RSS Feed (xml)

Powered By

Skin Design:
Free Blogger Skins

Powered by Blogger

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

A significant addition to Uganda’s literary heritage

Title: Dance, Words and Sounds of Colour,
Authors: Femrite
Reviewer: Dennis D. Muhumuza 

The poor reading culture among Ugandan children has for a long time been attributed to the inexistence of relevant and captivating reading materials. The few that exist are clichéd fables and traditional folktales that have long lost their appeal. It is because of this that the Uganda women writers association, Femrite, has released an anthology of poems, short stories and songs for children and teenagers that should begin the healing process.
Launched last week at Makererere University, Butterfly Dance, Words and Sounds of Colour, draws its themes from everyday life as well as natural and invented splendour –things like cars, rainbow, landscapes, insects and school life that in all capture a whole range of experiences that children can identify with and enjoy reading or sharing about.

Some of the titles of the poems and short stories are inviting that a reader can hardly wait to discover what they are all about as represented by Mrs Butterfly, Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!, The Singing Fish and The Boy who Grew Tired of Being a Boy.

Others are much fun when read out aloud because of the rhythm and rhyme formation used, and the rhetorical flourish and sounds they generate. A poem like The Speeding Car is simply about the musicality in the ‘noise’ vehicles make. The “Vroom! Vroom!” , the “beep – beep…” and gradually the “Vrooooooooooo” and “Beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee…!” and “Booooooooooom” of the car offer pleasurable reading for the child.

Of the 39 poems, 18 come with colourful visual illustrations and one of the five stories is accompanied by a painting illustration while three of the five songs also come with a musical accompaniment.

The editors of the book, Okaka Dokatum and Rose Rwakasisi, note in the preface: “This is a great innovation because the visual imagery that is usually seen with the minds eyes can be seen within these pages with the naked eye, enhancing the enjoyment of poetry for readers.

Musical accompaniment creates a performance setting complete with mood and atmosphere…” Overall, the collection is sure to play a not-so-insignificant role in ingraining in the young reader the love of poetry, song, writing and appreciation.

--Sunday Monitor, April 11, 2010