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Kronos vol.39 no.1 Cape Town Jan. 2013




Political rhetoric in the transition to Mozambican independence: Samora Machel in Beira, June 19751



Colin DarchI; David HedgesII

IDemocratic Governance and Rights Unit, University of Cape Town
IIDepartamento de História, Universidade Eduardo Mondlane




In late May 1975, Samora Machel crossed the Tanzanian border and began a month-long 'Triumphal Journey' down the whole length of Mozambique from north to south, finishing in Lourenço Marques (now Maputo). During the journey, he addressed crowds in the former liberated zones, as well as in urban centres such as Nampula, Quelimane and Beira, where Frelimo had had no public presence during the liberation struggle. A few days before national independence he made a lengthy speech in Portuguese to a large crowd in a football stadium in an outlying black suburb of Beira, Mozambique's second city. This speech ranged widely over such topics as colonial racism, economic exploitation, and the tasks of reconstruction that lay ahead. It was the first time that the population of Beira had seen the Frelimo leader, soon to be the country's first president. With no television stations, censored radio broadcasting, and only a few Portuguese-language newspapers with limited circulation, Frelimo needed to rely heavily on mass meetings and speeches to get its message across. This article breaks new ground in Mozambican studies by combining historical and socio-linguistic techniques to analyse an accurately reconstructed text of this particular speech, a recording of which is available online. It focuses on the historical context of Beira as a centre of colonial and settler resistance to FRELIMO's struggle, as well as the speech's content, its linguistic register and the rhetorical devices used to compel agreement and to persuade listeners of the correctness of Frelimo's political line.



This article analyses a previously unpublished political speech by Samora Machel.2 The analysis locates the speech in its period historically as well as socio-linguistically and interprets ways in which the speech uses both coercive and persuasive rhetorical devices. Through this cross-disciplinary analysis we are able to show how the FRELIMO leadership systematically used public speech making as a means of furthering its agenda and establishing forms of political mobilisation in the transition to one-party independence in 1975. Moreover, it reflects important aspects of the leadership's reaction to the conflicted urban and regional context in which FRELIMO sought to extend its power in central Mozambique in 1974-1975, as well how the leadership perceived its developing power relations in Mozambican society more generally.

Both the content of the speech and its rhetorical and discursive character show that FRELIMO was aware of the need to recruit support from the centre of the country into a revolutionary nationalist project with which many Beira residents may not have been directly involved, even clandestinely. More detailed research would be needed to confirm that FRELIMO did in fact expect counter-revolution to emerge in Beira after independence, but we believe that our analysis points in this direction. Our examination of the political contradictions that were present in central Mozambique during the late colonial period and just after independence indicates some of the possible causes of resistance in this region to FRELIMO's policies.

The speech by Machel in itself is evidence of an early attempt to create political unity in what was a city seriously divided racially, socially and politically. The historical evidence that we adduce supports the view that Machel's speech is an example of a complex and subtle political discourse that FRELIMO was in the process of developing. Our detailed linguistic and discursive analysis suggests that FRELIMO was deeply concerned about the potential for fragmentation in Beira and its surrounding areas.

The article begins with a brief description of the Triumphal Journey through Mozambique and its antecedents - tours of Tanzania and Zambia - where Machel spoke extemporaneously to large audiences in order to mobilise international and domestic support for continuing political struggles. This is followed by an analysis of the complex political divisions in late colonial Beira and its region to provide a context for our analysis of Machel's discursive and rhetorical practices in the speech. We then move on to an examination of the language politics of FRELIMO's use of Portuguese and its varieties before concluding with a detailed exploration of the coercive and persuasive elements of the speech, arguing that rhetoric is an essential component of political action and not merely incidental to it.

In the 1970s and 1980s, and up to the present day, political speeches were a significant component in FRELIMO's communication practice in a country in which the printed mass media were only available linguistically to - and affordable economically by - a tiny minority of Portuguese-speaking urbanites. In 1975 there was no independent press and there were no television stations in Mozambique, and the few radio stations, although nominally commercial in nature, had in practice always been under the strict control of the colonial government.3

The speech in question was made on 14 June 1975, a few days before independence, in Beira, Mozambique's second largest city, a place that had a particular importance because of its history in the later colonial period and in the war against FRELIMO nationalists. The content of the speech is noteworthy for what it represents in the sequence of political transition, and particularly for its relevance in analytically demolishing the colonial social structure and presenting parts of FRELIMO's vision of the transformation process. Some commentators have disparaged the idea that Samora Machel and FRELIMO were able to make a contribution to Marxist political theory, arguing rather that a supposed 'disdain [within FRELIMO ranks] for "Marxism-as-books" was based on ignorance, not experience'.4 In this regard, the speech in Beira is interesting as much for its paucity of overt theory as for its rhetorical and theatrical complexity. It adds little in the way of concrete data to our knowledge of the historical events of the period, and the words 'comunismo', 'socialismo', 'Marxismo' and 'Leninismo' do not appear. It does, however, consolidate our knowledge of the complexity of FRELIMO's approach to race, colonial class structure and internationalism at various levels, topics basic to Machel's line of argument.

A significant part of the linguistic context for this event was the existence in Mozambique of two competing varieties of Portuguese. These were a dominant and well-established normative standard based on educated European speech, on one hand, and the vernacular speech of a segment of the Mozambican population, on the other. The fact that the reconstructed text shows many of the characteristic markers of popular demotic speech is, therefore, significant in the lengthy process of defining FRELIMO's language policy.5 We shall return to this question below.

The use of language (discourse) is a social practice determined by social structures, including the economic, cultural and political.6 Within this broadly defined social practice, different orders of discourse are in turn socially constituted, consisting of the linguistic conventions associated with specific social configurations, such as class, race, gender, age, organisations, political parties, geographical regions and so forth. A dialectic is at work: the relations of power that exist in a society define and mould these orders of discourse ideologically, just as members of a society can and do use them as instruments to affect and change the social institutions that determined them in the first place.

If any order of discourse expresses implicit relations of power, then a political order of discourse is an especially complex expression of the operation of the social and political power of the state. Power not only lies beneath the order of discourse, relying on state coercion and informing the whole process of communication, it also lies within the order of discourse, working to obtain 'consent' or 'acquiescence' to the exercise of power through persuasion or rhetoric.7



In the process of establishing and analysing the text as the object of analysis, we are attempting to achieve several objectives. The first and most important of these is to read this African political text analytically and as historical evidence, rather than as an act of political piety or as homage to a deceased leader.8 Second, we attempt to 'make heard' the voice of one of Africa's major popular orators as he performs a kind of 'political theatre' in front of an enthusiastic audience hardly used to analytical political exposition.9 To hear this voice, we have worked non-prescriptively to reestablish the actually spoken text as far as possible, although to a significant extent this process still results in a reconstructed literary product. Third, we attempt a reading of the textual narrative in the context of the last few days before full independence, with competing policy positions working themselves out in the heady atmosphere of victory, and senior FRELIMO cadres jockeying for position in government.10 We believe that such a reading must be to a large extent culturally determined. This kind of analysis is an extension of literary criticism, and while it may or may not be persuasive, it can hardly be 'correct' or indeed 'incorrect'. It would also be arrogant of us to suppose that our insights in some fashion cut through a fog of mystification that Mozambican listeners were unaware of, or unable to deconstruct for themselves.11

The Beira speech exists in various forms. The primary form was the speech event that occurred on 14 June 1975, when Samora Machel addressed the rally (comício) in the football stadium of Ferroviário de Manga, an important but geographically peripheral suburb of Beira. We know that an interpreter was present and interpreted the whole speech into Sena. There is no official written transcript of this subaltern African language speech event as far as we know. A secondary form is the audio-cassette recording of these speech events, located in the tape library at the Arquivo Histórico de Moçambique.12 It is probable, although we do not know for certain, that the written transcript from which we initially worked was made from this tape, as journalists made a typewritten set of all the speeches during the journey from the Rovuma to the Maputo.13

Although this Beira speech has never been published in its entirety, a few hundred words were taken from it and published in a contemporary Mozambican collection of political texts, and quotations appeared in contemporary newspaper accounts of Machel's visit to Beira. These published extracts were heavily edited, as was subsequently commonly done with transcripts when they appeared in print.14

In transcribing the speech, we followed a form of 'strict verbatim' protocol, attempting to capture and record every utterance by both Samora Machel and his audience. We inserted as little punctuation as possible, using it mainly to break the different 'speech acts' into understandable units. We attempted to avoid prescriptive or normative correction of Machel's utterances.

The most complex techniques of speech and performance transcription have evolved within the anthropological sub-disciplines of ethnography and folklore, especially in the United States, with the work of such scholars as Tedlock and Fine.15 We have not attempted such a level of sophistication in approaching the Beira speech, while accepting in relation to it that Samora was using an 'aesthetic mode of communication' that was integral to the event (his visit to Beira) and at the same time culturally specific.16 In addition, the fact that the audio recording is available to readers of this text means that they can analyse or re-interpret it at will.

Most of Machel's speeches were printed only in 'smooth verbatim' transcriptions, i.e. grammatically and rhetorically 'corrected' versions such as those that routinely appeared in Tempo or Notícias. By contrast, our transcription includes interjections, changes of thought and false starts, repetition and audience reactions such as applause, laughter and other responses. The major omission is the subaltern text of the interpreter who can be distantly heard in the recording; we were and are not linguistically competent to attempt to transcribe this parallel speech event and so it is omitted.


The Triumphal Journey 'from Rovuma to Maputo'

The speech was one of over thirty made in the course of an emblematic and little-studied journey that Machel undertook between 24 May and 25 June 1975, from the Rovuma River that marks much of Mozambique's northern border with Tanzania, to the Maputo River in the extreme south.17 The Triumphal Journey constituted the 'symbolic embodiment of the totality of the new territorial space that now made up independent Mozambique', and set the stage for the new phase of nation building.18 Then, as now, the phrase, 'do Rovuma ao Maputo', summarised and encapsulated the idea of national unity as an overriding political virtue in post-independence Mozambique. The journey culminated in the formal handing over of power by the Portuguese to FRELIMO. It was clearly intended to begin the work of emphasising unity in a country subject to extensive attempts at political division by the Portuguese colonial administration in the preceding decades and still very much open to the threat of internal and external colonialist initiatives.19

Mozambique shared long frontiers with Rhodesia and South Africa, as well as economic attachments. These countries had great military potential and a colonialist political and ideological dynamic. This meant that FRELIMO advanced toward political control in the centre through Beira, Rhodesia's port, and in the south, through Lourenço Marques, scarcely eighty kilometres from the South African frontier. Strategically, therefore, a FRELIMO government was vulnerable. The leadership was aware of the military resources that could be pitched against them by Rhodesia and South Africa, should they choose to support Portuguese settler initiatives. Apart from the support of the post-25 April Portuguese government and military, FRELIMO's main armoury consisted in its proven capacity to mobilise the colonised population behind the ideals of independence and social transformation. In an overwhelmingly hostile region, unity was seen to be politically fundamental to this leadership, owing to the risk - with the memory of multiple experiences from its own history still fresh -of dissidence leading to collaboration with the colonialist enemy.

The extensive development of the argument in the speeches, aimed at demonstrating the correctness of FRELIMO's analysis and popular support for it, was designed to continue this tradition of mobilisation into a new era of governance. A central element in this mobilisation was the need felt by the FRELIMO leadership to transform, where necessary, what they saw as the unconscious but retrogressive mentality of passivity and acceptance of colonial ways and culture. Much effort in the speeches was designed to undermine this basis of potential political and strategic weakness and to promote pride in Mozambican culture and politics as an effective counterweight to potentially insidious ideas of colonial - racial - superiority.20

The urgent need to build a functional national unity is a theme that runs like a thread through FRELIMO's history, from its foundation in 1962 until the present day, and makes many of its policy decisions comprehensible. Why is Portuguese the national language? Because of the need for unity. Why was Mozambique a one-party state? Because of the need for unity. The Front had been founded by supposedly merging three earlier nationalist organisations, but factionalism and ideological divisions persisted. Machel had emerged as the dominant leader from the so-called 'struggle between the two lines' in 1969-1970, but at the cost of FRELIMO losing some of its members, associated with the disgraced Uriah Simango and others, from the central provinces.21 The perception articulated by its opponents, that FRELIMO was made up of northern foot soldiers led by southern officers, dogged the party for many years.22 However, from the hostility shown to opposition groups by Beira audiences in 1974,23 and the rapturous reception given to Samora in Beira in June 1975, it appears certain that such factors were, at least for the time being, an unimportant side issue. This was definitely true in comparison to the perspectives opened by the ending of colonialism - itself a justification of the FRELIMO emphasis on unity against the colonial oppressor.

