“A valuable addition to collections supporting African or women’s studies. Highly recommended.
“Marvelous use of oral and archival sources makes this a good account of changing gender formulations and of women’s development and achievement in the twentieth century.”
Kathryn Barrett-Gaines, University of Maryland Eastern Shore
“A model of scholarly cooperation between a western historian (McIntosh) and an African anthropologist (Kyomuhendo)....”
International Journal of African Historical Studies
“In terms of depth of analysis and breadth of material covered, the book is a pioneering work in its field in Eastern Africa. The benefits of this study lie in its sound recommendation of strategies that will improve women’s circumstances....”
Journal of Colonialism and Colonial History
This groundbreaking book by two leading scholars offers a complete historical picture of women and their work in Uganda, tracing developments from precolonial times to the present and into the future. Setting women’s economic activities into a broader political, social, and cultural context, it provides the first general account of their experiences amid the changes that shaped the country. Women, Work & Domestic Virtue in Uganda, 1900–2003 describes the origins of the current situation, highlighting the challenges working women now face and recommending strategies that will improve their circumstances in the future.
Grace Bantebya Kyomuhendo is an associate professor and the head of the Department of Women and Gender Studies, Makerere University. She is the author of many articles on women’s reproductive health and HIV/AIDS. More info →
Marjorie Keniston McIntosh is a distinguished professor of history emerita, University of Colorado. She is the author of Working Women in English Society, 1300–1620. More info →
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Yoweri Museveni battled to power in 1986. His government has impressed many observers as Uganda's most innovative since it gained independence from Britain in 1962. The Economist recommended it as a model for other African states struggling to develop their resources in the best interests of their peoples. But where was change to start? At the bottom in building resistance committees, or at the top in tough negotiations with the IMF? How was it to continue?
In August 1986, Alice Auma, a young Acholi woman in northern Uganda, proclaiming herself under the orders of a Christian spirit named Lakwena, raised an army called the “Holy Spirit Mobile Forces.” With it she waged a war against perceived evil, not only an external enemy represented by the National Resistance Army of the government, but internal enemies in the form of “impure” soldiers, witches, and sorcerers.
Uganda's recovery since Museveni came to power in 1986 has been one of the heartening achievements in a continent where the media have given intense coverage to disasters. This book assesses the question of whether the reality lives up to the image that has so impressed the supporters of its recovery. What has actually happened? How successful have the reforms been thus far? What are the prospects for Uganda's future?