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African History

African History Book List

Cover of 'Property Rights & Political Development in Ethiopia & Eritrea'

Property Rights & Political Development in Ethiopia & Eritrea
By Sandra Joireman

This book looks at the microfoundations of poverty in the developing world and in particular those present in property rights. The local institutions that govern land access are fundamental in affecting the distribution of wealth in a society. Property rights matter because they affect political development and economic growth. Development economists and policy makers often work on the assumption that property rights evolve from collective to more specified systems.

Cover of 'Nigerian Video Films'

Nigerian Video Films
Edited by Jonathan Haynes

Nigerian video films—dramatic features shot on video and sold as cassettes—are being produced at the rate of nearly one a day, making them the major contemporary art form in Nigeria. The history of African film offers no precedent for such a huge, popularly based industry. The contributors to this volume, who include film and television directors, an anthropologist, and scholars of film studies and literature, take a variety of approaches to this flourishing popular art.

Cover of 'Nkrumah & the Chiefs'

Nkrumah & the Chiefs
The Politics of Chieftaincy in Ghana, 1951–1960
By Richard Rathbone

Kwame Nkrumah, who won independence for Ghana in 1957, was the first African statesman to achieve world recognition. Nkrumah and his movement also brought about the end of independent chieftaincy—one of the most fundamental changes in the history of Ghana. Kwame Nkrumah's Convention Peoples' Party was committed not only to the rapid termination of British colonial rule but also to the elimination of chiefly power.

Cover of 'Workers, War and the Origins of Apartheid'

Workers, War and the Origins of Apartheid
Labour and Politics in South Africa, 1939-48
By Peter Alexander

This book provides a significant revision of South African labor history and makes an important contribution to the debate about apartheid's genesis. Using a range of untapped sources, it shows that there was far more strike action during World War II than has been officially acknowledged. A new working class, sometimes organized into multiracial unions, won improved wages and softened racial prejudice among white workers.

Choice Outstanding Academic Title, 2000
Cover of 'The History of Islam in Africa'

The History of Islam in Africa
Edited by Nehemia Levtzion and Randall L. Pouwels

The history of the Islamic faith on the continent of Africa spans fourteen centuries. For the first time in a single volume, The History of Islam in Africa presents a detailed historic mapping of the cultural, political, geographic, and religious past of this significant presence on a continent-wide scale. Bringing together two dozen leading scholars, this comprehensive work treats the historical development of the religion in each major region and examines its effects.

Cover of 'The Poor Are Not Us'

The Poor Are Not Us
Poverty and Pastoralism in Eastern Africa
Edited by David M. Anderson and Vigdis Broch-Due

Eastern African pastoralists often present themselves as being egalitarian, equating cattle ownership with wealth. By this definition “the poor are not us”, poverty is confined to non-pastoralist, socially excluded persons and groups. Exploring this notion means discovering something about self-perceptions and community consciousness, how pastoralist identity has been made in opposition to other modes of production, how pastoralists want others to see them and how they see themselves.

Cover of 'African Womanhood in Colonial Kenya, 1900–1950'

African Womanhood in Colonial Kenya, 1900–1950
By Tabitha Kanogo

This book explores the history of African womanhood in colonial Kenya. By focussing on key sociocultural institutions and practices around which the lives of women were organized, and on the protracted debates that surrounded these institutions and practices during the colonial period, it investigates the nature of indigenous, mission, and colonial control of African women.

Cover of 'African Apocalypse'

African Apocalypse
The Story of Nontetha Nkwenkwe, a Twentieth-Century South African Prophet
By Robert R. Edgar and Hilary Sapire

The devastating influenza epidemic of 1918 ripped through southern Africa. In its aftermath, revivalist and millenarian movements sprouted. Prophets appeared bearing messages of resistance, redemption, and renewal. African Apocalypse: The Story of Nontetha Nkwenkwe, A Twentieth-Century Prophet is the remarkable story of one such prophet, a middle-aged Xhosa woman named Nontetha.

Cover of 'Black Lawyers, White Courts'

Black Lawyers, White Courts
The Soul of South African Law
By Kenneth S. Broun
· Foreword by Julius L. Chambers

In the struggle against apartheid, one often overlooked group of crusaders was the coterie of black lawyers who overcame the Byzantine system that the government established oftentimes explicitly to block the paths of its black citizens from achieving justice. Now, in their own voices, we have the narratives of many of those lawyers as recounted in a series of oral interviews. Black Lawyers, White Courts is their story and the anti-apartheid story that has before now gone untold.

Cover of 'Facing the Truth'

Facing the Truth
South African Faith Communities and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission
Edited by James Cochrane, John de Gruchy, and Stephen Martin

The unique desire of South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) to turn its back on revenge and to create a space where deeper processes of “forgiveness, confession, repentance, reparation, and reconciliation can take place” reflects the spirit of some churches and faith communities in South Africa.

Cover of 'Herero Heroes'

Herero Heroes
A Socio-Political History of the Herero of Namibia, 1890–1923
By Jan-Bart Gewald

The Herero-German war led to the destruction of Herero society. Yet Herero society reemerged, reorganizing itself around the structures and beliefs of the German colonial army and Rhenish missionary activity. This book describes the manner in which the Herero of Namibia struggled to maintain control over their own freedom in the face of advancing German colonialism.

Cover of 'El Dorado in West Africa'

El Dorado in West Africa
The Gold Mining Frontier, African Labor, and Colonial Capitalism
By Raymond E. Dumett

The second half of the nineteenth century witnessed some of the greatest gold mining migrations in history when dreams of bonanza lured thousands of prospectors and diggers to the far corners of the earth—including the Gold Coast of West Africa. El Dorado in West Africa explores the first modern gold rush of Ghana in all of its dimensions—land, labor, capital, traditional African mining, technology, transport, management, the clash of cultures, and colonial rule.

Cover of 'East African Expressions of Christianity'

East African Expressions of Christianity
Edited by Thomas Spear and Isaria N. Kimambo

Christianity has been spread in Africa by Africans. It is the story of peoples seizing control of their own spiritual destinies—rather than the commonplace notion that the continent's Christian churches represent colonial and capitalist powers that helped subdue Africans to European domination. In short, once introduced, Christianity took on a powerful life of its own and spun out of the control of those who would retain ownership of doctrine and practice.

Cover of 'Kwame Nkrumah'

Kwame Nkrumah
The Father of African Nationalism
By David Birmingham

The first African statesman to achieve world recognition was Kwame Nkrumah (1909-1972), who became president of the new Republic of Ghana in 1960. He campaigned ceaselessly for African solidarity and for the liberation of southern Africa from white settler rule. His greatest achievement was to win the right of black peoples in Africa to have a vote and to determine their own destiny. He turned a dream of liberation into a political reality.

Cover of 'Developing Uganda'

Developing Uganda
Edited by Hölger Bernt Hansen and Michael Twaddle

Uganda's recovery since Museveni came to power in 1986 has been one of the heartening achievements in a continent where the media have given intense coverage to disasters. This book assesses the question of whether the reality lives up to the image that has so impressed the supporters of its recovery. What has actually happened? How successful have the reforms been thus far? What are the prospects for Uganda's future?