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Ohio University Press · Swallow Press · www.ohioswallow.com

Western Africa

Western Africa Book List

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Forthcoming

Cover of 'Embodied Engineering'

Embodied Engineering
Gendered Labor, Food Security, and Taste in Twentieth-Century Mali
By Laura Ann Twagira

Common narratives about development in Africa miss the critical technological work of women. Twagira’s study instead positions Malian women as rural engineers whose strategic planning and labor over the course of the twentieth century assured their food security.

Cover of 'Village Work'

Village Work
Development and Rural Statecraft in Twentieth-Century Ghana
By Alice Wiemers

This detailed and groundbreaking history of rural Ghanaian statecraft details the crucial importance that local village development systems have on regional and national scales.

Cover of 'Embodied Engineering'

Embodied Engineering
Gendered Labor, Food Security, and Taste in Twentieth-Century Mali
By Laura Ann Twagira

Common narratives about development in Africa miss the critical technological work of women. Twagira’s study instead positions Malian women as rural engineers whose strategic planning and labor over the course of the twentieth century assured their food security.

Cover of 'Village Work'

Village Work
Development and Rural Statecraft in Twentieth-Century Ghana
By Alice Wiemers

This detailed and groundbreaking history of rural Ghanaian statecraft details the crucial importance that local village development systems have on regional and national scales.

Cover of 'Militarizing Marriage'

Militarizing Marriage
West African Soldiers’ Conjugal Traditions in Modern French Empire
By Sarah J. Zimmerman

By prioritizing women and conjugality in the historiography of African colonial soldiers, Militarizing Marriage historicizes how the subjugation of women was indispensable to military conquest and colonial rule across French Empire.

Cover of 'Kwame Nkrumah'

Kwame Nkrumah
Visions of Liberation
By Jeffrey S. Ahlman

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.

Cover of 'The Actual True Story of Ahmed and Zarga'

The Actual True Story of Ahmed and Zarga
By Mohamedou Ould Slahi and Larry Siems

This stirring, poetic tale features a Bedouin man whose irrepressible love for his family, his camels, and his way of life fuels both his harrowing journey into the Sahara Desert to find a lost camel and his struggle to preserve a culture on the brink of profound change.

Available

Cover of 'Militarizing Marriage'

Militarizing Marriage
West African Soldiers’ Conjugal Traditions in Modern French Empire
By Sarah J. Zimmerman

By prioritizing women and conjugality in the historiography of African colonial soldiers, Militarizing Marriage historicizes how the subjugation of women was indispensable to military conquest and colonial rule across French Empire.

Finalist for the 2020 African Studies Association Book Prize
Cover of 'Emergent Masculinities'

Emergent Masculinities
Gendered Power and Social Change in the Biafran Atlantic Age
By Ndubueze L. Mbah

Atlanticization—or interaction between regional processes and Atlantic forces such as the slave trade and Christianization—from 1750 to 1920 transformed gender into a primary mode of social differentiation in the Bight of Biafra. Mbah examines this process to fill a major gap in our understanding of gender’s role in precolonial Africa.

Cover of 'Amílcar Cabral'

Amílcar Cabral
A Nationalist and Pan-Africanist Revolutionary
By Peter Karibe Mendy

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.

Cover of 'Market Encounters'

Market Encounters
Consumer Cultures in Twentieth-Century Ghana
By Bianca Murillo

By emphasizing the centrality of human relationships to Ghana’s economic past, Murillo introduces a radical rethinking of consumption studies from an Africa-centered perspective. The result is a keen look at colonial capitalism in all of its intricacies, legacies, and contradictions, including its entanglement with gender and race.

Cover of 'Making Money'

Making Money
Life, Death, and Early Modern Trade on Africa’s Guinea Coast
By Colleen E. Kriger

A new era in world history began when Atlantic maritime trade among Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas opened up in the fifteenth century, setting the stage for massive economic and cultural change. In Making Money, Colleen Kriger examines the influence of the global trade on the Upper Guinea Coast two hundred years later—a place and time whose study, in her hands, imparts profound insights into Anglo-African commerce and its wider milieu.A

A 2017 Choice Outstanding Academic Title
Cover of 'Ken Saro-Wiwa'

Ken Saro-Wiwa
By Roy Doron and Toyin Falola

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.

