Saturday, June 15, 2013

Cameroonian-Born Novelist Juliette Schlegl Fotsing’s Mark Departure with “Timshall”

 By FC Jr

Juliette Schlegl Fotsing: Looking to the Stars as the Limit
Rudyard Kipling, one of the finest English writers once said that “if you can keep your head when all around you are losing theirs and if you can meet with triumph and disaster and treat the two the same, yours is earth and everything that is in it”. This is a straightforward reality and in fact there is no doubt that Rudyard Kipling had this inspiration from the obstacles and barriers we often crush to get to prominence. In our contemporary society this statement could only be referred to one person, Juliette Schlegl Fotsing.
What is important about this young and talented female writer is that she is innovative, down to earth and fertile in expedients. She falls within the ranks of the new breed of young women born with extra abilities to surmount all sorts of barrier to emerge successful. If we go by Albert Einstein who declared that genius is 1/10 inspiration and 9/10 perspiration, Juliette Schlegl Fotsing is a genius. This means that for somebody to be termed a genius that person must be a workaholic. In this light, Juliette Schlegl Fotsing merits to be mentioned first among women celebrities if not the story of women who young girl look up to as role models will remain unfinished. What is so interesting about Juliette Schlegl Fotsing is that she has extraordinary things in a very common way.  
 If Mother Teresa became a celebrity it is because she did extraordinary things and Fotsing at her age is not far from Mother Teresa. Meet her for a discussion then you will discover you have met an honest intellectual. The courage and the frankness she expresses tell you that she was naturally born a workaholic. It is this frankness, hard work and determination that has made her the most admired woman writer among women. She is a lady of a specific class expressionists have opined. Cameroon they say is Africa in miniature and it is indicative that role models are bound to be in Cameroon in all walks of life. What obtains today is that Fotsing is making Cameroonians and Africans proud.
If there is any area in Cameroon where the Beijing platform can be assessed, it is the domain of book writing. Hitherto considered a no go zone for women, Fotsing has not only dismantled the male barriers constructed many years ago as women were reduced to kitchen work but has more importantly demonstrated that what a man can do, a woman can do it even more better. She talks and acts with untiring sociability.  Yet, it is this quality which immensely complements her multifarious roles as a writer, journalist and marketer. This ex-student of Government Bilingual High School Bamenda marked her departure from the madding crowd with her Novel “Timshall”.  As a woman she has shown proof of being a systematically thought out of the box.
Worthy to note that apart from the fact that she distinguishes herself through hard work, she is also blended with the God-given knack that she speaks fluently several languages: French, Spanish, French and German. Her intellectual background is an asset. Knowing that everything in the world is purchased by labour, Fotsing put herself to education and learning that would make her useful in the field of work. And being a God fearing person, her inspiration has often come from Genesis 1:28 which states that: “replenish and subdue it”.  It is therefore a noble sentiment that she has not only replenished the earth but has been subduing it through her work.

Her Book “Timshall”
“Timshall” is written in the most refined style and tells the story of a young woman in search of “greener pastures”. In “Timshall” she portrays her language power. In fact she writes with superb descriptive power, especially in the scenes where her character’s aloneness and the world’s indifference come together to create the most reflective passages.  In her early life, her education, her search for a job, and on to her career, there runs the psychological scar that seems to her more birth right than accidental set of circumstances – made by the serrations of history and destiny. 
“Thus, her career or path in life is described in the subtitle A Saw-Toothed Career.  Readers, though, can readily accept what the author says – it is truthful, a very intelligent and moving reading of a problematic world – and it is said in the spirit of a life-giver successfully transmuting the base elements into spiritual fullness.”
For more info
On her website, she states that “If she had chosen any other path in her pain filled life, would she have demons running after her in the process of surviving and making a life?”  What is very plain to see despite the fact of the character’s inherited problems as a Cameroonian and later issues of assimilation in Europe, is that her life has been based upon a moral foundation, a remarkably, even stunningly strong one. Thus, the Steinbeck imperative works as a perfect influence, the philosophical vehicle running throughout this book.
If you have never had the opportunity to read an inspirational work that tells the inside story of the life outside your four walls of the house, “Timshall” would not only be motivational but instrumental for your understanding of life. Through this book, Fotsing believes like Immanuel Kant that “the more we are busy, the more we feel we are alive and contributing to the welfare of others”. Her educational background coupled with her devotion to be perfect has made her to transform the principle of education for work into the principle of education through work. This is one of the key notes that make “Timshall” a great work of art. As a Christian, she believes like Martin Luther King that “working is praying”. One prelate once said that every human natured person is made up of the human and the divine and that when the divine overrides, the human one becomes closer to God. Yet, Fotsing goes beyond that by making work the divine with the human as a pairs. Juliette Schlegl Fotsing’s book goes deep into the life of a young girl born to a poor family given that she was barely six months when she was separated from her mother due to a familial traditional conflict. Her paternal grandmother who believed in Jesus Christ wanted her to grow up far away from her maternal family and their paganism. Was it a good thing?  She describes not only her youth in Africa in the context of such a very poor family and typically widened which colonialism has marked and modified the quintessense even of their daily natural existence but always tells us how she deals with her life in terms of her search for stability since she arrived in Europe.  The imperative “may you” is a golden rule of her book.
A Must Read Book…..
An autobiographical novel by Juliette Schlegl Fotsing, Timshall follows a problem-filled, often lonely life of a strong woman from Cameroon to Europe.  It is narrated by the author’s alter ego, marked by a depth of experience and insight cast in the brilliant forges of creative inspiration. The cover artwork design done by Fotsing herself for the book derives from a monument called “Woman Water Carrier” located at Rostock Zoo in Germany that shows a West African woman symbolising the river of life, the joy and gladness for the entire world. She has the power to tackle any difficulties by struggling daily in body and soul for the survival of the family and bringing them life even though she is isolated from the rest of the world.

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