Culture of Botswana - Literature - Unity Dow

Unity Dow

Unity Dow (born 1959) is a judge, human rights activist, and writer from Botswana. She came from a rural background that tended toward traditional values of the African kind. Her mother could not read English, and in most cases decision-making was done by men. She went on to become a lawyer with much of her education being done in the West. Her Western education caused a mixture of respect and suspicion.

As a lawyer she earned acclaim most for her stances on women's rights. She was the plaintiff in a case that allowed the children of women by foreign nationals to be considered Batswana. The tradition and law before this stated nationality only descended from the father. She later became Botswana's first female High Court judge.

As a novelist she has had three books. These books often concern the issues concerning the struggle between Western and traditional values. They also involve her interest in gender issues and her nation's poverty.

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