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University of Botswana English Department
Language, Literature and the Discourse of HIV/AIDS in Africa
University of Botswana English Department, 2002

About Botswana

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Botswana is a land-locked country in Southern Africa. The climate is quite hot in summer (November to March), but winters (June to August) are pleasant, with sunny days and cold nights. Gaborone, the capital, has a population of approximately 150,000 people, a healthy climate, and all modern amenities. There is no significant risk of malaria in Gaborone, although it is found in the far north, such as the Okavango Delta.

Almost uniquely in Africa, Botswana has an unbroken record of peaceful multi-party democracy since independence in 1966. Botswana was a British colony (the Bechuanaland Protectorate) and is now a member of the Commonwealth. The current president is Mr. Festus Mogae.

The people are composed of a number of different groups, including the historically dominant Tswana (Setswana-speakers), Kalanga, numerous groups of Basarwa (KhoeSan language groups) and others. The national language is Setswana, which nearly all people in the country speak to some degree, and the official language is English, which is used for conducting government business and at the university.

For more comprehensive information about Botswana's history, ethnic composition, languages, culture, and literature, visit the University of Botswana History Department website at The site includes, as well as historical information, things like a page on historical and cultural tourism and information about the return of "El Negro of Banyoles" to Africa.

Peruse some of the local papers:

Find out more about the Basarwa and other minority peoples:

Visit the Botswana government's official website:


Travel guides:

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Copyright © 2001 University of Botswana English Department
Last updated 5 November 2001