Three Swahili Women

Three Swahili Women : Life Histories from Mombasa, Kenya

3.54 (11 ratings by Goodreads)
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This is altogether a most worthwhile book, a fine example of a growing genre of African literature... " -ChoiceMirza and Strobel let these women speak about their lives in their own words, and the results are wonderful.... This is an excellent book with which to introduce students both to Africa and to life histories... " -American Historical ReviewThis exploration of the lives of three Mombasa women reveals the complexity of Swahili society-its ethnic diversity, the impact of slavery, and the varied reactions to colonialism and Western culture. They illustrate the rich interactions within the women's community, focused on family and festive or ritual occasions.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 180 pages
  • 140.7 x 209.6 x 15mm | 283.66g
  • Indiana University Press
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • English
  • 0253288541
  • 9780253288547
  • 2,032,904

Back cover copy

This exploration of the lives of three Mombasa women reveals the complexity of Swahili society--its ethnic diversity, the impact of slavery, and the varied reactions to colonialism and Western culture. These women, born between 1890 and 1920, come from different ethnic groups and social backgrounds. Their lives illustrate the rich interactions within the women's community, focused on family and festive or ritual occasions. Through their stories and those of their families and friends, we discover the enormous changes that have swept the Swahili Muslim community in Mombasa with the abolition of slavery, the introduction of secular education for girls and the spread of new social and cultural practices in the colonial and postcolonial periods.show more

Review quote

"This is altogether a most worthwhile book, a fine example of a growing genre of African literature ..." Choice "Mirza and Strobel let these women speak about their lives in their own words, and the results are wonderful... This is an excellent book with which to introduce students both to Africa and to life histories ..." American Historical Reviewshow more

Table of contents

PrefaceGlossaryIntroductionI: Kaje wa Mwenye MatanoIntroductionKinship DiagramMy FamilySlaveryChildhoodHusbands and ChildrenAdult LifeII. Mishi wa AbdalaIntroductionMy FamilyPuberty Rites, Weddings, and LelemamaFigure 1Figure 2III: Shamsa Muhamad MuhashamyIntroductionMy Early Life and FamilyMy Work in Women's OrganizationsAppendix: The Translation: Swahili Language and Kimvita DialectNotesReferencesIndexshow more

Rating details

11 ratings
3.54 out of 5 stars
5 18% (2)
4 18% (2)
3 64% (7)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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