It is not clear when or how the decision to make the Triumphal Journey was taken. When Samora Machel's plane landed at the Mueda airstrip in Cabo Delgado on 24 May, the FRELIMO-dominated Provisional Government had completed an eight-month period in power. However, this had been marked by considerable uncertainty about the future, as right-wing settlers attempted to test FRELIMO's nerve and capacity with support from the white minority regimes in Rhodesia and South Africa.



From a public viewpoint, Samora Machel himself had perhaps been a remote and mysterious figure at the start of the period of the Transitional Government. During these months he travelled extensively, but while in Dar es Salaam was seen to exercise control at a distance. Indeed, on 29 October 1974, a few days after a second round of violent unrest in Lourenço Marques and within weeks of his appointment as Prime Minister, Joaquim Chissano flew to Dar es Salaam for consultations with the executive committee (comissão executiva) of FRELIMO. These focussed on how to deal with what were being characterised as 'vast' economic and political problems.24 Significantly, Chissano brought back a well-publicised message from Machel appealing for unity. There was no room for tribal or racial divisions, and 'the people' must combat any agitators who tried to introduce them. Machel also appealed for hard work, especially in agriculture.25

In December 1974, Machel paid a lengthy visit to the German Democratic Republic, Bulgaria and Romania, the three Socialist bloc countries that had supported FRELIMO most comprehensively during the armed struggle. In early May 1975, he began an eight-day farewell tour of Tanzania, with the political purpose of thanking the Tanzanian citizenry for their support of FRELIMO during the ten years of armed struggle. These visits, to nine Tanzanian regions, including such towns as Tanga, Iringa, Dodoma, Mbeya, Arusha and Moshi, were cheerful celebrations characterised by the planting of trees, listening to military bands and school choirs, and receptions in local hotels. All the places visited had some direct link with FRELIMO. This could either be due to educational or military influences, or simply the result of a high level of popular mobilisation of support for the struggle. Machel, according to reports, sometimes had difficulty controlling his emotions.26

The importance of the emotional links between FRELIMO and Tanzania, particularly during this period, should not be underestimated. The euphoria among large sections of the Tanzanian urban public certainly appears to have been genuinely felt. Tanzanian schoolchildren, for example, were politicised through the teaching of siasa (roughly, civics) in secondary schools, the only subject taught in Kiswahili, which included the freedom struggles in southern Africa. Nevertheless, there were conflicts and disagreements between the Tanzanians and FRELIMO (over the role of radical whites, for example) that were largely concealed by ideology and discourse. What both countries shared was a powerful and voluntaristic confidence in a socioeconomic approach to policy in the sense that a successful political dynamic leading to independence would necessarily produce tangible benefits.

Machel used the tour of Tanzania to broach some serious policy issues and to give notice to those who cared to listen of the positions that the incoming FRELIMO government was likely to take. In Lindi, on 8 May, for example, he announced that Mozambique would actively support the Zimbabwean liberation struggle and revealed that FRELIMO and the Commonwealth were discussing compensation if Rhodesian rail links to the sea were severed.27

During this period, FRELIMO held two meetings at its training camp in Nachingwea, in the Lindi region in the far south of Tanzania. At the second of these meetings, in May 1975, about four hundred 'reactionary agents and traitors to the Mozambican people' were presented as prisoners to the assembled cadres, journalists and distinguished guests. The group included such notable figures as Joana Simeáo, who had been arrested on 19 October on her return from Malawi,28 Uriah Simango, Lázaro Nkavandame, Basilio Banda and Verónica Anyayiva (Namiva). The highly theatrical and staged character of these meetings as political events struck contemporary observers vividly. 'Machel commanded centre stage for seven hours as if the leading actor in a Shakespearean drama', wrote one sympathetic journalist a decade later.29

Machel paid a four-day visit to Zambia between 12 and 15 May at the invitation of President Kenneth Kaunda, essentially to thank and say goodbye to the Zambian citizenry, whose country had also supported FRELIMO during the armed struggle.30 The visits to Tanzania and Zambia may be seen in the context of the emergence of what was to become the Frontline States, an alliance that was first formally recognised by the Organisation of African Unity in April 1975.31

FRELIMO's vice-president, Marcelino dos Santos, like Machel, did not take a role in the Transitional Government and concentrated instead on cementing alliances with the movement's traditional supporters and emphasising FRELIMO's determination to push for change nationally and regionally. Described by one South African newspaper of the time as 'dynamic and tough-talking, it is nevertheless unlikely that dos Santos was shooting from the hip when he warned the Rhodesian and South African governments that things were changing in southern Africa.32 In choosing to direct his remarks directly to Ian Smith and John Vorster, admonishing them to face the reality of the situation in southern Africa and 'to stop playing games', he was signalling serious policy intentions for public as well as private audiences.

After the prolonged and emotional leave-taking, Machel's aircraft finally landed on the airstrip in Mueda in Cabo Delgado province on 24 May 1975. After attempting to rouse the crowd with FRELIMO slogans, he is recorded as saying, at the beginning of an extremely brief speech,

Parece que todos têm medo, mas já não há administradores aqui, não é verdade? Ontem, eram bombas inimigas que gritavam, hoje, é a nossa vitória [It seems as if everybody's afraid, but the administrators aren't here any more, right? Yesterday it was the bombs that made a noise, but now it's our victory.]33

Mueda had been a Portuguese garrison town, but for the next few days Machel was back in much more familiar territory, addressing crowds at old FRELIMO bases across the extreme north. Moving steadily south, by the time he reached Beira he had spoken at more than 25 meetings at other FRELIMO bases in the former liberated zones, in provincial capitals such as Lichinga, Pemba, Nampula, Quelimane and Tete, and in various smaller towns and villages such as Ibo, Angoche, Morrumbala and Wiriyamu.

By mid-June, he had reached the centre of the country, territory where FRELIMO penetration had been most solidly opposed. The Portuguese had invested heavily in counter insurgency, including programmes of villagisation, intelligence gathering and Africanisation of the military. There was also a strong nucleus of settler farmers in Manica province, spread along the line of rail and road toward the Rhodesian border from Beira city. During the armed struggle these obstacles had failed to prevent FRELIMO's recent successes in the rural areas of the centre. However, Machel was about to enter an urban environment, where the dimensions and complexities presented a much more serious challenge to FRELIMO's social and political objectives, which would test its discursive strategy.


Beira, a City of Strategic Importance and Explosive Tensions

After the Second World War, and particularly in the 1960s, the port city of Beira was fundamental to Portuguese plans for the expanded development of central and northern Mozambique. Such plans provided the prospect of entrenching the Portuguese nationalist economic mission in Mozambique and neighbouring countries and were to be implemented through ambitious development projects.

The implementation of these plans was preceded by foreign policy initiatives crucial for the economic exploitation of Mozambican territory and for the defence of colonialism in southern Africa as a whole. Thus, for example, in June-August 1967, the Portuguese foreign minister made official visits to South Africa and Malawi, emphasising the spirit of cooperation that had been built up among the three countries on the basis of mutual security and economic relations. As the foreign minister recorded in his memoirs, the welcome afforded by President Hastings Banda of Malawi to Portuguese initiatives in Central Africa was fulsome:

President Banda did not hide his wish to strengthen relations with Portugal and to lead other states in the area in the same direction, particularly Zambia, Madagascar and the Congo. For their part, the Portuguese suggested the formation of an international organisation for the region, apolitical and non-ideological, for the purpose of mutual economic and technical collaboration; Banda welcomed the idea, and requested that the Portuguese draw up the details of such a plan; he, Banda, would present them as his own to other African leaders. Banda has bilateral relations with Portugal close to his heart: it can be said that Portuguese-Malawian cooperation became intimate.34

This proposal, amounting to a Portuguese-led 'constellation' of economically and politically aligned states, represented the consolidation of several years of Portuguese diplomacy and marks the most explicit statement of Portuguese regional strategy for southern and central Africa in the period.35

In the aftermath of these regional initiatives, economic projects began to be implemented with greater intensity. Undoubtedly the largest of these projects was the Cahora Bassa dam on the Zambezi, in central Mozambique, conceived in the late 1950s and early 1960s, and constructed between 1969 and 1974. Involving regional - mainly South African - and international financial and technical resources, the power it produced was to be supplied exclusively to the South African grid. The development of the Nacala port and railway system also took place in the 1960s, and it was finally linked to the Malawian rail system in 1971. At the same time, the Portuguese military effort to repulse the advance of FRELIMO guerrillas in the north of the country intensified, culminating with the well-known 'Operation Gordian Knot' in 1970.

As a result of these strategies, in the 1960s, Beira came to be the location of military and intelligence centres fundamental to the advance and defence of the colonial economic and political projects outlined above. More important still, from the viewpoint of Mozambique's liberators, until mid-1974 Beira was the centre of the political and military force capable of underpinning, through a settler-dominated state, the policy of 'progressive autonomy'. Caetano had articulated this for the colonies in 1969 and had encouraged it in a limited way through the economic and constitutional reforms of 1971-1972, which gave Mozambique the title of 'state'. Although limited, taken together with the growing Africanisation of the colonial army and commandos at this time, such reforms were a clear indication of the political and economic path then being developed by the colonial regime and raised the spectre of a war of liberation of much greater dimensions.36

In addition to its strategic importance, the liberation of Beira by FRELIMO in 1975 presented problems of a political nature resulting from its economic and social development typical of urban colonial life in southern Africa. Despite its rapid growth in the 1950s and 1960s, Beira was still a relatively small city marked by a long history of racial stratification. The late 1890s and early 1900s had seen the establishment of a Portuguese presence, the installation of the Companhia de Moçambique as Portugal's proxy administrator and developer, the beginning of the port and the construction of the railway to the emerging southern Rhodesia. All this resulted in the arrival and settlement in Beira of migrants closely involved in these colonial processes. Apart from Portuguese- and English-speaking migrants, among the arrivals, for example, were the Chinese who proved to be just as adept in railway and harbour construction, as well as in the Zambezi sugar industry, as Europeans, and were cheaper than other skilled labourers. They later took up market gardening and commerce. Their numbers expanded considerably in the 1950s and 1960s to over 4,200 by the early 1970s, and they were relatively larger as a community than in the colonial capital, Lourenço Marques.37 Samora Machel identifies the Chinese in his speech as belonging very much to the exclusive ethnically organised social hierarchy that was the colonial legacy to Beira.

A consequence of this racialised social hierarchy was active discrimination, particularly in commerce and the job market. In the struggle for employment, government-authorised trade unions (sindicatos nacionais) and their employment cards (carteiras profissionais) protected the jobs and high wages of whites. Meanwhile, even in the last decade of colonial rule, the liberty of movement and of contract of blacks was still strictly controlled by forms of registration and documentation - loosely described as 'pass laws' - under native administration (indigenato) regulations, which were only theoretically abolished in the 'reforms' of 1961.38 As Samora says in his speech, in colonial Mozambique 'jobs had colours. Wages had colours too'.

Indeed, it can be argued that race barriers and associated oppositional stances were even more stark in Beira than in Lourenço Marques, which, being much larger and having a wider variety of commerce and institutions, had proportionately more space for the still very limited assimilation of blacks. In the capital, for example, the Instituto Negrofilo, the main channel for the political assimilation of the black petite bourgeoisie, continued to function albeit under conservative leadership and the close supervision of the colonial authorities. In Beira, however, with its members accused of incitement to open political protest, the Núcleo Negrófilo had been suppressed in 1955,39 leaving no real channel for the socio-political assimilation of the majority population, or influence over them.



