Archive for Reviews


Compiled by John Budge and Michael Wzse

Helena JERMAN, Between Jive lines: the development of ethnicity in Tanzania, with special reference to the western Bagamoyo District Uppsala: Finnish Anthropological Society; Nordic Africa Institute, 1997. 360p. (Transactions of the Finnish Anthropological Society; no.38) ISBN 952-9573- 16-2, SEK 110.

This study is based on the area that lies inland from Bagamoyo. It forms the section of the greater Bagamoyo district that, more than the sea coast town itself, was subjected to and influenced by, the passage of representatives of differing cultures through the centuries. Not all of the slavers, propagators of religious belief, traders, and politicians merely passed through, leaving a detritus of ideas and physical tokens of their passage. Some, for whatever reason, tarried or settled, administered from distant urban centres; all had some significant impact. It is their successive impacts that are the subject of this interesting book.

It originated as the author’s thesis for her doctorate, and was based on oral as well as documentary evidence. The investigation dates from more than twenty years ago, and as such is to some extent a valuable historical record, pictorially and in the interviews with old people, of a society that has subsequently undergone further radical change; such has been the impact of the late twentieth century even on rural communities.

The five lines of the title were drawn in the sand by an elder in the course of describing his country’s development though many centuries. They symbolised, for him, the peoples who have confronted each other in the region. The author’s text is divided into sections that consider the pre-colonial period, which included most notably the islamisation of the coast, the development of the Waswahili ethnic identity, and powerful invasions such as the Ngoni and the Kamba. Then came the German period, and the widespread repercussions of the Maji Maji movement. The British period included the emergence of political associations, while the post-independence era has seen attempts at the integration of a national culture and controversial attitudes regarding the positiveness or otherwise of ethnic/tribal thinking.

The author’s list of sources used, or consulted in personal contacts is impressive. This is the outcome of systematic investigation over a period of years, and deserves consideration. It is also very readable.


John MILLARD, Never a dull moment: the autobiography of John Millard -administrator, soldier and farmer. Silent Books [1997?] 226p., ISBN 1 85183 096 0, 217.50. Obtainable from: Philippa Millard, 29 Gorst Road, London SW1l 6JB. U.K.

This is an apt title for the story of an all-rounder who enjoyed life to the full. A more sententious critic might categorise the book as a smug saga, but although a degree of self-satisfaction does emerge in its pages (as happens with many autobiographies) this would be far too harsh a verdict to make in this case.

The author writes from experience in many fields and countries and he must have taken great pains over the years to chronicle the incidents that provide the material for his narrative. In doing this he has achieved his aim of portraying both the highs and lows in various situations and careers. He describes these lucidly and entertainingly and with an easy style in which, inter alia, he makes light of adversity.

John’s account compares favourably, in my view, with several others I have read written by persons who served and farmed in the colonies, and he certainly captures the atmosphere of Africa. Although not a scholarly dissertation, he writes expansively and diversely, not confined only to African matters. His encounters during World War I1 in many theatres receive due comment and are interesting, as also his amusing description of his time in Whitehall at the Colonial Office, where he worked with the late Sir Ralph Furse (the renowned Director of Recruitment) on the selection of key personnel for the Post-war Colonial Service. Never a dull moment is not penned in official Government-type language nor is it weighed down by numerous appendices. Another plus, and so essential in a non-fiction book, is the efficient index of names and places.

Affection for his family is apparent throughout, and this is well illustrated by his sensitive handling of the effects of the serious and tragic riding accident sustained by his wife; Corinne. His love of the countryside, and for South Africa (where he was born), the United Kingdom and especially his wife’s homeland, Ireland, all figure prominently in his thoughts. His final philosophical words, written no doubt from his contented retirement base in Kenya state: “I am not afraid of tomorrow, for I have seen yesterday, and I love today”.

N. O. Durdant Hollamby

Aili Maria TRIPP, Changing the rules: the politics of liberalisation and the urban informal economy in Tanzania. Berkeley: University of California Press, Berkeley, 1997. 289p., ISBN 0-520-20278-3, £13.95; US$ 18 (paperback)

It is the early 1980s. Forty passengers board a privately operated bus leaving Dar es Salaam. A police officer stops the bus because, although public transport is woefully inadequate, only government-owned buses are legal. The passengers, strangers to one-another, spontaneously become one big happy family, singing and ululating as though on the way to a wedding. The police give up; they cannot charge the driver of a wedding party.

That is but one of the many examples Aili Maria Tripp offers to convince the reader that the civil society – persons pursuing livelihood outside wage employment – strongly influenced government policies. Tripp’s approach is refreshing because the ordinary citizen is often seen as victim of inept or immoral government and/or international banking policies. The tale is too seldom told of collective survival skills -families getting roofs over their heads, beans on the table and shoes on the children.

The author of this book, the daughter of Lloyd and Marja-Liisa Swantz, did her schooling in Tanzania (1960-1974) and often accompanied her mother on research interviews. Between 1987 and 1994 she and a Tanzanian research assistant interviewed (in Kiswahili) nearly 300 residents of Manzese and Buguruni districts of Dar who were engaged in informal sector activities. They also interviewed ten-house cell leaders, party secretaries and chairmen and legal counsellors. The objective of the study was ‘to document the growth of new dimensions in Tanzania’s urban and informal economy in response to the economic crisis of the late 1970s and 1980’.

Tripp traces the employment-related history of Dar es Salaam, including the split between CCM and government in the mid-1980s. In 1970 just 4 per cent of wives living there were self-employed, but by the end of the 1980s, 69 per cent of women were self-employed. Because real wages fell by 83 per cent between 1974 and 1988, more than 90 per cent of household income came from the informal sector of the economy, where women, children and the elderly dominated. Most of them operated from their homes, a fact that leads Tripp to a strong condemnation of the oversight of the household economy in national accounts that intensifies the formidable nature of market restraints for the poor.

The survival strategies of women, children and the elderly form an innovative array. They sell maandazi and other pastries, fish, cassava, soup, rice, beer and soft drinks; they are tailors, and the better educated export horticultural products and organise secretarial services; they own shipping and receiving companies, private schools, flour mills. In Zanzibar alone, since the late 1980s, an estimated 10,000 women produce seaweed as a cash crop.

Some husbands -but not many -fear that their wives ‘will do well and leave me’, others simply say that their wives ‘make a few cents’ with their projects. But most men keep quiet after providing starting capital for their wives. Indeed! The average monthly income from making maandazi is 4.5 times the minimum salary in Dar.

Women have a good deal of autonomy today, and at least half of those interviewed by Tripp participate in savings societies (upato). Whether barely getting by or earning high incomes, they save money to pay for their children’s education, clothe them and build family houses. They are central to the family economy. In the words of the author: ‘People have drawn on their own resources and have come up with creative, flexible and viable solutions to the problem of survival under extreme duress’. In the process, they have often quietly defied the law, and government gradually gave in – often quietly as well – by easing restrictions and legalising informal economic activities.
Margaret Snyder

Articles in Journals

Rita ABRAHAMSEN, The victory of popular forces or passive revolution7 A neo-Gramscian perspective on democratisation. Journal of modern African studies, 35 (1) 1997, p. 129-152.

Most scholars acknowledge the connection between the fall of Communism in Eastern Europe and the subsequent “democratic wave” in sub- Saharan Africa. This paper, by a journalist and PhD. candidate in the Department of Politics at the University of Swansea, is primarily a perceptive study of overseas aid and its ramifications.

Aid policy during the Cold War was shaped by strategic-political considerations, and African leaders did not hesitate to play the two sides off against each other in order to attract foreign support. When it ended there was a substantive reduction of aid to Africa, especially for authoritarian regimes -as witnessed most recently in Zaire. The end of the cold war has been portrayed as a ‘moral release’ for the West because it allowed for the formulation of policies along more principled ethical lines, and resulted in the emergence of the ‘good governance’ agenda, and political conditionality.

While former communist states became successful competitors for Western aid, presenting new and lucrative investment opportunities, Africa’s share of economic assistance declined. At the same time the idea of one-pasty states was discredited and democratic thinking was encouraged – even Julius Nyerere was said to have conceded that Africa could learn “a lesson or two” from Eastern Europe.

Africa’s prolonged economic crisis also undermined the developmental ideology which underpinned the one-party state, as the capacity of states to meet the welfare needs of their citizens steadily deteriorated or collapsed altogether. At the same time corruption, mismanagement and human rights abuses persisted in what have been called ‘states without citizens’ – which exist only for themselves and their own beneficiaries, excluding the vast majority of the population. Popular protests became common among wide sections of the population, especially urban workers, trade unions and the middle classes, including students, teachers and civil servants.

Maintaining that countries do not exist in isolation, the author sees that in a world increasingly dominated by a global capitalist system, more and more decisions lie outside the control of the individual state. African regimes, increasingly reliant on overseas aid, consequent on poor credit ratings, had no alternative to dealing with the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, described as “a de fact receiver to African governments”, and the effective governance of Africa was “gradually transferred from its official political leaders and former political organs to international financial institutions”.

Structural Adjustment policies, with their emphasis on privatisation, market efficiency, proper pricing policies, and so on, invariably lead to a dismantling or radical reduction of the economic and welfare role of the state. But so far, the author continues, “the miracle of the market” has failed to materialise, while the negative effects continue to mount. “Those few countries which have achieved some macro-economic stability have done so at the expense of growth, investment and human welfare”.

The emergence of pro-democracy movements could not be explained without reference to the widespread feeling of disillusionment and discontent arising from externally imposed austerity measures.

The author expresses the view that a liberal market democracy merely becomes complementary and supportive of goals aimed at expansion of the capitalist world economy. Some gains are achieved in terms of civil and human rights, “but the same elites are still in power and the same socio-economic arrangements persist”.

She concludes: “For those committed to change the message is perhaps that, in order to succeed, counter-hegemonic struggles must take place, not only at the national but also at the international level.”


Stein Sundstol ERIKSEN, Between a rock and a hardplace? Development planning in Tanzanian local governments. Third world planning review, 19(3) August 1997.

Laura FAIR, Clothing, class and gender in post-abolition Zanzibar. Journal of African history, 39, 1998, p.68-94.

From the dawn of civilisation – if not before – what people wore and how they wore it has been significant for the identification of class, status and power. In this interesting and detailed study Laura Fair shows that in Africa, and especially in Zanzibar, this subject is particularly meaningful because of the legacy of slavery and of the area’s specific geography.

She observes that with the abolition of slavery in 1897, former slaves began a “protracted multi-generational process of redefining their positions”. In the early part of this century they accounted for roughly three-fourths of the island’s population, and began identifying themselves as freeborn coastal Swahilis. “They had spent the greater part of their adult lives there, built their homes, planted their farms and watched both their children and their trees grow to maturity on Zanzibar’s rich soil.”

They abandoned clothing associated with their mainland heritage and adopted fashions which identified them first as Swahili and later as Zanzibar-is. As smallholders they became the main producers of the island’s two main exports -cloves and coconuts. Their increasing economic advance often came at the expense of the Omani aristocracy.

Clothing fashions and styles, as well as class and ethnic identities were dramatically remade. Freeborn children began adopting elements of free dress, particularly head coverings and shoes, which they had formerly been forbidden to wear, as well as creating new forms of dress. New markets for imported cloth were opened up, especially in towns, as consumerism was seized upon by former slaves “as a means of articulating their aspirations of upwards social mobility.” The makers and sellers of kangas were making a fortune from women who were said by many to be busily transforming their identities from those of slaves into “slaves of fashion”!

The adoption of Arab clothing was a common strategy, for the association of veiling and purdah with status and property was widespread in pre-colonial Muslim Africa.. After the First World War, women who covered themselves from head to foot with a buibui were publicly demonstrating that they were worthy of respect. Asked why women began to wear the buibui instead of a kanga, a respondent suggested : “It covered you completely, rather than simply covering your head, and was therefore a sign of respect for yourself, your parents and Islam.” It signified that they were “women of dignity and rank and more worthy of respect.”

The author adds significantly: “While the buibui reflected a growing ideology of spiritual equality among East African Muslims, it nonetheless allowed Zanzibari women a freedom to express and debate hierarchicies rooted in more material bases.”

She concludes: “Throughout history and across the globe, men and women have consciously manipulated their material world in order to fabricate their identities physically, and differentiate themselves from others… Covering their heads and bodies was one of the first public demonstrations that formerly servile men and women made of their freedom.” Intrigued by the power of drawings and photographs to act as historical sources, the author effectively utilises such evidence as an integral part of the discussion and text.


Susan GEIGER, Tanganyika nationalism as ‘Women’s Work’; life histories, collective biography and changing historiography. Journal of African history, 37(3) 1996, p.465-479.

Outstanding and exceptional personalities, almost invariably male, are all too often assumed to be the prime instigators and leaders of revolutionary and anti-colonial movements.

After independence, for example, Nyerere was known as “Father of the People”, and the inspiration provided by the masses was generally ignored by historians. These unchronicled individuals were generally presumed to be men, but in this study Susan Geiger, of the University of Missesota, claims that nationalism in Tanzania was largely the creation of women.

Bibi Titi Mohammed, the only TANU leader besides Nyerere whose name was known throughout the country at the time of independence, went from being the lead singer in a popular Dar es Salaam group called ‘Bomba’ to being head of the women’s section of TANU in 1955, and was responsible for enrolling 5,000 women members in a period of three months.

Susan Geiger suggests that the women activists, who constituted a substantial majority of TANU’s card-carrying members, did not learn nationalism from Nyerere or TANU; rather they brought to TANU and to political party activism an ethos of nationalism already present as a “trans- ethnic trans-tribal social and cultural identity”, expressed collectively in their dance and other organisations, and reflected in their families of origin as well as in marriages that frequently crossed ethnic lines. They “evoked, created and performed the nationalism that Nyerere needed to make TANU a credible and successful nationalist movement.”

Open to all who wished to join them, urban women’s dance groups provided newcomers to urban life with entry into “a social and cultural world in which Swahili was the language of song and conversation.”

TANU also benefited from the appeal of uniformed members of the party’s women’s section and of the choirs and youth league, with their many women members, chiefly constituting the party faithful. “Performance and signification produced nationalism in Tanzania as surely as Nyerere’s speeches.”

The writer concludes that nationalism was significantly the work of thousands of women whose lives and associations reflected trans-tribal ties and affiliations, and who thought of Nyerere not so much as father of the people as the son of the people!


Bruce HEILMAN, A social movement for African capitalism? A comparison of business associations in two African cities, by Bruce Heilman and John Lucas. African studies review 40 (2) September 1997, p. 141-17 1.

A comparative study of Kano, in Northern Nigeria, and Dar es Salaam.

Publications Noted

FAREWELL to farms: de-agrarianisation and employment in Africa; edited by Deborah Fahy Bryceson and Vali Jamal. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing, 1997. 277p., ISBN 18014 193 X, 516.50.

This collection of essays by various authors is a continent wide survey, which considers the topic of whether Africa’s future is necessarily rooted in peasant agriculture. The term ‘de-agrarianisation’ embraces the actuality of urban migration, and the expansion into rural areas of non-agricultural activities which provide income for those who live there; thus accelerating a move away from reliance on agriculture by rural people.

The name Bryceson is familiar to many Tanzania-philes, and the book includes a study of the rural informal sector in Tanzania, as well as several chapters of general scope, such as rural industries, and labour diversification in rural areas, which take into consideration the Tanzanian factor,

K. GUILANPOUR, A systematic review of Tanzanian environmental impact statements, by K. Guilanpour and W.R. Sheate. Project apppraisal, 12 (3) September 1997, p. 138-150.

Daniel KOBB, Measuring informal sector incomes in Tanzania: some constraints to cost-benefit analysis. Small enterprise development, 8 (4) December 1997, p.40-48.

LAND degradation in Tanzania: perception from the village, by Alemneh Dejene and others. Washington, D.C.: World Bank, 1997. 92p. (World Bank Technical paper; no.370) ISBN 0-8213-3993-1) US$20.

Charles LANE, Tanzania – uncertain future for the Maasai of Ngorongoro. Indigenous affairs, no.314, July-December 1997, p.4-7.
Garth MYERS, Localising Agenda 21: environmental sustainability and Zanzibari urbanisation, by Garth A. Myers and Makarne A.H. Muhajir. Third world planning review, 19 (4) 1997, p.367-384.

P.K.G.M. NDYETABULA, The use of soil information in Tanzania. PhD.
thesis, University of East Anglia, 1995.
Stephen J. NORTH, Europeans in British administered East Africa: a provisional list 1889 to 1903. Wantage: The Author (22 Belmont, Wantage, OX12 9AS, U.K.), 1995. ISBN 0-9524754-0-5, £37.

A loose-leaf compilation of information which the author has already supplemented, and intends to continue as more information comes to light. This useful and unusual handbook follows work previously undertaken by Donald Simpson at the Royal Commonwealth Society, Mary Gillet of Kenya, and others. The informative entries aim to provide for each individual: full name, dates of birth and death, date of arrival in East Africa, nationality, profession, and chronological account of the person’s career in East Africa.

Robert PINKNEY, Democracy and dictatorship in Ghana and Tanzania. Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1997. 240p., ISBN 0-333-63 175-7, £40.

In examination of the evolution of democracy in the two countries, the author looks at the balance of forces between governments and campaigners for pluralist democracy, and at the outcomes that emerged.

Severine M. RUGUMANU, Lethal aid: the illusion of socialism and self- reliance in Tanzania. Lawrenceville, N.J.: Red Sea Press, [1997?] 256p., ISBN 0-86543-513-8, US$21.95 (paperback)

Peter R. SCHMIDT, Iron technology in East Africa: symbolism, science and archaeology. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, [1997?] 400p. US$19.95.

Peter R. Schmidt, The tree of iron. Bloomington: Indiana University Press,
[1997?] US$39.95

A 60 minute video. Has been welcomed for being one of the few films which document archaeological work in sub-Saharan Africa. In dealing with African iron smelting it presents convincing evidence of early indigenous technologies far more sophisticated than anyone had previously suspected. The video is described as being skilfully crafted and often beautiful to watch.

SUPPORTING women groups in Tanzania through credit: is this a strategy for empowerment? By Dorthe von Bulow and others. Copenhagen: Centre for Development Research, 1995. 14p. (CDR working paper; no.95.10)
Corinne Natalie Cox WHITAKER, The Impact of women’s participation in an income-generation program in south-western Tanzania. PhD. thesis, Johns Hopkins University (USA), 1996.

Editor’s Recommendation

In issue no.58, September -December 1997 we published an enthusiastic review of Laura Sykes’ attractive guide, Dar es Salaam: a dozen drives around the city. It went with us when I revisited Dar with my wife earlier this year. As former residents we felt it would probably be useful in locating areas and buildings of interest after an interval of almost thirty years. We used it as a point of reference as we moved around once familiar districts, and explored new sectors of the huge conurbation that has developed since we lived there. This is a strong commendation of the work of Mrs. Sykes and her co-author, Uma Waide. They have produced a guide that need not be followed faithfully, but can add a great deal to any visitor’s enjoyment of Dar, which is such an interesting, lively and relaxing city -by contrast to the rough hustle into which Nairobi has descended.

From time to time we publish reviews of more general guides. Let me recommend, for the same reason of having actually used it, Michael HODD, East Africa handbook, with Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Ethiopia. 4th ed. Bath: Footprint Handbooks, 1997. 864p., TSBN l 900949 06 7, 214.99. It provides, as far as we needed, accurate and up to date information about what the average traveller requires: what to see, where to stay and eat; how to move around each locality; and most important, provides unexpected sections of relevant and very interesting background information when appropriate. We travelled very happily, following our own instincts and with reference when necessary to this guidebook, through Eritrea, Kenya, Tanzania and Zanzibar. Full marks to Footprint!




Compiled by John Budge and Michael Wise

Readers who do not have the good fortune to live near a specialist African studies library are reminded that many items reviewed may be obtainable through the national interlibrary loan service. Please enquire at your local public library.

Pat CAPLAN, African voices, African lives: personal narratives from a Swahili village. London: Routledge, 1997. 267p., ISBN 0-415-13724- 1. No price stated.

Caplan’s book is in the form of a personal narrative and is based on thirty years of fieldwork in a village in Mafia Island. We hear the story of Mohammed’s life, both through his own words, those of his wife, Mwahadia and daughter, Subira as well as Caplan’s own observations of him over this period. His life is revealed in conversations between Caplan and Mohammed, as well as excerpts from the diary he kept for her. These document personal matters as well as village gossip and other daily events of “Minazini” village. The author sees the work as a humanistic enterprise and aims to “explore the universal human condition, and in so doing cross, or bridge the gap between oneself as ethnographer and the subject of the life history”.

The book is divided into four main sections, each with an introduction by Caplan. It is interspersed with photographs which help to give the flavour of daily life in the village. The first section focuses on Mohammed’s life history and the second contains excerpts from his diary describing marriages, divorces, quarrels, ways of making a living by farming or fishing – all concerns which had touched closely on his own life. In the third section we hear other voices as well – those of Mwahadia and Subira. We see how their lives changed from 1965-1985 and how they suffered from increasing poverty and hardship. “The Search for Knowledge” is the final section, which deals with explanation for the afflictions which affect all the characters’ lives, such as witchcraft and spirits.

Caplan is concerned to break with the anthropological tradition of focusing on difference and “otherness” and instead shows how Mohammed’s and his family’s struggle to make sense of daily events has wider relevance. She has succeeded in her aim of producing a text to interest both anthropologists and non-anthropologists. It offers a fascinating glimpse of life in Mafia, and into the lives of three people who have concerns shared by us all.
Bethan Rees Jones

Tijs GOLDSCHMIDT, Darwin’s dreampond: drama in Lake Victoria. London: MIT Press, 1996. 274p., ISBN 0 262 07178 9, £17.50.

This is really several books within one. Firstly we have an account of the fish of Lake Victoria, especially those known to scientists as cichlids (species of Haplochromis) and to local fishermen as furu. The story begins in 1985 when fishing nets came up almost empty; where were all the small fish (furu) that usually filled the nets? Recently the fishermen’s gill nets had been full of big holes due to a predatory (carnivorous) fish – the Nile Perch (lates nilotica) or sangara, known elsewhere as ‘Elephant of the water’, that can weigh more than 70 kilos. Where had this fish come from? Why was it never caught by fishermen when the author first came to Mwanza in 1981? The answers are all here – they make fascinating reading.

In the late ’70s there was a project of the Tanzanian and Dutch governments to set up a fish-processing factory near Mwanza, which would process 60 tons of furu a day into fish-meal. Could Lake Victoria provide that much fish for an indefinite period? Scientists from the University of Leiden in the Netherlands set up a team (H.E.S.T. – the Haplochromis Ecology Survey Team) to study the ecosystem of the Mwanza Gulf and to identify the species of cichlid involved. As time went by, the nature of the diet of 302 species of cichlid became evident – with more than twelve different types of food ranging from detritus (mud), snails, smaller fish, to insects. These furu show a great range of morphology, especially in their jaw structure, which is related to their diet. No need for powerful jaws for eating mud! The big question is – were all the juru derived from one single riverine ancestor?

Secondly, there is frequent reference to Darwin and his theory of natural selection, and speciation, to aspects of camouflage, and selection pressure, to reproduction strategies, extinction … all part of the discussion of how species originate and change, not just in fish, but in birds, insects, and mammals. Throughout the book (originally written in Dutch and beautifully translated by Sherry Mm-Macdonald), there is an interesting use of words and language: the wanderers (Swahili mzungu), a kiss on the hand (from a female chimp), the battlefield (the lake, between Lates and furu), the savior (Sw. sangara), the Nile Perch, which has enriched some fishermen and traders), masabethi (aluminium dishes) … and so on.

Thirdly, there is an in-depth description of DNA and its variation, and its application to the identification of fish species and their origins. Fourthly, there are plenty of comments on social conditions, and life among the local residents; plus a six page glossary, 168 references, and a very complete index. What more could one want?
Brian J. Harris

Julie JARMAN, WAMMA: empowerment in practice, by Julie Jarman and Catherine Johnson. London: WATERAID (27-29 Albert Embankment, SE1 7UB), 1997. 20p.

