KINDEZI: The Kongo Art of Babysitting, by K.Kia Bunseki Fu-Kiau and A.M. Lukondo-Wamba, with an Introduction by Marimba Ani

KINDEZI: The Kongo Art of Babysitting, by K.Kia Bunseki Fu-Kiau and A.M. Lukondo-Wamba, with an Introduction by Marimba Ani

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To the people of the Western world, babysitting is usually merely a means to make some extra money, chatter with friends on the phone, and raid their host's refrigerators. However, to the people of Africa, particularly the Bantu, babysitting is an art. Both K. Kia Bunseki Fu-Kiau and A.M. Lukondo-Wamba present the importance and consequences of this African tradition in Kindezi: The Kongo Art of Babysitting.

Kindezi (the art of babysitting) and the ndezi (the babysitters) provide an extensive amount of services for both the society at large and the individual child, making for a cohesive, unified community. Kindezi serves to provide an early education for African youth, therapy and a feeling of purpose for the aged, and liberation and independence for African women. In addition, Kindezi develops the moral and intellectual character of the young, thus ensuring a strong foundation for each new generation. It is no wonder the authors address, in depth, the problem of encroaching Westernization and its effect on the African tradition.

Indeed, as Fu-Kiau and Lukondo-Wamba so masterfully illustrate, Kindezi embodies the very hope and strength of Africa's future. Kindezi: The Kongo Art of Babysitting has much to teach the reader about human and social development.