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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Leeds-Makerere Connection and Ngugi's Intellectual Development
Author:Sicherman, Carol
Geographic terms:Great Britain
East Africa
literature (form)
Literature, Mass Media and the Press
Education and Training
Abstract:In the mid-1960s the Department of English at Makerere University College in Uganda sent a number of highly gifted graduates to Leeds. Did Leeds exert neocolonial mind control on Ngugi wa Thiong'o and the other Old Makerereans, such as Peter Nazareth, Grant Kamenju, and Pio and Elvania (Van) Namukwaya Zirimu, who came there for graduate work? The present article addresses this question, with the author arguing that Ngugi and his friends learned at Leeds (if not from the university in an official capacity) to challenge their colonial education. The East African students forged this opportunity out of a somewhat fortuitous confluence at Leeds of four influences: Arnold Kettle, the well-known Marxist literary critic, who taught at Leeds from 1947 to 1967; an intense left-wing student culture wrought to an even higher pitch by crises of the 1960s, such as the Vietnam war; the Africans' discovery of Frantz Fanon; and the creative friendships that flourished among the Leeds African literati. App., bibliogr., notes, ref.