WATERAID have produced an attractive 20 page booklet about their water development programme in four districts of the Dodoma Region between 1991 and 1996. WAMMA derives its acronym from the partnership between WATERAID and the Ministries of Maji (Water), Maendeleo ya Jamii (Community Development) and Afia (Health), but a key feature is the full involvement of the local community from the outset. Villagers have to establish a water fund, open a bank account and make a one-off contribution before implementation starts. They must also gather any local materials required, such as rocks, sand and gravel. The village Water Committee sets the price for water and encourages participation in a hygiene education programme.

The report suggests six preconditions for a successful programme of the WAMMA type: the right policy climate (a national water policy); the willingness of government to make suitable fieldworkers available; the continuous backing and support of a senior official (e.g. the Regional Development Director); readiness of the donor (in this case WATERAID) to sustain the partnership over a long period and at an adequate level; high priority for village-level participation at all stages; and above all, patience, flexibility and being prepared NOT to push for quick results.
John Sankey

Omar R. MAPURI, Zanzibar, the 1964 revolution achievements und prospects. Dar es Salaam: TEMA (P.O. Box 63 115, DSM), 1996. 120p No price stated.

This book represents a disturbing, even tragic sign of the times. Mr. Mapuri is a minister in the CCM government of Zanzibar, and his book is a call for the intensification of racial politics.

The author starts by identifying the ‘Arabs’ as oppressors who were overthrown by the 1964 Zanzibar Revolution. Now, he says, they have edged back into positions of power. It is a situation where ‘Zanzibari Africans’ – (not all Zanzibaris) must unite. But unite against what or whom? The answer is powerfully implicit throughout the book.

Mr. Mapuri bends over backwards to see everything in purely racial terms. For example, the Union of Zanzibar and Tanganyika, which was engineered by the United States, happened according to him simply as the logical conclusion of the close relationship between African Associations in Zanzibar and Tanganyika – and to say anything else is somehow anti-African. The suggestion that the Umma Party, which had African, Arab and Asian members, had any role to play in the 1964 revolution is seen as an attempt to belittle Africans – since it detracts from what the author regards as purely African ‘achievement’.

What makes all this particularly strange, of course, is the fact that most Zanzibaris are not pure Arab or even pure African but a mixture of many different groups. Even stranger to anyone who has been to Zanzibar in recent years is Mr. Rampuri’s assertion that the last 33 years have been a continuation of the Glorious Revolution which brought justice and prosperity to the people.

One of the aims of the books seems to be to glorify the Afro-Shirazi Party, ASP (which was a key player in the 1964 revolution) and through it the CCM Zanzibar, which is seen as its successor with the same interests and support base. With this in mind the author praises the ‘Committee of Fourteen’, who were considered by many to have been responsible, in the period after the revolution, for the deaths of hundreds of innocent Zanzibaris. These included well-known progressive leaders of the ASP itself, including Abdala Kassim Hanga, Abdul Aziz Twala and Saleh Saadala.

The Civic United Front (CUF) is attacked as a representative of Arab interests, and a successor in this and other ways, of the Zanzibar National Party (ZNP) of 1964. It is also regarded by the author as the villain of the 1995 election. In a Kafkaesque scenario, it is declared that CUF rigged the elections, intimidated voters and manipulated the (African) people of Pemba to turn against the Africans of Unguja. He sees the international and national observers as stooges of the CUF – did they not, after all, complain that it was the CCM which had been engaged in rigging; that they were biased in favour of the CUF because the Arabs always had western support!

What then is the solution to Zanzibar’s problems? What does the author have to say to the youth for whom he declares he has written this book? The answer seems to be out and out confrontation – he urges ‘Zanzibari Africans’ and particularly the youth to save the gains of the Great Revolution.

Reading this book will bring for many of us a sense of deja vu and disappointment. Less than two years ago, in April 1996, the late Abdulrahman Babu predicted just such a polarisation and suggested a solution. In his last pamphlet Wanted: a Third Force In Zanzibar politics, written soon after the 1995 elections he wrote:
the ruling party has ‘won’ the election but not the country The country is at a standstill waiting for a political solution …’ The balance of political power has hardly altered since the 1950s struggle for independence which led to the 1964 Revolution. The political rivalry that has followed the advent of the multi-party electoral process has exacerbated rather than healed the great political divisions of the pre-independence era. And the political leadership cannot … find a way out of this deadlock.

What then is the way forward? In Babu’s view (which has been proved right), a government of national unity is not possible because the conflict now is primarily between leaders with past grudges, and not between parties. He advocated the creation of an independent Third Force in Zanzibar politics, whose task would be to alert the country to the reality of the current state of affairs. If this did not happen soon, he declared, there was a very real danger of fragmentation in Zanzibari society. Unfortunately, if Rampuri’s book is any indicator, the leaders are pushing Zanzibar towards just such a fragmentation.
Amrit Wilson

Thomas SPEAR, Mountain Farmers: moral economies of land & agricultural development in Arusha & Meru. Dar es Salaam: Mkuki na Nyota; Berkeley & Los Angeles: University of California Press; Oxford: James Currey, 1997. X, 262p., ISRN 0-85255-737-X, £14.9533.

This study traces the history of the Meru and Arusha peoples during the closing decades of the nineteenth century and the fist half of the twentieth; the period when they found themselves, and their economic and social systems in conflict with incomers, whose interests were varied, and by and large became focused upon making use, in various ways, of their productive lands. The limited extent of these lands, and population increase led to strong resistance against incoming governments, settlers and religious bodies.

The Meru and Arusha peoples endured more than a customary share of tribulation during the period under consideration. Their traumas have included epidemic diseases, civil war, drought and famine. All these posed severe threats to the established social order, and more or less coincided with the arrival of Christian missionaries, who were killed in accordance with customary practise directed at individuals seen as introducing undesirable witchcraft, and undermining social order. The establishment of foreign rule, first by the Germans and later the British, bore especially heavily on the area under consideration in this book, by reason of the attractions of the lands for European farmers.

This situation was recognised, and criticised by administrators from the early years of British administration after the first World War. The two tribes were relatively small units when the German Government entered their lives … secure from molestation by other tribes. They occupied land almost unexampled by its fertility … Immense plains were at the disposal of their cattle and there was an abundance of agricultural land available for further expansion. These fair prospects were quickly brought to nought by the German Government. An extensive system of land alienation to non-natives was inaugurated and proceeded in the most reckless manner. Two large mission stations … and two small farms were alienated in the heart of the native area and a belt of farms was carried right around the mountain.. .and entailed the expropriation of many.. . when British officers took over the district they found the Arusha and Meru cramped within an area which was barely adequate for their immediate needs and practically incapable of extension to meet future requirements In every quarter, normal tribal expansion … had been hopelessly compromised.

The author’s prolonged investigation of source materials, ranging from verbal information to archives in Tanzania, Europe and North America, traces the attempts of the peoples concerned and their British administrators on the spot, to check the continued degradation of their society by incomers. This culminated, for the purpose of the book, in the internationally renowned Meru Land case, whose disputants went to the United Nations Trusteeship Council.

It is a record, not only of dispute about possession, but also about the actual use of land and resources by the people concerned, who rapidly, and fairly successfully adapted their methods in order to continue to produce and survive economically within a reduced allocation of land. Professor Spear has provided a highly readable, balanced and most informative history of a segment of Tanzanian society in the earlier twentieth century.


TUKI English-Swahili dictionary. Kamusi ya Kiingereza-Kiswahili. Dar es Salaam: Mkuki na Nyota for Institute of Kiswahili Research, University of Dar es Salaam, 1996. xx, 883p. ISBN 9976 911 29 7. Distributed in the U.K. by African Books Collective, 27 Park End Street, Oxford OX1 IIIU. Price £60; US$108.

The TUKI English-Swahili dictionary is the culmination of fourteen years’ work by the Institute of Kiswahili Research at the University of Dar es Salaam. Given the difficult conditions under which the TUKI staff worked (at which the Foreword only hints) and the quality of the final product, this dictionary is a remarkable achievement. There is no doubting the need for a new English-Swahili dictionary; the English language has outgrown Johnson’s dictionary of 1939, and none of the more recent dictionaries provides such comprehensive coverage. This one contains over 50,000 entries, including many new words and meanings, along with lexicographic information such as word class, alternative spellings, status (whether formal, slang, vulgar, etc.) and collocations. The most significant drawback, given the erratic nature of English spelling, is the lack of a pronunciation guide. This omission is attributed to technical reasons.

The dictionary begins with a series of diagrams explaining the various types of information included in a dictionary entry, followed by instructions (in English only) on how to use the dictionary. Both these sections are clear and informative, but should perhaps be given in Swahili also. The quality of entries is high; words and their derivatives arc easy to find, and the translations and accompanying information are generally accurate. Many colloquial and figurative expressions arc also included, as are a number of illustrative examples.

The work is not without its problems, of course. A significant problem is a lack of consistency within and between entries. Information about the status of a word or its regional variations appears sometimes before and sometimes after the word, which occasionally causes confusion. Such information can also be inconsistent between entries. Thus, the entry for bell includes the following illustrative example: (colloq) ring a – kumbusha. Under ring, the same expression is treated as a ‘run on’ (a sub-headword, in bold type) but without the information that this is a colloquial usage. – a bell leta kumbukumbu kwa mbali. Some inconsistency is also found in the regional information; although the dictionary indicates usage specific to Britain, America, Australia/New Zealand and Scotland, at times British usage is used as a default. For example, the entry for mad does not indicate that ‘angry’ is the most common American usage of this word; similarly, although the sub-heading of sidewalk gets the label (US) the sub-heading pavement is unmarked, and neither of these entries is cross-referenced to the other. There are also a few mistakes, but these arc rare.

Aside from these minor problems, I found this authoritative dictionary informative and easy to use. It will, I am sure, soon become established as a standard reference work. Steve Nicolle

Articles in Journals

Thadeus SUNSERI, Famine and wild pigs: gender struggles and the outbreak of the Majimaji war in Uzaramo Journal of African History, 38, 1997, p.235-259

Catherin BAROIN, Religious conflict in 1990-93 among the Rwa: secession in a Lutheran diocese in Northern Tanzania. African affairs: the journal of the Royal African Society, 95 (381) Oct 1996, p.529-554

There may not appear to be much connection between wild pigs and banana beer, but these apparently irrelevant details sparked off two rebellions, harking back directly and indirectly to the period of German rule in Tanganyika at the beginning of the century. These two admirable and interesting studies show how religious beliefs and practices become linked to radical social change and how authoritarian obstinacy can tear societies apart.

Sunseri, maintaining that the prevailing conception of the Majimaji war needs to be re-examined, acknowledges that a good deal of historical research was directed to this end at the University of Dar es Salaam in the 1970s.

The Germans, attempting to regiment Tanzanian peasants, succeeded only in destroying the historic structure of rural society – the delicate balance between the distinctive practices of men and women essential to social cohesion, health and the well-being of the soil and the environment. They forbade bush-burning, hunting, the felling of forest trees and forced men to work on communal cotton farms and railway construction. Men, robbed of their traditional tasks, were forced to leave their homes for long periods with the result that women had to assume their roles, ushering in vital “shifts in gendered spheres of power”. The 1905 revolt, Sunseri claims, was not so much a fight for independence as a ‘symptom of household struggles’ to overcome these problems. Headmen lost authority and when severe famine struck women practised ritual pagan remedies by using dawa (medicine) based on maji (water) to protect crops, and appealed to agricultural deities.

Sunseri claims that these rituals were appropriated by nationalist historians and ‘transformed into a proto-nationalist ideology of resistance’ which became established as the Majimaji tradition. In fact, he says, it was a subtle protest against the assault by the colonial power on the peasant economy and their ‘loss of environmental control’. The wild pigs became a symbol of the policy, exacerbated by the increasing number of Moslems with their aversion to eating pig flesh. Women became hunters – the protectors of the fields.

Whereas Sunseri shows how authoritarianism directly created social problems, Catherine Baroin demonstrates how social conditions drove a religious organisation into an ideological corner. Ever since Tanganyika fell under German domination in 1886, as a result of an agreement between Germany and Britain, the supreme cultural and social influence in the Kilimanjaro region has remained that of the Lutheran Church, which controls nearly all the infrastructure of social life, owning churches, fields, coffee plantations, schools and hospitals, and drawing upon external aid that enables it to finance development programmes.

The Rwa, who occupy the slopes of Mount Meru, are Bantu-speaking farmers, numbering about 150,000, working the rich volcanic soil of the rain-soaked mountain, which is favourable to intensive farming, mainly of coffee and bananas. The Kilimanjaro Chaga outnumber the Rwa nine times over and are “reputed for their business sense and on average more cosmopolitan, more educated and richer”.

Baroin claims that the ‘inferiority complex’ of the Rwa was one cause of conflict, although a large majority are practising Lutherans who read, write and speak Swahili. The 18 patriarchal clans are modelled on the Masai system, divided into ‘generations’, but they accused the Chaga (Northern) branch of the church of discriminating against them, especially in the financing of health and education.

The issue was exacerbated by the uncompromising attitude of many of the clergy and even the Bishop, who blamed the main instigator of the rebellion, Jackson Kaaya, describing him as “an agitator thirsty for power”. Aged over 70, he gained notoriety during the Meru Land Case, when the Rwa eventually took their case to the United Nations, in defiance of Britain, and their action was a prelude to founding the Tanganyika African National Union. A sore point with the church was the Rwan habit of indulging in long drinking sessions of banana beer, while other conflicts arose from their practice of polygamy and the generation system.

When the situation became tense the government strove to maintain order, eventually calling in the army. The rebels tried to take over church institutions in their area, the leaders were imprisoned, and after further serious rioting the Rwa eventually sought a compromise, as a result of which the hegemony of the church was ended. It is noted that bitterness still persists, especially between the Meru Educational and Social Development organisation (MESODET) and the church. As coffee producers the Rwa rely mainly on coffee sales for development funds, and the control of coffee co-operatives is a key issue. In Rwan consciousness, economics and politics are inextricably linked.

Publications Noted

Hector BLACKHURST, East and Northeast Africa bibliography.. Lanham, Md.; London: Scarecrow Press, 1996. xiv, 299p. (Scarecrow area bibliographies; no.7) ISBN 0-8108-3090-6, US$62.50.

Compiled by the founder editor of the well known and much regarded Africa bibliography, this is a handy and very immediately usable gathering of references to books about the area published from 1960 to date. That alone is a form of recommendation, because of the greater likelihood of being able to find items in libraries, and even still in print and available for purchase.

Very precise subject headings allow immediate access to, or indication of non-existence of the user’s chosen approach Thus, more general items in our selected area of interest can be traced under Tanzania – Handicrafts; – Health and Medicine; – History and so on. Quite specifically, Chaga; Dar es Salaam; Olduvai Gorge; Zinza, etc. This is one of the most usable bibliographies I have come across for some time. Not exhaustive, but highly recommended for the sensible selection of entries included.

Erik 0. GILBERT, The Zanzibar dho [dhow?] trade: an informal economy of the East African coast, 1860-1963. Ph.D. thesis, Boston University, 1997. Obtainable from University Microfilms International, PO Box 1346, Ann Arbor, M1 48106-1346, U.S.A. quoting order number 9713661.

Abacleti K. KASHULIZA, Determinants of bank credit access for smallholder farmers in Tanzania: a discriminant anlysis appreciation, by Anacleti K Kashiliza and Jonathan G. Kydd. Savings and development, no.3, 1996, p.285-304

Nasor MALIK, Extension of Kiswahili during the German colonial administration in continental Tanzania (former Tanganyika), 1885-1917

Originally published in Swahili forum III, Sept., 1996, p. 155- 160, this article of approximately 2,000 words has been revised by the author, and a copy of the typescript can be seen by contacting the editor of Tanzanian affairs.

Fenella MUKANGARA, Women and gender studies in Tanzania: an annotated bibliography(1982-94). Dar es Salaam: The University Press, 1995. 245p., ISBN 967 6602 782. Distributed in the U.K. by African Books Collective, 27 Park End Street, Oxford OX1 IHU, Pricc 514.95, US$27.

Roger PFISTER, Bibliography of Swiss doctoral dissertations on sub-Saharan Africa, 1897-1996 Bern SWISS Society of African Studies,( P 0 Box 8212, CH- 3001 Bern), 1997 76p No price stated

A useful list, which draws upon diverse sources to present a comprehensive and well indexed list of Swiss dissertations on African topics. The high degree of interest in Tanzania over the period is shown by the proportion which concentrate on the country (almost ten percent out of some 400). The bibliography includes helpful advice on how to obtain copies of dissertations listed.

PLUNDERING Africa’s past; edited by Peter R. Schmidt & Roderick J. Mclntosh. Oxford: James Currey Publishers, 1996. 296p., ISBN 0 85255 738 8, 514.95.

Described by the publisher as being a frank indictment of African contributions to the problem, and discussion of specific steps that could halt the disappearance of Africa’s art. In addition to several overview chapters looking at aspects of art theft continent-wide, there are two chapters devoted to aspects of the destruction and looting of archaeological sites in Tanzania, another on Kenya, and one on the East African coast.

Detlef H. SCHMIDT, Measuring participation: its use as a managerial tool for district health planners based on a case study in Tanzania, by Detlef H Schmidt and Susan B Refkin International Journal of health planning and management, 11, 1996, p.245-358

E.H. SILAYO, Cadastral surveying practice In Tanzania. Dar es Salaam: The University Press, 1997. 163p.

A discourse on why cadastral surveying “is much more than merely solving boundary disputes between neighbours”.

The reviews editors thank contributors for their reviews, especially those that come unsolicited and often draw attention to publications that might have been overlooked. Anyone offering a review should please contact Michael Wise.



Compiled by Michael Wise and John Budge

ADULT education in Tanzania: Swedish contributions in perspective, edited by Gunnar Rydstrom. Lonkoping Centre for Adult Education 1996 171p (Centre for Adult Education serles, 10) ISBN 91-7871-839-2, SEK 160 Obtainable from Vuxenutbildarcentrum, Lonkopings universitet S-58 L 83 Linkoping, Sweden

This is an anthology, based on the involvement and interaction of four Swedes, five Tanzanians, and two other expatriates in the adult education movement. The fist of the three main sections provides the “background to Sweden’s commitment to international aid in general and to adult education in Tanzania in particular”. Rolfe Sunden, in his article “How it all began” traces the history of Swedish involvement in adult education and folk development colleges in Tanzania. The author discusses the emergence and significance of the Social Democratic Party in Sweden and its belief, in the 1960s, that it could have “something to contribute to the new states, those just declared independent or those struggling for independence”. It is also emphasised that Sweden was particularly sympathetic to President Nyerere’s philosophy of Uhuru, Maendeleo, Demokrasi.

The second part provides four lengthy essays narrating personal experiences of Swedish participants. Folke Albinson discusses, amongst other things, his involvement in training adult education personnel: differences between the Swedish environment and that of Tanzania in terms of awareness of colleagues, teaching methods, economic circumstances and so forth. The example of his typist, Hamis, made him aware of the fact that “living conditions for almost all of the Tanzanian staff’ were more or less the same”. Perhaps Gunnar Rydstrom had the most challenging task. He was presented with a “short list of urgent requests: to get some kind of adult education journal or magazine going, to produce a handbook for adult educators, specifically geared to Tanzanian needs, and study materials to be used in evening classes and other courses”.

The third section presents contributions from Tanzanians. namely Yusuf Kassam. Nicholas Kuhanga. Paul Mhaiki and Shaaban Msuya, narrating their experience of participating In the Swedish input to adult education Most of them write as administrators. and it would perhaps have been appropriate for the beneficiaries to have been given an opportunity to air their views a: this point. Apart from narration of the various authors’ personal experiences in Tanzania, the book also shows some common points of agreement that the success of adult education in the country is attributed to, inter alia, personal commitment of President Nyerere at the time, favourable policies, commitment and dedication of administrators, favourable economic conditions and a warm Sweden-Tanzania relationship. The book presents such a picture of positive Swedish contribution that it would have been equally interesting to know why Sweden had to withdraw its support

Ali A.S Mcharazo

CHELEWA, chelewa: the dilemma of teenage girls, edited by Zubeida Tumbo-Masabo and Rita Lijestrom Uppsala Scandanavian Institute of African Studies. 1994 218p. ISBN 91-7106-354-4, distributed by Almqvist & Wiksell International, Stocknolm $15.95p

This interesting volume comes out of work by a team at the University of Dar es Salaam funded by the Swedish Agency for Research Co-operation with Developing Countries. The authors focus on a series of problems faced by young women. There are the health hazards faced by girls as young as thirteen due to pregnancy following on early marriage and casual sex. There is their low representation relative to boys beyond primary education. There are state laws that target those who commit abortions or infanticide and stipulate expulsion from school for pregnancy, whilst doing little to support girls who bear children and thereby jeopardise their education, job and marriage prospects. Exploited by men; disregarded by fathers, even their mothers may withdraw, blamed by their husbands for the disgrace the girl may bring to the family. Older women mock them in the pain of labour: -‘You thought it was ice-cream. Taste the sweetness of it now!’. (p. 181)

One of the challenging questions raised by the studies in this book relates to changes in the way young women learn about sex. There has always been a powerful taboo on discussion of such matters within the family; in the past it was the responsibility of the whole community to socialise young people through initiation ceremonies In some areas these collective rituals survive, but in many ways they are fading. given the onslaught of urbanisation, labour migration Islam, Christianity and ‘modern’ education systems. So too is the wider influence of kinsfolk and community in nuclear family affairs, whilst parents, schools and clinics have been unable successfully to fill the gap.

Hence Ntukulu’s call here for the revival of collective initiation ceremonies. On the other side of the argument, Shuma points out that in Lindi, where such ceremonies are still prevalent, there is a high level of teenage pregnancies as well as of maternal and child mortality in childbirth.

Two issues are raised here. The first is the value of continuing community concern for young women and the expression of this through collective means, whilst the second concerns the substance as well as the style of the teaching in initiation ceremonies. Shuma notes that in Lindi the matrilineal system of kinship does not stigmatise girls for becoming pregnant before marriage as responsibility is taken by their mother’s brothers to whose lineage children are affiliated. High rates of mortality have more to do with levels of poverty than with ignorance. In other areas there is a contradiction between teaching about sex and then expecting young people to abstain for many years. Tumbo-Masabo also argues that the teaching in such settings was always didactic, with girls unable to ask questions for fear of seeming too forward. It is also evident that girls’ initiation rites entailed learning subservience to the power of men, rather than the gender equality which ‘Tumbo-Masabo sees as essential to improving the lives of young women. This is a book that puts young people on the research agenda and raises issues of sexuality age and gender in a way that is relevant not only to other parts of Africa but also more widely Janet Bujra

CUSTODIANS of the land: ecology und culture in the history of Tanzania edited by Gregory Maddox, James Giblin and Isaria N Kimambo. London James Currey. Dar es Salaam Mkuki na Nyota. l996 xiv, 271p , £12.95p ISBN 0-8214-1134-9

This interesting collection brings together nine papers written by historians which consider interactions between local agricultural systems, human development and the environment in various different regions of Tanzania during different historical periods. The great strength of the collection is the detailed evidence provided, from excellent scholarly research amongst archival material as well as more easily available publications, of the diverse nature of agriculture and population dynamics of this huge country – material which will be of great use to Africanist students and scholars from a range of disciplines.

The book is presented in four sections. each considering a different aspect of environmental interrelationships. The first focuses on demographic issues and the first demographic paper, by Koponen provides some fascinating insights into Tanzanian population dynamics during the colonial period. The material on fertility rates and of truly terrifying levels of infant mortality I found particularly compelling. The other in this section provides a case study of environment and population growth during the colonial period in Ugogo. central Tanzania.