By contrast, the African population of Beiras informal (caniço) suburbs grew from about 34,000 to 91,000 in the period 1960-1970. In part, this may well have been a response to decreasing migration opportunities for black workers from central Mozambique in Southern Rhodesia, as well as the installation of some new industries in Beira and Dondo. Yet investment and economic growth in Beira was somewhat artificially confined by the reduction in transit traffic, resulting in part from sanctions against Rhodesia from the late 1960s.40

There was thus increased potential for social conflict over the various forms of participation and discrimination in the developing colonial economy, particularly as the colonial system came increasingly under question as the liberation struggle got under way in the 1960s. Socio-political tensions in Beira in the 1960s and early 1970s were exacerbated by determined positioning, on the central issue of the nature of Portuguese colonialism and African political rights and independence, from two other sources. The first of these was the Roman Catholic Church. The Bishop of Beira, Sebastião Soares de Resende (in office 1943-1967) had, from the late 1940s, encouraged the rapid development of missions partly through the introduction of non-Portuguese orders. Moreover, for more than 20 years the Bishop had promoted in various ways the questioning of a good deal of the basis of colonial socio-economic structure in his pastoral letters, books and, above all, in his newspaper, the Diário de Moçambique. In the 1960s, this critique was accompanied by the maturing of some of the Church's educational investment, the spirit of Catholic renovation typified in the II Vatican Council (1962-1965) and the growth of a pastoral consciousness more appropriate to the process of decolonisation.41

This was a context which contributed to intensified ideological polarisation between the Portuguese state and the Vatican at the end of the 1960s, marked by the emblematic meeting in Rome between leaders of the liberation movements in Portuguese African colonies, Amílcar Cabral, Marcelino dos Santos and Agostinho Neto, and Pope Paul VI on 1 July 1970. These pressures led to episodes of confrontation between Church and state specifically related to the war. Thus, the White Fathers, noted for their missionary practice close to African culture, and a central pillar of the ecclesiastical regime in the Beira diocese in Soares de Resende's time, were accused by the government of favouring relations with FRELIMO and were obliged to leave the country in April 1971. In this period, and in succeeding years, political and ideological tensions broke out into violent demonstrations against the Church by sections of the colonial population in Beira.42

The second source of conflict in the 1960s was the politico-military grouping led by Jorge Jardim, resident in Beira and nearby Dondo, whose commando-style military prowess - used by the regime in the 1961 Angola crisis - and personal contact with Salazar and Caetano led to his acquiring para-governmental political status in Beira, and indeed the whole colony. This parallel centre of power assumed the political leadership of colonial settler defence in central and northern Mozambique with ever-greater emphasis as the liberation struggle waged by FRELIMO moved on. This was particularly evident in the newspaper Notícias da Beira, whose editorial line was effectively directed by Jardim. In this struggle, after the Bishop's death, and with the Church pressured to appoint a more pliable successor, Jardim was able to take over Resende's newspaper Diário de Moçambique in 1968 with Government funds and invert its editorial line, absorbing it completely into Notícias da Beira in 1971.43

The advance of FRELIMO guerrillas in Tete province from 1970-1971 - in strategic reaction to the Portuguese operation 'Gordian Knot' - resulted in the rapid escalation of war in the centre of the country, threatening the Cahora Bassa project then under construction, and facilitating the passage of Zimbabwean guerrillas to northeast Rhodesia. With the weakness of existing means to resist such infiltration, other methods came to be more seriously considered by the colonial regime. Apart from the establishment of protected villages guarded by locally recruited militias, particularly in Tete province, the Africanisation' of the military as a whole took on a new relevance, reinforcing the semi-official role of Jardim. From 1972, commando-style Grupos Especiais Paraquedistas (Special Parachute Brigades) - often incorporating whites - and the ethnically based Grupos Especiais were formed. These politically oriented formations, recruited specifically to oppose the advance of FRELIMO, were trained partly at properties directed by Jardim in Dondo and were regarded by settler politicians as an essential component of the future political order under Portuguese control. At the same time, partly on the insistence of the Rhodesian secret services, the Portuguese security police (PIDE) also began to organize a new special force -the Flechas (Arrows').

It is estimated that there was a total of 30,000 African troops in the various sectors of the armed forces by 1974, concentrated mainly in the centre of the country.44 At times, Jardim took charge of commando-style operations against FRELIMO penetration in Nampula and Zambézia provinces and transit through neighbouring Malawi. He also undertook parallel diplomacy with the Malawian President Banda, aimed at curbing FRELIMO's strategic use of that territory. In practice, Beira came to be the headquarters of politico-military coordination - under Jardim's supervision - of surveillance of Malawi's borders.45 Notwithstanding their immediate incapacity to prevent the guerrilla advance, these relatively well-trained and well-armed forces represented a considerable potential threat to the future establishment of FRELIMO in the central provinces.

More radically, with the failure to prevent 'infiltration' and particularly the advance of FRELIMO into the central Tete province in 1970-1971, in 1973 Jardim advanced a plan for negotiations with FRELIMO via the Zambian presidency - the so-called 'Lusaka Programme'. This was designed to stem the further advance southward of the liberation forces, and to create space for semi-independent African political initiative.46 Rejected out of hand by FRELIMO, such a plan appealed to many whites as offering the possibility of a Rhodesia-style settler state. From their perspective, Africanisation of the Portuguese army appeared to obviate the absence of a Mozambican as opposed to a metropolitan Portuguese military structure. On the political front, furthering the plans of the last Portuguese Minister for Overseas Territories, Rebelo de Sousa (1973-1974) to support the creation of internal Mozambican political groupings, Jardim's far-reaching political manoeuvring resulted in the establishment in Beira in January 1974 of an evidently anti-FRELIMO African political grouping, the Grupo Unido de Moçambique (GUMO). GUMO was led by Máximo Dias and Joana Simeão, the latter a former member of COREMO, a smaller grouping of mainly ex-FRELIMO nationalists that had been overtaken by FRELIMO's success in Tete province.47

Socio-political tensions stemming from this complex process were actively expressed in violent settler demonstrations - widely thought to have been stimulated by Jardim and his agents. For example, on 1 January 1972, priests in Macuti (a wealthy Beira suburb) articulated their position in favour of justice and peace in Mozambique and against racial domination, referring openly to the massacre perpetrated by colonial troops at Mukumbura, Tete, in November 1971, and refusing to use the Portuguese flag in ceremonies in their church. Condemned as 'subversive' by Notícias da Beira, the priests became the object of several protests and demonstrations by settlers before their trial and judgment in a military tribunal. When the priests were finally acquitted in January 1973, demonstrations reached such a level of aggression that they were obliged to leave the country.48

In January 1974, with the war in the central and northern provinces at an even more critical phase, settlers demonstrated again, this time against the perceived inactivity and inefficiency of the Portuguese officers stationed in Beira. It was a confrontation which showed the great distance between the expectations of the settlers and the real capacities of the regular army to defend the regime in Mozambique, which led to the elaboration of one of the more important documents explaining the changing philosophy within the colonial army regarding the conduct of the war.49

Indeed, the politico-military and ideological crisis in the first half of 1974, and the gradual coalescence of the Portuguese Armed Forces Movement (Movimento das Forças Armadas-MFA) around an accommodationist stance toward African nationalist movements could only increase tensions in Beira. After the 25 April coup d'état in Portugal, the beginning of GUMO's political activity on 11-12 May 1974 was also the occasion for open settler violence. This turned on General Francisco da Costa Gomes, vice-president of the newly installed Portuguese Junta Nacional de Salvação, during his fact-finding visit to the city at the time. As a result of this experience of settler violence, and fearing its development toward an independence outside the control of the new government in Lisbon, Costa Gomes is said to have inspired the arrest warrant issued against Jardim who, fortuitously or not, was in Lisbon during the coup, and was thus impeded from returning to Mozambique.50

In his speeches in Mozambique, Costa Gomes asserted the new government's colonial policy. This was to invite FRELIMO to lay down its arms and turn itself into a political party like the many others springing up after 25 April, and to participate in debate before free and fair elections or a referendum, which would hopefully lead to Mozambique's remaining within a mooted Portuguese commonwealth. Such a discourse only served to heighten suspicion that the Portuguese generals were still attempting to use the divisive methods already used with considerable success in Angola, when Costa Gomes had supported UNITA against the MPLA in the period 1970-1972. This time, however, the division was to be pitched at a political level, creating space for opponents or lukewarm supporters of the liberation war to operate against FRELIMO. The generals thus appeared to be extending even further the Jardim strategy. No doubt fear of such neo-colonialist manoeuvres, as well as of settler politico-military mobilisation, soured the political atmosphere of the transition from the start. It also gave further justification for the vanguardist stance of the FRELIMO leadership, and the violent dislike expressed toward such groups in Samora's speech.51

In fact, the new political context after the coup d'état in Portugal created space for the open expression of positions and activities of a number of professionals who, until then, had been clandestine supporters of FRELIMO - such as the Democratas de Moçambique. In Beira, as well as in Lourenço Marques, there were a number of these, the heirs of a long and well-established anti-fascist and anti-metropolitan tradition. From June 1974, members of such groups came to dominate the main means of communication in the country, including Jardim's Notícias da Beira.52 However, this opening also enabled the evolution of political parties, including GUMO and COREMO and, later, the Partido de Coligação Nacional (National Coalition), inaugurated in Beira in August 1974, and led by Uriah Simango.53

By mid-July 1974, the radical MFA in Mozambique moved more directly toward termination of the war, recommending to their leaders in Lisbon 'immediate recognition of FRELIMO as the legitimate representative of the Mozambican people and the right of that people to independence'.54 The Portuguese military thus manifested its unwillingness to continue the struggle in Mozambique, and the MFA in Lisbon was correspondingly willing to hold direct talks with FRELIMO on the nature of transition and independence. This subverted the stance of the older generals and meant that, as the talks between FRELIMO and Portugal developed toward final agreement in Lusaka on 7 September 1974, the prime focus of political struggle shifted to controlling the centre of the state apparatus in the capital, Lourenço Marques. The balance of forces contributed to the political neutralisation of the colonialist dream. On one side, FRELIMO political support and the military cohesion of the MFA coincided with the effect of the Vorster-Kaunda détente in limiting support for the settler cause in neighbouring South Africa. On the other side, Jardim - by then based in Swaziland and Johannesburg - lost any hope of pursuing the vestiges of his Lusaka Programme. Nevertheless, settler resistance to the installation of the transitional government on 29 September 1974, headed by FRELIMO and containing members nominated by the Portuguese government, occasioned violent conflict in Lourenço Marques, costing many lives, in September and October.55

In the context of heightened tensions brought about by the prospect of rapid decolonisation and revanchist settler ambition, the transitional government did a reasonable job in establishing a degree of relative political calm between October 1974 and June 1975. This owed much to the political alignment between FRELIMO, the MFA and the new Portuguese administration on the composition and installation of the transitional government, and to FRELIMO's being able openly to embark on the creation of its political structures after a decade of risk-laden clandestine political work.

Even so, such relative stability was achieved at the cost of corralling dissidents such as Simango and Joana Simeão - whose participation in the events of September 1974 appeared to confirm their active collaboration with settler colonialism - to face FRELIMO militants and the press at Nachingwea (referred to above). Moreover, the installation of the transitional government, as if confirming that the rhythm of political decolonization would materially affect the existing socio-economic structure of the country, intensified the flight of settlers, members of PIDE and others to Rhodesia and South Africa. Particularly in Rhodesia, confronting a critical security crisis brought about by the loss of its Portuguese ally, the receptivity in its security forces for any reinforcement for use against ZANLA and FRELIMO supported the infiltration into Mozambique of anti-government guerrilla groups already initiated in June 1974. Samora mentions this activity in the first part of his speech as a warning of what revanchist colonialism, defeated but not yet destroyed, might mean.56

Yet, in the absence of a history of party activity or of any constitutional means for the resolution of political conflict during the rapid transition to independence, this relative stability may well have resulted in the seeming attenuation of the negative potential, for the colonial population, of transforming the existing social and economic system. If such were the case, Samora's speech in Beira on 14 June, with its frontal attack on that system, on the social privileges it supported and on the negative cultural consequences for the majority of the population, refocused attention on the difficult tasks ahead and implied that the transformation would, on the contrary, be no easy matter, particularly for the privileged. The main crowd in the comício, largely black, and expecting to meet the leader of the victorious nationalist movement for the first time, could be expected to share in the euphoria of upsetting the old order, the nature of which is of course the central message of the speech. It is noteworthy that Samora's verbal onslaught on the status quo gets a delighted response from the audience.57

Such a verbal onslaught functioned both coercively and persuasively in enrolling audiences whose reaction to FRELIMO's political objectives would certainly have been mixed, as we have shown. We now examine FRELIMO's language policy, especially with regard to Portuguese as a unifying factor in soon-to-be-independent Mozambique before moving on to an analysis of the specific rhetorical character of the speech, viewed as direct political action rather than merely a set of verbal devices.


