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Loch Ness, Scotland
  • Location: Uganda

The First Woman

The First Woman

Why a Booktrail?

2000s: A sweeping tale of longing and rebellion

  • ISBN: 978-1786077882
  • Genre: Coming of Age, Fiction

What you need to know before your trail

Growing up in a small Ugandan village, Kirabo is surrounded by powerful women. Her grandmother, her aunts, her friends and cousins are all desperate for her to conform, but Kirabo is inquisitive, headstrong and determined. Up until now, she has been perfectly content with her life at the heart of this prosperous extended family, but as she enters her teenage years, she begins to feel the absence of the mother she has never known. The First Woman follows Kirabo on her journey to becoming a young woman and finding her place in the world, as her country is transformed by the bloody dictatorship of Idi Amin.

Travel Guide

Travel BookTrail style to a Uganda village

The village Nattetta, Bugere is fictional – the real setting is Uganda as a whole.

Here you will get to live in a Ugandan village for a while. One which has very strict rules about what you can and can’t do – well what woman can and can’t do. Women are blamed for much of what goes wrong in society or family such as abuse and neglecting the family  – they are not allowed to work when with a man for this reason.

“A girl uneducated is an oppressed wife in the making”

She must keep the man happy – for if he cheats or leaves, it means that she has failed! There is a strict order of hierarchy in society but sometimes, women manage to take their rightful place at the top….

Years ago, the people here claimed women couldn’t own or share land. “They claimed that the very first woman rose out of the sea while the first man emerged from earth…both women and the sea were baffling…water has no shape…is inconsistent…cannot be tamed…you cannot draw borders on the ocean…land belonged with men”.

Out with society, the book explores a lot of Ugandan history. They are at war with Tanzania for example and their relationship with their neighbours is interesting. How has cultural influences from invading countries affected Uganda and the religion there?


BookTrail Boarding Pass: The First Woman

Destination: Uganda  Author/guide: Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi  Departure Time:2000s

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