Part two focuses on the relationship between environmental change and human history in the northern highlands. Kimambo’s paper on precolonial development in Usambara, the Pare Mountains and on Kilimanjaro examines the significance of trade as a stimulant to economic innovation (presented here as a challenge to the idea that precolonial societies were inherently unable to respond to market opportunities). The discussion is enlivened by the author’s own background of being brought up on Kilimanjaro, and he brings personal experience to his examination of aspects of local agricultural systems. The second paper, by Conte, deals with the Usambara Mountains and the Impact of settlement by Wambugu pastoralists on the high forests

The third section on politics and environmental change contains two chapters examining environmental and agricultural issues in eastern Tanzania at different times: Handeni District in the nineteenth and early twentieth century and the Uluguru Mountains of Morogoro in the 1940s and 1950s. Both draw attention to the way in which political organisation can affect the environment – for example settled, organised and stable populations were able to create environments more suited to human occupation and development than the ‘natural’ vegetation and flora (e.g. ticks and tsetse flies) would allow.. Thus weakening the political structures easily leads to increased human vulnerability as the environment becomes ‘degraded’ – not in the usual sense utilised in the ecological literature, where human intervention is the cause of degradation, but in the more people-friendly sense that the environment is less productive for human needs because there is too little human intervention.

The fourth section, entitled Environmental and Morality, provides detailed case studies of agricultural and environmental issues in precolonial Buha, western Tanzania; early colonial times in the Kilombero Valley, and the 1950s in Mount Meru. In each case compelling evidence is presented of the existence of institutionalised concepts of ‘proper’ resource use amongst local communities, which was tied in not only to the exercise of indigenous political authority, but also to much more individual or very locally-based moral economies.

As a non-historian it is possible to feel that some of the authors might have found their positions easier to develop had they looked at more of the literature from outside their discipline – particularly geographical and contemporary demographic studies. Overall this is a valuable contribution to the literature on African environmental history. It should be of interest to any student of Tanzanian affairs in general, and provide valuable case study material for readers from a wide variety of disciplines, including geography, environmental studies and demography as well as history.
Deborah Potts

Jeffrey MEEKER, The Precarious socio-economic position of women in rural Africa the case of the Kaguru of Tanzania. Jeffrey Meeker and Dominique Meekers African studies review 40 (1) April 1997, p 35-58

There seems to be a common belief that while men in rural African societies ‘enjoy life’, often succumbing to the alleged ‘delights’ of drunkenness, laziness and debauchery, their women folk struggle valiantly against great odds to maintain a reasonable standard of living for their children and, incidentally, for their good-for-nothing- husbands. Although this is a dangerous general assumption, the authors found when interviewing a large number of representative women that they seemed to confirm that, sadly, it is not a complete misconception.

While then women are typically engaged in agricultural, household and income-earning work, they do not experience equal access to educational and economic resources because they are restrained by family relationships, land-holding customs, household power structures and other financial and social realities.

The Kaguru who occupy a hilly area in the Morogoro region, are cultivators mainly of millet, sorghum and maize, and keep chickens, goats and sheep. The land is relatively fertile but recurrent droughts, floods and rodent infestations often destroy the harvest, sometimes resulting in severe famine.

While attempting to secure universal primary school enrolment, various African countries find it impossible to achieve the same result in secondary education. particularly in rural areas where parents are too poor to afford fees. The writers suggest that the implementation of World Bark Structural Adjustment Programmes tends to decrease government spending, causing more difficulty for parents, especially of girls, who are in any case traditionally expected to remain at home, or be solely wives and mothers. One woman declared, “Yes. I went to school. In those days there was only up to Standard Four. If you pass, you proceed. I actually passed but my Father wanted me to get married so that he received bridewealth.”

Women suffered by the introduction of cash crops that altered the customary household division of labour, with men becoming increasingly involved their production, while women continued to grow food for the family, from decreased allocation of arable land. The revenue from cash crops generally goes to the men, and women have only limited access to credit services. They also suffer most in cases of divorce, separation or widowhood. They most usually generate income through non agricultural activities such as bee-keeping, pottery making, baskets and mats, charcoal and beer-brewing, most especially during times of general economic hardship; when their income generation is often needed for the household’s survival.

It is reported as being not uncommon for women and children to have no shoes or adequate clothing, although the husband and father may be relatively wealthy. “My husband doesn’t care for the children … I have to pay the school fees and buy the uniforms.” Some men seem to believe that extra-curricular activities by their wives might undermine their authority.

The authors observe that since the early 1980s economic growth has stagnated, making the future prospect ‘grim’. Women would receive substantial help by the provision of more wells and grain mills, and from switching to alternative fuel, such as propane, instead of having to search for wood. This study provided valuable evidence of the social deficiencies that hold back economic advance and human wellbeing in many areas of sub-Saharan Africa.

Thomas P. OFCANSKY. Historical Dictionary of Tanzania,2nd ed by Thomas P. Ofcansky and Rodger Yeager Lanham Md. London Scarecrow Press, 1997 xxxi, 291p (African historical dictionaries no 72) ISBN 0-8108-3244-5, $US 69

How very difficult is the task of compiling a dictionary that will encapsulate, through short entries, the recorded history of a country. This one, which is the seventy second (and now revised, which shows the continuing demand for the record provided), follows the publisher’s established pattern of providing short entries, almost never more than two pages long, which give concise information about personalities, institutions and bodies, and outstanding movements and events significant in the history of Tanzania. It ends with a classified bibliography. around 100 pages long, of publications considered important in studying the history of the country

Thus, dipping almost at random there are consecutive entries for Chuma, James (one of Livingstone’s companions), Church Missionary Society, City States (Kilwa, Pemba, and so on), Clarke. Edward A. (Consul General in Zanzibar early in this century), Closer Union (a proposal in the 1920s); Clove Growers’ Association: Cloves; Coal; Coconuts; Coffee; Colonial Development and Welfare Act, Common Market of East and South African States; Consolata Fathers: Constitutions, Cooperative Societies And so it proceeds. This is far more than a mere collection of names of individuals who have helped to shape Tanzania, but they are there too; all kept in proportion by the publisher’s evident insistence on keeping the resultant dictionary within manageable and economic proportions. So even Nyerere, Julius K. gets only a page and a half, as does his successor. This treatment of the subjects does, however, risk becoming pedestrian, because of the constraint on recounting much detail of controversial matters, or outlining telling aspects of personal character. Such is the nature of dictionary compilation.

As with most of the other dictionaries in this series, it is a most welcome and useful addition to general/ specialist information on Tanzania. Yes, every attentive user will discover omissions, but would they have achieved such formidable coverage as Ofcansky and Yeager have done? They deserve whole-hearted commendation for this excellent revised dictionary. The bibliography is unusually fine, even for this series, and must surely leave the Clio Press, publishers of the World Bibliographical series on most countries in the world concerned about their own impact. The bibliography at the end of this work, with some 2.000 references, admittedly presented without any annotations, is considerably longer than the content of the average Clio bibliographical guide.

Francis G. Smith, Three cells of honeycomb. Privately printed, 1994 by Dr F G Smith 36 Vincent Street/ Nedlands WA 6009 Australia xii, 248p, ISBN 0 9587538 5 7 $AUS 25 inc p&p in Australia, £15 p&p to UK by air

This is the autobiography of Francis Smith, who has used the metaphor of honeycomb cells to represent three periods of his life, in Britain, Tanzania and Australia. He worked in Tanzania from 1949 until independence in 1962. and was responsible for introducing many improvements in honey and beeswax production. If you are not interested in beekeeping don’t however give this book a miss. It gives an interesting insight as to what it was like being a government officer at that time, and is written most entertainingly.

For example, after describing problems encountered when locating nests of stingless bees: “There was a story that a team of British army surveyors, working under these difficult conditions, received complaints about the condition of their field notebooks, which they sent periodically to the mapping branch in England. In reply, between the pages of the next set of field notebooks, they included hairs of the buffalo beans (which cause considerable irritation). Complaints ceased.”

On arrival in Tanzania Dr Smith was confronted with a problem of ‘sticky wax’ which was useless and polluted true beeswax, but whose origin was unknown. In a few months he started on the trail of the culprit and the whodunit nature of the text would go well in a TV soap, but probably be rather more original and entertaining. Obviously Francis Smith’s time in Tanganyika was great fun and this comes through. It makes a good read.
David Gooday

Laura SYKES. Dar es Salaam: a dozen drives around the city, by Laura Sykes and Uma Waide. Dar es Salaam: Mkuki na Nyota Publishers, 1997 154p., ISBN 9976 973 357. Distributed by African Books Collective Ltd. 27 Park End Street. Oxford OXJ LW, U.K.

As the authors state in their introduction, this is not merely a straightforward tourist guide to the main sights of Dar es Salaam. In its detail it makes up for the casual attention paid to the city by the majority of guidebooks to Tanzania, which assume that the capital will be merely a staging post for the greater excitements of parks, coasts and mountains. This delightful accumulation of information about Dar arises from the enthusiastic recognition, by two expatriates. that they had the good luck to have come to live in a city with a long and interesting history, of which a remarkable amount survives in buildings that are still extant.

The outcome of their investigations is arranged as twelve systematic routes by car; for the obvious reason that the climate is likely to make much consecutive walking an endurance test. It is, however, easy to use the book as a sampler for information by anyone who looks about them as they go around the entire metropolitan area. The excellent index facilitates this, and the photographs whet the appetite to get out and about. The text is one to dip into, and almost any casual flip of the pages brings up facts. quotations, historical references, which illuminate so much better than the average encapsulated hard facts of where to stay and eat and catch a bus, which are the mainstay of many comprehensive’ guidebooks for travellers with limited time. Not that this overlooks those essentials of daily life for the traveller and resident alike.

To take one example of the care taken by the authors to draw an interested stranger into a feeling of place. Their description of the important commercial sector, Kariakoo, occupies, together with the itinerary for going there and coming array again, nine pages of concisely presented description and background information. Compare such treatment of the main market area of a large city with that given in an average guide book.

I had the good luck along with my wife to be infected by Mrs Sykes enthusiasm for Calcutta a few years ago. This latest jointly authored outcome of her interest in another city of great character is highly recommended. For the curious traveller who wishes to know more than an average guidebook has space to tell.

The UNSUNG heroines: women’s life histories from Tanzania; edited by Magdelene Ngaiza and Bertha Koda Uar es Salaam WRDP Publications 1991 232p ISBN 9987 8820 l l, no price stated

This book takes seven ordinary Tanzanian women who are used as a basis for interpretation of issues confronting women in contempora9 Tanzania. It’s review here, some six years after publication, indicates our opinion that it still has validity as a useful documentary record. Their life histories are told by themselves, and theoretical analyses and interpretations are provided by women scholars. The articles have the same structure, starting with narration of the subject’s life history, and proceeding to interpretations and conclusions about the impact of social and political factors on each of the women. Among them are ‘Life history of Bibi a woman in urban Tanga”, by Bibi with P Mbughuni. “My life is a life of struggles: the life history of a young barmaid’ by Anna X with Alice Nkoma- Wamunza; “A migrant peasant woman in the city” by Eve with A. Nkebukwa; and “The life history of a housewife”, by Mama Koku with M. Ygaiza;

The interpretations are, for instance, that Bibi’s history, like that of many Tanzanian women of her generation, is dominated by the struggle against colonialism and also male domination, while the story of Anna X shows how it “takes a woman of extreme courage to work as a barmaid”. Anna, the narrator states however that she does not believe that all barmaids are necessarily prostitutes, nor that all customers are looking for sex. Her life history is taken by the commentator to show how factors such as Employment Ordinance; job security; lack of credit facilities; are some of the instruments that have been used to perpetuate the subordination of women in society.

Rural-urban migration, bride price, the institution of marriage and household economy are also discussed in the context of the fundamentals of democracy. The book addresses an extremely important area which has not been sufficiently investigated. Since the experience of Tanzanian women is more or less similar to that of women elsewhere in the developing world it can also be useful in other countries.
Alli A. S. Mcharazo

Three from New Holland (Publishers) Ltd.

Lisa ASCH, Traveller’s guide to Tanzania, by Lisa Asch and Peter Blackwell 1997. 192p. £14-99
GLOBETROTTER travel map – Tanzania 1996 £4-99
Graham MERCER, (Globetrotter travel guide – Tanzania 1996 128p , E6-99

New Holland Publishers is a truly International company, using Far Eastern printing sources and East African authors and photographers to produce their exciting new trilogy of Tanzanian travel.

The folding travel map in particular is excellent and good value. More than just a map of the county, it includes detailed street plans of Dar es Salaam and other major cities, as well as large scale projections of popular tourist destinations such as national parks. Mount Kilimanjiro and the Great Lakes.

The larger of the two guidebooks contains a wealth of superb photographs and detailed, often scholarly and erudite information on many aspects of Tanzania – from archaeology, geology and pre-history to anthropology, agriculture, forestry, history and politics, in addition to the expectable tourist data on wildlife, parks, beaches, Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar.

The smaller of the two books is a true gu1debook also well illustrated and ideal for a short-stay visitor

Both books are ideal for young (in heart) adventurous travellers and arc spiced with an earthy sense of humour. The smaller volume starts “Tanzania is among the World’s poorest countries and at times among its most exasperating. For visitors it can often be expensive, hot, unsophisticated and exhausting. But there can be few, if any countries in the World which are more exciting.” The longer book has an awesome photo of what might well be a dry river bed, with the laconic caption “The road between Dodoma and Arusha will challenge the skills of all drivers ”
I enjoyed the whole set and learnt a lot, not least that Mount Kilimanjaro is apparently popularly known nowadays as ‘Kily’!
Randal Sadlier

Publications Noted

Jacob L. KIMARYO, Urban design and space use: a study of Dar es Salaam City Centre. Lund: University of Lund, 1996. (School of Architecture, Department of Building Function Analysis; report 1 : 1996). No price stated. (Dissertation)

Vesa-Matti LOISKEb, The Village that vanished: the roots of erosion in a Tanzanian village Stockholm University of Stockholm, 1995 (Meddelanden kin Kulturgeograiiska institutionen , no B9.1) No price stated (Dissertation)

Roger PFISTER, Internet for Africanists and others interested in Africa: an introduction to the Internet and a comprehensive complilation of relevant addresses. Bern: Swiss Society of African Studies (SAG-SSE.1): Basel- Basler rZfrika Bibliographien (B.-). 1996 140p.. ISBN 3-905 141-67-1. 20CHF.

This is possibly the most comprehensive and helpful directory of Africanist Internet locations that has appeared to date. It provides an introduction to Internet connection and search techniques that appears to be designed for those (in Africa?) who require such assistance and encouragement, which is followed by the substance of the guide. This consists of country codes and lists of African and Africana Internet sites arranged broadly by topics and by types, mailing lists and news groups.

There are, of course many more websites of Afrcanist content outside than in the continent, and they grow apace. It is worth noting here the recent arrival of Electronic Journal of Africana Bibliography, whose web site address is http:/// and of Peter Limb’s A-Z of African Studies on the Internet, with web site address must hope that Roger Pfister’s very useful guide will be updated to take account of the increasing number of sites becoming available, and it deserves wide publicity.

Joan I. SMITH. Heart of Africa. Privately printed, 1992 by Dr. F.G Smith 36
Vincent Street Nedlands WA 6009 Austra1ia.u. 202p.., ISBNO 9587538 4 9, $AUS 20 inc p.&p in Australia. f15 p&p to UK by air
. A Patch of Africa. Privately printed, 1996 by Dr F.G. Smith; 36 Vincent Street, Nedlands WA 6009 Australia vii. 232p.., ISBK 0 9587538 1 4, $&US 20 inc p.& Australia; £15 p.&p. to UK by air.
Two collections of stories and reminiscences about an absorbing and affectionately remembered expatriate family life in Tanganyika during the 1950s

75 Years, Baldegg Sisters, Capuchin Brothers in Tanzania; editor: Marita Haller- Dirr. Lucerne: Swiss Capuchin Province; Dar es Salaam: Tanzanian Capuchin Province, 1997., 1 SSp., no price stated. (Obtainable from Capuchii Friary Office, P.O. Box 9174, Dar es Salaam).

An unusually impressive commemorative volume. Well illustrated and with articles in German, Swahili or English it conveys the sense of purpose that has been followed by the order during its period of work in Tanzania.



Compiled by Michael Wise and John Budge

Paul J. KAISER, structural adjustment and the fragile nation; the demise of social unity in Tanzania, and, Sayre P. Schatz, The World Bank’s fundamental misconception in Africa. Two articles in Journal of Modern African studies, 34 (2), 1996.

The most powerful economic institutions in the world, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank have been, and continue to be guilty of serious errors of judgement and practice, in the opinion of two American investigators. In the opinion of Paul Kaiser, of Mississippi state University, their structural adjustment policies as applied to the Third World, especially Africa, are largely responsible for the destruction of the essential virtue of social cohesion. Any visitor to Tanzania since the two institutions’ loan conditions were reluctantly accepted will probably agree with him that, in one of the few African countries to have remained relatively calm ever since independence, “a long history of ethnic, racial and religious cohesion has begun to fray”. He believes too, that the terms imposed and the burgeoning debt crisis may represent a “new dependency” for many African countries unable to acquire capital from other sources.

He points to religious and racial tensions directly related to the process of economic liberalisation, a matter which was argued between President and World Bank for almost six years. For example, when parastatals were being sold off, it was not long before racially motivated questions began to be asked about who should be allowed to move into the rapidly expanding private sector. At the same time the quality of life of the majority of Tanzanians was declining, as incomes became devalued and the costs of necessities of life escalated.

The welfare state, built up over 30 years witnessed a partial demise, with the people, especially urban workers, being called upon to share the costs of education and health at a time when their incomes were inadequate even to meet food costs.

Although Nyerere’s policies may not have entirely achieved some of the intended goals, Kaiser comments: “A potentially divisive array of social groups achieved a degree of cohesion that surpassed each and every neighbouring country” .

In the second article, Sayre Schatz of Columbia University reinforces this by reproducing data showing that the World Bank’s attempts to demonstrate the policy’s efficacy “not only failed to support its conclusions but actually bolstered the contrary thesis, namely that its implementation most often caused poorer economic performances”. He attributed this to the “objective difficulty of promoting development in Sub-Saharan Africa, a formidable and obdurate problem”, but also to the “mistaken view that the basic cause of Africa’s economic stagnation was poor government performance”.

He concludes: “The only way to generate a satisfactory rate of growth in Africa’s least developed economies is through government intervention to nurture investments. We should also remember that governmental activism has been associated with economic success in many developing countries”.

This promotes in this reviewer the horrifying thought that perhaps IMF/World Bank policies may have played a part in undermining the social cohesion of Rwanda and Burundi, and thus contributed to the recent escalation of conflict, which in turn has cost Tanzania heavily as a host neighbour to refugees.

A. Charles LANE, Pastures lost: Barabaig economy, resource tenure, and the alienation of mainland Tanzania. Nairobi: Initiatives Publishers (P.O. Box 69313, Nairobi), 1996. 216p., US$18.

Charles Lane cannot be other than highly commended for his very detailed study of the Barabaig of Hanang District, Tanzania. It is also a most useful contribution to the cause of pastoralists generally in East Africa.

Lane’s detailed research was carried out in 1986-88 and he continued after this to work closely with the Barabaig, particularly on their land campaign. The method used was “participatory research”, that is to say he lived in a traditional Barabaig community for about 18 months and involved them in actual research. This says much for his skill and dedication, as well as, I am sure, ingenuity. It seems he had to learn much Tataga language, to the extent of the names of many species of grass, herbs and trees. I am glad he had help from the East African Herbarium for this. The result is a comprehensive socio-economic and historical account of the Barabaig people, and it reveals a national customary order of life to cope with the circumstances of nomadic pastoralism contradicting some misconceptions generally held. Lane describes their social rank formation and wealth control system; their land tenure methods and customary tenure; care of their cattle; grain production; food consumption; levels of income; their beliefs, culture and other social details.

The book is however, much more than a social study. Lane contends throughout that policy-makers from colonial times have misunderstood pastoralism. The last three chapters deal with the present considerable problems and developments, which have arisen since the appropriation of 100,000 acres of their land in the 1970s by NAFCO for the Canadian Wheat Project. New Tanzanian Government policies on land tenure are discussed. Lane concludes:

Ways need to be found to integrate traditional Barabaig leaders and institutions with state structures. For this to be achieved, government administrators will have to view this representation (i.e. the Barabaig’s) as a complement to effective government and not a threat to their authority, and traditional leaders will need to be convinced of the benefits from such integration.

I do recommend this book and hope it can be made freely available where it is most needed.
Christine Lawrence

Emmanuel J. E. MAKAIDI, EMMA’S encyclopaedia tanzaniana of national records 1497-1995. Dar es Salaam: Sunrise Publishers (P.O. Box 352), 1995. 279p. Tshs 7,500

The first entries in this strictly chronological and rather intriguing record of events in Tanzania over a period of 498 years give some flavour of the style of the book and the presentation of the events recorded:

1497: On April 15 Tanganyika is for the first time infiltrated with white men. This was the occasion of the arrival of portuguese, purportedly on business exploits.

1498: On June 2, leading a large group of Portuguese, Vasco da Gama arrives in Tanganyika. It was largely due to Vasco da Gama’s greed and influence, that led to the establishment of Portuguese settlements on the coast of Tanganyika and later, the initiation of their rule in the country.

1500: On July 16 Kilwa residents wake-up only to find themselves under alien rule. The first Tanganyikans to be colonised by white men …

There are only five more entries before we jump to 1843 when, on September 29, The British national flag is hoisted high in Zanzibar, amidst colonial pomp and pageantry.

As we proceed further, particularly after 1980, the entries become fuller and more comprehensive and thus begin to fulfil the stated objectives of the book – to be a student’s companion, a researcher’s pathfinder, a teacher’s reference, a politician I s compass and a diplomat’s guide. The final entry dated December 31, 1995 records part of President Mkapa’s new year message to the nation.

Ali A. MAZRUI and Alamin M. Mazrui, Swahili state and society: the political economy of an African language. Nairobi: East African Educational Publishers; London: James Currey, 1995. 171p., ISBN 0-85255-729-9, £11.95.

The focus of this book is the relation between Kiswahili and economic, political and social conditions in East Africa. This is a two-way relation: the development and spread of Kiswahili has been and continues to be dependent on social, political, and above all economic factors, whilst at the same time helping to shape (to various degrees) the social, political and economic characters of Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda and Zaire. The book consists of three sections and two appendices, each of which can be read in isolation (there is in fact a considerable overlap between the three sections) . The first and third sections of the book cover the same topics, but from different perspectives. Kiswahili is discussed in relation to detribalization (not eradication of ethnic identity, which remains strong, but the overlaying of ethnic loyalties with national, political, class and religious identity), class formation, popular political participation, secularization, and science and technology. The first section provides a concise but comprehensive account of Kiswahili’s role as an agent of change in East Africa, from the perspective of economic history (for example, the role of Kiswahili as a ‘proletarianizing’ force is traced back to the facilitation of dockers’ strikes in Mombasa (1939, 1947, 1955, 1957) and Dar es Salaam (1947). The third section is more of a manifesto, sketching the contemporary socio-linguistic scene and proposals for the ‘decolonization’ of Africa, in which the promotion of Kiswahili should play a prominent role. The second section (‘The History’) also concludes with suggestions for pan-East African co-operation in the development of Kiswahili, but focuses on the historical spread of the language, starting with the Maji Maji rebellion in Tanzania. Section 2.3 provides a fine account of Tanzania’s educational language policy.

The two appendices are: ‘Social engineering and language policy in East Africa’, by Ali A. Mazrui, and ‘African languages in the African-American experience’ by Alamin M. Mazrui. Each of these is reprinted from previously published sources.
Steve Nicolle

Magdalena K. RWEBANGIRA, The Legal status of women and poverty. Uppsala: Nordiska Afrikainstitutet, 1996, 58p. (Research report; no.100), ISBN 91-7106-391-9, £5.95 (SEK60). Distributed by Almqvist & Wiksell International, Stockholm.,

This book provides a review of existing laws relevant to the title, with legal developments of the last twenty years being dealt with separately. The principle laws that are considered in depth are the Law of Marriage Act, 1971; inheritance laws, and land laws. The issues concerned are described clearly, accessible to those without any knowledge of the Tanzanian legal systems. The section on significant changes to relevant laws in the last twenty years is interesting, not only as a review of the actual legal developments, but also because reference is made to legal changes which did not address gender issues in areas where this could have been productive.

