports and has presented many workshop and conference papers on various issues relating to development of the Shona language and 22 of these have been selected for publication.
The man just does not stop. He also contributes articles to newspapers and magazines where he has 15 articles to his credit.
His efforts have not gone unnoticed as he has three grants/ awards already in his cabinet yet he is still in the prime of his professional career.
The awards are as follows:
- 2004 Winner of the Zimbabwe 75 Best Books in the 20th Century Literary Awards in the Drama category with the play Njuzu published by Mambo Press: Gweru.
- 2004 Winner of the Zimbabwe Culture Fund Trust Grant for the Children against Aids Theatre Project
- Awarded the Rockefeller Foundation Grant for the Implementation of the Sexual Maturation Research Findings from 2003-2006
The prolific writer believes in the Shona axiom that “munhu munhu nokuda kwevanhu” (a person is human because of other people), hence he is a member of the following professional boards:
- Non-Executive Director of EDUCARE College, Gweru, Zimbabwe.
- Non-Executive Director, First Link College, Harare, Zimbabwe
- Secretary General, The Shona Language and Culture Association (SLCA)
His creativity does not only end at the writing stage, he has been involved in community work as drama director with the following productions among many others: A stage drama entitled “Haasiye Wandinoda” which was taken around Zimbabwe by the Gweru Theatre Arts Group in the year 2000, a television drama entitled “Sins of the Fathers” that was shown live on ZBC Television Services on December 21, 2001, a radio drama entitled “Triumphal Entry” that was broadcast live on 3FM radio station on February 9, 2002.
He was also involved in “Our Sovereignty”, a TV drama that was shown live on ZBC television services on April 17, 2002 and a stage drama entitled “Kamoto Kamberevere” that was shown to parents and new students during University orientation week in March 2003.
The man is just unstoppable. He just laughs when asked where he gets the energy and time to balance this seemingly busy schedule which is quite frightening for many.
He has a sense of humour too says: “Time, you create your own if it’s not there. As for energy simba mukaka rinosinira.” He acknowledges the support he gets from his wife and three children, one daughter who seems to have been inspired by her father and has a publication “Maidei Anodzidzisa Baba Vake”.
With a daughter who already has a publication to her credit, it is just a matter of time before the nation sees where the Magwa artistry roller coaster is going to land.