A History of Modern Uganda
But finding a good general history of the country has been difficult – until now. Richard J. Reid’s A History of Modern Uganda is the book I’ve been waiting for, both for my course and for my own knowledge of Uganda’s historical place in East Africa and the broader world.
Reid sets out to tell the story of Uganda differently, by avoiding a simple narrative of political events to situate the country’s history in the long series of interactions between different ethnic groups and outsiders. He grapples directly with whether it even makes sense to speak of a precolonial history of “Uganda” as a unit, given the linguistic and cultural divides of the precolonial kingdom’s and societies that were slapped together in British East Africa.
by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Americanah is a 2013 novel by the Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, for which Adichie won the 2013 U.S. National Book Critics Circle Award for fiction.Americanah tells the story of a young Nigerian woman, Ifemelu, who immigrates to the United States to attend university. The novel traces Ifemelu’s life in both countries, threaded by her love story with high school classmate Obinze.
As teenagers in a Lagos secondary school, Ifemelu and Obinze fall in love. Nigeria at the time is under military dictatorship, and people are seeking to leave the country. Ifemelu moves to the United States to study, where she struggles for the first time with racism and the many varieties of racial distinctions: for the first time, Ifemelu discovers what it means to be a “Black Person”. Obinze had hoped to join her in the U.S. but he is denied a visa after 9/11. He goes to London, eventually becoming an undocumented immigrant after his visa expires.
Years later, Obinze returns to Nigeria and becomes a wealthy man as a property developer in the newly democratic country. Ifemelu gains success in the United States, where she becomes known for her blog about race in America, entitled “Raceteenth or Various Observations About American Blacks (Those Formerly Known as Negroes) by a Non-American Black”. When Ifemelu returns to Nigeria, the two consider reviving a relationship in light of their diverging experiences and identities during their many years apart.
The Zanzibar House of Wonders Museum: Self-Reliance and Partnership, a Case Study in Culture and Development
by Abdul SheriffProvides an interesting case study in culture and development, an example of best practice in the field, with lessons to be learned for the future* Explores the relevance of a museum to the population it serves and to economic development* Offers a glimpse into Zanzibar s extraordinary history and cultureZanzibar is a small island off the east African coast with a grand history. Its national museum is located in one of the world s most beautiful buildings, The House of Wonders. Between 2000 and 2005 a nineteenth-century sultan’s palace was converted into a museum to display the history and culture of Zanzibar and the Swahili coast. Does such a venture need foreign assistance? And if it does, how to circumvent the pitfalls of dependency? This book describes how Zanzibar managed to marry self-reliance and partnership in the development of its new museum. Since the UNESCO report Our Creative Diversity in 1995, attention to culture and development has risen. One of the needs felt in later years was more documentation of examples of best practice in this field. The development of the Zanzibar House of Wonders Museum can serve as such an example. It has been exemplary in many ways: in its contribution to the safeguarding of Zanzibar s heritage and in its wider scope; its approach to self-reliance and autonomy; and in the sustainability of its results. Part of this development has been a training program, which has a unique character and has contributed greatly to the overall results.”
The Impenetrable Forest: Gorilla Years in Uganda
By Thor Hanson
Lying in the remote hills of southwest Uganda, Bwindi Impenetrable Forest harbors elephants, chimpanzees, monkeys, and half the world’s population of endangered mountain gorillas. For two years, Thor Hanson called that forest home, working with local guides and trackers to develop an ecotourism program for the newly-formed Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. Thoroughly researched and beautifully told, Hanson’s story blends natural history with cultural insight to place the forest and the gorillas in the context of modern Africa. The Impenetrable Forest offers a rare glimpse into the world of mountain gorillas, and the human cultures that surround them. A must-read for anyone interested in gorilla tracking, endangered species, or travel to Uganda.
My Brutal Muse
by Giles Foden
Idi Amin was one of the most evil dictators in modern history, butchering hundreds of thousands of his own people. And for one young novelist he became an obsession. As the tyrant lies on his deathbed, Giles Foden recalls the remarkable life of his tragicomic hero. I’ll be glad when he goes, not least because I won’t have to write about him any more. But it’s been a fine romance. It all began on my parents’ verandah in Mbarara, western Uganda. The year was 1990. I had won a creative writing studentship from Cambridge and had ambitions to write a novel about an African dictator. I had invented one called Dipsenza – a very bad man, as George Bush would put it, but he didn’t quite work.
— The Guardian
We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed with Our Families
by Philip Gourevitch
In April of 1994, the government of Rwanda called on everyone in the Hutu majority to kill everyone in the Tutsi minority. Over the next three months, 800,000 Tutsis were murdered in the most unambiguous case of genocide since Hitler’s war against the Jews. Philip Gourevitch’s haunting work is an anatomy of the killings in Rwanda, a vivid history of the genocide’s background, and an unforgettable account of what it means to survive in its aftermath. — Goodreads
by Nakisanze Segawa
Kalinda is a page in Mwanga’s palace. His life is centred on pleasing the Kabaka. The beauty of Mwanga’s second wife, Nagawa, threatens his relationship with the Kabaka. Nagawa desperately wants to give Mwanga an heir, but the religious war with in Buganda, coordinated by Reverend Clement tests Kalinda and Nagawa’s loyalty towards their Kabaka.
Nakisanze Segawa was born in the Luweero Triangle. She is both a fiction writer and a Luganda performance poet. Her poetry and short stories have been published by Jalada and Femrite. Nakisanze is a contributor to both the Daily Monitor and Global Press Journal.
Things Fall Apart
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: We should all be feminists
We teach girls that they can have ambition, but not too much … to be successful, but not too successful, or they’ll threaten men, says author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. In this classic talk that started a worldwide conversation about feminism, Adichie asks that we begin to dream about and plan for a different, fairer world — of happier men and…
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: The danger of a single story
Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice — and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie | TED Speaker
Inspired by Nigerian history and tragedies all but forgotten by recent generations of westerners, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s novels and stories are jewels in the crown of diasporan literature.