The Use of Portuguese and the Policy of 'Enrichment' in the 1970s

FRELIMO's on-going concern with national unity led to an awareness of the importance of the political implications of the choice of Portuguese as the language of the struggle. In this context, Machel and FRELIMO came to transmit various political messages through a revolutionary semiotic that included various elements. Examples of these were their choice of venue for the rally, the informal ways in which the population was called upon to attend, the actual content and argument of the speech and, not least, the use of a specific variety of Portuguese for the delivery of political content. Such a semiotic would have been entirely consistent with what we know of FRELIMO's desire in 1975 to revolutionise and transform Mozambican society rapidly. In making this argument, we necessarily lean strongly towards a functionalist view of language, considering it to be a discursive project located in a societal context, rather than an autonomous, formal system. The most obvious reason for this is that part of our purpose is to understand the force, as well as the sense of Machel's speech in the historical circumstances of the time.58 We thus see the rhetorical devices that we describe as high-level argumentative conventions, which at a concrete level may be quite specific to Portuguese and/or to Mozambique. Our brief narrative analysis of the speech is thus intended to demonstrate the usefulness of rhetorical analysis in interpreting the political dynamic of this early encounter between FRELIMO's leader and the population of Beira.

The study of rhetoric as a speciality is in its essence inter-disciplinary, and the analysis of political discourse from the past, even the quite recent past, requires an understanding of both history and politics.59 The pragmatic analysis of political speech and language has a long but largely hidden tradition, going back to the pioneering work of the North American political scientist, Harold Laswell, in the aftermath of the Second World War.60 Since then, but most especially from the 1980s onwards, scholars interested in this topic have worked in a wide range of disciplines, using diverse research methodologies and approaching linguistic functionality from different directions.61 The fragmentation both of effort and product seems still to be a largely unresolved problem.62 This is especially true at a theoretical level, where it is difficult to discern coherence. On the one hand, 'discourse analysis' has attracted the attention of the major figures of postmodern literary and cultural studies. On the other hand, the study of how meaning is constructed in concrete situations is the business of the branch of linguistics known as pragmatics. Indeed, the very term 'rhetoric', both as activity and as discipline, remains slippery and hard to define.63 The central problem has remained, however, the nature of the relationship between power and language, and - in this complex environment - the French engage thinker, Pierre Bourdieu (1930-2002), has exerted enormous influence. Bourdieu argued that a 'legitimate language' is one which people associate in their minds with power and authority. Since it is actively taught in the educational system, and is the subject of official policy and planning, it becomes, in Bourdieu's terminology, a kind of 'symbolic capital' in an integrated language market. Members of the ruling classes have full(er) access through education, accent and so on.64

In this context, it can plausibly be argued that FRELIMO's act of appropriating Portuguese as Mozambique's vehicular language - 'use the enemy's language to defeat the enemy' - was itself 'an act of major significance, full of subversive potential'. The mastery of 'good [i.e. European] Portuguese' was a means of bestowing authority on groups such as the assimilados, who also had to have jobs and be monogamous. Any substantive change in linguistic policy was thus seen as a real threat to their social standing and authority.65

However, hierarchical relations of power are not the only determinants of language choices or of language policy. It is plausible - and not necessarily contradictory - also to see FRELIMO's pragmatic adoption of a demotic Portuguese variety as establishing a 'means of horizontal communication' between people in a struggle and committed to an egalitarian political practice, as opposed to the vertical communication of standard European Portuguese, the variety of colonial domination and mastery.66

In any event, a speech in Portuguese by the FRELIMO leader at a public meeting could not have functioned in an unproblematic way as a means of social communication. Apart from the political issues, there were obviously major linguistic barriers, given that the command of Portuguese among the Mozambican listeners possibly varied from first language fluency to virtually complete ignorance of the language. These were difficult barriers to overcome, and may have influenced Machel to simplify both his uses of language and his politico-historical argument. The straightforward contrast, made by some observers, between a hypothetical European Portuguese standard (EP) and an equally hypothetical variety called Mozambican Portuguese (MP), often spoken as a second language and marked by various typical 'errors', is both highly normative and makes a sweeping generalisation.67 A much more nu-anced reality is being uncovered in which aspects such as age, gender, education, social context, language contact and even government language policy all play a role. Mozambican speakers as a group constitute an especially complex picture, which is a result of the diversity of Bantu languages that they speak as mother tongues, the wide variation in their levels of education, social stratification and regional asymmetries.68 Thus, MP presents an assortment of registers, ranging from those heavily influenced by local usage to near standard EP.69 It is 'a "complex matrix of varieties" in a continuous state of flux, adaptation and change driven by the interaction of multiple social factors'.70 Indeed, it is probably reasonable to describe Mozambican Portuguese as 'a dialect being born'.71

Whether FRELIMO ever had a serious intention in the 1970s to privilege a still-to-be-codified MP over the EP norm, as a question of policy, has been a matter to which scholars have devoted some passing attention.72 Machel's choice of an MP register for the delivery of the speech would acquire extra significance if this could be shown to have been the case. There is, in fact, some scattered and largely circumstantial evidence that FRELIMO wanted, in the mid-1970s, to see if it was possible to develop the demotic Portuguese of the Mozambican towns into a new vehicular language of national unity with its own grammatical, lexical and syntactical characteristics. As independence approached, and given the FRELIMO leadership's preoccupation with national and political unity, the general choice of Portuguese as a neutral and already codified language was entirely natural and arose from its use by the colonial power as well as by the liberation movement.73

The question was, which Portuguese was appropriate? There was a significant amount of 'revolutionary rhetoric around Portuguese' throughout the period.74 Machel himself seemingly had a low opinion of the expressive capacity of the language in comparison with, for example, Spanish. At the same time, he believed that Mozambicans used it more effectively than the Portuguese (or, apparently, the Brazilians). In a conversation with Mozambican students in Cuba in August 1980, he claimed that

Portuguese is a weak language; it doesn't burn with a bright light. Only the former colonies, in freeing themselves, are modifying the language, especially Mozambique and Angola. We are enriching Portuguese ... Portuguese doesn't leave a student with a broad, clear view of life. Even today we are struggling against this inheritance... If you complete your secondary education and subsequently your higher education, you will be able to think in Spanish, and not just in Portuguese. And this is a good thing.75

It is easy to see that this kind of approach might alarm those who had a cultural investment in normative EP: not only was it no longer seen as a language of authority, it was not even possible to think clearly in it. Machel returned to the theme a few months later in an obviously jovial conversation with a sympathetic Portuguese reporter:

We speak better Portuguese here. And why? Clear Portuguese, because of clear ideas, clear content, clear objectives. The language only gets richer in this way ... and that's why we say that we speak better Portuguese here. We like it a lot, we're going to cultivate it. [Samora Machel laughs heartily].76

However, commenting on these remarks at the time, the writer Mia Couto argued cautiously that rules for an 'Africanised' MP could not be developed 'in an office', but would, on the contrary, emerge in unforeseeable ways as part of a prolonged process. Machel, he contended, was simply pointing to the connection between 'free thought and a liberating language'.77

In a similarly ambiguous vein, José Luís Cabaço, then Minister of Information, claimed that 'within a few years, a form of Portuguese will be spoken in Mozambique, that is a Mozambican Portuguese that has its own characteristics, ours. [...] It will be a Portuguese born out of the participation of our people in the process of national reconstruction.'78

Such speculations had two characteristics in common, a kind of voluntarism about language policy, married to the idea that political virtue would, somehow or other, 'enrich' and thus create a viable MP.79 The idea of enriquecimento as a defining characteristic of the Mozambican linguistic process was commonplace by the late 1970s, perhaps influenced by examples from the Soviet Union.80 Machel himself, on both the occasions cited above, claimed that Mozambicans were enriching the Portuguese lexicon; the Portuguese linguist, Óscar Lopes, made similar assertions in a text published in late 1979.81 Certainly some Mozambican writers had experimented (and continue to experiment) with new ways of representing Mozambican speech. As Stroud has pointed out, the importance of the fiction of Luís Bernardo Honwana, among others, was that by putting passages of Mozambican Portuguese into his characters' mouths 'without revision or modification [...] replete with errors of simplification and transfer', he challenged the status quo, and by the very act of representation legitimised Mozambican speaking. The 'marginal and wrong' by the normative standards of the Portuguese colono or settler thus becomes acceptable as a mode of discourse, in the articulation of 'a politics of identity in transition'.82



It may be the case that by mid-1975 different practices of the Portuguese language in Mozambique had begun to compete for political supremacy, as Stroud has argued, with FRELIMO seeking 'to further its popular legitimacy by appealing to vernacular, or non-standard forms of Portuguese in a rhetoric of political mobilization and authority'83 However, FRELIMO had other and more urgent matters to attend to, and although language policy was discussed at conferences on the media (1975) and on education (1979), by the early 1980s EP had effectively re-established itself as the accepted normative standard.84

The population of Beira in 1975 - and hence, almost certainly, the audience at the comício - was linguistically as well as socially heterogeneous. It would have included members of an employed middle class of mestiços, white colonos and black assimilados, all of whom would have understood EP, but some of whom may have spoken something closer to the hypothetical MP. There would have been skilled members of an employed black working class, mother tongue speakers of either Ndau or Sena. They would probably have understood spoken MP at an elementary level. Lastly, the black underclass - the unemployed and the underemployed - would in effect have understood either Ndau or Sena and would have relied on the quality of interpretation at such an occasion as this.

Equality of speech-code - in other words, using the preferred order of discourse of those whom the speaker seeks to persuade - is a fundamental strategy that distinguishes intimates from strangers, outsiders from insiders. Language, 'especially group-language, is the badge par excellence of belonging: nothing anyone could say (and mean) is more convincing of in-group identity than the familiar ring of how somebody says what he [sic] need not really mean'.85 But Mozambique is a multilingual society in which Portuguese is a second language for most of the population. To choose to speak it for political discourse has an effect similar to the same choice in education.86 It might be argued - to take an extreme position - that the unintended but inevitable consequence of FRELIMO's privileging of Portuguese would have been to limit access for the majority of the population. In such a view, education and politics become the terrain of a privileged elite.87 It is clear that FRELIMO took steps to avoid this danger, as we have argued here.

Machel's choice of Portuguese for his public speeches, driven by FRELIMO's policy of using the language to build national unity, therefore ran the risk of having the objective and undesired result of reinforcing caste distinction within the society. His resolution of this dilemma was, whether consciously or unconsciously, to adapt his order of discourse to the circumstances by using a variety of MP - a means of horizontal communication - that would be most accessible to the majority of his listeners, and in which he was himself competent. At the same time, he was implicitly inviting his audience to collude with him in both the choice and the process. The subsequent editing of this and other texts may well have been a de facto transformative act for social communication since newspaper and book readers would likely expect normative EP in a written text. Thus: spoken in MP, published in EP.

This hypothesis seems to be supported by the data. Throughout the speech, Machel employs short phrases and sentences in repetitive patterns, a simplified grammar and a limited lexis. In a text of 5,720 word occurrences, his vocabulary consists of a mere 1,264 word types. This total includes separately each of the various inflected and elided forms of Portuguese definite articles, verbs, and so on; an analysis of lexemes would reduce the total lexis of the speech even further. The text, as punctuated by us, consists of 799 short sentences or phrases with an average length of just over seven words.

