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Mass Media in North Africa: From Print to Digital  

Emilio Spadola

The emergence, spread, and transformation of media technologies in North Africa has attracted much attention over the past decade. Yet the disruptive effects of technological mass media ... More

Material Culture as a Historical Source  

Robert Ross

Online publication date:
Aug 2018
Over the last couple of centuries, there has been a profound shift in the things which Africans have around them, or in other words their material culture. At differing speeds and to ... More

Mbeki, Govan  

Colin Bundy

Online publication date:
Mar 2019
Govan Mbeki was a South African politician, writer, long-term political prisoner, and father of President Thabo Mbeki. His political career was distinctive among African leaders of his ... More

Mental Illness, Psychiatry, and the South African State, 1800s to 2018  

Julie Parle

Online publication date:
May 2019
Definitions of and explanations for mental illness differ between societies and have changed over time. Current use of the term arises from secular and materialist epistemologies of the ... More

Mernissi, Fatima  

Raja Rhouni

Online publication date:
Mar 2020
Fatima Mernissi (1940–2015) was a sociologist, writer, feminist, and activist, and above all a free thinker and an avowed humanist. She was committed to dialogue, dismantling all sorts of ... More

Climatology: Methods  

Sharon E. Nicholson

Environmental constraints have large impacts on populations, especially in semi-arid regions such as Africa. Climate and weather have long affected African societies, but unfortunately the ... More

Methods in the Study of African Historical Geography, Landscapes, and Environmental Change  

Katherine Homewood

Increasingly, methods not traditionally used by historians are becoming available for the study of African historical geography, landscapes, and environmental change. Starting with an ... More

Migration History and Historiography  

Benedetta Rossi

Migration has been a central factor in African history. It is likely that the human species started spreading on the planet within and outside of Africa between 2 and 2.5 million years ago. ... More

Money and Currency in African History  

Jane I. Guyer and Karin Pallaver

Online publication date:
May 2018
African peoples have managed multiple currencies, for all the classic four functions of money, for at least a thousand years: within each society’s own circuits, in regional exchange, and ... More

Motherhood and Maternalism  

Lorelle Semley

Online publication date:
Mar 2020
The nature of motherhood and maternalism in Africa challenges perceptions and assumptions about women, families, and societies in unexpected ways. Across Africa, motherhood has operated as ... More

Mountain History in Africa from the Earliest Times  

Christopher Conte

Over the long haul of geological time, the natural history of Africa’s mountains is a story of the lithosphere’s rise and fall. For hundreds of millions of years, tectonic forces have ... More

Nana Asma’u  

Alaine Hutson

Online publication date:
Jul 2019
Asma’u bint Shehu Usman dan Fodio (1793–1865) was an Islamic scholar, poet, and educational leader in what is now Northern Nigeria. She is best known as Nana Asma’u. A daughter of Shehu ... More

Nana Yaa Asantewa  

Lynda Day

Yaa Asantewa, the female ruler of Ejisu, a town near the Asante capital of Kumasi in the Ashanti Region of modern-day Ghana, inspired and led an armed resistance to British colonial rule of ... More

Nationalism and Decolonization in Cameroon  

Joseph Takougang

The union between the former French Cameroun and the British Southern Cameroons on October 1, 1961, to form the Federal Republic of Cameroon was a unique experiment in nation building and ... More

Newspapers as Sources for African History  

Emma Hunter

Newspapers have become increasingly important as a source for African history, and the range of historical questions newspapers have been employed to address has expanded dramatically. ... More

Ngoyi, Lilian  

Iris Berger

Online publication date:
Feb 2020
Lilian Masediba Matabane Ngoyi was a passionate anti-apartheid and women’s rights advocate and one of the most prominent woman leaders during the 1950s. Born in Pretoria in 1911, she ... More

Njinga a Mbande: Power and War in 17th-Century Angola  

Selma Pantoja

Njinga a Mbande (1582–1663) is the most famous and controversial historical figure in the history of the West-Central Africa region during the 17th century, the region of present-day ... More

North Africa and France: Imperialism, Colonialism, and Women, 1830–1962  

Julia Clancy-Smith

The workings of modern empire can better be viewed through the lens of gender because gendered hierarchies illuminate broad, intersecting aspects of the colonial project. ... More

Numerical Data and Statistical Sources  

Leigh Gardner

The use of numerical data and statistical sources in African history has expanded in recent decades, facilitated by technological advances and the digitization of primary sources. This ... More

Oral History and Life History as Sources  

Mary Dillard

Online publication date:
Nov 2018
Historians, anthropologists, sociologists, psychologists, and independent scholars have used oral history and life history, two slightly different but complementary methods, in order to ... More

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