The ‘poverty and the Legal status of Women’ section, although not mentioned in the introduction, briefly mentions some of the wider social influences which reduce the effectiveness of the legal systems in terms of gender equality. A ‘Women’s Law approach’ is mentioned but not elaborated on (worthy of several volumes as a debate topic in its own right). This section, and others on background and conclusions, highlight the need to view the role of the legal system in a realistic and holistic way, rather than assuming that the simple process of a law will ensure that its purpose is fulfilled. Social issues affecting the effectiveness of the legal system are mentioned, including the ever important areas of education and media.

The presentation of the report may be found to be misleading in some respects. For example, although the objectives are described clearly in the ‘Executive Summary’, they are lacking in the ‘Background and Objectives’ section. In this, and elsewhere in the text, a stricter proof reading might have improved the ‘flow’ of the report.

For anyone with little knowledge of the subject area, this book introduces some of the issues involved in a largely accessible way, and puts forward recommendations on ways to improve women’s legal status. Its size, dictated that only selected issues and legislation could be discussed in any significant detail.
Kenneth Dawe

Nancy SPALDING, The Tanzanian peasant and Ujamaa: a study in contradictions. Third world quarterly, 17 (I), 1996, p.89-108.

The writer of this article pays tribute to Nyerere for his, unusual among African leaders, integrity and devotion to his people, but notes how his policies were failures, leaving the country still “desperately poor despite high levels of aid” .

Asking the question; “How much can or should political agendas and rhetoric be measured against historical reality?”, she employs a ‘culture theory’ from anthropology, constructed by Mary Douglas and based on African social ritual and religion.

This led to the conclusion that the essential characteristics of Tanzanian society are non-centralisation, with the family as the unit of decision, high levels of interaction between communities, especially in trade, and pronounced individualistic cultural tendencies. She believes this culture was “incompatible with Ujamaa and Tanzanian socialism” . However, Nyerere in his essays and speeches never concealed that he had few illusions about the individualism of Tanzanian peasants.

On the one hand, in this article, Spalding asserts that “natural change in response to significant contextual shifts” is different from “engineered change, which is notoriously difficult” and feels that further research on this is necessary. Nyerere, on the other hand, could quite justly respond that changes in human nature and culture, “engineered!’ through the progressive reform of human institutions, has been chiefly responsible for the advancement of civilisation over the course of history. However, such engineering can only succeed when the time and conditions are ripe.

Werner VOIGT, 60 years in Africa: the life of a settler 1926-1986. Published by the Author, 1995. Obtainable from General store Publishing House, 1 Main Street, Burnstown, Ontario, Canada KOJ IGO. CAN$24. 95, plus $10 for shipping and handling.

This book is a rare gem. For anyone with the slightest pang of nostalgia for the Tanganyika of the old days, and even for those who cannot be nostalgic but have a trace of curiosity about what life was really like then in an expatriate community, this book is not to be missed. It is the adventure-packed, gentle and moving personal story of the 60 years the author (who is now 92 and lives in Canada) spent in Africa most of them in Tanganyika/ Tanzania. A short review cannot do justice to the richness of this tale. Werner Voigt grew up in Leipzig and studied tropical agriculture. He went to Tanganyika in 1926 and started work on a coconut/ cotton plantation near Bagamoyo. He nearly died of malaria; one year his crops were totally destroyed by locusts; he panned for gold in the Lupa goldfields; he eventually got his own farm at Mufindi and took his bride on a 1,000 km foot safari for her honeymoon; he became a skilled builder and constructed houses for the groundnut scheme; he imported a lifeboat for his fishing expeditions at Bagamoyo and then converted it into a cabin cruiser. He remembers all the extraordinary stories he heard about exotic personalities he met and recounts them with humour and an original but highly readable and rather elegant writing style. There are a lot of references to ‘the war’ but it is the 1914-1918 war he is writing about Werner Voigt must be good natured. There is hardly a word of criticism of anyone in the book except his neighbours who became rabid Nazis in the 1930’s. His relations with Africans seem to have been excellent. Even the British colonial administration is never attacked – something very unusual among settlers in fact the British are hardly mentioned at all in the first part of the book, as the Germans seemed to be a self-contained group.

During and after the second world war Voigt was interned for eight years. When he tried to buy back his farm which had been taken from him, many of his British neighbours were resentful but later, when he was growing tea at Mufindi, he seems to have become part of a largely British community. The final chapter entitled “The Dream Fades” is sad but very brief. The eightyodd snapshots which illustrate the text are remarkably clear considering that most of them were taken fifty years ago. I am grateful to reader Michael Carr for letting me know that this book exists. Do not start reading it when you are expecting visitors – you might resent their intrusion. Do not start reading it late at night (as I did) – you will miss a night’s sleep! And watch out for the film which will surely follow.


Tyler BIGGS and Pradeep Srivastava, structural aspects of manufacturing in Sub-Saharan Africa: findings from a seven country enterprise. Washington, D.C.: World Bank, 1996, ix, 67p. (World Bank discussion paper; no.346; Africa Technical Department series), ISBN 0-8213-3807-2.

Assesses the result of a survey of firms in seven countries, Burundi, Cameroon, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe, and deals with issues of entrepreneurship, labour markets, technological capabilities, financial markets, infrastructure, regulation, and conflict resolution mechanisms.

COTTON, colonialism, and social history in sub-Saharan Africa; edited by AlIen Isaacman & Richard Roberts. London: James Currey, 1995. xi, 314p., ISBN 0-85255-619-5, £14.94 Includes several chapters dealing specifically with German East Africa/ Tanganyika.

Colin CREIGHTON and C.K. Omari, Gender, family and household in Tanzania. London: Avebury, 1995. 327p., £39.90 Peter J. DAVIS, East African: an airline story. Thirty years of the international airline of Africa. 2nd ed. Egham:
Runnymeade Malthouse Publishing, 1996. 485p., ISBN 0 9523047 08 £20

L.G. “Bill” DENNIS, The Lake steamers of Egham: Runnymeade Malthouse Publishing, 1996,
9523047 1 6, £16 40 East 280p. , Africa. ISBN 0

KONIGSBERG – A German East African Raider by Kevin Patience
This new book of 100 pages and 150 illustrations, many never before published, is the result of 25 years of research and tells the complete story from 1906 to the present day of the German cruiser Konigsberg. This ship destroyed the British cruiser HMS Pegasus at Zanzibar in 1914 before seeking shelter, pursued by the Royal Navy, in the Rufiji Delta. Special pre-publication offer to readers of Tanzanian Affairs – £14 inc. p&p Obtainable from the author at P 0 Box 669 Bahrain.

Also obtainable:
Zanzibar and the Shortest War in History: A narrative of events leading up to the destruction of the Sultan’s Palace at Zanzibar on 27th August 1896. 32pp illustrated. £4 inc. p&p. Zanzibar and the Bububu Railway: A history of the two railway systems built on the island in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. 32pp. Illustrated. £4 inc. p&p.

Zanzibar and the Loss of H.M.S. Pegasus. The story behind the destruction of the British cruiser sunk at Zanzibar by the German raider Konigsberg on 20th September 1914. 48pp. Illust. £5 inc. p&p. Steam in East Africa: A pictorial history of the construction and development of railways and lake services in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Zanzibar from 1893 to 1976. 140pp.hb. £15 inc. p&p. Steam Twilight. A nostalgic look back at the last years of steam on Kenya Railways. 64pp. Illustrated. £8 inc. p&p.

Alex DIANG’A, Where native fish face extinction September 21, 1996. Daily News,

A study of Lake Victoria, carried out by World Watch Institute, has shown that as a result of the introduction of exotic, i.e. non-native fish and the commercialisation of fishing activities, 60 per cent of the native fish species are extinct, and the remaining 40 per cent are at risk. From time immemorial the native fish of the lake were harvested by artisan fishermen and processed for local consumption. The harvesting of fish by large, open water vessels, with destructive gear, prior to large scale commercial processing operations for the export. market, has brought about this change.

China has experienced the virtual extinction of fishing on the Yangtze River in 40 years since the 1950s. The World Watch report considers that a major cop-operative effort between the three East African countries could still restore Lake victoria, as well as preserve the less degraded other lakes, Malawi and Tanganyika. will anything effective be actually put into action?

Peter DUMBAYA, Tanganyika under International mandate, 1919- 1946. Lanham, Md.: University Press of America, 1995. no price stated.

Klaus FIEDLER, Christianity and African culture: conservative German Protestant missionaries in Tanzania, 1900-1940 .. Leiden: Brill, 1996. 250p. (Journal of religion in -Africa supplements; 14). NLG125.

The FUTURE of Tanzania. Conference report; deliberations and recommendations, ESAURP (Eastern and Southern African Universities Research Programme), December 1995. Dar es Salaam: Tema Publishers Co., 1996, 81p., ISBN 9987 25 010 6, no price stated.

Includes the summary of a paper by Dr. M. Hodd, a member of Britain-Tanzania society and occasional contributor of reviews.

Seyoum Y. HAMESO, Ethnicity in Africa: towards a positive approach. London: TSC Publications (P.D. Box 12879, London W13 8WS), 1997. viii, 120p., ISBN 0 9530204 0 I, £11. The author’s preface draws attention to the tendency of historians and nationalists, during the first half of this century, to concentrate on state nationalism, and to bypass the significance of more localised expressions of ethnicity in the African continent. This short study includes quite lengthy case studies of selected studies, including Tanzania and its neighbours.

C. George KAHAMA, The Twelve tasks. Dar es Salaam: Tema Publishers Co., [1995?]. 12p., no price stated. Described by the author as being derived from his book, Tanzania into the 21st century, this short statement on his view of the way ahead ends with a punchy acrostic of twelve points for development into the next century. They read: Government: Education: Overseas visitors: Rates of currency exchange; Guidance for the private sector; Exports; Karibu visitors: Alleviation of poverty: Health: Accumulation of savings; Management; Asset restructuring.

Juhani KOPONEN, Development for exploitation: German policies in mainland Tanzania 1884-1914, [Helsinki]: Finnish Historical society, 1995. 49), ISBN 951 710 005 1, £19.95.. 741p., (Studia Historica; Has been described as being the first major survey of the period since the works of John Iliffe and Rainer Tetzlaff twenty five years ago.

Gwynneth LATHAM and Michael Latham,Kilimanjaro tales: the saga of a medical family in Africa. 1995, ix, 220p. London: Radcliffe Press,

A double narrative (Mother and son) about two generations of a medical family in Tanzania, from the 1920s to the 1960s. The larger part of the book is made up of a narrative by Michael Latham, based on his Mother’s journal up to the end of the 1940s.

LIBERALIZED development in Tanzania.; edited by Peter Gibbon. Uppsala: Nordiska Afrikainstitutet, 1995.

Georges LOIRE, Sea people in Dar es Salaam. Dar es Salaam: Tanzania Publishing House, [1996?]. 170p. Tshs 7,000.

This is an account, by Fr. Georges Loire of to Seamen, of his attempts to organise help return home of “fishermen”, and other sea stowaways who have become stranded far from during the 1980s. the Missions towards the people or home shores

M.H. MULOKOZI, The last of the bards: the story of Habibu Selemani of Tanzania, c.1929-93. Included in Research in African literatures, Spring 1997, published by the Journals Division of Indiana University Press.

Comments (1)


Compiled by Michael Wise and John Budge

Astier M. ALMEDON, Recent developments in hygiene behaviour research. Tropical Medicine and International Health, 1 (2) 1996,p.171-182.

This discussion of research in Kenya, Tanzania and Ethiopia aims at the preparation of a handbook for field personnel in water supply, sanitation and health/hygiene education projects. Trials were conducted in the Dodoma region and Kondoa districts in collaboration with water Aid UK. The villages of Asanje and Kwayondu were selected on the grounds that they represented parts of the region which suffered most from serious water shortages; nevertheless one cannot help being surprised, even in this conscientious study, by the naivete and glibness of experts, who, sitting in a room in London, with no doubt an adjoining fully-equipped toilet, discuss the importance of teaching African children to wash their hands thoroughly in clean water before meals and after defecation.

Lene BUCHERT, Education in the development of Tanzania 1919- 1990. London: James Currey, 1994, 192p. (East African studies), ISBN 0-85255-704-3, £14.95 (paperback); £35 (hardback)

Lene Buchert’s book, which originates from her Ph.D. work, attempts to provide an account of education in the development of Tanzania and to relate the function of education to wider social, economic and political development from 1919 to 1990. Using mainly official, unofficial and semi-official primary sources, as well as secondary source material, the author discusses policies and their practices for specific periods during the British colonial era, and after independence.

The book examines the indirect rule system and relates the application of the government’s education for adaption policy to the actual provision of education during the colonial period. This is done well in showing that the aim of education, as stated by the report Higher education in East Africa in 1937 was to “render the individual more efficient in his or her condition of life … to promote the advancement of the community as a whole through the improvement of agriculture, the development of native industries, the improvement of health, the training of the people in the management of their own affairs, and the inculcation of true ideals of citizenship and service … ” The analysis concludes that factors such as the colonial government’s emphasis on its staffing needs, rather than provision of agricultural education for Africans; emphasis on provision of education for men; failure to provide education above elementary level, and so on made education a form of social control. A case study of Nyakato Agricultural Training Centre is used to demonstrate discrepancies between declared policies and the outcome of their implementation.

The years 1962 to 1981 were the period of education for socialism, self-reliance and social commitment, especially after the declaration of policies of socialism and selfreliance in 1967. Education was seen as a crucial instrument in achieving the goals and strategy for national development, and to redress the inequality inherited at independence. Chief among these were mass education, which was characterized by the establishment of adult education and universal primary education programmes; Africanisation of the curriculum; abolition of educational systems which were based on racial distinctions, and so on. These were all geared towards fulfilling the objective of making education a means to “liberate the African from the mentality of slavery and colonialism by making him aware of himself as an equal member of the human race, with the rights and duties of his humanity” as Julius Nyerere would have maintained.

The study indicates varying degrees of success out of these policies and practices, and highlights several drawbacks, especially in its focus on the community school movement, between 1971 and 1982. The movement’s purpose was to “contribute to village development by breaking down the barrier between the school and the surrounding society, and between academic and manual skills … ” Case studies of Kwamsisi community school as the prototype for the experiment, and Kwalukonge as a replicated experiment; also adult literacy programmes in Mvumi Makulu, Bahi and Dabalo villages in Dodoma region, are used to analyse discrepancies between policies and implementation.

Much has changed since the early 1980s. The retirement of Julius Nyerere and the succession of Ali H. Mwinyi, and subsequently Benjamin Mkapa; trade liberalisation; relaxation of policies of socialism and self-reliance; introduction of the multi-party system, all call for a further study which would help to assess their impact on education and the future direction of development in Tanzania. Do these factors explain why, for instance, some primary school children are studying without desks?

This book is another contribution to understanding educational issues in the nation’s development.It is highly useful and recommended to academics and tertiary level students interested in education, history and development in Tanzania.
Alii A.S. Mcharazo

Andre MAGNIN and Jacques Soulillou, contemporary art of Africa
. London: Thames & Hudson, 1996, 192p., 317 illus. ISBN 0-500-01713-1,£45.

This significant book presents, in many good quality colour reproductions, the work of sixty artists from Africa south of the Sahara. About two thirds of the works represented are in the contemporary African Art Collection of Jean Pigozzi, the world’s foremost collector of this kind of work, for which the volume serves as a catalogue. The artists hail from eighteen countries, inclusive of Tanzania.

There are spreads of several pages: photos, texts (by Magnin) and reproductions for two artists: Makondi sculptor John Fundi (1939-1991) and painter George Lilanga di Nyama (b.1944). Lilanga paints in a modified ‘Tinga Tinga’ style; his imagery has more density and is usually related to a proverb. Some of his works were exhibited at the Saatchi Gallery in 1992. The reference section lists note four additional artists, all resident in Dar es Salaam: painter Jaffary Aussi and three sculptors: Martin Dastani, Kashmiri, and Christine Madanguo. The glossary has three entries related to Tanzania, to explain the sources of styles: shetani, ujamaa and Tinga Tinga. It is a treat to see even this amount of attention given to Tanzanian visual arts.
Elsbeth Court

NYAKYUSA-English-Swahili and English-Nyakyusa dictionary; compiled by Knut Felberg. Dar es Salaam: Mkuki na Nyota Publishers, 1995, ISBN 9976 973 32 2, £19.95; $US 35. Distributed by African Books Collective, 27 Park End Street, Oxford OX1 1HU.

This dictionary arises out of an expatriate teacher’s sense of frustration, partly his own and partly his pupils’, because of the difficulty of observing the official policy of using English as the medium• of instruction in secondary schools in Tanzania. It was his (and the pupils’ experience) that bewilderment was created by insisting on what was effectively a third language at that stage of education. The approximately 1,000,000 Nyakusa are a sizeable and coherent cultural cluster, whose language essentially is their corporate personality. Swahili serves fairly well as the general lingua franca for communication with the wider world in the region. The understandable expectation by government, of using English in secondary and higher education often slows up the process of comprehension in the earlier stage of its compulsory introduction.

The author recognised that the first language had been picked up rather than taught, and this dictionary is an outcome of his attempt to provide a better grounding in the structure and vocabulary of Nyakusa. It provides an outline of Nyakusa grammar, usage and sounds, and the major part consists parallel word lists, Nyakusa-English-Swahili, and EnglishNyakusa. It is by no means a traditional vocabulary either, ranging from airmail to zip code and zoom lens. It is to be hoped that this lively and well produced dictionary will sell well enough to repay production costs, and set an example for others to follow where similar difficulties are encountered in other large language groups. By such means it may yet be possible for many of the approximately one thousand surviving African languages to remain alive and viable. Without support it is certain that many will disappear under the pressure imposed by stronger cultural influences and the languages in which they are propagated.

Gregory PERRIER and Brian E. Norton, Administration of pastoral development: lessons from three projects in Africa. Public Administration and Development [Utah state University], vol.16, 1996, p.73-90.

It is salutary when somebody reveals that some western aid donors got it wrong – even after 30 years. This frank report on development projects conducted by the us Agency for International Development in Tanzania, Somalia and Lesotho does just that.

When the countries of sub-Saharan Africa achieved independence they were targeted for rapid development, both to generate export trade and strengthen their domestic economies. Many aid organisations, for instance, provided massive assistance for livestock development. The report asserts that despite the investment of hundreds of millions of dollars the projects “failed to achieve their goals … Projects designed by western specialists and funded by western donors have been based on faulty assumptions, inadequate information and distortions created by cultural bias, and have been implemented in an inappropriate manner”

As an example, ten million dollars were spent over a 10- year period on a project designed to increase livestock production, and improve the quality of life of the Masai people in Tanzania. visiting the area in 1989 the two researchers found “no evidence that the project had led to sustained improvements in the production system.” Whereas the Tanzanian government had been advised to establish “ranching associations” and to adopt rotational grazing practices, the investigators felt that the AID design team had ignored vital cultural aspects of Masai life; such as the need for subsistence milk production and capital savings, and the fact of their preference to sell small ruminants for their cash requirement. Instead, the advisers focused entirely on beef production and cattle marketing.

By the time when conflicts in strategy between ranching associations and the government’s villagisation policy were finally being resolved the project was abruptly terminated. Expatriate technical specialists “operated relatively independently of one another, each pursuing his own technical assignment … Project activities got out of sequence as staff applied themselves to personal professional interests.” Local administrators and politicians, pre-occupied with the implementation of ujamaa, also created confusion. “Inappropriate strategies”, such as introducing ranch-style rotational grazing to a people whose traditional grazing practices already included seasonal rest, or attempting to increase cattle off-take in a society where cattle are the primary measure of wealth, or transferring a project design to another region without taking into consideration local factors. These and other failures in understanding were “the result of false assumptions or the adoption of a western stereotypic model.”

The researchers come to what might seem the obvious conclusion that “producer participation is a necessity for project success”, and that the secret of success for the future must be adherence to three golden rules – flexibility, simplicity and appropriateness. Better late than never.

Joan RUSSELL, Teach yourself Swahili. London: Rodder & Stoughton, 1996, 324p. (Teach yourself books) ISBN 0-340- 62094-3, £8.99 (book only); £18.99 (book and cassette)

With the new Teach yourself Swahili (replacing the previous book published in 1950), Dr. Joan Russell has written a new course for beginners which is both comprehensive and very accessible. It contains 18 units, each of which is based around a dialogue which serves as a vehicle for the introduction of vocabulary, grammar and cultural information. The situations described in the dialogues are typical of those which visitors to East Africa might encounter: booking into a hotel, buying gifts, asking directions, travelling, even climbing Kilimanjaro. Many, however, go beyond mere tourism and involve visitors in discussions with their Tanzanian and Kenyan friends on matters such as arranging meetings and travel plans, cooking the evening meal, and language learning. The dialogues are read by native Swahili speakers on the accompanying cassette, which begins with a pronunciation guide.

Although the approach is basically ‘communicative’, in that Swahili is introduced through the use of realistic dialogues, grammar is addressed throughout. Noun classes are introduced one at a time in the early units (beginning with the most commonly used classes) along with noun and verb agreement. other areas of Swahili grammar – tenses, suffixes, pronouns, and so on – are covered methodically and in some detail, but in terms accessible to any learner. In each unit, readers are encouraged to check their understanding and practise what they have learnt through various exercises. A brief ‘How to study’ section at the start of the book provides useful advice on getting the most out of each unit.

The book itself is compact enough to be easily portable (say, on a trip to Tanzania) and is attractively laid out, incorporating Swahili adverts, press cuttings and a few black and white photographs. At the end of the book are a key to the exercises, a summary of the main grammar points and a very useful Swahili-English/ English-Swahili dictionary.

Although described as “a complete course in spoken and written Swahili”, part 1 (the first of six units) can be used on its own as a course in ‘survival’ Swahili for beginners. I expect that complete beginners in Swahili will find that it presents a very steep learning curve; there is a lot packed into each unit! However, by the end of the course any reader who has taken the time to learn the vocabulary and tackle the exercises should be equipped with the Swahili language skills to cope with most everyday situations in East Africa.

Its communicative approach and attention to grammatical and cultural detail makes Joan Russell’s book ideal for people who may have picked up Swahili informally whilst in East Africa, and who wish to build on this and develop their competence in the language. In short, I wholeheartedly recommend the new Teach yourself Swahili to any member of BTS wishing to learn or brush up their Swahili.
Steve Nicolle

SERVICE provision under stress in East Africa: the state & voluntary organizations in Kenya, Tanzania & Uganda; edited by Joseph Semboja & Ole Therkildsen. London: James Currey in association with Centre for Development Research, Copenhagen; EAEP, Nairobi; Mukuki na Nyota, Dar es Salaam; Fountain Publishers, Kampala, 1995, ISBN 0-85255-389-7, £12.95 (paper); £35 (cloth)

This powerful book is poorly titled. It is about the historical roles of the voluntary sector and the state in providing education, health and legal services and changes that came about in the wake of Structural Adjustment Programmes (SAPs). Out of fourteen chapters, two discuss the subject generally, and four are about Tanzania.

The editors hold that the rush toward privatisation of services that accompanied SAPs disregards the need for collective action by governments, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and ‘people’s organisations’ – the latter often called ‘community based organisations’ or CBOs. They assert that privatisation, as practiced, overlooks the increasing interdependence between voluntary sector and state, and the growing reliance of NGOs on foreign aid. To justify drastic cuts in government investment in services, proponents of privatisation often overestimate poor people’s ability to pay directly for the health and education services they need, with the result that social services are slashed more than other expenditures. To transform such situations., governments that rely on foreign assistance must risk defying IMF/WB prescriptions. For example, Official Development Assistance (ODA) accounted for 37% of Tanzania’s GDP in the early 1990s.

A further complication for governments is that donor aid is increasingly targeted to NGOs (2/3rds of it through donors’ own NGOs operating overseas, and the other third directly to East African NGOs). One author in the book argues that it is not NGO performance, but western donors’ efforts “to reduce the role of African states” that is functioning here. Several authors question the received wisdom that NGOs are more ‘poverty-oriented’ than governments. The truth may never out on this subject, however, because only an estimated 15% of donor aid is ever evaluated – a frightening fact when one considers how much possibly baseless conditionality is imposed on recipient countries and the NGOs by donors.