There is virtually no use of the subjunctive case (conjuntivo), widely used in concessive subordinate phrases in standard EP to refer to hypothetical occurrences or to events that did not in fact take place. The use of indicative forms where EP would require a subjunctive is beginning to be recognised as characteristic of the Mozambican variety of the language.88 Interestingly, the most common marker words for subjunctive phrases, 'talvez or 'embora, do not occur at all in this text. Yet Machel's political discourse is far from being simply assertive, nor does it deal in unqualified and un-nuanced certainties about Mozambican reality.

What amounts to Machel's didactic practice in relation to his audience can be seen by the frequency with which certain words and phrases reoccur. For example, the most frequently occurring content-bearing lexical item is the term 'povo' which occurs 82 times in the singular and plural. Second, Machel is concerned not to distance himself from his listeners, but rather to confirm and verify that he is, in fact, articulating their own views. Thus, he asks his listeners 'Ouviram?' [Do you hear?] a total of 59 times, 'É ou não é? [Is it or isn't it?] over 50 times, and there are occasional variations such as 'Compreendem? [Do you understand?].


Machel's Rhetorical Practice: A Politics of Persuasion or Coercion?89

The ancient art of rhetoric has traditionally been seen as the use of oratory to exercise influence through persuasion by convincing listeners of the correctness of an argument. However, more recent scholarship has suggested that persuasiveness is not the whole story. Although it is a commonplace that rhetoric embraces 'all the available means of influencing human behavior and ... some of these are persuasive and some are not', it is also true that 'rhetoric ... may be either persuasive or coercive.'90 Modern analysts of rhetoric recognise the 'intimate and compelling relationship between persuasion and coercion', and the fact that some element of the latter may be necessary to achieve rhetorical objectives.91 It is also true that a conventional and widely held view of political rhetoric is that it is epiphenomenal, which is to say that it is essentially a manifestation of more 'real' kinds of power relations.92 However, our analysis of the discourse of FRELIMO, as a liberation movement on the cusp of victory, at the moment of acceding to power, reveals a significantly different rhetoric at work, one that is central and not marginal to the political process. We believe that the Beira intervention shows significant signs of being rhetorically coercive as well as persuasive. Speaking in Beira, Samora Machel is engaging in what has been called a 'framing contest',93 which is to say that he is shifting basic assumptions about Mozambican society towards the politics of independence and socialist transformation and away from the politics of colonialism and the struggle against it. His immediate task is

through skilful framing, to leave [his] opponents without access to the rhetorical materials needed to craft a socially sustainable rebuttal. Rhetorical coercion occurs when this strategy proves successful: when the claimant's opponents have been talked into a corner, compelled to endorse a stance they would otherwise reject.94

In support of this idea, the section of Machel's speech that deals with the role of assimilados seems likely to have been found offensive and unpersuasive by those assimilados who were present in the crowd. Nevertheless, in the new political frame, there was no sustainable response, either at the time or later (for example, during the 1983 meetings with the comprometidos).95

Krebs and Jackson have argued that, in general, the concept of rhetoric as

persuasion is theoretically and methodologically problematic . rhetoric's role may be more usefully conceptualized in the context of coercion . scholars [should] avoid focusing on unanswerable questions about actors' motives and . examine instead what actors say, in what contexts, and to what audiences.96

In this essay, we have attempted to analyse the five elements of rhetoric - the orator, the speech, the audience, the situation and the outcome - as well as some of the seven techniques - oratory itself, vocabulary and register, humour and Machel's relationship with his audience. The fact that a recording is available means that pitch, tone and inflection are also available for analysis.

Machel works hard to construct a narrative that both recounts (in this case, the history of the struggle) and accounts (the nature of the enemy) in offering persuasive reasons for accepting and supporting his and FRELIMO's ideas, policies and legitimacy as the future wielders of state power. To be effective, such a narrative must be characterised both by coherence (it must make sense) and by fidelity (it must resonate with listeners' experiences and values).97 We see Machel periodically testing for coherence and fidelity by inviting the audience to affirm its assent to the narrative, and in one case at least finding that they have failed to follow his argument sufficiently closely. These qualities of coherence and fidelity are political in character, however. The narrative must make sense, and it must resonate, but it is not necessarily required to present an entirely accurate or nuanced historical account of the past if this would interfere with its rhetorical function.

Political orators typically use a range of different strategies and techniques, and it is not hard to find examples in the Beira text. Machel often employs simple and explicit rhetorical devices to invite (or compel) his listeners to agree with a particular proposition that he has offered for consideration before basing further argument on it. Examples of such argumentative devices include such apostrophes, already mentioned, as:

É ou não é? [Is it or isn't it?]

Ouviram? [Do you hear?]

Certo? [Correct?]

In some instances the phrase is repeated as many as three times, as in a crescendo. Once the audience has responded positively to Machel's rhetorical invitation, the subsequent statements that he makes, regardless of their degree of logical relevance, can be made to seem part of the overall point of view agreed to. What have been called 'unmitigated' assertions, without any proof or supporting argument, 'are among the most direct and therefore the most brutal ways of handling the interlocutor's views and attitudes'.98 Machel uses this type of assertion occasionally throughout this speech, although more often than not the assertion is in fact followed by some kind of argumentation. In other words, mitigation follows assertion, as in the two following examples:

Falar da Beira é falar do crime [To speak of Beira is to speak of crime].

... FRELIMO, legítimo representante do povo moçambicano [... FRELIMO, the legitimate representative of the Mozambican people].

A variation on the assertive technique involves requiring listeners to repeat statements out loud. Typically, FRELIMO leaders, along with the leaders of many other African liberation movements and political parties such as the MPLA of Angola, the ANC of South Africa and ZANU in Zimbabwe, made and continue to make use of the device of repeating slogans at the beginning and at the end of speeches or meetings. Palavras de ordem utilise a kind of linguistic conditioning for their irrational, emotional impact. They work because they have been repeatedly used before in situations that had or have acquired a common significance for the hearers.

Thus, a long series of variations along the lines of 'Viva FRELIMO!' or 'Viva o povo moçambicano unido do Rovuma ao Maputo!' evoke a formulaic response from the audience of 'Viva!' sometimes repeated several times. In another variation, the speaker shouts 'Independência ou morte!', and the audience is expected to know that the correct response is 'Venceremos!'. These exchanges of slogans function at various levels. By knowing and making the correct response, listeners were able to show that they 'belonged' to a group that did not have to have everything laid out explicitly, presumably 'patriotic Mozambicans'. In addition, the exchanges served as disciplinary devices, reinforced support for specific political lines and denounced enemies of the struggle. In earlier periods of actual armed struggle, popular familiarity with the potentially violent consequences of non-participation also served to underline the coercive nature of such exchanges.

Nonetheless, if an audience is made up of, say, party members or supporters, then the use of this technique is significantly less manipulative and exclusiviste than it would be at a general public meeting of the Mozambican citizenry. In any case, this type of assertion is highly presumptuous and manipulative communication behaviour insofar as it is apparently based on the idea that people may be more likely to subscribe to statements that they have actually uttered themselves, even if they have not done so entirely of their own free will.

'Name-calling' is the 'smallest unit of assertive communicative behaviour'.99 The effectiveness of name-calling is situated in the fact that both derogatory and affectionate nicknames are normally impervious to logical argument or to proof or disproof - and they are therefore hard to get rid of. Early in the speech, Machel effectively appropriates a derogatory nickname when he proudly introduces Marcelino dos Santos and Gideon Ndobe as 'turras', originally an insulting abbreviation of the word terrorist, used widely in the Portuguese army to denominate FRELIMO guerrillas.

Machel quite often makes an effort to maintain a strophic pattern. For example, when he is speaking of the way domestic servants were exploited by the Portuguese in colonial times, he keeps the key concept, the 'empregados' themselves, at the beginning of a series of sentences:

Empregados que não recebiam dinheiro [Servants who didn't receive their wages].

Empregados que depois de seis meses eram encarcerados porque roubaram! [Servants who were thrown in jail for theft after six months].

Empregados que depois de doze meses eram expulsos para evitar o pagamento [Servants who were sacked after 12 months so that they wouldn't have to be paid].

He also makes extensive use of repetitive elision in a pattern of reiterating parts of sentences, sometimes without verbs, sometimes consisting only of a verb. As Sornig argues, 'utterances that allegedly and seemingly can do without a full wording endow a statement with a certain kind of general validity and acceptability', and this is the effect of this technique.100 The speech includes an important and effective passage describing 'o pretinho assimilado' [the little black assimilado], for instance (complete with its highly derogatory diminutive). He is unlikely to have been referring to all assimilados: the passage makes sense only when seen as satirising those who adopted the slavish behavioural characteristics of the coloniser in social and political life. In the context of the city of Beira and its political significance for FRELIMO this would have been immediately understood by most of his audience. Referring to spoken assimilado Portuguese, Machel goes on:

Já sabe dizer uma frase completa. Imitando. Não pensa. Imitando. Imita. Imita. Não sai da cabeça. Imita. Certos hábitos, imita. Imita até o pensamento. Imita até a pronuncia.... [He knows how to speak a complete sentence. Imitating. He doesn't think. Imitating. He imitates. He imitates.

It doesn't come from his head. He imitates. Certain habits, he imitates. He even imitates the thinking. He even imitates the pronunciation....]

The listeners are forced to complete the thought behind the repeated utterance, to identify the specific ways in which such assimilados imitate the behaviour of the colonists and by the very process of working out what Machel may mean come to identify themselves with and accept the political reasoning and the social meaning. In another passage, Machel refers to the multitude of political parties that emerged in Beira as soon as political conditions were safe enough after the 25 April coup. These were seen by FRELIMO, with some justification, as lacking legitimacy because they had not participated in the armed struggle, and, indeed, some of them openly and opportunistically represented colonial interests. Machel characterises them as mere puppet organisations:

... quero chamar a atenção a esses fantoches. A esses fantoches. Títeres. Títeres. Títeres, são títeres [... I want to call attention to these puppets. To these puppets. Marionettes. Marionettes. Marionettes, they're marionettes].

The ability to decode these incomplete utterances in the context of knowledge of FRELIMO's broad public policy can be seen as an indication of the hearer's 'Mozambican-ness'. By participating in the act of decoding, by completing the thought of the speaker, the hearer identifies with the utterance at various levels, not least of which is its propositional content.

Elsewhere, for example in characterising the city of Beira both literally and politico-metaphorically as a centre of corruption and crime, Machel makes use of sentences without verbs, which, because listeners can decode them without their needing to be grammatically complete, acquire acceptance.

Na Beira - violação de mulheres, banditismo. O centro do banditismo, aqui. [In Beira - raping of women, banditry. The centre of banditry, here].

The very vagueness and generality of these assertions means that, theoretically at least, they could easily be misunderstood, but that the speaker is entirely confident that they will not be - and thus the listener, busy completing the utterance, is ensnared into collusion with the speaker's intention.

The use of acoustic devices such as alliteration, rhyme or assonance to reinforce belief in an argument, or to even disguise dissimilarities between concepts so that listeners will accept a package less critically, is an ancient rhetorical device, and is recognised in African languages. Machel makes fairly subtle use of alliteration, so that it is noticeable but not exaggerated.

Dominados, discriminados, desprezados [Dominated, discriminated, disrespected].

Bandidos e bandoleiros [Bandits and outlaws].

Agrediam, assassinavam, massacravam, matavam, violavam [They assaulted, they murdered, they massacred, they killed, they raped].

Contradições profundas, contradições antagónicas, insolúveis, irredutíveis [Deep contradictions, antagonistic contradictions, unsolvable, irreducible].

In this last example, Machel is making reference to Marxist terminology - an antagonistic contradiction is structural in character and therefore unsolvable - that would probably have been unfamiliar to many in his audience. Nonetheless, the repetition of 'contradições' followed by the alliteration of 'insolúveis','irredutíveis' serves to reinforce acceptance of the fundamental idea of an antagonistic contradiction without Machel having to interrupt the flow of his rhetoric to explain, in what would have constituted a kind of discursive footnote, what he was in fact referring to.

