To Dwell Secure Generation, Christianity, and Colonialism in Ovamboland (Social History of Africa,) by Meredith Mckittrick (Author)
Heinemann (September 18, 2002)
Soft Cover, 297 pages
As McKittrick explains, Christianity meant many different things to floodplain communities, and struggles to incorporate Christianity paralleled and intersected with other ongoing struggles. The sets of meanings that came to dominate were those created by young people drawn from a range of social backgrounds who in the behaviors and beliefs associated with Christian missionaries, found a refuge from insecurity and ways to transcend a particularly African context of generational relations and ideologies.
Based on over five years of research in Nambia, Finland, and Germany, McKittrick's book is a tour de force demonstration of African social history at its best. Her fluency with a number of sources in a number of languages: Afrikaans, English, Finnish, French, German, Oshiwambo, and Portuguese, her interviews with numerous Ovambo, and her rigorous sleuthing through a massive body of ethnographic materials, travelers' accounts, and missionary accounts is breathtakingly impressive. She convincingly demonstrates the many ways a microhistory that stresses the local can nonetheless significantly illuminate our understanding of historical process throughout Africa.