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The Archaeology of Political Complexity in West Africa Through 1450 CE  

Stephen Dueppen

Political complexity in archaeological research has traditionally been defined as socio-political differentiation (roles, statuses, offices) integrated through centralized systems of power ... More

The Dar es Salaam School of African History  

Gregory H. Maddox

Published Online:
Nov 2018
The Dar es Salaam School of African History refers to the work of a group of historians based at what became the University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania. Led initially by Terrance O. ... More

The History of Migrant Labor in South Africa (1800–2014)  

Peter Delius

Published Online:
May 2017
A pervasive system of migrant labor played a fundamental part in shaping the past and present of South Africa’s economy and society and has left indelible marks on the wider region. South ... More

The Internet and Social Media as Sources  

Aubrey Bloomfield and Sean Jacobs

Published Online:
Nov 2018
The Internet and social media increasingly are becoming sources about the African past and present in ways that will influence to some extent how history will be learnt and the form that ... More

The Nile Waters Issue  

Terje Tvedt

Published Online:
Sep 2017
To understand the role of the modern Nile in African history, it is first necessary to have familiarity with the premodern “natural” Nile, including both its hydrology and societal ... More

The Wisconsin School of African History  

Joseph C. Miller

The University of Wisconsin-Madison has been a prominent producer of doctorates in African history since 1963. As of 2017 the institution had granted more than 110 degrees. Philip D. ... More

Travelers’ Accounts as Sources  

Adam Jones

Published Online:
Oct 2018
Accounts written by foreigners—especially Europeans—about what they saw in Africa constitute one of the major sources for African history between c. 1450 and c. 1900. Some were published, ... More

Tropical Africa in the Global Economy  

Ralph A. Austen

Tropical Africa has been in communication with the global economy since at least the last centuries bce through either land travel across the Sahara to the Mediterranean or navigation ... More

Ujamaa  

Michael Jennings

Published Online:
Sep 2017
The idea of Ujamaa emerged from the writing and speeches of Tanzania’s first president, Julius K Nyerere, from the late 1950s and into the 1960s. Usually translated as “familyhood,” it was ... More

Urbanization in East Africa, circa 900–2010 CE  

Andrew Burton

Published Online:
Mar 2017
East Africa’s urban past is broken down into five historical periods. The first (c. 900–1500 ce) saw the emergence of an urban Swahili culture on the East African coast that flourished ... More

Urban Society in Colonial Sudan  

Ahmad Alawad Sikainga

As in the rest of Africa, the establishment of colonial rule has accelerated the pace of urban growth in the Sudan. During the period of British colonial rule (1898–1956), a number of new ... More

Uwilingiyimana, Agathe  

Jennie Burnet

Agathe Uwilingiyimana was the first woman prime minister of Rwanda and only the second woman prime minister on the African continent. A Hutu from southern Rwanda, she was among the first ... More

West African Cinema  

John C. McCall

Published Online:
Sep 2018
Motion picture technology developed at the dawn of the 20th century, just as the formal colonization of Africa was launched at the Berlin Conference of 1884–1885. While it took a few ... More

West African Manuscripts in Arabic and African Languages and Digital Preservation  

Fallou Ngom

West African manuscripts are numerous and varied in forms and contents. There are thousands of them across West Africa. A significant portion of them are documents written in Arabic and ... More

Witchcraft in Africa: Political Power and Spiritual Insecurity from the Precolonial Era to the Present  

Sean Redding

Historically, witchcraft in Africa has not comprised a stable or uniform set of beliefs. The idea of witchcraft, which might loosely be defined as the belief that people exist who use ... More

Women and Apartheid  

Meghan Healy-Clancy

Published Online:
Jun 2017
Apartheid, the system of racial and ethnic separation introduced in South Africa in 1948, was a gendered project. The immediate goal of the white Afrikaner men who led the apartheid state ... More

Women and Pan-Africanism  

Hakim Adi

Published Online:
May 2019
Women played a central role in the development of Pan-Africanism. It can even be claimed that it was a woman, the South African Alice Kinloch, who initiated the modern Pan-African movement ... More

Women and Politics in Africa  

Aili Marie Tripp

Published Online:
Jul 2017
While women were never fully equal to men in the political sphere, women in precolonial Africa governed kingdoms, established cities, launched military conquests, and founded states. Some ... More

Women and Post-Independence African Politics  

Gretchen Bauer, Akosua Darkwah, and Donna Patterson

Published Online:
Dec 2017
Building upon their participation in anti-colonial struggles across Africa in the mid-20th century, African women have taken on many political roles in the post-independence period. While ... More

Women and Violence in Africa  

Peace A. Medie

Published Online:
Jul 2019
Violence, in all of its forms, touches girls and women’s lives in Africa. While there is evidence that girls and women do participate in violence, research has shown that a significant ... More

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