Portuguese uses forms of address quite explicitly to indicate relations of power. Speakers employ a range of devices, including formal third person referential forms such as o senhor or a senhora (the so-called pronomes de tratamento or polite forms of address), intermediate and neutral forms, such as você and the familiar tu. What is noticeable is not so much how Machel addresses his listeners, but rather that he addresses them at all. By speaking to the crowd directly - asking them about their general experience - he makes them complicit in argument over which they have little or no actual control, as the following two examples show:

Se nós tivermos muita comida, a vida será barata ou será cara? [If we had a lot of food, would life be cheap or expensive?]

Como é que [os vossos filhos] apareciam nas fileiras portuguesas? [How come your children were found on the Portuguese side?]

Interestingly, Machel also exploits ambiguity in his use of the form nós [we], which is employed in various ways, from the simple editorial 'we', through occasional inclusive uses (eu plus vocês) to invite collusion, and even sometimes exclusive uses (eu plus FRELIMO):

Nós somos moçambicanos, e temos orgulho de sermos moçambicanos [inclusive: We are Mozambicans and we are proud to be Mozambicans].

Não, nós não somos inferiores [inclusive: No, we are not inferior].

Nós combatemos com armas na mão e vencemos o colonialismo [exclusive: We fought with guns in our hands and we defeated colonialism].

Nós fizemos a guerra sem o dinheiro [exclusive: We fought the war without any money].

By leaving the specific significations of this 'nós' ambiguous, by not counter-posing them as 'we Mozambicans' or 'we in FRELIMO', Machel is able yet again to invite collusion from his listeners, who become implicitly supporters of the struggle, supporters of the movement.

Deflation or inflation of referential content can be achieved by varied means. A fundamental political view of the world held by FRELIMO as an about-to-be-Marxist party was that, in the words of their best-known slogan, a luta continua - the war is not only not over, it will never be over. We live in a permanently present world of struggle, of class contradictions and history does not end, things go on, changing dialectically, but continuing. In Beira, Machel is far indeed from closure on anything other than a phase of the struggle as he prepares his audience for the difficulties that lie ahead. Precisely because a luta continua, the bad features of colonialism, which might have been assumed to be coming to an end by this time, remain firmly in the present even though the Portuguese have actually been defeated. Thus the audience's historical - and most importantly, political - perspective shifts from the recent past to an actual and on-going present.



Given that equality of speech code was not the dominant reality in Beira, Machel quite reasonably shows little confidence in his listeners' capacity to decode irony. Even though he makes some use of irony, it is clear that with the culturally and linguistically mixed audience he was addressing it was a risky tactic. The possibility of being taken literally was always present, and indeed he manages to trip the audience up on occasion. For instance, following Portuguese racist logic, he ironically suggests that the superior race has just managed to lose the war. When, in answer to the confirmatory 'É ou não é?' and to his apparent surprise, the audience gives the 'wrong' reply, he then proceeds to correct and admonish:

Mas já caíu o colonialismo. Não é verdade? [É] Porque é que caíu, se é raça superior? O colonialismo era representado por uma raça branca. Porque é que caíu, então? Prova de que o povo é mais forte do que qualquer outra força. Ouviram? [Ouviram] Derrubamos o colonialismo português aqui. Não é? Então, foi derrotado o colonialismo português por uma raça inferior! É ou não é? [É] Não somos inferiores, não. Derrotamos porque somos iguais a eles. Ouviram? [But colonialism has collapsed. Isn't that true? [It is]. Why did it collapse, if it's a superior race? Colonialism was represented by a white race. So, why did it collapse? Proof that the people are stronger than any other force. Do you hear? [We hear]. We defeated Portuguese colonialism here. Right? So, Portuguese colonialism was beaten by an inferior race? Was it or wasn't it? [It was]. No, we are not inferior, no! We beat them because we are equal to them. Do you hear?]

Não, nós não somos inferiores. Não devem pensar assim. Não devem pensar assim [No, we are not inferior. You must not think like that. You must not think like that].

Machel occasionally uses words that are unusual, unfamiliar or even invented lexemes, perhaps consciously to create a shock effect. Mozambican Portuguese is characterised as a variety by some socio-linguists partly for its neologisms.101 However, the few cases of this that occur in the Beira speech are hard to analyse. It is difficult to tell whether Machel, himself speaking a second language, is groping for a word, or if the word was commonly used in MP at the time, as in the following example:

Não queremos reacionarismo em Moçambique [We don't want reactionarism in Mozambique].


Political Discourse and Social Communication under a Marxist Regime

In order to draw wider conclusions about the way in which Machel exercised power over the policy process, and over political actors such as the party, the state structures and the population as a whole, a much larger corpus will need to be submitted to analysis. We are fortunate in that we have bibliographic control over the published utterances of Machel through the work of Souto and Sopa, which lists his speeches, interviews and messages year by year up until his death in 1986.102 Unfortunately, most of these texts have been submitted to the process of linguistic standardisation that we have already discussed, and are thus of diminished value as primary sources for the kind of analysis that we have attempted here. However, the speeches that Machel delivered during the triumphal journey constitute, perhaps, a sub-category of such a corpus, and the recordings made at the time remain available in the Arquivo Histórico de Moçambique for future historical and sociolinguistic analysis.

As we pointed out at the beginning of this article, the exercise of power can clearly be seen at work in this text: Machel's speeches were important in themselves both because of his personal authority and because of the understandable weakness of the policy process in a poor and about-to-be-independent country shaking off the shackles of both colonialism and Portuguese fascism.103

For reasons to do with the needs of political theatre, quite long and complicated historical periods are described in the speech as having been much shorter and speedier - but still coherent - processes. Machel needed to immediately consolidate public opinion in the city and to describe FRELIMO's political dynamic, and so he was not particularly concerned with the subtleties of historical truth. For example, contrary to Machel's representation of events, the building of the anti-Fascist alliance that finally defeated the Axis powers in the Second World War was not a simple, semi-linear process, but rather the result of over five years of diplomatic manoeuvring, culminating in the somewhat precipitate adherence of the USSR and the USA to the Allied cause after 1941.104

We can also see the qualities of coherence and fidelity in the rhetorical passage where Machel builds tension around the contradiction that people were drawn into fighting against their own interests in the process of what was called the indigenização da tropa colonial [Africanisation of the colonial army], and that they were sometimes also offered educational opportunities in the process. His references to the Organização Provincial Voluntária (OPV) and the Grupos Especiais (GE) were likely to have resonated loudly in the Beira of Jorge Jardim (see above). Machel releases the tension at the end of this passage with the tight phrase 'vos combateram a vocês' ['you fought against yourselves'], reflecting the core contradiction in its very grammatical structure. In a similar way, at the end of the comic and crowd-pleasing satirising of the assimilado, the phrase 'É o preto, este, agora' [he's black, this one, now] cleverly resolves the tension around the assimilado's identity. This has been built up in the preceding, semi-dramatised sketch, in which Samora both represents the voice of the pretentious assimilado and comments disparagingly on its artificiality. This is theatrical narrative put thoroughly to the purposes of political discourse.

Samora Machel was an effective orator, lively and entertaining, as any who saw and heard him speak can testify. His performances were often highly theatrical, but they were also, we believe analysis shows, finely tuned to the political and linguistic capacity of his audience. Thus, at a public meeting, his Portuguese is simple in structure and shows many of the markers of the MP variety; the historical or political content is also focussed on the process of exercising political power to persuade and convince. The text analysed here serves to support this part of our argument. However, at the other end of the spectrum, at a state banquet for example, we believe that analysis will show that his use of Portuguese is more nuanced and conforms more closely to EP standards, and that his presentation is more sophisticated. The normalisation of the texts of his speeches for publication has often served to disguise this differentiation.

But Machel's utterances are only part of the equation. The symbolic domination that he and other party leaders exercised with greater or lesser success at comícios like the one in Beira and on many other public occasions depended to a significant extent on their use of Portuguese as the language of political discourse. It also depended on the context of an emerging one-party state, in which the legitimacy of political discourse was determined only by FRELIMO. But listeners colluded with this choice, neither simply accepting it, nor simply and freely adopting it. Many Mozambicans could not (and cannot) speak Portuguese, the official language, competently, but nonetheless acknowledged that it enjoyed a legitimate official and national status. On the other hand, in the comícios there was frequently interpretation into a local language and the opportunity for at least some reactive participation by the audience. Machel's willingness to depart from prepared texts and to improvise was an essential element in such a process.

The speech considered in this article shows Samora Machel opening up for the first time crucial topics of contemporary social and political relevance in the context of FRELIMO's need to establish political control over the central part of the country.

These topics had not been plainly spoken of before because there had been no previous political platform. Indeed, the thrust of Samora's argument could in no imaginable way have been contained within the stifling confines of colonial political institutions, insofar as they existed at all. The strength and popularity of the FRELIMO leadership in most of the country during the first years of independence was in no small measure a result of its capacity publicly to demarcate its position before large audiences and to expend much subtle effort in explanation and persuasion, creating a participatory dynamic and mobilising political support. Little research has been done on political events in Beira and the central provinces in the years that followed independence, or on FRELIMO's apparent failure to capitalise on the moment described in this article; we hope that this text may serve to stimulate more detailed analysis of the political history of Mozambique's second city and its region.



