A Popular History of Wau

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Document Publisher/Creator
Santandrea, Stefano
Sudan Open Archive
NGO associated?
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I think that the history of the capital of the Bahr el Ghazal province, formally called colloquially Bog, deserves to be told, if the memory of its past is not to perish with the death of the last elders.
I have called it a “popular history” for two reasons. First, it is concerned almost exclusively with people. Secondly, it lacks of the whole, the backing of official statistics and documentation. This is not meant to imply disdain for such evidence; rather it is an invitation to someone else to fill the gap. Such information would provide enough material for another History of Wau, to complement, and where necessary, to correct this popular version.
It might be asked how the author can call what follows a “popular history”, living, as he does far from Wau. Why not leave the task to other people on the spot, or to those who can go and live there for a sufficient period of time?
The answer is that only one who actually lived in Wau, in daily contact with his heterogeneous population, is in a position to paint a living picture of the place.
In addition, a stranger will be unable to find the elders or representatives of the various tribal groups from whom he could collect the necessary information, for they have nearly all died.
I apologise for the ‘poor’ English of the text, and at the same time I thank most warmly those friends who helped me to improve it. Realising, however, that in history facts weigh more than words, I decided to release the work as it stands.
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