Isaria N. Kimambo is a professor of history at the University of Dar es Salaam.
Christianity has been spread in Africa by Africans. It is the story of peoples seizing control of their own spiritual destinies—rather than the commonplace notion that the continent's Christian churches represent colonial and capitalist powers that helped subdue Africans to European domination. In short, once introduced, Christianity took on a powerful life of its own and spun out of the control of those who would retain ownership of doctrine and practice.
Farming and pastoral societies inhabit ever-changing environments. This relationship between environment and rural culture, politics and economy in Tanzania is the subject of this volume which will be valuable in reopening debates on Tanzanian history.
The originality of this study of rural transformation stems from the way in which Professor Kimambo has used the oral tradition to reveal the history of the impact of the world economy in northeastern Tanzania. First under the pressures of commodity trade, and later under German and British imperialism, the peasant producers of this region were forced into participation in capitalist production. These partial changes destroyed the Pare’s balanced subsistence structure.