I Dare to Say: African Women Share Their Stories of Hope and Survival

Edited by Hilda Twongyeirwe. Lawrence Hill, $17.95 trade paper (288p) ISBN 978-1-56976-842-6
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In this harrowing collection, women from rural Uganda tell their stories of rape, abuse, familial loyalty, and quiet courage. Those who shared their experiences with FEMRITE, the Uganda Women Writers’ Association, include former prisoners of war, women in polygamous marriages, child brides, those suffering from HIV/AIDS, small business owners, and in one of the book’s most moving sections, those enduring the humiliation of female genital mutilation. Habari suffers unspeakable pain and a month of bleeding after her circumcision, which leaves her infertile. Zayaga is shunned by her native village when she returns after being barred from her marital home in favor of her husband’s co-wife. The Lord’s Resistance Army abducts Hakim and her classmates from their secondary school and assigns them husbands they must submit to or be killed for refusing. Told in voices that are alternately frank, impassioned, angry, resigned, and resilient, these stories underscore the plight of rural women in a patriarchal society, where the husband’s extended family tends to have control over the nuclear family, and where symbolic rites of passage, such as female circumcision, continue in secret. Highlighting the conflict between traditional and modern Africa, where women are beginning to speak out and seek legal advice, this is a heartfelt, inspiring book. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 11/21/2011
Release date: 02/01/2012
Genre: Nonfiction
Ebook - 338 pages - 978-1-56976-967-6
Open Ebook - 288 pages - 978-1-56976-969-0
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