In his introduction, Aaron Bady calls it “simply and obviously, a plain fact” that Jennifer Makumbi’s Kintu is the great Ugandan novel. But just as you need not be American to read Toni Morrison or John Steinbeck, you need not be Ugandan to fall mesmerized by Makumbi’s novel, which begins in January 2004, travels back to 1750, and ends in April 2004, interweaving the characters, events, and DNA of the two times. Passionate, original, and sharply observed, the novel decenters colonialism and makes Ugandan experience primary.

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