Counting in Rukiga-Runyankore (Embara omu Rukiga-Runyankore)

Our ancestors had a counting system whose terminology was similar to or shared roots with that of Bantu language nations all over Africa. It appears that there were words for quantities/amounts up to, at most, ten thousand. It is very unlikely that there was an item that needed enumeration in numbers exceeding ten thousand. According […]

Rhoda Nakibuuka Kalema@90

Rhoda Nakibuuka Kalema turned 90 today.  When my wife and I visited her last year, we talked about her entry into another decade of her amazing life.  “Will I get there?” she asked, and then laughed. ​I saw no reason why not and told her as much. With her positive attitude, her intellectual curiosity, her constant exercising of […]

The Forging of an African Nation: The Political and Constitutional Evolution of Uganda from Colonial Rule to Independence, 1894-1962 – By G.S.K Ibingira (1973)

Grace Stewart Katebariirwe Ibingira was a 30-year old youth at Uganda’s independence in 1962. A founder member of the Uganda People’s Congress in 1960, Ibingira was at the centre of national politics during those critical years of transition. Just a little over three years after independence, he was imprisoned, along with four other ministers, on […]

The Political Kingdom in Uganda: A Study in Bureaucratic Nationalism – By David E. Apter (Revised Third Edition, 1997)

This book is an analytical study of the internal and external politics and systems of Buganda, the central and largest kingdom in Uganda. The development of political parties and the great conflicts in post 1900 Buganda are thoroughly presented and analysed. But more than politics, it is an anthropological and historical account of the evolution […]

Sundiata: An Epic of Mali – By D.T. Niane (1965)

This is the English translation (by G.D. Pickett) of D.T. Niane’s part history/part legend of Sundiata Keita, the thirteenth century founder of the Great Empire of Mali, and great uncle of the famous Mansa Musa. It is a short but very captivating story, only 84 pages long. This is classic story telling from a very […]

The Great Lakes of Africa: Two Thousand Years of History – By Jean-Pierre Chretien

This is an English translation (by Scott Straus) of a scholarly book that successfully stitches together the complex and long story of kingdoms, chiefdoms, traditions, alliances, hatreds, settlements, movements, colonization, political independence and violence that have shaped one of the most fascinating, albeit troubled, regions in Africa. Published in 2006, the book is not an […]

The King’s Men: Leadership and Status in Buganda on the Eve of Independence – Edited by L.A. Fallers (1964)

  This is a multi-author presentation of Buganda’s progress during the century between first contact with Europeans and Independence in 1962. We learn about Buganda’s hierarchical political organization that was later exported to many parts of Uganda. The description and analysis of social mobility, cultural adaptation and Buganda’s economy are highly instructive.  The section on […]