Cover of 'Ellen Johnson Sirleaf'

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
By Pamela Scully

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.

Cover of 'Black Skin, White Coats'

Black Skin, White Coats
Nigerian Psychiatrists, Decolonization, and the Globalization of Psychiatry
By Matthew M. Heaton

Black Skin, White Coats is a history of psychiatry in Nigeria from the 1950s to the 1980s. Working in the contexts of decolonization and anticolonial nationalism, Nigerian psychiatrists sought to replace racist colonial psychiatric theories about the psychological inferiority of Africans with a universal and egalitarian model focusing on broad psychological similarities across cultural and racial boundaries. Particular emphasis is placed on Dr.

Finalist for the 2014 Melville J. Herskovits Award from the African Studies Association.
Cover of 'The Power to Name'

The Power to Name
A History of Anonymity in Colonial West Africa
By Stephanie Newell

Between the 1880s and the 1940s, the region known as British West Africa became a dynamic zone of literary creativity and textual experimentation. African-owned newspapers offered local writers numerous opportunities to contribute material for publication, and editors repeatedly defined the press as a vehicle to host public debates rather than simply as an organ to disseminate news or editorial ideology.

2014 Winner of the African Literature Association First Book Award
Cover of 'Metaphor and the Slave Trade in West African Literature'

Metaphor and the Slave Trade in West African Literature
By Laura T. Murphy

Through an examination of metaphors that describe the trauma, loss, and suffering associated with the the transatlantic slave trade, Metaphor and the Slave Trade shows how the horrors of slavery are communicated from generation to generation and persist in West African discourse.

Cover of 'Our New Husbands Are Here'

Our New Husbands Are Here
Households, Gender, and Politics in a West African State from the Slave Trade to Colonial Rule
By Emily Lynn Osborn

In Our New Husbands Are Here, Emily Lynn Osborn investigates a central puzzle of power and politics in West African history: Why do women figure frequently in the political narratives of the precolonial period, and then vanish altogether with colonization? Osborn addresses this question by exploring the relationship of the household to the state.

Cover of 'Colonial Meltdown'

Colonial Meltdown
Northern Nigeria in the Great Depression
By Moses E. Ochonu

Historians of colonial Africa have largely regarded the decade of the Great Depression as a period of intense exploitation and colonial inactivity. In Colonial Meltdown, Moses E. Ochonu challenges this conventional interpretation by mapping the responses of Northern Nigeria’s chiefs, farmers, laborers, artisans, women, traders, and embryonic elites to the British colonial mismanagement of the Great Depression.

Cover of 'Themes in West Africa’s History'

Themes in West Africa’s History
Edited by Emmanuel Kwaku Akyeampong

Themes in West Africa’s History draws on different disciplines and expertise to bring together key themes in West Africa’s history, from prehistory to the present.

Cover of 'Negotiating Power and Privilege'

Negotiating Power and Privilege
Career Igbo Women in Contemporary Nigeria
By Philomina E. Okeke-Ihejirika

Even with a university education, the Igbo women of southeastern Nigeria face obstacles that prevent them from reaching their professional and personal potentials. Negotiating Power and Privilege is a study of their life choices and the embedded patriarchy and other obstacles in postcolonial Africa barring them from fulfillment.Philomina E. Okeke recorded life-history interviews and discussions during the 1990s with educated women of differing ages and professions.

Cover of 'Slavery and Reform in West Africa'

Slavery and Reform in West Africa
Toward Emancipation in Nineteenth-Century Senegal and the Gold Coast
By Trevor R. Getz

A series of transformations, reforms, and attempted abolitions of slavery form a core narrative of nineteenth-century coastal West Africa. As the region’s role in Atlantic commercial networks underwent a gradual transition from principally that of slave exporter to producer of “legitimate goods” and dependent markets, institutions of slavery became battlegrounds in which European abolitionism, pragmatic colonialism, and indigenous agency clashed.In