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need help compiling kernel: problems with make menuconfig

Just reinstalled a Debian/GNU system. I didn't install X, has it wouldn't
load up correctly and didn't it. Without X, to compile a new kernel I am
forced to use make menuconfig. Which supposedly requires the package
ncurses-dev. Using Debian's apt-get utility I tried to install ncurses-dev.
It returns an error, which I should I have noted, in brief in states that
ncurses is out of date and that I can only install libncurses6-dev (which
replaced it). So I did. When I tried to make menuconfig, it returned an
error saing it could not find the ncurses libraries.
What can I do? I tried using apt-get to install X, but I can't seem to find
the right package name.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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