1 We acknowledge the assistance of the late Iain Christie, António Sopa and Simão Jaime of the Arquivo Histórico de Moçambique for their help in locating the recording of the speech. We also thank Álvaro Simões, Amélia Souto, António Sopa, Armando Jorge Lopes, Hernani Rodrigues, João Paulo Borges Coelho, Joel das Neves Tembe, Johane Zonjo, Júlio Bicá and Luís de Brito for valuable comments and information. Special thanks go to Perpétua Gonçalves for her critical comments and suggestions. Our thanks also to David McLean in Cape Town for his impeccable re-engineering and digitisation of the original cassette tape. Earlier versions of this work have been presented at the Conference of the South African Association of Political Studies (University of Durban-Westville, 5-7 October 2001); at the International Symposium, 'Moçambique no Contexto da África Austral, da Independência ao Acordo Geral de Paz' (Centro de Documentação «Samora Machel», Maputo, 4-6 October 2006); and at the seminar 'Não Vamos Esquecer: Dialogues on Mozambican History' (Centre for Humanities Research, University of the Western Cape, 15 August 2012). We also acknowledge the extremely helpful comments of the two anonymous peer reviewers.
2 For a complete English translation by the authors, with a short introduction, see S. M. Machel, 'The Beira Speech', African Yearbook of Rhetoric, 2(3), 2011, 67-83, available at; a digitised audio recording in MP3 format can be streamed or downloaded at A full Portuguese transcription of the speech is to be published in our forthcoming book, Samora Machel na Beira, 1975: a Retórica Política na Transição à Independência Moçambicana.
3 On the history of broadcasting see E. Santos Barbosa, A Radiodifusão em Moçambique: o Caso do Rádio Clube de Moçambique, 1932-1974 (Maputo: Promédia, 2000), especially pages 85-96 on broadcasting in African languages from the late 1930s.
4 M. Hall and T. Young, Confronting Leviathan: Mozambique since Independence (London: Hurst, 1997), 64, appear to attribute this idea mainly to [Western] 'academic admirers', and miss, for example, the significant role played by such Mozambican intellectuals as Aquino de Bragança or Sérgio Vieira in analysing and defending FRELIMO theoretical positions. See e.g. A. Bragança, 'O Marxismo de Samora', Três Continentes, 3 (1980), 43-50; Notícias, (October 1983). In 1979-1980 there was an attempt by FRELIMO to debate on their own terms with Socialist-bloc parties within at least two international gatherings. FRELIMO argued that socialist transformation could precede the development of the productive forces, i.e. society could change before it developed economically. This was not a trivial issue. See 'A Contribuição do Nosso Partido para o Enriquecimento do Marxismo-Leninismo', Voz da Revolução, 70, (November 1979-January 1980), 21-24; S. Vieira, untitled address, in The Joint Struggle of the Working Class Movement and the National Liberation Movement against Imperialism and for Social Progress: International Scientific Conference, Berlin, 20-24 October 1980 (Dresden: Verlag Zeit im Bild, 1981), 1, 39-61.
5 For an interesting interpretation of this process, see C. Stroud, 'Framing Bourdieu Socio-Culturally: Alternative Forms of Linguistic Legitimacy in Post-Colonial Mozambique', Multilingua, 21, (2002), 247-273.
6 We accept for practical purposes the useful distinction made by H. G. Widdowson between 'discourse' (text plus situation) and 'text' (discourse minus situation). See 'Directions in the Teaching of Discourse,' in S. P. Corder and E. Roulet, eds., Theoretical Linguistic Models in Applied Linguistics (Paris: Didier, 1973), 65-76.
7 N. Fairclough, Language and Power (London: Longman, 1989), 17.
8 Such an approach can be seen as implicit in several collections of Machel's texts. For a comprehensive listing of published speeches and other texts by Samora Machel, see A. Souto and A. Sopa, Samora Machel: Bibliografia, 1970-1986 (Maputo: Centro de Estudos Africanos, 1996).
9 Hall and Young explicitly recognise this component of FRELIMO's discourse in their grudging comment, 'if politics is in part theatre, then the least that can be said is that FRELIMO did not fluff its lines.' See Hall and Young, Confronting Leviathan, 62.
10 Machel himself described this struggle in his speech at Base Beira (Cabo Delgado province) on 25 May: 'Do you know what ambition is? There's been a war amongst us. We, the ones who fought the war, we're going to have fighting in the government: «Why was he chosen to be president? Why was he chosen to be minister? Why wasn't he elected president? Why was that one not chosen to be minister? How come he's not the head of the FRELIMO army?»' S. Machel, 'Discurso na Base Beira,' Tempo 246 (15 June 1975), unpaginated.
11 J. Wilson points out that it is presumptuous to suppose that political language 'creates for the listener a controlled cognitive environment from which any interpretation is manipulated'. See his Politically Speaking: the Pragmatic Analysis of Political Language (Oxford: Blackwell, 1990), 10-11.
12 The original cassette tapes are archived in the Fitateca of Rádio Moçambique in Maputo.
13 Photocopies of the complete set are in the possession of the authors.
14 A normative editing process was routinely undertaken for Machel's speeches when they were published in newspapers and elsewhere during his years as President of Mozambique and even earlier. A heavily 'corrected' fragment of the Beira text appears in J. Reis and A. P. Muiuane, eds., Datas e Documentos da História da FRELIMO (Lourenço Marques: Imprensa Nacional, 1975), 426-427. See also Notícias da Beira, (15 de June 1975), 2.
15 D. Tedlock, The Spoken Word and the Work of Interpretation (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1983); E. C. Fine, The Folklore Text from Performance to Print (Bloomington, Ind.: Indiana University Press, 1994).
16 Fine, The Folklore Text from Performance to Print, 58.
17 A book of photographs of this journey with a short accompanying text, described by its author as a 'deserved tribute to a friend and companion in the struggle', was published in Mozambique in 2005; see R. D. Pachinuapa, Do Rovuma ao Maputo: a Marcha Triunfal de Samora Machel, Primeiro Presidente de Moçambique (Maputo: Edição do Autor, 2005). But scholarly analysis has largely ignored the journey. N. MacQueen, for example, does not mention it in his The Decolonization of Portuguese Africa: Metropolitan Revolution and the Dissolution of Empire (London: Longman, 1997).
18 C. Stroud, 'Portuguese as ideology and politics in Mozambique: semiotic (re)constructions of a postcolony', in Jan Blommaert, ed., Language Ideological Debates (Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 1999), 345.
19 Regarding the attempt to create division based on presumed ethnic rivalries, and on the powers of the 'traditional' chiefs, or régulos, during the colonial period, see inter alia, E. A. Alpers, 'Ethnicity, Politics and History in Mozambique,' Africa Today 21 (1974), 39-52; Arquivo Histórico de Moçambique, Secção Especial, J. A. Branquinho, Prospecção das Forças Tradicionais do Distrito de Manica e Sofala (Lourenço Marques, 1966); Arquivo Histórico de Moçambique, Secção Especial, J. A. Branquinho, Prospecção das Forças Tradicionais do Distrito de Moçambique (Lourenço Marques, 1969); and D. Hedges and A. Rocha, 'Moçambique Durante o Apogeu do Colonialismo Português: a Economia e a Estrutura Social', in D. Hedges, ed., História de Moçambique, vol 2. 1930-1961, 2nd ed. (Maputo: UEM-Livraria Universitária, 1999), 182-186.
20 Our thanks to J. P. Borges Coelho and P. Macaringue for their assistance in the elaboration of this argument.
21 B. L. Ncomo, Uria Simango: um Homem, uma Causa, 2nd ed. (Maputo: Edições Novafrica, 2004).
22 For a more detailed treatment of this question, especially with regard to the politically stable alliance between the FRELIMO leadership and 'young military leaders from all the provinces', see L. de Brito, 'Le FRELIMO et la Constitution de l'État National au Mozambique: le Sens de la Référence au Marxisme (1962-1983)' (Ph.D. dissertation, University of Paris VIII, 1991), 123-125.
23 J. Mota Lopes, J. Catorze and L. David, 'Moçambique e o Futuro: Extremistas Tentam Alarmar a População Branca' Tempo 192 (May 1974), 6-8.
24 A Capital, Lisbon, 31 October 1974.
25 Tempo, Lourenço Marques, 215, 10 November 1974.
26 Notícias, Lourenço Marques, 6 May 1975 and 11 May 1975.
27 Notícias, Lourenço Marques, 9 May 1975.
28 O Século, Lisbon, 22 October 1974.
29 D. Martin, The Herald, Harare, 28 October 1986.
30 Notícias, Lourenço Marques, 13 May 1975.
31 C. B. Thompson, Challenge to Imperialism: the Frontline States in the Liberation of Zimbabwe (Harare: Zimbabwe Publishing House, 1985), 16.
32 Star Weekly, Johannesburg, 14 December 1974; A República, Lisbon, 11 December 1974.
33 S. Machel, Discurso em Mueda, typed transcription, 24 May 1975; Notícias, Lourenço Marques, 25 May 1975.
34 F. Nogueira, Salazar, vol. VI: o Último Combate, 1964-1970 (Porto: Livraria Civilização, 1985), 292 [authors' translation]; see also Nogueira, Diálogos Interditos (Braga: Intervenção, 1972-1979), 2, 207-225.
35 For more detail on these strategies, see D. Hedges, 'The Political Economy of Mozambique in the Last Phase of Portuguese Colonial Rule, 1945-1974', unpublished paper, Departamento de História, Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, 1996.
36 C. Darch and D. Hedges, 'Não Temos a Possibilidade de Herdar Nada de Portugal: as Raízes do Exclusivismo e Vanguardismo Político em Moçambique, 1969-1977' in G. Villas Boas, ed., Territórios da Língua Portuguesa: Culturas, Sociedades, Políticas (Rio de Janeiro: IFCS, 1998), 135-149; for detail on the Caetano period in Moçambique, see the excellent study by A. Neves de Souto, Caetano e o Acaso do 'Império': Administração e Guerra Colonial em Moçambique (Porto: Afrontamento, 2007); see also below.
37 E. Medeiros, 'Formação e Desagregação das Comunidades de Origem Chinesa nas Cidades da Beira e Lourenço Marques' in Actas do Seminário Moçambique: Navegações, Comércio e Técnicas (Lisbon: Comissão Nacional para as Comemorações dos Descobrimentos Portugueses, 1998), 300-302.
38 M. Schaedel, Eingeborenen-Arbeit Formen der Ausbeutung unter der portugiesischen Kolonialherrschaft in Mosambik (Köln: Pahl-Rugenstein Verlag, 1984), 300-302; J. Capela, O Imposto de Palhota e a Introdução do Modo de Produção Capitalista nas Colónias; as Ideias Coloniais de Marcelo Caetano; Legislação do Trabalho nas Colónias nos Anos 60 (Porto: Afrontamento, 1977), 259-271; Hedges and Rocha, 'Moçambique Durante o Apogeu do Colonialismo Português', 173-176.
39 D. Hedges and A. Chilundo, 'A Contestação da Situação Colonial, 1945-1961' in D. Hedges, (ed.) História de Moçambique, 2, 205-206; A. José, 'Beira: Lembranças da Cidade Colonial', Arquivo, 6, 1989, 190-193, testimony of R. D. Mucacho.
40 Schaedel, Eingeborenen-Arbeit Formen der Ausbeutung, 302. A. Rita-Ferreira, 'Trabalho Migratório de Moçambique para a Rodésia do Sul', História 80 (1985), 47; data compared by Rita-Ferreira led him to conclude that the relative increase in Beira's African population was greater than that in the colonial capital - 131 percent as against 115 percent in the decade 1960-70.
41 J. Capela, 'Para a História do Diário de Moçambique, Arquivo, 6, 1989, 177-180; G. Tajú, 'D. Sebastião Soares de Resende, Primeiro Bispo da Beira: Notas para uma Cronologia', Arquivo, 6, 1989, 149-175; T. Cruz e Silva, Igrejas Protestantes e Consciência Política no Sul de Moçambique: o Caso da Missão Suiça, 1930-1974 (Maputo: Promédia, 2001), 210-212; L. Costa Ferreira, Igreja Ministerial em Moçambique: Caminhos de Hoje e de Amanhã (Lisbon, 1987), 80-85. For more on the mission orders, see E. Morier-Genoud, 'The Catholic Church, Religious Orders and the Making of Politics in Colonial Mozambique: the Case of the Diocese of Beira, 1940-1974', (Ph.D. dissertation, State University of New York, Binghamton, 2005).
42 Cruz e Silva, Igrejas Protestantes e Consciência Política, 212-213; Morier-Genoud, 'The Catholic Church, Religious Orders and the Making of Politics in Colonial Mozambique', 108-109, passim; J. Freire Antunes, Os Americanos e Portugal, 1969-1974: Nixon e Caetano, Promessas e Abandono (Lisbon: Difusao Cultural, 1992), 230; F. A. Couto, Moçambique 1974: o Fim do Império e o Nascimento da Nação (Maputo: Ndjira, 2011), 78-79.
43 Capela, 'Para a História do Diário de Moçambique' 180; Tajú, 'D. Sebastião Soares de Resende', 170; J. Freire Antunes, Jorge Jardim: agente secreto (Lisbon: Bertrand, 1996), 94-95, 101-102, 284-285.
44 J. P. Borges Coelho, 'Protected Villages and Communal Villages in the Mozambican Province of Tete, 1968-1982: a History of State Resettlement Policies, Development and War', (Ph.D. dissertation, University of Bradford, 1993), 187-193; Borges Coelho and P. Macaringue, 'Da Paz Negativa à Paz Positiva: uma Perspectiva Histórica sobre o Papel das Forças Armadas Moçambicanas num Contexto de Segurança em Transformação', Estudos Moçambicanos, 20, 2002, 46; A. Neves de Souto, Caetano e o Acaso do 'Império', 283-301.
45 Freire Antunes, Jorge Jardim,'Protectorado Malawi, 1968-1969', 235-270; D. Hedges, 'Notes on Malawi-Mozambique Relations, 1961-1987, Journal of Southern African Studies, 15, 4 (1989), 631-633.
