Abstract

In British Tanganyika, school-educated African correspondents used the Swahili-language and English press extensively to comment on issues relevant to their lives. With a focus on post–World War II letters to the editor and rhyming poems (mashairi) on dansi (urban jazz and ballroom dancing) in the government-controlled Mambo Leo (Current Affairs), this article shows that debates in print offer insights into culturally specific and sometimes conflicting ways in which ustaarabu (civilization), heshima (respectability), and modernity were discussed, articulated, and performed by self-consciously modern Africans. Broader questions on writers and their creation of networks with their rivals and readers/audiences are asked.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1527-1978
Print ISSN
0001-9887
Pages
pp. 39-55
Launched on MUSE
2011-05-13
Open Access
No
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