Chapter 8, by Gaspar Munishi, discusses the relationship between political development strategies and NGO participation in Tanzania. The author traces the history of public and private education from colonial times. In 1958, for example, 45% of African pupils went to government schools and 55% to NGO owned ones; the latter received grants-in-aid from government. Munishi’s views on the rationale behind increased government involvement after independence and the later resurgence of private, NGO provision of services are succinct; the desire to democratise education that the Arusha Declaration highlighted in the 1960s and the economic crunch and donor-driven support of NGOs rather than governments when aiding the service sector in the 1990s.

In chapter 9, Abel G.M. Ishumi focuses on secondary education. He concludes that nationalisation and monopolisation of social delivery systems stifle creative energles and lead to institutional stagnancy, and public apathy and disaffection. Self-help school projects succeed, he says, when a community links education with progress, and when there are strong economies and community-based management and leadership capacity.

Julius T. Mwaikus writes about maintaining law and order in Tanzania in chapter 10. using ‘Sungusungu’, the traditional defense and self-help groups among Sukuma youth, as his case study, he concludes that Sungusungu will survive as an ad-hoc people’s organisation only if its units know the basics of what the law requires or allows them to do.

The Catholic Church and the state in Tanzania are the subject of John Sivalon’s chapter 11, which challenges the conventional wisdom that Church and state have been ‘passive partners’, and that church-state relations became very tense after the Arusha Declaration. However, the recent Mtanzania Mpya’ programme of Christian professionals seeking to build the ‘new Tanzania’ by associating bureaucrats with NGOs disturbs the author, because Islamic communities perceive this church-state linkage as a threat to Islam.

The only chapter this reviewer found ominous is that by Goran Hyden, who proposes the creation of ‘trust funds’ as ‘intermediaries between foreign donor agencies and local recipients’. These funds would be “independent of government and any other actors” and they would support requests “from any agency, whether governmental, private or voluntary”. I see that proposal as creating a kind of parallel government – a powerful donor-driven institution that is responsible neither to the people nor to the government. Who, we must ask, will call the tune?
Margaret Snyder

Thaddeus SUNSERI, Labour migration in colonial Tanzania and the hegemony of South African historiography. African Affairs, 95 (381), 1996, p.581-598.

The author sets out to show how the history of labour migration in Africa has been unduly influenced by the assumption by historians and sociologists, that the migrations which provided the very large labour forces required by South African mining, industrial and agricultural activity, from the early years of this century, set the pattern elsewhere in the continent. He focuses on the record of German labour initiatives in Tanzania up to the time of the First World War, and shows how the Tanzanian inherited instinct to maintain something akin to traditional social life meant that the commonly held perception (by labour historians) of ‘kraal to compound’ African migrant labour was never applicable to the Tanzanian situation.

The Maji Maji rising of 1905-07 was sparked by German forced labour and production policies in the southern part of the country. There had been a systematic imposition of forced settlers, and railway construction which facilitated settler rather than peasant production.

Ever increasing development of the settler economy after 1907 meant that the demand for labour rose steadily, but government then faced the facts and gave some consideration to the reaction of the people. A middle way, between a ‘coolie policy’ and a policy of protection in favour of ‘Africa for the Africans’. Peasant production, allied to wage labour incentives, was recognised as the compromise way forward. The author points out that this gave leeway for the migration of families, rather than men only, to areas of settler developed production; that in more favourable circumstances (for there were great variations in treatment of labour and conditions of service and living), village society transferred for the period of a contract to new locations. By no means all the labour was at work at any time, and the people attended to their own crops in the locality as well as working for wages. People knew their rights, and were willing and able to use the judicial system to guarantee them. Thus, in one year 34 unscrupulous labour recruiters, Germans, Greeks and Africans were convicted of various infractions of the labour ordinances. Plantations were therefore vulnerable to the economic behaviour of their wage labourers, who were the major expense and whose response to work conditions determined the success or failure of a venture.


M. BAREGU, Political culture and the party-state in Tanzania. Southern Africa Political & Economic Monthly [POB MP 111, Mount Pleasant, Harare], 9 (1) Oct. 1995, p.31-34.

BUILDING a vision: President Benjamin W. Mkapa of Tanzania Zimbabwe: Southern African Research & Documentation Centre (SARDC), 1996. 26p., £3.75; SUS 6.95 Distributed by African Books Collective Ltd., 27 Park End Street, Oxford OX1 1HU.

The text of an interview by David Martin, a Director of SARDC, with Benjamin Mkapa, conducted in Dar es Salaam on 11 and 12 November 1995, when elections had not been completed, but Mkapa was virtually president-elect at that time. Immediately after his formal declaration as Tanzania’s President the interview was published in Tanzania in three Swahili and two English newspapers. It concentrates therefore on the major aspects of his election campaign, and the matters of greatest concern to the country at that time. It is a useful and forthright record of answers to questions put by a practised interviewer.

G. FRAME, Serengeti cheetahs. Swara [E.A. wild Life Society, POB 20110, Nairobi], 16 (5) 1993, p.14-17.

R. HEYWORTH, The Last Rhinos of Northern Tanzania, Ngorongoro. Swara [E.A. wildlife Society, POB 20110, Nairobi], 18 (6) Nov.-Dec. 1995, p.18-21.

B. JACOBS and Z.A. Berege, Attitudes and beliefs about blood donation among adults in Mwanza region, Tanzania. East African Medical Journal [P.O. Box 41362, Nairobi], 72 (6) June 1995, p.345-348.

L. JANSSENS DE BISTHOVEN, A Safari in northern Tanzania Swarai [E.A. Wildlife society, POB 20110, Nairobi], 16 (2) Mar./Apr. 1993, p.15-19.

S.F.N. KIWIA, Management of work schedules in an educational institution: a case study. Business Management Review [University of Dar es Salaam], 3 (2) July-Dec. 1994, p.64-73.

L. RUTASHOBYA, The Role and performance of women’s retail cooperatives. Business Management Review, [University of Dar es Salaam], 3 (2) Jul-Dec., 1994, p.74-87.

Eve SARAKIKYA, Tanzania cook book. Dar es Salaam: Tanzania Publishing House, 1996, 165p., ISBN 9976-101-25-2, $3.95; SUS 7.50. Distributed by African Books Collective, 27 Park End Street, Oxford OX1 1HU.

This is a reprint of the earlier edition of 1978, and therefore may be familiar to some readers. Its virtues as a guide to the rich variety of Tanzanian foods, and their use in the country’s cuisine, which uses a wealth of local spices, a great range of fruits and vegetables, staple grains and roots, as well as sea and fresh water fish, have kept it in use and appear to justify a reprint. It gives many recipes which strike the balance between meals that merely taste good, and those with nutritional value. All who live in London or any of a number of other large cities in the U.K. will feel confident of finding many of the ingredients required to reproduce tropical cooking in Britain’s cold climate.

* * * * * *

This list includes a certain number of articles published in African journals. We hope that those among our readers in the U.K. who may not have access to specialist academic libraries, will be able to use their local public library to obtain copies from the British Lending Library, which is richly endowed with journals from all over the world, and provides a lending or photocopy service at modest cost.

Comments (1)


In the last issue an appeal was made for help in reviewing books. Many thanks to the six persons who responded. From the next issue, book reviews will be organised by Michael Wise who will be helped by John Budge especially on article reviews. Michael Wise was at the Library of the University of Dar es Salaam from 1962, shortly after its establishment, until 1969 and has maintained contact with Tanzanian colleagues in the library profession throughout subsequent years. He has also worked in Library Science in Nigeria. He can be contacted at Fronhaul, Llandre, Bow Street, Ceredigion SY24 5AB. Tel: 01970 823351. John Budge has begun reviewing articles in this issue. He has been a journalist for many years and was Lecturer in English and Social Studies at Dar es Salaam Technical College from 1966 to 1970. For the following two years he was Journalist Training Officer at the Dar es Salaam ‘Daily News’. Thomas Ofcansky in Washington DC has also kindly offered to keep TA informed about new US publications on Tanzania – Editor.

D Barkan. Lynne Reinner Publishers. 293 pages. 1994.

This is an important book. There is very much in it which is instructive and it incorporates valuable statistical information to back up the arguments in eight generally well written articles. Perhaps inevitably, the articles do vary in quality, although most show evidence of good background knowledge and research. However, the considerable political bias of almost all the articles (and especially of the editor’s) needs to be recognised and borne in mind. Unfortunately, while each author (or group of authors) draws conclusions on the basis of just one aspect of the two nations’ development, there is none which looks at the total effect of their different policies on the lives of their peoples.

But perhaps this is to complain about something which was never intended. The first article, by the editor, sets out what appears to be the real purpose of the book – to present the argument that despite different policies in the past, both countries are now seeking to become some kind of capitalist economy and society – which (two years after the book was published) it is possible that the new government in Tanzania might dispute!
Nonetheless, this book could be very helpful to those concerned about, or having responsibility for shaping the future of Tanzania and East Africa generally. Much of its factual information is a painful but useful education for those who try, without full knowledge, to defend the policies of ujamaa na kujitegemea against allegations that they were an an unmitigated disaster for Tanzania in practice. Thus, valuable lessons about avoidable mistakes can be learned by socialists and others generally concerned for the well-being of the commonality of people; at the same time, factual ammunition is provided for anti-socialists! This book deserves to be read.

True as I believe that statement to be, the book would have been more helpful if its underlying and guiding assumption had not been along the lines that both Kenya and Tanzania made a mess of things in their different ways, but both have ‘seen the light’ and are in the process of reform. Even so, acknowledging the advantages of hindsight, and the paucity of educated and trained citizens in the 1960’s, might have been appropriate. Nor was it enough to mention only once or twice – and in passing – the important differences between the two neighbours.

The economic geographies of Kenya and Tanzania are and always were very different. There was considerable difference in the levels of human, infrastructural and industrial development which the newly independent governments inherited. And the dissimilar political configurations of the early postindependence administrations resulting from those facts, together with the different pre-independence policies of the colonial power in the two countries, had clear relevance to the success or otherwise of the policies they adopted after independence.

Further, it is only in the final article that the book really takes any account of the effects of external events on the development of the two countries. That, however – except for the instructive sections dealing with the IMF/World Bank as well as their operating tactics – is the weakest of the eight articles. The author’s experience is in international economics and the US State Department, but he has written also on political matters without sufficient research or care. For example, he refers at one point to the ‘low key approach to foreign policy’ by both countries from independence to the mid 1970’s; this is an astounding statement in the light of Tanzanian policies during those years. He also talks on page 237 of a Tanzanian ‘initiative’ in invading Uganda in January 1979, while on page 245, talking about the aftermath of October 1978 when ‘Amen’s forces invaded and occupied the Kagera salient. .. declaring it to be part of Uganda’!

Despite such irritations, the book is thought provoking and worthwhile. The article on the Politics of Agricultural Policy by M Lofchie, for example, is well written, well argued and factually supported: its being presented solely in economic terms, divorced from the countries’ stated social and political objectives, is probably the result of the brief given by the editor. It should be noted, however, that the author’s assertions of political and budgetary bias in Tanzania appear to be contrary to the conclusions of the article on urban policy by R Stern, M Halfani and Joyce Malombe.

The article on Education is also extremely important, albeit the participation of three authors (B Cooksey, D Court and B Mkau) is noticeable and perhaps accounts for its unevenness. The most recent figures given, for the time of writing, are frightening. This is especially true for Tanzania, where it is asserted that the primary school enrolment now covers only 50% of the children of the relevant age group; that is about the percentage in 1961. The article also gives evidence of a collapse (and in the past ten years even of abandonment) of endeavours to equalise educational opportunities among regions and among all income groups and religions. The dangers of this for a country committed to the principles of equality and justice and to safeguarding national stability, are very clear: they are recognised by the authors. It seems rather odd, therefore, that their conclusion should include the statement that ‘pluralistic politics and market economics are the two most important factors’ offering hope for ‘further educational decline being arrested’!

But despite all possible criticisms, the information and arguments of this book need to be studied and learned from. It is a pity therefore, that its price is high (more than £25 in UK) and that its print is so small and light that it is quite difficult for anyone with imperfect sight to read. Perhaps a Tanzanian publisher might be able to consider applying for permission to reprint – assuming that the authors would be willing to forego royalties for the purpose?
Joan E Wicken


In contrast with other developing countries, infant and child mortality in Tanzania after independence did not vary in accordance with the relative wealth or poverty of the parents. In demographic jargon there was ‘a unique lack of socioeconomic differentials’. Searching for a reason the authors concluded that it was due to the country’s post-independence development strategy, which began in 1967 with the ‘radical shift’ in policy when the government ‘changed the capitalist oriented development it had inherited to a socialist, centrally planned economy’ with special emphasis on rural concerns. Although communal production was disappointingly low ‘notable success’ was achieved in the provision of education, health and water supply to the villages. Another surprising consequence of their research is the importance they place on the presence in the household of a radio, ‘relatively widely used and valued in almost all parts of Tanzania’. They claim that it acted as an ‘economic indicator’ which in turn was likely to influence access to health services and the ability to provide adequate nutrition for the children’. They link this with the ‘enlightened education policy’ which, from the mid-1970’s resulted in Tanzania’s efforts and achievements in adult literacy being ‘lauded the world over and recommended as a model for developing countries’.

The authors believe, however, that in the process of building up and maintaining the rural health system, urban health services were neglected, especially in the provision of adequate staff, particularly nurses. The mortality levels in the coastal region, including Dar es Salaam, are among the highest in the country.

They conclude that although Tanzania’s child survival patterns may be different from those in other countries because of its development approach, infant and child mortality remain too high; they add: ‘It is difficult to predict the future due to the recent changes in policies and economic hardship among the people.’ John Budge

ADVENTURES IN EDUCATION. Bernard de Bunsen. Publisher: Titus Wilson, Kendal. 153 pages.

This book is a personal document written with informality of style. Although, in places, de Bunsen’s own feelings and reactions shine through, it is other people who loom large in his account of his life, written almost as though he was no more than an interested observer of the achievements of others.

de Bunsen writes about education in Britain, Palestine, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Senegal and, of course, Makerere in Uganda where he went to make this institution of higher learning into a University College. It is surprising to read that the letter of appointment to the principalship of Makerere was written by himself. de Bunsen writes about the difficulty of dealing with people at the College who did not want change, in making it autonomous, in seeing subjects and the college itself though African rather than British eyes, and about problems with the Art School and in the introduction of social studies.

The author then involves himself in the genesis of the University of East Africa and talks at length on the stages culminating in its beginning. Avoidance of unreasonable duplication and maintenance of common standards in the region were the factors that gave rise to the University. Politics, kept away from the British mode of education, was glaringly present in the East African countries. To the politicians the Africanization of important posts went a long way to speak of freedom of the black man. But Africanization of the content of education was being implemented very, very slowly. The University, a recipient of government funds, cannot sequester itself from the state. This was made very clear in Tanzania by the appointment of a ruling cadre , Pius Msekwa, as the Vice-Chancellor of the University.

It is advisable to read de Bunsen’s book and see the transitory nature of Man’s activities. The author himself writes: ‘….the most humanly absorbing job a man could be given, in the centre of a community, is transformation’. I believe that Prof. Geoffrey Mmari of the Open University knows better. Like de Bunsen he has been at the centre of Tanzania higher education transformation for decades. He owes the state a book of the calibre of ‘Adventures in Education1. It is a challenge directed at him to show us that we have our own de Bunsen’s in our midst. Edwin Semzaba

EXPERIENCE OF WOMEN IN TANZANIA. THE RIGHT TO ORGANISE AS THE MOTHER OF ALL RIGHTS. Nakazael Tenga and Chris Maina Peter. Cambridge University Journal of Modern African Studies. 34 1 (1966) 19 pages.

Nyerere’s declaration that “women in the villages work harder than anyone else in Tanzania but the men are on leave for half their lives” is at the heart of this excellent study. Nakaziel Tenga is a Dar es Salaam advocate and Chris Peter is Head of the International Law Department at Dar es Salaam University.

Women have always been a formidable force in Tanzania and after independence it soon became clear that although politics may have been traditionally regarded as a man’s domain, mothers, wives and daughters could not be ignored. The radicalism of TANU, the ruling party, appealed to a lot of women, not least to those who were Muslims active in the ngoma dance groups that characterised the highly-organised lelemama societies.

Nyerere ensured that TANU’s first constitution provided for a women’s section and that their leaders occupied various positions in the government. The authors mention that in several less tolerant communities, such as Bukoba, the women’s sections were closed down by the men, and in others women were only invited to take part when there was work to be done! When a single national organisation Umoja wa Wanawake wa Tanganyika (UWT) was set up Bibi Titi became the first chairman, with Kanasia Mtenga as her deputy and President Nyerere as patron. When later amalgamated with Zanzibar’s Afro-Shirazi party it became Jumuiya ya Wanawake wa Tanzania. To all intents and purposes a branch of the government in a one-party state dominated by men, it nevertheless managed to record some positive achievements. The authors state that it played a part in burying for ever the colonial myth that African marriage was equated with ‘wife purchase’; the 1971 Law of Marriage Act combined all forms of marriage in ways that comfortably accommodated Christians, Muslims, Hindus and others. There was powerful support from the judiciary in reforming the divorce and custody laws and an old lady in Bukoba, who took her husband to court over land inherited under her father’s will, is aid to have caused a judge to comment that “it had taken a simple old rural woman to champion the cause of women, not the elite women in town who chant jejeune slogans years on end on women’s lib without delivering the goods”.

Another judge was said to have decreed that domestic chores, looking after a home and bringing up children were valuable contributions which had to be taken into account when considering family assets which might be the subject of division if the marriage were dissolved.

During the marriage law debate the authors report that there were complaints that men were losing long-established customary rights and one parliamentarian pronounced that if a man had to get his wife’s consent to a second marriage the African tradition “where a man has always been superior to a womant” would be endangered.
The UWT was also in the forefront of the struggle to change
labour laws so that all working women would receive paid maternity leave and not just those who were married, and to ensure that young women were equally entitled as men to university entry.

Things changed with the introduction of the multi-party system in 1992 when the UWT’s affiliation to the CCM meant that it no longer spoke for all women, so a women’s council, the Baraza la Wanawake Tanzania (Bawatu) was set up. The new constitution continues to acknowledge the marginalisation of women by reserving a number of special seats for them in the National Assembly, but the authors acknowledge that, although women are no longer taken for granted, ‘a great deal of progress needs to be made.
John Budge

MIRADI BUBU YA WAZALENDO. (THE INVISIBLE ENTERPRISE OF THE PATRIOTS). Gabriel Ruhumbika. Tanzania Publishing House. 1995. 168 pages.

When the history of Tanzanian literature of the 20th century comes to be written, the small islands of Ukerewe in Lake Victoria will hold a place of honour quite out of proportion to their size and economic significance. For these islands have produced some of the most significant authors of the century, notably Aniceti Kitereza (1896-1981); E Kezilahabi, who pioneered the ‘free verse’ forms of Kiswahili poetry and introduced the critical realist novel into Kiswahili fiction; E Musiba, whose significance lies in the direction of ‘popular’ fiction; and now, Gabriel Ruhumbika. They all, except Musiba, belong to the Abasilanga clan, the traditional ruling family of Ukererewe.

Miradi Bubu is a sweeping and chilling tale covering 50 hectic years of Tanzania’s recent history i.e. the 1930’s to 1980’s. This is the first Swahili novel to portray this period of drastic socioeconomic changes and struggles. It is an attempt to recapture history as experienced by the various social forces – the rural proletarians, the ordinary office workers, the women, the youth and the nascent state bourgeoisie.

The novel’s structure is based on a simple narrative principle: that of parallel life profiles. Characters include Saidi, a government messenger who becomes a chief messenger; Nzoka, the up-start who benefits from the post-independence Africanization policy who becomes a parastatal executive, a tycoon and a polygamist into the bargain; and Munubi, a rural proletarian-cum-overseer whose yearning for justice eventually lands him at the gallows. Others who interact with them include politicians such as Julius Nyerere, white settlers such as Tumbo Tumbo, Indian shopkeepers, women petty traders such as Mama Ntwara, office girls, the wives, children and grandchildren of the main characters.

Miradi Bubu is not the kind of novel that one reads for mere entertainment or sheer excitement. Although it does have some humorous bits, the novel is, on the whole, serious business that demands some intellectual effort from the reader. It starts at a slow, leisurely pace, but manages to pick up momentum as we enter the exciting sixties, the frustrating seventies and the desperate eighties. At the end, the reader is left angry and depressed, critically reflecting on our chequered history and our inhuman condition.
M. M. Mulokozi


GOVERNMENT AND POLITICAL PARTIES IN TANZANIA (AFTER THE 1995 ELECTIONS). FACTS AND FIGURES. Max Mmuya. Friedrich Ebert Stiftung. (In English and Swahili). 44 pages plus 32 pages of maps, pie charts and tables. 1996. Shs 5,000. This extremely useful guide is what it says it is – a publication filled with facts and figures on the political parties, the structure of the two governments and parliaments and related institutions. It also includes a brave attempt at the difficult task of identifying policy differences between the parties. One criticism – its very detailed analysis of the election results in 1995 is based on the regions. How much more useful it would have been if it had been based on parliamentary constituencies. Its summing up of the kind of people which the policy of each of the main parties appeals to, could form the subject of many debates. Highly recommended – DRB.

60 YEARS IN EAST AFRICA: LIFE OF A SETTLER 1926-1986. Werner Voigt. General Store Publishing House, 1 Main St. Burnstown, Ontario, Canada KOJ IGO. 1995. 178 pp. Canadian dollars 24.95. The author, a German, was a settler initially in Deutsch Ost- Afrika and then Tanganyika. He worked on numerous plantations during his career. His memoirs, which are largely impressionistic, nevertheless provide an important insight into this period of Tanzania’s history. The book is illustrated by numerous photographs. (Thank you Thomas Ofcansky for letting us have this notice – Editor).

DONOR INTERVENTIONS IN TANZANIA 1989-94. A Report by the U.N. Development Programme (UNDP) in Dar es Salaam. 1996. This fact and figure-filled report analyses in great detail donor aid by region and by donor. It shows how overall aid flows are shrinking and how Mbeya Region, for example, has had most aid and Singida Region has had least during the years covered.

TRAWLING FOR TROUBLE. B S Sekento. African Farming. Jan/Feb 1996. 2 pages. Overfishing, weeds and ecological changes are threatening Lake Victoria; but this article lacks statistical information.

ROTATIONAL WOODLOTS FOR SOIL CONSERVATION, WOOD AND FODDER. R Otsyma, S Minae and P Cooper. Tanzania-ICRAF Agro-forestry Project in Shinyanga and the Southern Africa Development Community Project in Tumbi Tabora. In the coastal and western regions of Tanzania, where deforestation has been acute, farmers have to travel up to 15 kms in search of firewood and poles for construction. Many are using animal dung and crop residues for fuel, which means that valuable soil nutrients are going up in smoke. Pressure on land leads to long fallow periods giving way to intensive but short-duration fallows and even to continuous cropping affordable by small-scale farmers which do not provide the benefits that come with traditional fallows. The authors look at ways of reintroducing trees into existing crop and shrub land, in the form of ‘rotational woodlots’ established by villagers mobilised by local organisations such as women’s and youth groups – JB.

A E Hartemink. Technical Paper No 28. International Soil Reference and Information Centre, Wageningen. 1995. 67 pages. The dramatic decline of the sisal crop in the first few years of independence is statistically presented. When attempts were made to revive the industry in the late 1980,s little notice was taken of soil fertility problems despite the evidence. The author recommends an intensive production system including the application of sisal waste and the use of legumes and fertilisers – JB.

BRIDGING THE ‘MACRO-MICRO’ DIVIDE IN POLICY-ORIENTED RESEARCH: TWO AFRICAN EXPERIENCES. David Booth. Development in Practice. (15) 4. November 1995. A discussion about how to combine rapid-appraisal methods with inputs from more conventional styles of research. Case studies are taken from Tanzania and Zambia.

