The following organizations and people deserve a big thankyou: – Institute of Asian and African Studies, University of Helsinki, Finland for travel grantand eight years of stimulating studies – Finnish Cultural Foundation (
) for their grant – Nordic Africa Institute in Uppsala, Sweden for their one-month study scholarshipgiving the chance to work in peace – Zanzibar Indian Ocean Research Institute (ZIORI), Tanzania, its staff and particularly professor Abdul Sheriff and Saleh Mohammed Saleh for their indispensable assistance – Zanzibar National Archives, Tanzania – Dar es Salaam University Library, Tanzania – Friends for your support: you all know who you are
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But politics also brought shocking things to the surface. We liked to think of ourselvesas a moderate and mild people. Arab African Indian Comorian: we lived alongsideeach other, quarrelled and sometimes intermarried. Civilized, that’s what we were.We liked to be described like that, and we described ourselves like that. In reality, wewere nowhere near we, but us in our own separate yards, locked in our historicalghettoes, self-forgiving and seething with intolerances, with racisms, and withresentments. And politics brought all that into the open.
- Abdulrazak Gurnah: