Paolo Israel

Paolo Israel is a senior lecturer in history at the University of the Western Cape, South Africa. He has written extensively about Mozambican expressive cultures, political ethnicity, and witchcraft.

Listed in: African Studies · African History · Anthropology

In Step with the Times · Mapiko Masquerades of Mozambique
By Paolo Israel

The helmet-shaped mapiko masks of Mozam­bique have garnered admiration from African art scholars and collectors alike, due to their striking aesthetics and their grotesque allure. This book restores to mapiko its historic and artistic context, charting in detail the transformations of this masquerading tradition throughout the twentieth century.

“[This is] a study
 in great depth of the historiography of older mapiko masquerading in Mozambique, and an intricately woven social history of twentieth-century Makonde masking forms. … Israel brings to light a wealth of detail on the ways in which masking has changed over time and in a variety of social and historical circumstances. … An important contribution to the literature on African masquerades and performance.”

African Arts