46 G. Tajú, 'O Projecto de Engenheiro Jorge Jardim, 1971-1974', trabalho de diploma, licenciatura em história, Instituto Superior Pedagógico, Maputo, 1990.         [ Links ]
47 Freire Antunes, Jorge Jardim, 503-5; Borges Coelho, 'Protected Villages and Communal Villages', 'Caçador de Elefantes, 1964-1965', 185-207; on Rebelo de Sousa, see A. Neves de Souto, 'Moçambique no Período da Descolonização Portuguesa (1973-1974): Que Descolonização?' in A. Nascimento et. al., eds., Moçambique: Relações Históricas Regionais e com Países da CPLP (Maputo: Alcance Editores, 2011), 188-189; on the short-lived GUMO, which identified with 'progressive autonomy' within the Portuguese sphere, see Couto, Moçambique 1974, 346-349.
48 Morier-Genoud, 'The Catholic Church, Religious Orders and the Making of Politics in Colonial Mozambique', 285-286; Teles Sampaio, 'Fúria na Beira', in J. Freire Antunes, ed., A Guerra de África, 1961-1974 (Lisbon: Círculo de Leitores 1995), 2, 791-798; Freire Antunes, Jorge Jardim, 446-9, 452; Couto, Moçambique 1974, 82-88; J. A. dos Santos, et. al., O Julgamento dos Padres do Macúti (Porto: Afrontamento, 1973).
49 The 'Exposição contra os acontecimentos da Beira de Janeiro de 1974'; see J. Medeiros Ferreira, O Comportamento Político dos Militares: Forças Armadas e Regimes Políticos em Portugal no Século XX (Lisbon: Estampa, 1996), 306.
50 Couto, Moçambique 1974, 265-266; Freire Antunes, Jorge Jardim, 556-558.
51 F. Costa Gomes, Notícias, 5-8, 11-13 May 1974; Mota Lopes, Catorze and David, 'Moçambique e o Futuro'; Mota Lopes, 'Spinola e a Paz em Moçambique. Para Quando a Última Palavra?' Tempo, 202, 4 August 1974, 14-15. We are grateful to Amélia Souto and Emído Machiana for information and references on these points. For an analytical overview of the main questions in the transition, 1973-1974, see Neves de Souto, 'Moçambique no período da descolonização'.
52 On the 'Democratas', see Couto, Moçambique 1974, 326-333; 'Moçambique e o Futuro: Que Pretendem os Grupos Políticos Minoritários?' Tempo, Lourenço Marques, 193, 2 June 1974, 8-9; Mota Lopes, Catorze and David, 'Moçambique e o Futuro, 4.
53 Couto, Moçambique 1974, 353.
54 J. Medeiros Ferreira, Portugal em Transe (1974-1985) (Lisbon: Ed. Estampa, 1994), 66.
55 See Couto, Moçambique 1974, 422-443, 450-432.
56 On the flight of settlers, see A. Rita-Ferreira, 'Moçambique Post-25 de Abril: Causas do Êxodo da População de Origem Europeia e Asiática', in Moçambique: Cultura e História de um País (Coimbra: Universidade de Coimbra, Instituto de Antropologia, 1988), 121-169. The exodus included a major part of the Chinese community, who left for destinations such as São Paulo, Curitiba, New York, Toronto and Lisbon (Medeiros, 'Formação e Desagregação das Comunidades de Origem Chinesa', 311-312).
57 On the severe problems of political and economic transformation in the following years, see I. Christie, Samora: uma Biografia (Maputo: Ndjira, 1996), 232-238.
58 A distinction can be made between two types of meaning: 'the sense (which has often been described as the "literal" or face-value meaning) and the (illocutionary) force. ...the sense can be described by means of a semantic representation in some formal language or notation. The force will be represented as a set of implicatures.' See G. Leech, Principles of Pragmatics (London: Longman, 1983), 30.
59 See, e.g. Wilson, Politically Speaking; O. Feldman and C. de Landtsheer, eds., Politically Speaking: a Worldwide Examination of Language Used in the Public Sphere (Westport, Conn.: Praeger, 1998); and de Landtsheer and Feldman, eds., Beyond Public Speech and Symbols: Explorations in the Rhetoric of Politicians and the Media (Westport, Conn.: Praeger, 2000).
60 Harold D. Lasswell (1902-1978) worked with the Experimental Division for the Study of Wartime Communication during the war and published two pioneering books on political language in the late 1940s-early 1950s.
61 For an early example of the comparison of a transcript with an edited text, see E. H. Carr, 'Editorial Changes in Stalin's Speech of 9 July 1928, Soviet Studies, 16.3 (January 1965), 339-340. Carr believed that stylistic changes were intended to 'make the argument more forceful' and that other, substantive changes had a primarily overt political motive.
62 A brisk overview of the contemporary field can be found in C. de Landtsheer, 'Introduction to the Study of Political Discourse' in Feldman and de Landtsheer, eds., Politically Speaking, 1-16.
63 Spivak comments, 'I see rhetoric as I see most other important master words in the tradition of poststructuralist nominalism. Foucault says ... that in order to think power one must become a nominalist; power is a name one lends to a complex network of relationships. In Paul de Man ... rhetoric is the name for the residue of indeterminacy that escapes the system ... in Derrida there is no concerted, or organised, use of the word rhetoric....' P. Sipiora and J. Atwill, 'Rhetoric and Cultural Explanation: a Discussion with Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak', Journal of Advanced Composition, 10.2 (1990), 294.
64 The most systematic exploration of Bourdieu's ideas in a Mozambican context remains Stroud's 'Framing Bourdieu Socio-Culturally'.
65 Stroud, 'Portuguese as ideology and politics in Mozambique', 347.
66 J. Katupha makes this point but does not explore it further in his essay 'Language and Problems of Technical and Cultural Development in Latin Africa: the Mozambican Case' in M. Sabour, ed., African Perspectives in Development: Voices from the South (Joensuu [Finland]: Joensuu University Press, 1994), 57.
67 A. J. Lopes, Política Linguistica: Princípios e Problemas (Maputo: Livraria Universitária, Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, 1997), 41 [English text].
68 F. Ribeiro, 'A Vertente Moçambicana da Língua Portuguesa: Português de Moçambique ou Português em Moçambique' in A. M. Galano and others, eds., Língua Mar: Criações e Confrontos em Português (Rio de Janeiro: FUnarte, 1996), 42.
69 Stroud, 'O Corpus: Antecedentes, Quadro Teórico e Aspirações Práticas,' in Stroud and P. Gonçalves, eds., Panorama do Português Oral de Maputo (Maputo: Instituto Nacional do Desenvolvimento da Educação, 1997), 1, 20-25.
70 Stroud, 'O Corpus', 26; Domingo, Maputo, 18 May 1986.
71 P. Gonçalves, Português de Moçambique: uma Variedade em Formação (Maputo: Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, 1996).
72 Stroud, for example, argues that language policy debates in the mid-1970s focused on 'the creation and institutional recognition of a legitimate concept of Mozambican Portuguese that would reflect the cultural, socialist and national identities of the newly independent state.' See 'Portuguese as ideology', 349.
73 G. Firmino makes this point: 'when Mozambique became independent in 1975, Portuguese was adopted as the official language and as a symbol of national unity. The definition of these roles for Portuguese was entirely natural ... it had already played them even in colonial Mozambique ... and within FRELIMO See his A Questão Linguística na África Pós-Colonial: o Caso do Português e das Línguas Autóctones em Moçambique (Maputo: Promédia, 2002), 273.
74 Stroud, 'Portuguese as ideology', 344. Elsewhere, Stroud argues that 'immediately after independence, the revolutionary government sought to further its popular legitimacy by appealing to vernacular, or non-standard forms of Portuguese in a rhetoric of political mobilisation and authority'. See 'Framing Bourdieu socio-culturally', 254.
75 Notícias, Maputo, 31 August 1980, 3.
76 'Doa a Quem Doer Nós Somos Moçambicanos', Expresso, Lisbon, 24 December 1980, secção Revista, 3-R [ellipsis in the original]. The remark also appears in Tempo, Maputo, 536, 18 January 1981, 21.
77 M. Couto, Ainda o Problema da Língua: Submissão Cultural?' Tempo, Maputo, 536, 18 January 1981, 11.
78 Quoted in English by Stroud, 'Portuguese as Ideology', 350.
79 M. Buendía Goméz comments dryly that there was at this time 'a strong tendency to think that in order to realise any kind of change some mobilisation and consciousness-raising was enough, that is to say, everything was the result of words and willpower'. Educação Moçambicana: História de um Processo, 1962-1984 (Maputo: Livraria Universitária, 1999), 343.
80 Stroud calls it the 'most fundamental technical process in the imaginative reconstruction of Portuguese'. 'Portuguese as Ideology', 351.
81 J. Baptista e J. Sá, 'Ensino do Português e Desenvolvimento de Línguas Nacionais: Entrevista com o Linguista Português Óscar Lopes', Tempo, Maputo, 472, 28 October 1979, 32-33. Two subsequent works have evaluated the lexical contribution of MP; see I. Mendes, O Léxico no Português de Moçambique: Aspectos Neológicos e Terminológicos (Maputo: Promédia, 2000); and A. J. Lopes et. al., Moçambicanismos: Para um Léxico de Usos do Português Moçambicano (Maputo: Livraria Universitária, 2002).
82 Stroud also discusses Sérgio Vieira, Mia Couto and Ba Ka Khosa as writers interested in experimenting with grammatical structure and lexical items. 'Portuguese as Ideology, 347-352.
83 Stroud, 'Framing Bourdieu Socio-Culturally', 255.
84 E.g., the first National Seminar on Portuguese Language Teaching, Maputo, October 1979. The Rádio Moçambique conference, held on 26-30 November 1975 under FRELIMO's ideological tutelage (see Tempo, 271, 1975, 60-61), argued that the use of an MP standard was indicated since most listeners did not easily understand EP. Concern for 'more popular forms' dominated the meeting, says Stroud, 'Portuguese as Ideology', 356.
85 K. Sornig, 'Some Remarks on Linguistic Strategies of Persuasion' in R. Wodak, ed., Language, Power and Ideology: Studies in Political Discourse (Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 1989), 109.
86 According to the 1980 census, at that time fewer than two percent of the population spoke Portuguese as their mother tongue, and only 24.4 percent of the entire population spoke it at all (Firmino, A Questão Lingüística na África Pós-Colonial, 82). According to the 1997 census, however, the number of mother tongue speakers had increased by then to below seven percent and the total number of speakers was a little less than 40 percent. Of course, these numbers hide sharp differences by gender and class, and between rural and urban areas, but even seven percent might have been too high in the late 1990s. Some scholars believe that a more realistic estimate might have been around three percent (A. J. Lopes, private communication, 10 December 2001). See the II Recenseamento Geral da População e Habitação 1997, Indicadores Socio-Demográficos - País Total, section 9, Línguas, tables 9.1 and 9.4. We also recognise that 'mother tongue' is a problematic category in the context of what may be either habitual code switching or hybridization, especially in urban areas.
87 C. Myers-Scotton, 'Elite Closure as a Powerful Language Strategy', International Journal of the Sociology of Language, 103 (1993), 149-163.
88 In a study of Mozambican Portuguese (MP) conducted in 1993, P. Gonçalves reported that 'The majority of "errors" classified as "verbal mood" mistakes (over 80 percent) referred to examples where the indicative was used in sentences where, according to European norms, the subjunctive was required.' See 'Tipologia de Erros do Português Oral de Maputo: um Primeiro Diagnóstico' in Stroud and Gonçalves, eds., Panorama do Português Oral de Maputo, 2, 63.
89 We acknowledge the extent to which cultural studies and postmodern theory have appropriated the terminology of rhetoric and deepened understanding of its social and political significance; at the same time, we are all too aware of our own inadequate expertise in this area.
90 J. R. Andrews, 'Confrontation at Colombia: a Case Study in Coercive Rhetoric', Quarterly Journal of Speech, 55.1 (1969), 10, emphasis added.
91 Andrews, 'The Rhetoric of Coercion and Persuasion: the Reform Bill of 1832', Quarterly Journal of Speech, 56.2 (1970), 187.
92 R. R. Krebs and P. T. Jackson, 'Twisting Tongues and Twisting Arms: the Power of Political Rhetoric', European Journal of International Relations, 13.1 (2007), 37. It is this view that leads in modern times to such dismissive expressions as 'mere rhetoric', or 'spare me the rhetoric'.
93 Krebs and Jackson, 'Twisting Tongues and Twisting Arms', 44.
94 Ibid., 36.
95 Rhetoric may be 'critical to success in political contests' even when political opponents remain unpersuaded. Ibid., 36.
96 Ibid., 36.
97 These concepts are taken from W. R. Fisher, Human Communication as Narration: Towards a Philosophy of Reason, Value and Action (Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1987).
98 Sornig, 'Some remarks on linguistic strategies of persuasion', 99.
99 Ibid., 100.
100 Ibid., 102.
101 E.g. Domingo, Maputo, 26 February 1984.
102 Souto and Sopa, Samora Machel: Bibliografia.
103 'Samora Machel's speeches were a major part of the policy process and often led to important shifts in emphasis'. Hall and Young, Confronting Leviathan, 90.
104 R. Jenkins, Churchill (London: Pan Macmillan, 2002), 647 and following; R. Overy, Why the Allies Won, 2nd ed. (London: Pimlico, 2006), 18-19.

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