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Kalanga culture and the nature of resistance against the Native Land Husbandry Act of 1951 in colonial Zimbabwe
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In this article the nature of resistance to the implementation of the Native Land Husbandry Act of 1951 (NLHA), popularly known as amagandiya in Bulilimamangwe, in colonial Zimbabwe is explored. It looks at two Kalanga chiefs, Madlambuzi Ncube and Masendu Dube, who were deposed by colonial administrators in the 1950s and replaced by an Ndebele chief, Mpini Ndiweni. It is argued that the implementation of the Act, the demotion of the two Kalanga chiefs and the subsequent imposition of Chief Mpini Ndiweni can be perceived as the imposition of a type of cultural hegemony which was then resisted by the two Kalanga chiefs and their subjects by the reassertion of their own culture and identity in colonial Zimbabwe. It demonstrates how it was not violent or military resistance but rather cultural resistance, which was expressed through various modes, which took the centre stage in challenging both the white colonial government and Ndebele hegemony over the Kalanga. In contributing to the argument over the use of cultural resistance against the NLHA, the article draws from oral interviews which were conducted in Bulilima and Mangwe districts, on archival research and on secondary literature to demonstrate that this cultural resistance drew on a variety of signifiers of Kalanga identity such as Kalanga history, the politics of land, ideas around Kalanga chieftainship, Mwali/Ngwali religion and the possession of cattle.