COMPARISON OF PRIVATISATION ECONOMIES OF EASTERN AFRICA AND EASTERN EUROPE. Jean M Due and Stephen C Schmidt. African Development Review. Vol. 7. No 1. June 1995.

ASSESSING HEALTH OPPORTUNITIES: A COURSE ON MULTI-SECTORAL PLANNING. M H Birley and others. World Health Forum. Vol. 16. No 4. 1995. An account of a type of planning, tested in Ghana, Tanzania and Zimbabwe, which can yield major benefits for health, especially in water resource development projects.

Comments (1)


THE RACE FOR THE PRESIDENCY. THE FIRST MULTIPARTY DEMOCRACY IN TANZANIA. T L Maliyamkono. Tema Publishing, Dar es Salaam. 1995. 90 pages $15.00.

I have often wondered why it takes book publishers so many months to publish a book when Sunday newspaper publishers take less than a week to provide an equal amount of reading. So this attractively designed little book with colour illustrations and very useful statistical appendices produced in record time, represents an achievement. Unfortunately the content shows that it has been produced in a hurry. The book begins well with a useful summary of Tanzania’s economic plight. In its political content, however, it assumes that the reader is familiar with recent political events and therefore covers them and particularly the characteristics of the parties and personalities in rather a superficial way. The author takes the story up until two weeks before the election. He indicates that he knows what he is talking about by scoring high marks in predicting what the result would be. He predicted a victory by Benjamin Mkapa with 55% to 65% of the vote (he got in by 61.8%), that the CCM would have a landslide victory in Parliament (CCM did!) and that in Zanzibar ‘1 would expect neither party to take a majority either in Presidential or Parliamentary voting’. Most observers would go along with that.

The book contains a succinct chapter on Nyerere’s achievements and failures and points out that he has been involved in the transfer of power three times in succession without military intervention – something the author rightly describes as Tanzania’s greatest achievement’ – DRB.

JAPANESE AID TO TANZANIA: A STUDY OF THE POLITICAL MARKETING OF JAPAN IN AFRICA. Kweku Ampiah. African Affairs 95 (378). January 1996. 17 pages.

Japan has a good reputation in the aid world. Its aid budget has increased dramatically in amount – from $252 million in 1985 to $1.04 billion in 1991 and anyone who has seen the change in the state of the roads in Dar es Salaam knows how effective it can be.

The value of this article is the skilful way in which the author analyses the motivation behind the giving of the aid to a country (Tanzania) which Japan clearly recognised as being different or special. Thus, Tanzania became by far the biggest recipient of Japanese grant aid among African states and was second to Kenya in technical aid. A country which promised little or no economic benefit to Japan (Japan was Tanzania’s third most important trading partner in 1991 but Tanzania was only Japan’s lOlst trading partner) tended to get little loan aid because of opposition from the Japanese Ministry of International Trade and Industry – Kenya was the main recipient. It was the Ministry of Foreign Affairs which was the primary initiator of Japan’s economic assistance to Tanzania.

The author argues that it was not just charity because Tanzania got so much more aid than other African countries. It was Tanzania’s leading frontline position in Southern Africa, Tanzania’s popularity in the Third World and, because of a Japanese tendency to place great importance on individuals, the centrality in it all of Julius K Nyerere. Ampiah notes significantly that Tanzania was understanding of Japan’s ‘predicament’ as a nation that survived on trade and therefore had to continue to deal with the then outlawed state of South Africa.

There is much more in this article including useful statistics, brief evaluations of the different aid projects and a note on the very limited Japanese investment in Tanzania – by 1993 seven private Japanese companies had invested a total of only $5.5 million – DRB.

BAGAMOYO – A PICTORIAL ESSAY. Jasper Kirknaes and John Wembah- Rashid. (Obtainable from J Kirkenes, P 0 Box 128, Frederiksberg. Denmark 2000. £4 plus postage).
HISTORICAL ZANZIBAR. Introduction and captions by Professor Abdul Sheriff. HSP Publications. 7 Highgate High St. London N6. Tel: 0181 340 3054. £19.95 (Postage free for UK BTS members).
Bagamoyo marked the final stage of the long overland route from the Great Lakes via Tabora and was the main port for the shameful trade in slaves and ivory in the first half of the nineteenth century. It was also the starting point for the famous expeditions by Burton and Speke in 1857 and Stanley in 1871.
With the gradual ending of the slave trade and the establishment of a Catholic mission in 1868, Bagamoyo became a haven for the welfare and education of freed slaves. The Germans made it the administrative centre of their newly acquired East African Colony until 1891 when the capital was moved to Dar es Salaam.

The historical background is briefly set out in the first of these books – a ‘pictorial essay’ which includes some 50 black and white photographs with an attractive cover in colour showing the beach and old Customs House. The order is at times confusing, with scenes from the German period of rule in the 1890’s on the same page as views from the 1990’s. Some of the references to the British presence in Bagamoyo are rather tendentious.

With few, if any, books available on this historic town, this publication is to be welcomed as a reminder of Bagamoyo, the place where ‘one lays one’s heart to rest’. Professor Sheriff presents us in the second book with a splendid album of (mainly Victorian) photographs taken from Zanzibar’s archives. Many of these fascinating scenes have probably not been published before. Here we have the State Barge presented to the Sultan by Queen Victoria: a locomotive of the Bububu Railway complete with American-style cowcatcher; and a photo of the Sultan taking tea with British officials which is vintage Evelyn Waugh.
The darker side of Zanzibar’s history is shown in disturbing photographs of chained slaves and of the damage done by the 1896 bombardment. The earliest photograph is that of the explorer Henry Stanley receiving an address of welcome; the most recent shows the last Sultan opening the last Assembly shortly before the 1964 revolution, while Karume sits quietly a few feet away.

Professor Sherrif’s six-page Introduction succeeds in summarising the main features of the period without succumbing to anti-colonial cliches, and there is a clear and informative plan of Zanzibar town. This attractively produced book is recommended not only for those under the spell of Zanzibar but also for anyone planning a visit who wishes to learn something of the Spice Island’s fascinating history. John Sankey

BLOOD, MILK AND DEATH. BODY SYMBOLS AND THE POWER OF REGENERATION AMONG THE ZARAMO OF TANZANIA. Marja-Liisa Swantz with the assistance of Salome Mjema and Zenya Wild. Finnish Anthropological Society. 1995. Bergin and Garvey. 168 pages. Hardback £44.95.

The Zaramo are a coastal people, closely related to the Kwere and the Zigua, living in and around Dar es Salaam. Once elephant hunters, they became farmers , and are now increasingly urbanised; but through all these changes they have preserved their character and identity. Marja-Liisa Swantz has lived among the Zaramo and studied them as an anthropologist for the last 25 years. This short and accessible book is a compilation of her writings with, as a kind of descant, the notes of a young Zaramo woman recalling her life and upbringing.

They are a people whose unity is based, not on attachment to land, but to their common valued way of life. What sometimes appears to outsiders to be inexplicable economic ‘backwardness’, is in fact a deliberate opposition to government directed ‘development’ which has not taken their needs into consideration. ‘The Zaramo have been steadfast in their determination to evade incorporation into alien systems, even when they would gain economic ally^. This book looks at the symbols that bind Zaramo life together, centred round the puberty ceremonies of young people, especially the girls. From their seclusion, which is a kind of death, they emerge to life, through a series of rites with a complex symbolism on how they will play their part as women and mothers. ‘The Zaramo’ writes Swantz, ‘as far back as oral and written history can determine, have chosen.. live according to their own values.. . This book is an attempt to describe some of the values that guide the Zaramo, and to come to some conclusions about how they have so consistently been able to find their way1. She concludes that the close-knit communal way of the Zaramo has much to offer to modern Tanzania if the nation can only find a way to acknowledge and incorporate it.
Virginia Luling

OUTLOOK FOR SURVIVORS OF CHILDHOOD IN SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA: ADULT MORTALITY IN TANZANIA. Henry M Kitange et al. British Medical Journal. Vol. 312. January 27 1996.

A team mostly from the Tanzanian Ministry of Health and Newcastle upon Tyne University has recorded adult deaths and death rates in Tanzania. Very high death rates in infants and small children are well recognised in sub-Saharan Africa but hitherto little has been known about mortality in those who survive the most dangerous first years.

Trained enumerators carried out censuses from mid-1992 until mid-1995 in 8 areas of Dar es Salaam, 59 villages in Morogoro and 47 in Hai district with a total of over 160,000 adults aged 15 to 59 years. Nearly 5,000 deaths were recorded in this age group.
The death rates were lowest in Hai, a relatively prosperous area growing cash crops, greater in Dar es Salaam and higher still in Morogoro where there is much subsistence farming with sisal cultivation. It was estimated that 32% of those aged 15 would die before their sixtieth birthday if current mortality persisted; 46% would die in Dar es Salaam and 53% in Morogoro. Women fared far worse than men from ages 20 to 34 in Morogoro and from 15 to 39 in Dar es Salaam. In Hai only women aged 25 to 29 had higher death rates than men.

The authors took great care to obtain complete censuses over three years, so these figures are the best available. They paint a bleak picture. Women aged 20 to 24 in Morogoro, for example, have a mortality which is over 40 times greater than women of the same age in England and Wales. The causes of death have not yet been analysed fully, but HIV and maternal mortality probably cause most excess deaths in young women.

The authors hope that these results will provoke a debate about health expenditure. Concentration on preventing infant and child mortality may have led to the relative neglect of adult mortality, much of which could probably be prevented. Epidemiological studies are of immense importance and the authors must be congratulated for their work and their paper. Long-term studies are particularly valuable, so we must hope that these observations can be continued.
John Wood

. Dr. Leader Stirling. AMREF Tanzania Publishing. 1995.
Dr. Leader Stirling originally published his autobiography in 1976 but it has been up-dated and re-issued with a supplement to the introduction written by Julius Nyerere in 1995.

The overwhelming impression , which made me enjoy it so much is Dr. Stirling’s obvious enthusiasm for almost everything he was involved in and his bubbling sense of humour comes out on almost every page. For example, I was fascinated by the extraordinary fact that one of his instructors in surgery was able to whip out an appendix in two minutes forty seconds! or the story of Louiza with acute septicaemia, whose progress to health was greatly assisted by a crate of Guinness; or the inspector from the Directorate of Medical Services whose previous encounter had been when Stirling had tried to restrain him as he ran naked down Victoria embankment late one night! The inspection went off well. There are many things touched on, more or less in passing, but without elaboration. I would have been very happy to have read about the remarkable improvisation at which Dr. Stirling became so adept. In this day of modern medicine, it is fascinating to read that quite simple techniques or equipment may be equally effective in saving lives. Triple distilled water with a bit of salt and glucose added to prepare intravenous infusions may shock the ‘modern’ doctor, but has saved many lives. A corkscrew is effective in removing tumours from the uterus, and a teaspoon has many surgical uses. Sterilised hippo fat makes an excellent aseptic ointment. I found the book entertaining and fascinating but my main criticism is that it was too short. For example, Leader Stirling was active in scouting throughout most of his life, but I would have been happy to read a lot more of the various ‘adventures1 with wild animals, despotic colonial officials and so on. I hope he will soon publish the sequel.
David Gooday, Elubisini Farm

INDIGENOUS KNOWLEDGE, INNOVATION AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT: AN INFORMATION SCIENCES PERSPECTIVE. Paper presented at the 1993 Annual Meeting of the African Studies Association, Boston Massachusetts. A Lalonde and G Morin-Labatut. IDRC. Ottawa. This paper focuses on the movement of development

priorities in recent years away from the solely economic to ‘people-centred development’. More attention should be given to ‘Indigenous Knowledge (IK)’ the authors say. An example of development which has ignored IK to its cost is the Canadian Wheat Scheme in Tanzania. It is suggested that, had the Barabaig been included at an early stage, there would have been improved planning of land utilisation and the project would have been more sustainable.

I feel doubtful as, not only are there two systems of farming at opposite ends of the spectrum, but also little was known about the Barabaig in 1969/70 – in fact, not many people wanted to know about them. An entirely new approach would have been necessary by planners, involving lengthy research and negotiation using specialist personnel when what was required was a quick answer to feeding Tanzania’s growing urban population. We are indeed wiser now, but to say that it could have been otherwise in the beginning is hypothetical. No doubt the writers of this paper could have found a better example to illustrate their proposition.
Christine Lawrence

ASANTE MAMSAPU. E. Cory-King. Minerva Press. 1995. This rather ordinary autobiography provides a fascinating insight into life in Tanganyika in the inter war period from 1927 to 1939. The story, as such is essentially of the author’s own childhood, although, through the eyes of ‘Putzi’ are recorded the exploits of her father, the well-known writer Hans Cory, as he undergoes a transformation from plantation manager to social anthropologist. The environmental and social backdrop of Tanganyika is vividly evoked, but the brevity of the period and the structural limitations of the autobiographical form hinder the development of the book and allow for very little narrative progression.

Nevertheless the nature of the autobiography is used to great effect in the highly entertaining portrayal of the book’s diverse characters: the omnipotent Hans, frivolous Lili and the countless caricatures throughout are the book’s main strength, bringing a personal, entertaining and human perspective on life in the territory under the British. The author’s own nationality – as an Austro-German she is in a minority and easily distanced from other nationalities – lends itself nicely to the caustic and hilarious appraisal of the other colonists that is one of the book’s delights. In fact, this device is much more prevalent towards the end which is indeed where the story becomes increasingly engaging. Her cynical eye it seems is used to much better effect when turned on the other Europeans rather than her own family. This artistic eye for detail and an affinity for nature combine to give us an intimate picture of the environment that surrounds her. However, her descriptive style is invariably and perhaps inevitably a reflection of her colonial experience: paternalistic in her social comments but wonderfully observant in her faithful translation of the Tanganyikan landscape and perhaps slightly nostalgic, judging by the numerous Kiswahili euphemisms that pepper the text. Still, this is obviously the mark of an author in love with her subject, regardless of the fact that the narrative lacks compulsion.

I think Cory-King’s intricate and personal story of a childhood in Tanganyika would be particularly rewarding for those who knew Tanganyika and Hans Cory or know Tanzania, since the beauty of her autobiography lies in the realistic and sensuous evocation of the landscape and the people rather than in anything inherently remarkable about the stories of her upbringing.
Ben Rawlence

No 16. Centre for Cross Cultural Research on Women. Oxford
University. Edited by Deborah Fahy Bryceson. Berg, Oxford.
This paper arises out of a workshop held in Holland in 1995 and looks at women as farmers in Africa and discusses a whole range of issues relevant to women’s lives in those African societies where hoe agriculture is prevalent.

Of the 14 chapters, six are from researchers whose work has developed in Tanzania. The editor has written an excellent introductory chapter on the mystique surrounding African women hoe cultivators.

Pat Caplan contributes an article from her return visits to Mafia where she did her field work 20 years ago and presents narratives of women’s views on the function and practicalities of motherhood in work and life. All very readable and a real pleasure to hear directly from womens’ own voices. Ulla Vuorela discusses truth in fantasy by presenting a number of powerful morality tales about women’s experience in marriage told for and by women in Msoga village in Northern Tanzania. A sharp insight into a world of difference between stories which begin at the point where stories from western cultures end in the ‘happy ever after…’ Han Bantje contributes a review of the relationship between maternal workloads and reproductive performance. His chapter contains very interesting factual information and reflections on human resilience which challenges conventional theories of nutrition.

Deborah Fahy Bryceson’s own fine contribution summarises the changing direction of development agencies’ policies and their gradual recognition of their tendencies to impose western assumptions on women’s lives in Africa even when demonstrably inappropriate. It is summarised by its title ‘Wishful thinking; Theory and Practice of Western Donor Efforts to Raise Women’s status in Rural Africa’.

An important and readable publication which is definitely
recommended to BTS members, especially for its value in helping readers to re-adjust their focus, which past perspectives and policies have often left seriously askew. Compulsory reading for anyone planning to go on the BTS visit to Tanzania in July, and who want to understand the position of women in Tanzania today.
Maura Rafferty


REVEALING PROPHETS. PROPHESY IN EAST AFRICAN HISTORY. Edited by David Anderson and Douglas Johnson. James Currey. 1995. 310 pages. Hardback £35. Paperback £12.95. This study contains a chapter by Marcia Wright, Professor of African History at Columbia University New York, in which she analyses in some detail the background events, with particular reference to peasant grievances and prophetic religion, which led up to the Maji Maji Rebellion in southeastern German East Africa in 1905 HEALTH SECTOR REFORM AND ORGANISATIONAL ISSUES AT THE LOCAL LEVEL: LESSONS FROM SELECTED AFRICAN COUNTRIES. S Mogedal, S Hodne Steen and George Mpelumbe. Journal of International Development 7 (3) 1995. 18 pages. Experiences with health sector reform in Botswana, Mozambique, Zambia and Tanzania including issues such as decentralisation, user fees, privatisation and human resource management.

INDIGENOUS KNOWLEDGE IN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT: IRRIGATION IN MSANZI , TANZANIA. Ophelia Mascarenhas and P G Veit . World Resources Institute, New York. 1995. 34 pages. How the people of Msanzi in Rukwa Region have successfully managed their water and irrigation system.

WHO CARES ABOUT WATER? Jan-Olof Dranqert. Waterlines. 13 (3). 1995. 3 pages. Whether a source of water in Sukumaland is developed by an individual or by a group, the belief is that it is a gift from God; everyone is entitled to use it. What incentive is there for individuals to develop a new water source? But individual ownership and use is acceptable where the new source is from a previously (traditionally) unknown arrangement, for example, construction of large storage tanks.


STRENGTHENING NATIONAL AGRICULTURAL SYSTEMS IN CENTRAL AND EASTERN AFRICA. World Bank Technical Paper No.290. October 1995. 164 pages. Tanzania is one of the 12 countries covered in this discussion on strengthening of agricultural research.

ASYMPTOMATIC GONORRHOEA AND CHLAMYDIAL INFECTION IN RURAL TANZANIAN MEN. H Grosskurth et al. British Medical Journal. Vol. 312. 1996. A study of 500 men in Mwanza Region which confirmed that these infections are asymptomatic; the results have important implications for the design of control programmes.

LIBERALIZATION AND POLITICS. THE 1990 ELECTION IN TANZANIA. Ed: R S Mukandala and Haroub Othman. 1995. Dar es Salaam University Press. 319 pages. Paperback $30.00. Includes case studies on the elections in Zanzibar, Chilonwa, Bunda and Mtwara .

PUBLIC AND PRIVATE SECONDARY EDUCATION IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES: A COMPARATIVE STUDY. E Jimenez, M E Lockheed and associates. World Bank Discussion Paper 309. January 1996. 144 pages. $9.95. This paper compares costs and achievements in private and public secondary schools in five countries including Tanzania.

POLITICAL PARTIES AND DEMOCRACY IN TANZANIA. M Mmuya and A Chaligha. Dar es Salaam University Press. 223 pages. $21.50. Comprehensive study of the foundation of the new parties. BIOGAS DIGESTERS. Katia Jassey. Agrotec Newsletter 9. June 1995. The use of biogas digesters for cooking in Tanzania.
TANZANIA’S FIRST MULTI-PARTY ELECTIONS AS SEEN BY A. M. BABU. Maendeleo. C/o Londec, Instrument House, 207 Kings Cross Road London WC1 9DB. 1995. 12 pages. A M Babu is the Overseas Representative of the NCCR-Mageuzi party. This personal account of his experiences concludes on a hopeful note. ‘Tanzanians must take heart. All is not lost. Behind the dark clouds of deception and rigging there is a silver lining. Whoever imagined only six months ago that … the opposition would still muster 40% of the popular vote in this first experiment in multi-party democracy … the majority of the 40% are energetic young people, the cream of young Tanzanians who have suffered the worst aspects of Nyerere’s economic nightmare … the opposition must strive to build on this formidable base . . . . l

FINANCIAL INTEGRATION AND DEVELOPMENT IN SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA: A STUDY OF INFORMAL FINANCE IN TANZANIA. M S D Bagachwa. 1995 £6.00. This paper is part of a report on an Overseas Development Institute (ODI) study of financial systems in four Anglophone countries.

DEVELOPMENT, DEMARCATION AND ECOLOGICAL OUTCOMES IN MAASAILAND. Kathreen Homewood. Africa 65 (3) 1995. 19 pages. This paper, using precise quantitative data, documents what it describes as the progressive erosion of territory and the imposition of new boundaries on the Maasai from the 1880,s to the present and how the Maasai communities have dealt with this by circumventing imposed boundaries, exploiting and sometimes attacking the resources the boundaries were designed to protect and in developing strategies to use to good effect the opportunities that boundaries can present.

TANZANIA BOOK NEWS. Ed: A Saiwaad. Children’s Book Project, P 0 Box 5702, Dar es Salaam. 1995. 8 pages. The first issue after a long break. Includes tenders for the publication of school books, TEPUSA – an NGO for the promotion of publications in Africa and an overview of the book project.

KILIMANJARO TALES: THE SAGA OF A MEDICAL FAMILY IN AFRICA. Gwynneth and Michael Latham. Radcliffe Press. 211 pages. £24.50. The story, based on the diary of his mother, of the life of Don Latham, a District Medical Officer in the 20’s and 30’s including background on Michael Latham’s own time in Tanzania.

GLOSA ENGLISH-SWAHILI DICTIONARY. Leonard A Sekibaha. Published by Glosa, P 0 Box 18, Richmond, Surrey TW9 2AU. 36 pages. £5.95. Glosa was originated by Prof. Hogben in 1943 while he was fire-watching in Aberdeen during the Second World War. This booklet contains the 1000 words which it claims are all that are needed to write, read, speak and understand the language; all the words are from Latin and Greek roots. The author runs the Glosa Centre in Pangani.


POTATO CULTIVATION IN THE UPOROTO MOUNTAINS, TANZANIA: AN ANALYSIS OF THE SOCIAL NATURE OF AGRO-TECHNOLOGICAL CHANGE. Jens A Andersson (Wageningen). African Affairs. 95 (378) January 1996. 19 pages. Although over supplied with sociological jargon and completely lacking in quantitative data (‘because of its unreliability’) this paper is revealing in pointing out a) the influence of migration of people on the choice of variety of potato grown in this area of South- Western (Southern Highlands) Tanzania b) the rise and fall of the pyrethrum industry c) the attractions of Kenya as a market for potatoes grown in Northern Tanzania d) changing consumption patterns in Dar es Salaam e) improved transport facilities – all these in addition to the normal agronomic factors of production.

THE CULWICK PAPERS 1934-1944. POPULATION, FOOD AND HEALTH IN COLONIAL TANGANYIKA. Ed: Veronica Berry. Academy Books, 35 Pretoria Ave, London E17 7DR. £22.75 incl. p&p. The first half of this book consists of articles written by A T Culwick, a District Officer and his anthropologist wife about the Ulanga valley and the second half is a survey conducted in 1938-39 of ‘Bukoba and its context in nutrition’. The book is illustrated with 88 contemporary photographs, 4 maps and numerous tables. MIRADI BUBU YA WAZALENDO (The Invisible Enterprises of the Patriots). Gabriel Ruhumbika. Tanzania Publishing House. 1995. 168 pages. This saga written in Swahili with a Kikerewe flavour tells the story of a group of people facing the big changes which have occurred during the period from the 1930’s to the 1980,s.

A new edition of the HISTORICAL DICTIONARY OF TANZANIA is in the final editing stage and should be published later this year. (Thank you Thomas Ofcansky from Washington DC for letting us have this advance notice – Editor).



THE HISTORY AND CONSERVATION OF ZANZIBAR TOWN. EU: Abdul Sheriff. James Currey. 1995. 164 pages. £35 cloth; £12.95 paperback. (Special offer to readers of ‘Tanzanian Affairs’ – paperback copy – £10).

The papers presented in this volume formed part of an international conference on the history and culture of the islands, convened in Zanzibar in December 1992 by the Department of Archives, museums and Antiquities of the Zanzibar government. Five papers deal with the history of the Stone Town; seven discuss its current and future status. In addition to a general introduction to the volume, Sheriff contributes a paper giving an outline history of the Stone Town, and another dealing with the socioeconomic implications of mosque building.

