Author Katherine Namuddu Explores Village Schooling in Uganda

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She presents a narrative of a woman’s 12-year passage through cultural and modern schools in a rural village in Uganda in “Never a Dull Moment”

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In a narrative that moves smoothly between Uganda’s cultural and modern schools in a rural village and the real circumstances in the life of common villagers, author Katherine Namuddu wishes to demonstrate how some rural parents used to pursue and accomplish successfully an education for their children through her eye-opening book, Never a Dull Moment. Here, she tells the story of how Ntaanya negotiated her 12-year passage through various home and modern schools in a rural village in 1950s to give readers a better understanding on this aspect of Uganda.

In this comprehensively revealing narrative, readers will follow Ntaanya, who was born in 1940s, as she narrates her 12-year passages through cultural and modern schools in a rural village in Uganda. First is a complex maze of clan relationships enforced by her paternal grandfather from which, Ntaanya extricates her identity with difficulty. The weaning school, run by her maternal grandmother shapes her character and notions of beauty. The home schools presided over by parents, friends, peers, relatives and villagers equip her with etiquette, a work ethic and principles of acceptable womanhood. Village production of alcohol comprises another school with unexpected lessons for the young girl.

On the other hand, the modern school and its sponsoring church become arenas where Ntaanya continues shaping her growing awareness of a world beyond, consolidates friendships and begins to question old beliefs but always with Muzeeyi, her mother, as the central reference point. Finally her maternal grandmother’s funeral reinserts her firmly back in the center of a cultural milieu that shapes her perspectives on life. The humor that runs through all the stories demonstrates the various ways in which rural children and adults created etiquette, firm relationships and fun for themselves from what might have appeared to outsiders to be a humdrum existence.

In Never a Dull Moment, Namuddu has written thought-provoking stories based on actual events spanning a 12-year period. The book attempts to show that perhaps the modern school is paying far too much attention to the mechanics of school learning and in the process it is eroding the complementary work of a variety of traditional learning agencies that in the past, not only provided a child with their first mental and practical curriculum but also greatly supported and consolidated the skills taught in the modern school.

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About the Author
Katherine Namuddu was born in Uganda and educated there and in the United States. She taught science at Makerere, Nairobi and Kenyatta universities. She worked for many years with the Rockefeller Foundation of New York. She is currently an advisor on African higher education.

Never a Dull Moment * by Katherine Namuddu
1950s Village Schooling in Uganda
Publication Date: October 29, 2012
Trade Paperback; £13.99; 246 pages; 978-1-4797-3481-8
Trade Hardback; £23.99; 246 pages; 978-1-4797-3482-5
Ebook; £3.99; 978-1-4797-3483-2

Members of the media who wish to review this book may request a complimentary paperback copy by contacting the publisher at +0800-644-6988. To purchase copies of the book for resale, please fax Xlibris at 44-203-006-8880 or call +0800-644-6988.

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