In times of injustice throughout history, women have taken a stand and made their voices heard. In a country where voices are being silenced, award-winning Zimbabwean author, Tsitsi Dangarembga, decided to stand up for what she believes in. This resulted in her being arrested in her country of birth for breaching the country’s COVID-19 regulations, by holding a two-woman demonstration in the capital with Julie Barnes, amongst other charges.
It’s undeniable that the impact of COVID-19 in Zimbabwe has been dire. The country has been struggling financially and the pandemic only added fuel to this fire. In explaining her stance, Dangarembga shared on Twitter before her arrest,
“Friends, here is a principle. If you want your suffering to end, you have to act. Action comes from hope. This the principle of faith and action.”
Dangarembga and Barnes were carrying placards that called for reform in Zimbabwe as well as the freedom of speech sighting the arrest of well-known journalist, Hopewell Chin’ono.
Although Dangarembga and Barnes were not detained for very long, their bravery sent a signal to the world about the injustice that has become the reality for Zimbabweans. Dangarembga was recently long-listed for the Booker Prize for her novel, This Mournable Body, which follows the life of a young Zimbabwean woman who explores how life changes when hope fades.