Mozambique > Literature Archive > Marcelo Panguana
Marcelo Panguana

Marcelo Panguana, Mozambican writer and journalist, was born on 30th of March 1951 in colonial Lourenço Marques (nowadays Maputo). In 1971 he entered the university but his Chemistry studies were interrupted because of the war. Only after the independence, in 1976, did he resume higher education studies, now in the field of oil refining. He started his literary career writing poetry and collaborating in the cultural pages of newspapers and magazines such as “Domingo”, “Notícias” and “Tempo”, among others. In the beginning of the 90s, he created and ran “Xipalapala”, a successful literary supplement of “Notícias”. In the 80s, he joined the AEMO – Association of Mozambican Writers – and became a very active member. Not only did he occupy different positions in the AEMO's management and assembly during three decades of its existence, but he was also a director of the association's magazine “Lua Nova” (founded in 1988), which disseminated the works of Mozambican writers. Earlier in that period, he also collaborated in “Charrua”, a literary magazine which became a landmark in the history of Mozambican literature. Launched in 1984 and with only eight issues published, “Charrua” brought together a group of Mozambican writers and intellectuals (the "Charrua" generation) who aspired to change and renew Mozambican literature, which had become a means of social and political propaganda. Panguana's first book, the collection of short stories As Vozes que Falam de Verdade (The Voices that Speak of Truth), was published in 1987. Since then, he published several books including short stories, novels, children literature and interviews, among which A Balada dos Deuses (The Ballad of the Gods, 1991), Os Ossos de Ngungunhana, João Kuimba, Chico Ndaenda e Outros Contos (The Bones of Ngungunhana and Other Stories, 2006), O Chão das Coisas (The Ground of Things, 2010). He was awarded Prémio Fundação Rui de Noronha for his novel Como um Louco ao Fim da Tarde (As If a Crazy Man in the Late Afternoon, 2010). At present, he is editor-in-chief of the magazine “Proler”, financed by Fundo Bibliográfico da Língua Portuguesa (Bibliographical Fund of the Portuguese Language). Besides his prolific literary activity, Marcelo Panguana works for an oil refinery in Maputo.



The Nation by Marcelo Panguana:

"Well, I think that the moment that the writer reflects on something, actually, the moment that the writer writes, whether it is poetry or fiction or short stories or whatever, the moment that this happens, he is already entering the debate about this issue of the nation.[...] I feel that I have been part of this debate without always realizing it. Because I think that in my earlier years as a writer I wasn’t very much concerned with these ideas around the debate about the nation. I think these are concepts that started appearing much later, and it was academics who started raising this issue about the construction of the nation. Because in their first phase writers were more concerned with their writing and, in a subsequent phase, they wanted to perfect their craft – these are personal points of view, are they not? – and, in their own way, to contribute to making a better society."

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