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Abstract

In this essay, Lauren shows how a breakdown in the belief in the Christian God in NoViolet Bulawayo’s novel We Need New Names leads to the protagonist’s renewal of faith in herself. As the world around her implodes and modern-day Zimbabwe collapses under the political regime of Robert Mugabe (who is never named in the novel but whose baleful influence is nevertheless assumed), “Bulawayo juxtaposes human endurance and the absence of a helpful god to achieve commentary on Darling’s fortitude and resilience.” The essay presents several original insights and offers a sensitive and highly nuanced picture of the divided colonial legacy of Christianity in Zimbabwe.


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