Ohio Short Histories of Africa is a series of informative and concise guides, lively biographies, and succinct introductions to important topics in African history.
Praise for Ohio Short Histories of Africa Titles
“I am a huge fan of Ohio University Press’s Ohio Short Histories of Africa series. I use them to teach my introductory-level African politics students about oppression, resistance, liberation and corruption, and I recommend the books to anyone who asks as an affordable and accessible introduction to a wide range of topics in African studies.” —Laura Seay, The Washington Post
“Authoritative, streamlined, and highly readable, this book deserves a wide readership.” — African Studies Quarterly review of The ANC Youth League
“This book is sure to become required reading for students and scholars of youth politics in South Africa and the continent more widely.” — Journal of African History review of The Idea of the ANC
“The book, as a short history rather than an in-depth examination of a person or a movement, will be most useful for students….” — Library Journal review of Steve Biko
Daniel Magaziner, Yale University
Michelle R. Moyd, Indiana University
Moses Ochonu, Vanderbilt University
This new biography of Kwame Nkrumah (1909–72), Ghana’s first president, demonstrates how his accomplishments extend well beyond his role in Ghanaian decolonization, state-building, and the promotion of pan-Africanism to include his broader anticolonialist work toward an independent, unified Africa.
Chris Hani was one of the most highly respected leaders of the African National Congress, the South African Communist Party, and uMkhonto we Sizwe. His assassination in 1993 threatened to upset the transition to democracy but also prompted an intervention by Nelson Mandela, which accelerated the process. This biography provides a concise presentation of this iconic political leader’s life.
From his anti-colonial military leadership to the presidency of independent Mozambique, Samora Machel held a reputation as a revolutionary hero to the oppressed. Although killed in a 1987 plane crash, for many Mozambicans his memory lives on as a beacon of hope for the future.
Drawing from distinctly African source materials and methods, Achebe’s groundbreaking historical account examines the shared power, influence, and authority that uniquely African, female-gendered entities—people, diviners, and deities—exert across Africa’s interconnected physical and spiritual worlds.
The latest in the Ohio Short Histories of Africa series, Josie Mpama/Palmer: Get Up and Get Moving tells the story of Josie Mpama/Palmer’s activism and political legacy in South Africa and around the world.
This concise biography tells the story of Wangari Maathai, the Kenyan activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner who devoted her life to campaigning for environmental conservation, sustainable development, democracy, human rights, gender equality, and the eradication of poverty.
Amílcar Cabral’s charismatic and visionary leadership, his pan-Africanist solidarity and internationalist commitment to “every just cause in the world,” remain relevant to contemporary struggles for emancipation and self-determination. This concise biography is an ideal introduction to his life and legacy.
In the accessible and concise A Short History of Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart, Terri Ochiagha asks new questions and brings wider attention to unfamiliar but crucial elements of the story, including new insights into questions of canonicity, and into literary, historiographical, and precolonial aesthetic influences.
Going beyond the headlines, including the group’s 2014 abduction of 276 girls in Chibok and the ensuing international outrage, Boko Haram provides readers new to the conflict with a clearly written and comprehensive history of how the group came to be, the Nigerian government’s failed efforts to end it, and its impact on ordinary citizens.
In an excellent addition to the Ohio Short Histories of Africa series, Robert Trent Vinson recovers the forgotten story of Albert Luthuli, Africa’s first Nobel Peace Prize winner, who linked South African antiapartheid politics with international human rights campaigns and was a leading advocate of nonviolent civil disobedience techniques.
For some, Zimbabwe’s President Mugabe is a liberation hero who confronted white rule and oversaw the radical redistribution of land. For others, he is a murderous dictator who drove his country to poverty. This concise biography, in a highly successful series, reveals the complexity of the man who led Zimbabwe for its first decades of independence.
In 1995, South Africa’s new government set up the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, a lynchpin of the country’s journey forward from apartheid. In contrast to the Nuremberg Trials and other retributive responses to atrocities, the TRC’s emphasis on reconciliation marked a restorative approach to addressing human rights violations and their legacies. The hearings, headed by Bishop Desmond Tutu, began in spring of 1996.The
With vision, hard-nosed judgment, and biting humor, Julius Nyerere confronted the challenges of nation building in modern Africa. Constructing Tanzania out of a controversial Cold War union between Tanganyika and Zanzibar, Nyerere emerged as one of independent Africa’s most influential leaders. He pursued his own brand of African socialism, called Ujamaa, with unquestioned integrity, and saw it profoundly influence movements to end white minority rule in Southern Africa.
In this concise biography, ideally suited for the classroom, Adekeye Adebajo seeks to illuminate former South African president Thabo Mbeki’s contradictions and situate him in a pan-African pantheon.
Africa’s newest nation has a long history. Often considered remote and isolated from the rest of Africa, and usually associated with the violence of slavery and civil war, South Sudan has been an arena for a complex mixing of peoples, languages, and beliefs. The nation’s diversity is both its strength and a challenge as its people attempt to overcome the legacy of decades of war to build a new economic, political, and national future.Most
A penetrating, accessible portrait of the activist whose execution galvanized the world. Hanged by the Nigerian government on November 10, 1995, Ken Saro-Wiwa became a martyr for the Ogoni people and for human rights activists, as well as a symbol of modern Africans’ struggle against military dictatorship, corporate power, and environmental exploitation.
In this concise biography, Scully shows us how the life of Nobel Peace Prize winner and two-time Liberian president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf speaks to many of the key themes of the twenty-first century. Among these are the growing power of women in the arenas of international politics and human rights; the ravaging civil wars of the post–Cold War era in which sexual violence is used as a weapon; and the challenges of transitional justice in building postconflict societies.