Area Handbook for Rwanda

Area Handbook for Rwanda

Area Handbook for Rwanda

Area Handbook for Rwanda

Excerpt

Rwanda, a small, landlocked country in east-central Africa that gained independence from Belgium in 1962, is engaged in the process of nation building and economic development. As of early 1969, the Government, under the leadership of President Grégoire Kayibanda and the only political party, was endeavoring to promote social and political unity and economic development.

This book is an attempt to provide in a compact, convenient, balanced, and objective form an integrated exposition and analysis of the dominant social, political, and economic aspects of the society. It is designed to give readers an understanding of the dynamics of the component elements of the society and an insight into the ideas and feelings of its people.

Sources of information used included scholarly studies, official reports and publications, reports by missionary organizations, and current newspapers and periodicals. The economic data available were subject to varying degrees of error, and most available ethnographic studies were based on field work completed before the social and political revolution that occurred immediately before independence.

The spelling of proper names conforms to the current usage in the country. Prefixes, which are used in Bantu languages to indicate categories -- e.g., Ba for people, Mu for man -- have not been used. The ethnic groups are referred to simply as Hutu, Tutsi, and Twa, and no indication of the plural is made. Throughout the book, Rwanda as opposed to the preindependence spelling of Ruanda is used. Place names are given as established by the United States Board on Geographic Names as of November 1964. A brief glossary of acronyms, economic terms, and foreign words is included for the convenience of the reader.

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