Sheriff begins by tracing the growth of the town since the 19th century. He argues against attributing the success of Zanzibar solely to the plantation economy. If that was the true explanation, Zanzibar would have been a larger version of Kenya’s 19th century Malindi. Sheriff believes that the immense cultural richness and cosmopolitan dynamism of Zanzibar town was due as much to its vibrant commercial port, and an emerging hinterland of huge economic potential. Sheriff’s second paper (published in a journal elsewhere) explores the connection between the building of mosques and the economic growth of the town, especially of its merchant community. Thus one sees an unfolding demography of the various religious communities through the endowments of their wealthy benefactors among whom were several property-owning women.

A facet of the cultural richness to which Sheriff refers is portrayed in Garth Andrew Myers’ article ‘The Other Side’ of the Stone Town, Ny’ambo, an area which has traditionally been considered a dwelling place of the poor. Myers does away with the notion that Ny’ambo was a dirty and chaotic area, and shows the development of its settlement to have been clean and orderly, possessing a ‘fascinating variety of house types and …. a gradually emerging solidarity of its peoples’.
The remaining two history papers can be taken together as their themes are similar, and in many ways they complement Sheriff’s article on mosques.These are Amina Ameir Issa’s contribution on the burial of the elite in the 19th century Stone Town, and Jean-Claude Penrad’s ‘The Social Fallout of Individual Death: Graves and Cemeteries in Zanzibar’. Issa deals with the burial locations of Omani and Hadhrama Arabs respectively, and also those of Comorians, Indians, and ‘othersr, a category which includes Africans, Europeans, Americans, slaves and members of other ethnic communities. Issa mentions the measures taken by the government to control and govern the allocation and upkeep of the burial sites. But such ‘ethnic’ burial was abandoned in 1969 by the Wakf Department in order ‘to end racialism’. Instead all people were required to bury their dead at Wanakwerekwe, four miles from the town. It is this social aspect of death, symbolised by the graves, tombs and their locations, which Penrad discusses in his article. The burial sites represent symbolic perceptions by the various communities about themselves and their beliefs.

The first of the seven papers on the conservation of the Stone Town is historically orientated, as it describes in detail the project to restore the ‘Old Dispensary’ a building with which the family of this reviewer has had some connection in the past. Steve Battle’s paper outlines the background and purpose of its original construction, and the current attempt to revive it as a functioning building.

The historical thread continues in Andriananjanirana- Ruphin’s paper which surveys the development of the Stone Town between 1890 and 1939. Of interest here is the story of the creation of the Municipal of Zanzibar in 1909, and its efforts during the years under consideration to undertake town planning and provide services for a growing municipality. A.Ruphin shows that its success was limited by ‘problems of land control, lack of financial means, shortage of staff, administrative slowness, conflict among the decision-making authorities, and absence of a clear policy of town planning.’ Remarkably similar ingredients to the ones listed above underlie the concerns expressed in the remaining papers in relation to the current and future condition of the Stone Town. The papers by Erich Meffert (‘Will the Zanzibar Stone Town Survive’) and Saad Yahya (‘Zanzibar Stone Town: Fossil or Foetus?’) pose the same question in different ways. Both emphasise the need for proper planning and for immediate action. Meffert is blunt and urgent in his plea: ‘One thing is certain: nobody will come to Zanzibar, or will look at the Stone Town. ..if the prime attraction of the historic landscape has been destroyed by more and more insensitive developers’. Yahya lists characteristics common to coastal towns, including Zanzibar, and suggests that this be utilised in developing not only the town itself but the islands as well. He lists some ideas for doing so.

The theme of planning is taken up in the last three papers by Archie Walls, Emin Balcioglu and Francesco Siravo. Walls’ plea is that the revitalisation of the town must make use of traditional methods of building; otherwise (as he has observed elsewhere) there is a risk of permanent damage. Balcioglu and Siravo discuss the work of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture and, in particular, its ‘Historic Cities Support Programme’. It is throughout the latter that the AKTC has initiated a planning project manned by AKTC appointees and Zanzibari officials to work out a realistic plan for the conservation and utilisation of the Stone Town.

The book is invaluable as a source of the history of the Stone Town, made all the more so by the inclusion of maps, drawings, and photographs of an era that has now disappeared. James Currey is to be congratulated for its production and for the insertion of the postscript which appears on page 142! Farouk Topan

WITCHCRAFT IN CONTEMPORARY TANZANIA. Ray Abrahams. African Studies Centre, Cambridge University.

This is an interesting book on a complex subject which demonstrates the link between traditional cultures and contemporary society. Witchcraft has been defined as the inherent power to harm others by supernatural (mystical) means. It is a phenomenon which many Tanzanians, both rural and urban, regard as an ugly reality, that can undermine the harmony of village society, but whose eradication can also lead to victimisation and violence.

Four case studies describe the incidence of witchcraft in the Bena, Sukuma and Pogoro tribes and how societies deal with suspects and false accusers. According to Mesaki, Ministry of Home Affairs statistics, from 1970 to 1984, reported the death of over 3,600 people – 240 a year – in witchcraft related incidents in 13 regions of mainland Tanzania. A direct link with witchcraft has not been conclusively demonstrated in all these cases. Over 60% of the cases occurred in Mwanza and Shinyanga (Sukumaland). The majority of victims were women.

Various ways of dealing with suspected witches are described – starting with warnings by the traditional village head, imposition of fines, moving on to driving the suspects out of the village, and finally the extreme case of killing the alleged witch, as in the clandestine operation of vigilante (Sungusungu) among the Sukuma. The Pogoro seem to have a benign way of dealing with suspected witches through a ritual shaving ceremony, kunyolewa. Green’s paper describes this effective social sanction.

Both Mesaki and Mombeshora give good assessments of the significance of legislation. It is doubtful if the formal legal process was ever very effective in rooting out witchcraft or in dealing with malicious accusations, which can be as destructive of a stable society as witchcraft itself. Post-independence governments, while deploring its existence, have had difficulty in dealing with witchcraft in the courts and have preferred to regard it as a civil dispute to be settled in the village. Bugurura, in his study of the Kahama district, describes how the village party leaders assess accusations of witchcraft even while they assert that it has no place in modern society.

Several of the authors, picking up a theory anthropologists have addressed in other African societies, allude to a possible link between the increase in witchcraft and the confining effect of villagization. Social strains in an enclosed society certainly increase as pressure on resources builds up. Young people’s unwillingness to conform to ancient lineage rituals can also lead to allegations that their elders are practising witchcraft.

The monograph is an exploration of a difficult topic in one country, rather than definitive statement of the place of witchcraft in African society. Nevertheless it does forcefully demonstrate the destabilising effects of maleficent beliefs and false accusations. As Professor Abrahams emphasises in his introduction, we are reminded that evil and harm in witchcraft in Tanzania have parallels in recent European experience with sectarian violence, ethnic cleansing and allegations of child abuse.
R Fennel1

AFRICA. THE ART OF A CONTINENT. The Royal Academy Of Arts. 4/10/95 to 21/1/96.

This is a large and ambitious exhibition displaying many artefacts from all over the continent dating from pre-history to the beginning of the 20th century. The very first item on display is a simple hand axe from Olduvai, Tanzania. Over one and a half million years old it is two million years later than the Laetoli footprints, but it is the earliest hand tool known. Other items from Tanzania are all from the 19th or early 20th centuries. Among the most interesting are a Nyamwezi chief’s chair; a Makonde man/beast mask; and, a very beautiful Iraqw leather skirt embroidered with beads and bells. Makonde ebony carvings are notably absent, presumably because they are of a more modern age.
Christine Lawrence

ESTIMATING THE SECOND ECONOMY IN TANZANIA. M Bagachwa and A Naho. World Development. 23 (8). August 1995. 12 pages.

THE IMPACT OF STRUCTURAL POLICIES ON WOMEN’S AND CHILDREN’S HEALTH IN TANZANIA. Joe L P Lugalla. Review of African Political Economy. No 63. 10 pages


FOREST-DEPENDENT LIVELIHOODS: LINKS BETWEEN FORESTRY AND FOOD SECURITY. S Dembner. Unasylva 182.Vol 46 1995. 6 pages. Includes brief case studies on Bolivia, Thailand, Vietnam and Tanzania – in two villages in Mtwara Region.

AID AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP IN TANZANIA. Thorvald Gran. Dar es Salaam University Press. 1994. 154 pages. £8.95. An evaluation of NORAD aid to Tanzania.


SUMMARIES OF THE PROCEEDINGS OF AN INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON DEVELOPMENT CHALLENGES AND STRATEGIES FOR TANZANIA: AN AGENDA FOR THE 21ST CENTURY. L Msambichaka and H Moshi. Dar es Salaam University Press. 1994. 95 pages. £7.50. Contains 23 papers on this 1993 conference.

CONSUMPTION AND POVERTY IN TANZANIA IN 1976 AND 1991: A COMPARISON USING SURVEY DATA. A Sarris and P Tinios. World Development. 23 (8). August 1995. 18 pages.

COMPARING EARNINGS PROFILES IN URBAN AREAS OF AN LDC: RURAL TO URBAN MIGRANTS VS NATIVE WORKERS. W P M Vijverberg and L A Zeager. Journal of Development Economics. 45 (2) 1994. 22 pages. A comparative study of labour productivity in Tanzania.

TEA ESTATE REHABILITATION IN TANZANIA. M Faber. World Development 23 (8). August 1995. 12 pages.

IMPORT SUPPORT AID. EXPERIENCES FROM TANZANIA AND ZAMBIA. H White. Development Policy Review. 13 (1) March 1995. 22 pages.


LIBERALIZATION AND POLITICS. THE 1990 ELECTION IN TANZANIA. Ed: R S Mukandala and H Othman. Dar es Salaam University Press. 1995. 319 pages. £16.75. Includes case studies on elections in Zanzibar, Chilonwa, Bunda and Mtwara.

TERTIARY TRAINING CAPACITY IN TANZANIA. ESAURP. Tanzania Publishing House. 1994. 234 pages. £14.95. A research report prepared for the Eastern and Southern African Universities Research Programme.

THE FUNCTIONAL DIMENSION OF THE DEMOCRATISATION PROCESS. M Mmuya. 1994. 148 pages. £9.95. Papers from a conference on the democratic process in Tanzania and Kenya.

CHAGGA. Leeman and Biddulph. 40 pages. £ 20. A course in the Vunjo dialect of the Kichagga language with two accompanying cassettes.

POVERTY ALLEVIATION IN TANZANIA. RECENT RESEARCH ISSUES. Ed: M S G Bagachwa. Dar es Salaam University Press. 270 pages.

£26.50. Seven papers from a 1994 workshop and a proposal for a long term research project.



AFRICAN PERSPECTIVES ON DEVELOPMENT. Eds: U Himmelstrand, K Kinyanjui, E Mburugu. 1994. James Currey.

GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS IN AFRICA. W Tordff. 1993, Indiana University Press.

POWER IN AFRICA. P Chabal. st. Martins Press. New York. 1994

‘African Perspectives on Development’, a tightly argued case laced with hard facts, calls into question much of the data and methodologies used by ‘experts’ (Eicher, Hyden, the World Bank) on the subject of Tanzanian agricultural production and its supposed decline during the years preceding the foreign exchange crisis of 1978. Marjorie Mbilinyi’s command of the history of agricultural production leads to conclusions that contrast sharply with those of the experts. Mbilinyi points, for example, to the tendency to aggregate crop data, combining plantation and peasant crops. Imagine aggregating data that include the collapsing sisal plantation industry with the positive growth of crops like tea and coffee planted by peasant and small capitalist producers! How easy to beat up on the small farmers once again; and how easy to justify unnecessary food imports.

From her factual base, Mbilinyi’s commentary is harsh. ‘Structural Adjustment Programmes’ (SAP’s) in agriculture are structured around the rehabilitation of the large-scale plantation and large farm sector owned by foreign, and, to a lesser extent, national enterprises and TNC’s, and the provision of a regular supply of cheap labour by impoverished peasants and farm workers. That the ‘cheap labour’ is mainly female is clear: by 1978 63% of all waged and unwaged agricultural labourers aged 15-29 were women. The campaign against the smallholder is further evidenced by data on credit: 90% of total lending in 1983 went to indigenous heads of household (covering some 4,300 out of 8,700 villages) as compared to only 15% of all peasant household heads in 1976. But following the SAP, only 2,000 villages received credit in 1986.

Recognising women’s grassroots organisations (in 1979 more than 7,500 economic groups on the mainland), and given the predominance of women in rural areas together with the much increased incidence of female-headed households, the author poses as ‘one of the greatest challenges to scholars and activists’ to ‘catch up with the ordinary women’. Much greater attention is due to the excellent writings of M Mbilinyi.

In the same volume, Samuel Chambua states that , irrespective of what development paradigm a sub-Saharan country has followed, the result has been the same ie: the failure to liquidate underdevelopment. This reviewer cheered his warning that ‘belief in the market has to be viewed with suspicion’ since the market was found wanting in the 1960’s as the solution to development problems. Both ‘modernization’ (dual economy) and ‘dependency’ theories are inadequate. Chambua calls for a theory and strategy that transforms the peasant economy while recognising that state and collective farms failed in both Ethiopia and Tanzania.

Also in ‘African Perspectives’, Benedict Mongula spoke to the ‘economic recovery experiments’ that have directly increased mass impoverishment, unemployment and destitution because both the social services sector and peoples’ real incomes have been affected. He points to the ‘considerable measurement problem’ in assessing the effectiveness of economic stabilization policies, due to such factors as the erratic inflation rates that follow currency devaluations and the challenge of comparing GNP’s when exchange rates and prices vacillate so much. Considering Mongula’s observations, one is tempted to question the exactness of economics as a science. After reviewing development theories and trends (often mentioning Tanzania) the author calls for a new kind of planning that would return control of their economies to the concerned countries themselves and avoid the blind liberalization of the economy advocated by the IMF.

Ernest Maganya scans the history of agricultural transformation in Southern Africa during the past three decades and the ongoing debate over modernization v dependency paradigms. Holding that the ‘free market’ can be ‘used or misused’, Maganya presents clear cases of government actions to improve or destroy the contributions of peasant farmers. He foresees the debate shifting from the issue ‘centrally planned economy v the market place’ to ‘the nature of the state that will have the political will and the technical capacity to harness the advantages of the market place and use it in the interests of the majority of the rural producers and smallholder peasants’.

The comprehensive analyses by the four Tanzanian authors above tempt one to ask the publishers of ‘African Perspectives’ to get a copy of their volume into the hands of every World Bank, IMF, and government planner. ‘Power in Africa’ a political essay labels as failures ‘paradigms lost’- all of the theories that have been employed to explain post-colonial politics. Patrick Chabal’s discussion of the African state as inherited from colonial powers, a state that did not arise from but had to create a nation, go a long way toward explaining why the post-colonial years have been perilous and why current economic adjustment programmes that disempower already fragile states’ capacities, carry with them a serious risk. Perceiving the state as the dominant economic actor in Africa – whether values are socialist, capitalist or mixed – Chabal nonetheless accepts ‘the politics of external aid’ from the West, the World Bank and the IMF as givens. He holds that ‘the system of dependence which is underpinned by the World Bank is one of the most significant factors in the survival of the post-colonial state. He sees such dependence as ‘hardly dependence at all’ but rather ‘inter-dependence’ – because, in his judgement, the donors finance African states ‘because the result is a relatively stable international order’ .

Some people, including this reviewer, hesitate to agree with Chabal, believing that the inherited risks that accompany adjustment programmes place ‘the social sectors in crisis’ as the World bank has itself said about its results in Tanzania (see ‘Adjustment in Africa’ page 413).

William Tordoff’s new edition of ‘Government and Politics in Africa’ is rich with detailed examples and refreshingly critical of both donor and developing countries. A former professor at the University of Dar es Salaam, Tordoff covers Tanzania thoroughly, from the East African Community through to President Mwinyi. He finds it ironic that ‘in the name of political and economic freedom’, western governments seek to deny African states the freedom to choose the political and economic systems that best suit their individual circumstances’. Questioning whether the African state as yet possesses the institutional capacity that the market economy system requires, he sees paradox in the SAP’s envisaging a ‘stronger society and a weaker central state’.

Reading Tordoff, I was reminded of President Nyerere’s response to questioning at a UN seminar in 1994. The gist of his statement was: They tell me all countries – the USA, Japan, Tanzania – participate on equal terms in the global ‘free market’. But putting Tanzania into that global market is like putting me in the boxing ring with champion Mohammed Ali! Margaret Snyder

THE MANAGEMENT OF HEALTH SERVICES IN TANZANIA: A PLEA FOR HEALTH SECTOR REFORM. P Sandford, G J Kanga and A M Ahmed. International Journal of Health Planning and Management. Vol. 9 No. 4. 1994. 13 pages.

This report on a research project in Kisarawe overturns widespread belief that management of health services can be substantially strengthened by such measures as development of information systems, training and evaluation. More radical changes are needed including the broadening of the base of funding (precise proposals are made) which would take into account an annual population survey in each district; full autonomy to health unit managers; the introduction of the private sector as provider; and, labour market reform including promotion to larger health units as incentives.


INFLUENCE OF ARABIC LANGUAGE ON SWAHILI (WITH A TRILINGUAL DICTIONARY). I Bosha. Dar es Salaam Univ. Press. 1993. 268 pages. £11.95. The author does not accept that Swahili was of Arabic origin. There were linguistic interferences from both sides. The book includes a list of Swahili words believed to have originated from Arabic.

DOCTOR’S CONTINUING EDUCATION IN TANZANIA: DISTANCE LEARNING. S S Ndeki et al. World Health Forum. Vol. 16. 1995. 6 pages.

THE POETRY OF SHAABAN ROBERT. Edited and translated into English by C Ndulute. Dar es Salaam University Press. 1994 179 pages. Shs3,260. A selection of the best and most representative of the poems.

QUALITY REVIEW SCHEMES FOR AUDITORS: THEIR POTENTIAL FOR SUBSAHARAN AFRICA. Sonia R Johnson. Technical Paper No 276. World Bank Findings. 1994. This paper concentrates on one aspect of financial management: the role of the external auditor and describes the results of two pilot quality reviews of government and private auditors in Tanzania and Senegal.

ECONOMIC CHANGE AND POLITICAL LIBERALIZATION IN SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA. Jennifer W Widner. Johns Hopkins Univ. Press. 1994. 307 pages. £14.00 paperback. The results of a 1992 colloquium in 1992 at Harvard; six case studies including one on Tanzania.

BUILDING CAPITALISM ….. SLOWLY. P Lewenstein. BBC Focus on Africa. Jan-March 1995. Two pages on how Tanzania is encouraging grass-roots capitalism.

THE SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC IMPACT OF HIV/AIDS ON FARMING SYSTEMS AND LIVELIHOODS IN RURAL AFRICA. T Barnett et al. Journal of International Development. Vol. 7. No 1. 1995. 12 pages.


STRUCTURALLY ADJUSTED AFRICA: POVERTY, DEBT AND BASIC NEEDS. D Simon, W van Spengen, C Dixon and Z Narman. Pluto Press. £12.95. Essays in this book cover the workings of structural adjustment in several African countries. The Tanzanian case study is on urban migration and rural development.

ESSAYS ON THE TRANSITION TO MULTI-PARTYISM IN TANZANIA. Pius Msekwa. Dar es Salaam University Press. 1995. This book of 10 essays by the Speaker of the National Assembly, which is apparently not-for-sale, describes the transition to multipartyism, shows how pluralism helped Parliament to recapture its supremacy from the CCM National Executive Committee, questions the decision to reject a three government structure for the country, suggests new methods of arranging presidential elections and points out that there is still no provision for independent candidates to stand for election.

URBAN FRUIT AND VEGETABLE SUPPLY IN DAR ES SALAAM. Geographical Journal. 160 (3). 1994. 11 pages.


BETTER HEALTH IN AFRICA: EXPERIENCES AND LESSONS LEARNT. World Bank. 1995. 240 pages. Tanzania is praised for its radio programme Man is Health which has been followed by two million people and also its health personnel plans where, in some cases, targets that were set up two decades ago have been surpassed.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT DECENTRALISATION AND THE HEALTH SECTOR IN TANZANIA. Public Administration and Development. 14 (5) 1994. 26 pages.

WOMEN AND COOPERATIVES IN TANZANIA: SEPARATISM OR INTEGRATION? Margaret R Msonganzila. Economic and Political Weekly. October 29. 1994. 11 pages in small type. This article discusses integrated cooperatives with men and women members and women-only cooperatives but states that the perspective and practice of Tanzanian Cooperative policies is biased against women.

The January 1995 issue of the JOURNAL OF FINANCE MANAGEMENT of the Institute of Finance Management in Dar es Salaam contains articles on the taxation of pension benefits, accounting and its environment in Tanzania, women executives and stress, an introduction to livestock insurance, safety management and on cushioning Tanzania’s external debt.




Nyerere Book

MWALIMU – THE INFLUENCE OF NYERERE. Edited by Colin Legum and Geoffrey Mmari. Mkuki Na Nyota, Dar es Salaam; Africa World Press, Trenton USA; and, James Currey, London. Published in association with the Britain-Tanzania Society. 1995. Clothbound £35. Paperbound £11.95. Special offer price to readers of ‘Tanzanian Affairs’: Clothbound – £10 from James Currey, 54B Thornhill Square. London NI IBE.

The British Empire had many achievements. One which is rarely cited is the remarkable group of leaders who led its colonies to independence. Had these colonies been fortunate enough to inherit power at the same time they would have been among the tallest on the world stage. Liberation movements attracted many intellectuals who might otherwise have taken careers other than politics. The quality of British education at home and in the colonies contributed to their formation. When history is written Julius Nyerere will rightly occupy one of the foremost places in this galaxy along with Gandhi, Nehru, Jinnah, Kaunda, Lee Kwan Yew and others.

This book is neither a biography nor the orthodox collection of eulogy produced on the retirement of an eminent figure. It is a scholarly compilation of some 14 essays covering his ideas, the policies that followed from them and their application to Tanzania during the 30 years of his leadership. It merits attention as one of the few attempts to analyse in depth and with objectivity the achievements of a very poor country immediately after it assumed control of its own destiny.

Nyerere has many qualities of heart and head. Huddleston, in his contribution places stress on his humility, austerity and dedication. Mmari reminds us that he did not lack determination. His attachment to his Catholic faith is an important factor in his life. Above all the theme is repeated that he is a thinker and a mwalimu (teacher) hence that honorific has been bestowed on him permanently uniquely among political leaders who have generally preferred to emphasise their power and leadership. Gandhi, Nehru and Mao were Asian leaders of an earlier generation who also had a vision of creating a New Society and of moulding a new man. Needless to say they differed in the essentials of that vision. Nyerere had a vision of building a more perfect society and a better individual in Tanzania based on African roots and socialism which encompassed Fabian humanist Marxist ideologies. Some day it is hoped that a study comparing Nehru and Nyerere will be made as these charismatic leaders had much in common. Nehru died in harness. Nyerere, having retired from office is still with us, active in the public service. Among their achievements, as Green points out in his contribution, is that much of the political engineering they accomplished continues to survive – a rare occurrence in post independence societies.

The gaining of independence from colonial rule was seen by the leadership as a new dawn when everything could be achieved. In the euphoria they believed that the same enthusiasm and the same willingness to sacrifice that enabled the ouster of foreign rulers would continue indefinitely. This would provide the motivation for the revolution to be brought about in the social structure and the economy. It was soon discovered that human nature and habits cannot be radically altered nor can vested interests be removed without enormous effort and education over a period of time. Too often unable or unwilling to confront this task the post-colonial leadership has moved back to authoritarianism. In many cases this was the penultimate stage before military rule. Nyerere realised he could not achieve his goals by using the system left by the British. As Kweka explains he believed a one-party state would better serve the entire nation. Democracy would be preserved by ensuring freedom of discussion, a policy debate and a choice of candidates for Parliament. In reality the party became all powerful and power and decision making were centralised. The one-party state instituted in 1965 was eventually dismantled in favour of a multi-party system in 1992. By that time Green states that sturdy institutions, a plural society and faith in the system had been firmly implanted. Legum, while acknowledging the achievements, prefers to remain sceptical about the future.

