The Colors of All the Cattle: No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency (19) - Chapters 16 - 17 Summary & Analysis

Alexander McCall Smith
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Summary

In Chapter 16, on the way to Mochudi, Charlie told Ramotswe about his breakup with Queenie-Queenie. He told Ramotswe that he liked Queenie-Queenie but thought she was too classy for him. Charlie indicated that his problem with Queenie-Queenie was one of cattle. Ramotswe knew at that point that Charlie was talking about the lebola system in which a man had to pay a dowry, usually of livestock, to a bride’s family in order to earn her hand in marriage. It was a practice that was criticized because it made women into an asset that could be bought and sold but still it had not been eradicated. Charlie said he had read in some places that people were trying to put a limit on the number of animals for which a family could ask because so many people were getting greedy. Charlie suggested that...

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