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Reviews of Lamu: History, Society, and Family in an East African Port City

“Provides a wealth of precious information which can be readily consulted … offers the reader documentary sources …”
— Francoise le Guennec-Coppens, Journal of Islamic Studies

“With this sensible book, Romero has prepared a careful study of modern Lamu that dissects fact from fantasy. The author provides new insights into the impact of slavery and the slave trade on the upper East African coast, on the introduction of British colonial rule and the British rivalries with German and French merchants and their diplomatic supporters, on health issues, on agricultural practices, and on religious and other ceremonial practices. Her discussion of the transition from Arab to Swahili to Anglo-Swahili to African Arab culture is important, and is a reflection of Lamu’s crossroads position commercially and culturally. Romero’s treatment of homosexuality and related sexual activities is, given Lamu’s notoriety, rather abbreviated. This book is an example of microhistory, well practiced, and in no antiquarian mode.”