The overall thrust of Nyerere’s philosophy is enshrined in the Arusha Declaration of 1967. This emerged after much debate but it was essentially the distillation of Nyerere’s own thinking over a long period and was largely imposed from above. Its facets appear in most of the chapters of the book. Irene and Roland Brown sympathetically spell out the reasons behind the perceived need for planning, for education for self-reliance and for community formation in the ‘ujamaa’ village. They and other contributors recognise that it was not so easy to implement these policies. Legum points out that, although some people had to be forced, what has been achieved with very limited coercion is indeed remarkable. India, with her partly successful Five-Year Plans and community development programmes in various forms, knows very well that revolutions in agriculture and economics do not come overnight. But they do come slowly at different speeds in different places. Enthusiasm for rural modernisation can be generated. Ultimately awareness grows with decentralisation, grassroots democracy and especially education. All this needs adequate resources. Groups and individuals have to feel that they too benefit from the revolution in the quality of life and being able to acquire goods unobtainable earlier. That is why socialism and planning do not succeed if they neglect to inject a sufficient measure of market forces. Nyerere may not have realised this till the 80’s and 90’s. But he has never lost sight of the importance of self-reliance and its relevance to independence in policy formulation. It is only in the post cold war era that this reality has been forced on many developing countries which had relied on aid-driven development.

Svendsen, writing on the economic sphere, explains how, after the shocks of the 1979-81 period, the costs of implementing the Arusha Declaration became impossible to sustain. Pride had to fight with need. As countries like India had discovered 15 years earlier, altruism does not exist in international finance and commerce. Tanzania fought a spirited battle with the World Bank and the Fund but the inevitable compromises had to be reached.

‘The development of a country is brought about by people and not by money’ as Komba asserts. To do this in Tanzania required an initial revolution which most other countries did not need. There were no rural communities. People were gathered into villages with the intention that these would eventually evolve into full-fledged cooperatives. Unlike in the soviet union and China this was done mainly by consent. It is however not clear from the book how Tanzanian society has evolved; in the desire to emphasise the unity achieved, the normal process of emergence of group identities is not clearly analysed.

The book is somewhat weak on Nyerere’s international achievements. Ramphal’s contribution highlights the Commonwealth role and touches upon Nyerere’s contribution as Chairman of the South Commission. The Commission’s contribution to the economic reform now going on around the world might not be fully appreciated in the pain of ongoing structural adjustment. Self-reliance is being accepted. Just now this is being done at the national level rather than at the multilateral level as the Commission had hoped. It is perhaps utopian to hope that the new rich will be any more altruistic than the old rich.

Nyerere was always a Pan Africanist as Ramphal points out in his reference to Nyerere’s offer to delay Tanganyikan independence to help preserve the East African Union. His outspoken statement that Tanganyika would not share the Commonwealth table with South Africa after it achieved independence in 1961 prompted the latter’s exit from the Commonwealth. Decisions on Southern Africa were not without cost to the Tanzanian economy. But they were borne bravely.

Legum explains the rationale behind the final ouster of Idi Amin and the incorporation of Zanzibar into Tanzania and how this was motivated by the same philosophy of African solidarity. The TANZAM railway may not have been a success but it was another effort in the same direction.

For anyone interested in Julius Nyerere and Tanzania this book is essential reading. It suffers from the defect of people on the inside writing about their special subject. Almost every contributor has worked for the Tanzanian Government or the University of Dar es Salaam. outsiders may feel that they have not been provided with the adequate foundation of facts and data on which the analysis is based. There is also no attempt at any comparative study of neighbouring African or other developing countries. This would have provided some benchmarks against which judgements can be made. These are however minor points against the carefully drawn and relatively objective picture that is projected and is retained by the reader. The Mwalimu’s legacy is indeed that of his ideas. Maybe some of them need to be updated. But the basic thrust which comes through loud and clear still remains valid for Tanzania and indeed for many other nations.
Eric Gonsalves

Published by Zimbabwe Publishing House. 1994

This is a short book but one which seems to be of exceptional significance. Its launch in the late Autumn of 1994 created such interest that the first printing became unobtainable in a matter of days. When the author addressed a meeting of the Press Association in March this year, at which he was to return to its major theme, over 800 people are reported to have attended.

Readers in the UK might wonder what all the fuss is about. We have become accustomed to the attacks of Edward Heath on his successor and on the seeming reluctance of Margaret Thatcher to show much enthusiasm for hers. But this is of a different order. Nyerere is the ‘father of the nation’; he led the movement for independence; he presided over a Party which, whatever its internal di visions, presented to the public a sense of unity in building a peaceful nation, free from racism, tribalism and religious intolerance, a nation seen as an example to the rest of the world, even if its economy ran into major problems. Moreover, Nyerere retired voluntarily with the status of a world statesman. Ten years later, though the economic framework to which he had committed himself is fast being dismantled, and though there are those in Tanzania who dismiss him as a figure of the past, he retains great influence among large sections of Tanzanian society.

The thrust of the book is a passionate defence of the united Republic and the main features of its constitution. Nyerere believes there are those working to split the Union into the two constituent parts that existed in colonial times. He points out that the present borders of Tanzania represent virtually the only example of a post-colonial state which has borders different from those determined by the colonialists and borders which have reunited people of the coastal area and the islands who had been divided by imperial force. He argues that, once the Union were split into two parts, there would be a danger of a descent into regionalism and into divisions based on religion. which of us in Europe, looking at events in the former Yugoslavia, can confidently say this is wrong?

But Nyerere goes much further. He accuses the then Prime Minister and the then Secretary General of the CCM – both since moved to posts of lesser importance – of conniving in these moves. They are alleged, with much documentation, to have defied the policy of their own ruling Party, undermined the authority of the President and done this to further their own personal political ambitions. He says that this would not worry him so much if he could see signs of an effective opposi tion party. As it is, without such an opposition, he thinks it even more important that the CCM should look to the strengthening of its internal democracy. Failing that, he sees the danger of dictatorship of the kind he observed in a neighbouring country.

The book is of importance in the lead up to the first multi-party general election. It must be of interest to all students of Tanzanian Affairs. I understand that an English translation will be available shortly.
Trevor Jaggar

THE DARK SIDE OF NYERERE’S LEGACY. Ludovick S Mwijage. Adelphi Press. 1994. 135 pages.
It is common knowledge that a secret intelligence service was very active in Tanzania during the Nyerere years and, as a result, a number of people were detained and some were ill-treated. Most of this book is devoted to the I exciting’ (as the publisher describes it) story of these detainees. The author made no secret of his opposition to the one-party state and in 1983 fled, first to Kenya and then to Swaziland when he knew that he was in danger of arrest. He describes in dramatic detail how he was then abducted, treated very roughly, and taken back to Tanzania via Mozambique and how he was then detained there.

Part of the book skims hastily over scores of other cases of injustice, reported at the time by Amnesty International, and perhaps inevitable in a system in which democratic differences of opinion were suppressed and in which, as in the case of Zanzibar, violent revolution seemed to be the only way of bringing about change.

The author began as a teacher in Bukoba. After his release from detention he fled to Rwanda I then Portugal and is now, apparently, in Iceland studying for a degree in social sciences with Britain’s Open university! – DRB

. Dean E McHenry Jr. Lynne Rienner Publishers. 1994. 283 pages. £33.95.

This book looks at the endeavour by the political leadership in Tanzania to establish a socialist state. Its coverage is wide and quite good in my opinion, and it includes some developments almost as recent as its year of publication.

One thing which impressed me was its tile ‘Limited Choices’. The author was clearly trying to tell something impressive about Tanzania but at the end of it I felt that he still wished to tell a bit more than he actually did. The theme of the work is very much like the experience of Tanzania and the Tanzanians; they tried to achieve something significant by pursuing socialist policies but in the end they do not have much to show for it.

McHenry shows that Tanzania had few logical options other than pursuing the strong appeal of the socialist ideals which had been opted for through the Arusha Declaration. He isolates a number of factors essential either as the vehicles to achieve socialism or define its objectives in Tanzania. These include a standard of socialist morality in the leadership, democracy, equality, rural cooperatives, the parastatal sector and self-reliance. The author’s finding is that at the end of the period under study, none of them had been achieved to any commendable standard. Socialist morality, and even commitment by the leadership had been virtually abandoned. But McHenry does not indicate that the choice of socialism should be regretted.

He does not blame the socialist option for the country’s economic failure; he puts the blame on the agreement with the IMF’ and the conditions attached to it. As evidence he points to the fact that Tanzania did make some progress after the Arusha Declaration. But serious decline came in with alarming consistency after the signing of the agreement with the IMF’ in 1986. He shows further that the trend in Tanzania’s development has been just like that of other countries in subSaharan Africa, including Kenya, which never contemplated a socialist option.

McHenry’s work is very rich in its factual account of Tanzania’s political and socioeconomic development. But somehow it leaves you with the impression that the author has been too uncritical of the country generally. While blaming the IMF’ can be justified, it is not easy to understand the author’s total reluctance to try and apportion blame to local factors like mismanagement, corruption and other factors which may not necessarily concern policy, but which may nevertheless affect economic performance, irrespective of whether the policies have been socialist or not, and irrespective of the IMF conditions.

In fact the author has sometimes appeared to be too sympathetic to Tanzania. Thus, while showing quite graphically the overall decline in incomes even before the IMF, he makes no attempt at all to explain that decline. Instead he tends to view it rather positively because there was, simultaneously, an apparent decline in income inequality!

Most writers about Tanzania have found the dominance of Julius Nyerere extremely difficult to avoid. McHenry’s work, while not being an exception, must be commended for its reasonably successful attempt to draw attention to the role of persons other than Nyerere. In fact he even asserts rather boldly that, shortly after initiating socialist policies, Nyerere surrendered his ‘proprietary rights’ over socialism to the party as a collective unit. Unfortunately, the author does not assess whether indeed the party ever accepted socialism as an objective. That assessment is necessary in view of the virtual abandonment of the Arusha Declaration (through the Zanzibar Resolution of February 1991) barely six months after Nyerere’s exit from party leadership.

McHenry categorises Tanzania’s socialists, particularly in the political leadership, into ‘ideological’ and ‘pragmatic’ socialists, each struggling for control, while Nyerere maintained a midway position between the two. I find this categorisation rather disturbing. Some of the people categorised as pragmatic socialists and most of the things they have stood for are not considered as socialist, at least not in Tanzania. They may have been pragmatic but certainly not socialist. Perhaps the author made a misleading assumption that, because of Tanzania’s commitment to socialism, the entire leadership consisted of socialists only.

There are a few inaccuracies but they are negligible as far as the main thrust is concerned. But while commending the author for the effort he made to authenticate his sources he could have done a little better if he had tried to cross check what he read in the government-owned Daily News with other sources including the independent papers which emerged after 1990. Some of them are in Kiswahili, which could be a limitation to some researchers, but not to McHenry; each chapter in the book opens with its own all encapsulating Swahili proverb.

All in all this is a work well worth reading. Even if you disagree with the author’s views, arguments or conclusions his work will certainly tell or remind you about things concerning Tanzania which you may have overlooked.
J T Mwaikusa

ARMED AND DANGEROUS. MY UNDERCOVER STRUGGLE AGAINST APARTHEID. Ronnie Kasrils. Heinemann. 1993. 374 pages. £6.99.

MBOKODO. INSIDE MK – MWEZI TWALA. A SOLDIERS STORY. Ed Benard and Mwezi Twala. Jonathan Ball Publishers, Johannesburg. 1994. 160 pages. South African Rands 19.99.

These two action-packed and well-written books tell parts of the same story – what it was like to be involved in the armed struggle against South African apartheid. And, as Tanzania was an early headquarters of the African National Congress (ANC) to which both main authors belonged, Tanzania gets more than a mention.

Ronnie Kasrils was head of ANC military intelligence. He was, called the ‘Red (because he was a dedicated communist) Pimpernel’, South Africa’s most wanted man. He is now Deputy Minister of Defence in the South African government. For him his period in Tanzania (he was also in the Soviet Union, Cuba and East Germany for training and in Angola, Mozambique, Swaziland and South Africa on active service) was a generally happy one, and followed an escape over a ladder on the South Africa/Botswana border. He arrived in Tanzania in a six-seater chartered plane. He started by licking stamps, and answering the telephone at the ANC’s ‘shabby office’ in Dar es Salaam. The ‘romantic town’ reminded him of Durban. He married there – ‘The colonial registrar, who was still in place in 1964, stuck by the book and refused to marry us because we did not have our divorce papers (left behind in S. Africa) but we knew the Tanzanian Attorney General, who wrote a curt note ordering the registrar to stop being obstructive!’. Later, Kasrils had to say his traditional Judaic incantation at the Israeli Embassy in Dar es Salaam when he heard that his father had died back at home.

Tanzania in the 1960’s was the centre of much radical political activity. ‘An unforgettable event’ Kasrils wrote ‘was an address to 200 people by the legendary Che Guevara at the Cuban Embassy …. I met him later as I was sitting on the harbour wall. He was smoking a large Cuban cigar; it was his striking features, almost feline, that set him apart from ordinary mortals’.

Kasrils also met, sometimes on the verandah of the New Africa Hotel, such personalities as Oliver Tambo, the Shakespeare-loving Chris Hani, Joaquim Chissano, Jonas Savimbi ‘the gentle Malcolm X’ and many others. For Mwezi Twala, the person whose experiences are described in the second book, (‘Mbokodo’ is a Xhosa word for a grinding stone and was used to describe the security branch of the ANC’s armed wing – ‘Umkhonto we Sizwe’) Tanzania was a very different place. As was the ANC. Mr Twala is now an organiser for the Inkatha Freedom Party in South Africa.

He was a dissident from an early age having organised a strike in his primary school! And when, as a training officer in the ‘Umkhonto we Sizwe’, he sometimes disagreed with policy, he was inclined to say so. The result was that he was brutally punished in ANC detention camps in Angola and later transferred, as a prisoner to Tanzania.

His first stop was Dakawa camp where some 700 South Africans were housed in two villages and a large tent community called ‘Hawaii’. Here the author was happy at first. He was elected as a camp leader and made responsible for brick making and the manufacture of prefabricated walls for the growing settlement.

But, according to the author, Chris Hani and other senior ANC officials came to the camp. Chris Hani, ‘strutted with all the arrogance of a cockerel, while barking orders like a dog. He proceeded to issue banning orders on all of us’.

He and eighteen of his friends decided to plan an escape. And their chance came when the Tanzanian contractor with whom they had been working, apparently without the knowledge of the ANC authorities, invited them for a two-day New Year break in Dar es Salaam. Conditions had not been good at Dakawa. On the way to Dar somebody pushed a coke into his hand. ‘It was the most beautiful coke I have ever tasted in my life’.

Chapter 9 of the book describes the following period in early 1990 – imprisonment in Dar es Salaam, hunger strike, appeal to foreign embassies – and Chapter 10 describes the escape, helped considerably by friendly Tanzanians, to Malawi and eventually, after the release of Nelson Mandela, to South Africa. I After fifteen years absence, the changes that had taken place in Johannesburg were mind boggling’ the author concluded. ‘Everything I saw exuded wealth’.

Quite a lot of other things in these two exciting to read books are also mind boggling!
David Brewin

. J P Kipokola. Institute of Development studies Bulletin. Vol. 25. No 3. 1994 Sussex university. 5 pages.

The evaluation of structural adjustment (SA) is a growth industry these days. This article however has two merits – it tells the story of Tanzania’s SA remarkably concisely and it tells it from the point of view of the recipient treasury.

The lessons which have been learnt include:
– the value of an inter-ministerial technical group;
– the importance of timely action – something which Tanzania was slow to accept;
– the need to prioritize those resources with the most rapidly visible recovery impact; in the case of Tanzania agriculture, industry and transportation;
– not to postpone financial sector reforms;
– avoiding over-emphasis on exchange rate policy and interest rate structure;
– not to accelerate privatisation and thus create new monopolies owned by foreign enterprises;
– the need to continue to protect local infant industries;
– the need to be patient – DRB.

PARADISE. Abdulrazak Gurnah.
This book reached the Booker Prize Short List for 1994 – Ed

This book is about many things; the growing up of a young boy, the disintegration of traditional society under colonialism, the nature of freedom, and even a tragic love story.

At the age of twelve, Yusuf, the central character, is torn away from his family for reasons he does not wholly understand. It quickly becomes clear that his parents have become indebted to a wealthy trader – ‘Uncle’ Aziz – and that Yusuf is the payment. Khalil, who is older than Yusuf, has already suffered the same fate as him and thus attempts to protect Yusuf from his youthful naivety and vulnerability. Yusuf’s confusion is understandable as he faces up to the contradictions of his new situation. On the one hand Yusuf is forced to understand his new position in terms of a masterservant relationship; he is told that his ‘uncle’ is not his uncle, he should now call him Seyyid. On the other hand Khalil emphasises the honour of their ‘master; ‘He buys anything … except slaves, even before the government said it must stop. Trading in slaves is not honourable’.

The whole area of slavery, bondage and freedom is thus introduced into the book at an early stage and is pivotal to Yusuf’s transition to adulthood. Yusuf is presented to us as an innocent. He is passive, things happen to him, not because of him.

‘It never occurred to him …. that he might be gone from his parents for a long time, or that he might never see them again. It never occurred to him to ask when he would be returning. He never thought to ask ….. ‘

He is frustrating in his passivity; one finds oneself demanding, along with Khalil ‘Are you going to let everything happen to you all the time?’ Of course this passivity is bound up with him coming to terms with this position of bondage, and it is this that he realises that he must ultimately challenge. Yusuf cannot understand why Both Khalil and the gardener, Mzee Hamdani, have refused to take their freedom when offered. He accuses them of cowardice and impotence respectively. But of course Yusuf’ s greatest challenge comes when he realises he himself is free to go – like Khalil and the gardener he is freely n the service of the Merchant. This forces him to reconsider his position and face up to his own inability to control his life.

Yusuf’s final action is to attempt to take control and deliver himself from ‘slavery’. Of course the fact that he left one slave-master relationship for what was clearly another, means that his liberation was obviously limited. Nevertheless it was clearly a progression and was reflective of the lack of choice that someone in Yusuf’s position would have had.

The style of ‘Paradise’ is poetic. Gurnah attempts a fusion of myth, dream, religious tradition and realism. He succeeds in this, although it must be said that he comes nowhere near the poeticism and magic realism of Okri’s ‘Famished Road’. Gurnah is most successful, however, in providing a sensitive portrayal of one young boy’s transition to adulthood in a society where a legacy of slavery and an ever increasing colonial presence complicate notions of honour, freedom and bondage.
Leandra Box

. Carlotta Johnson. !994. 91 pages. Obtainable @ £6 from Jane Carroll, Britain-Tanzania Society (which will receive receipts from sales) 69 Lambert Road, London SW2 5BB.

An account of a six-month’s return to Tanzania, Uganda and (briefly) Kenya after 17 years. Carlotta Johnson allows us to dip into her journal. And it makes evocative reading. I wanted to ask questions, to know more, to ‘see round the edges’ as one often does with the television screen. It is not an easy book to categorize, being neither a reference book for prospective travellers to East Africa, nor yet a guide for ornithologists – although it has something of interest for both. It is a very personal account of belonging and not belonging: of stranger-ness after many years away from a much loved country. It is both a questioning and an understanding of the clash of cultures. The poems between the chapters are an added bonus; this from “So, what did you go out in the world to see?”: ‘To try and understand about distance,/ separation, homecomings, here and there,/ to see what far is, discover/ if I can be at home away.’

Archbishop Huddleston has said that this book should be read by anyone who knows and loves Tanzania. It should also be read by anyone who recalls their own youthful contribution to that fascinating country, how little they learned at the time and how much they have realised since.
Jill Thompson




PREVALENCE OF HIV-1 INFECTION IN URBAN, SEMI -URBAN AND RURAL AREAS IN ARUSHA REGION. K Mnyika and others. Aids. 8 (9). september 1994. 4 pages.

TANZANIA. Jens Jahn (Ed) • Fred Jahn, Munich. 527 pages in German and Swahili. 1994. £57.00. This is described in the ,Art Book Review Quarterly’ as a superbly illustrated (b & w) catalogue of traditional sculpture in Tanzania. It shows ceremonial works, figurative wood carvings, ornate staffs, furniture and masks. The text indicates the similarities in the aesthetics of Western Tanzania and southeast Zaire.

MINING AND STRUCTURAL ADJUSTMENT. C S L Chachage et al. Sweden. 1993. 107 pages mostly about Zimbabwe but with a section on mining and gold in Tanzania.

CONSERVATION OF ZANZIBAR STONE TOWN. Abdul Sheriff (Ed). 1994. 224 pages. £12.95. Essays on culture, history and architecture.

THE ORGANISATION OF SMALL-SCALE TREE NURSERIES. E Shanks and J carter. Overseas Development Institute. 1994. 144 pages. £10.95. This is designed for policy-makers/professionals and includes case studies from six countries including Tanzania.

TEACHING AND RESEARCHING LANGUAGE IN AFRICAN CLASSROOMS. C M Rubagumya (Ed). 1994. 214 pages comparing experiences in four countries including Tanzania. £14.95.

WHAT’S IN A NAME? UNAITWAJE?: A SWAHILI BOOK OF NAMES. S M Zawawi. 1993. 86 pages. £6.99.


SOCIAL CHANGE AND ECONCMIC REFORM IN AFRICA. Ed: P Gibbon. Scandinavian Institute of African studies. 1993. £12.95. 381 pages. Contains three papers on Tanzania – on the effect (or lack of effect) of structural adjustment on the growth of NGO’s, on education and on agriculture.

ECONCMIC POLICY UNDER A MULTIPARTY SYSTEM IN TANZANIA. Eds: M S D Bagachwa and A V Y Mbelle. Dar es salaam university Press. 1993. 218 pages. £14.95.

THE DEMISE OF PUBLIC URBAN IAND MANAGEMENT AND THE EMERGENCE OF INFORMAL LAND MARKETS IN TANZANIA. A case of Dar es salaam City. J W M Kombe. Habitat. Vol. 18. No 1. 1994 20 pages. Management of urban land can be undertaken by either state-led or market-led instruments. This paper explains, through four case studies, the extent to which the infonnal market-led sector is growing largely because of deficiencies in allocation under the old system.

SOME LESSONS FROM INFORMAL FINANCIAL PRACTICFS IN RURAL TANZANIA. A E Ternu and G P Hill. African Review of Money, Finance and Banking. 1/94. 26 pages. This paper, which is full of interesting insights, explores in some detail informal financial practices in the Kilimanjaro Region. These include the keeping of cattle for emergencies, borrowing from friends and relatives, borrowing livestock and using money lenders; it points out the lessons bankers can learn from this informal sector.

BEYOND DEVELOPMENTALISM IN TANZANIA. Geir Sundet. Review of African Political Economy. No 59. 1994. 10 pages. ‘The Arusha Declaration is arguably the most influential policy paper to came out of Africa’ this writer states and goes on to analyse theories of political economy and the nature of the ‘African state’. He questions present modes of analysis of African political systems.

RECENT DEMOGRAPHIC CHANGE IN TANZANIA: CAUSES, CONSEQUENCES AND FUTURE PROSPECTS. A J Mturi and P R Andrew Hinde. Journal of International Development. Vol. 7 No 1. 1995. 17 pages. Fertility in Tanzania is very high by world standards – a woman bears on average more than six children (it used to seven in the early 1980’s). The population growth rate is around 3%. These writers argue, in a fact-filled paper, that a further decline in fertility will depend mainly on the family planning programme.

DOCTORS CONTINUING EDUCATION IN TANZANIA: DISTANCE LEARNING. S S Ndeki, A Towle, C E Engel & E H 0 Parry. World Health Forum. Volume 16. 1995. 7 pages. This a description and evaluation of a programme of distance learning for 150 medical personnel in the Arusha, Kilimanjaro, Tanga and singida regions. The most popular module was the one on obstructed labour; the most difficult was on epidemiology. Costs were $341 per trainee or $0.38 per person in the region. The paper points out the lessons learnt.

TANZANIA DEVELOPS GAS. T land. Southern Africa Economist. October 1994. 2 pages.