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New African Histories

The New African Histories series builds on the significant achievements of social historians over the past two decades, while pushing the boundaries of African social history in exciting new directions - theoretically, methodologically and conceptually.

The series promotes continued research on the lived experiences of Africans in their households, communities, workplaces, and classes, as well as in the clubs, associations, and social movements they have created. It insists on the centrality of gender, generation and social identity to African historiography, while it seeks to expose the constraints at local, national, and transnational levels that structure the daily lives of the poor and disadvantaged.

Social historians have long maintained that there can be no social history without economic history. We contend that it is increasingly imperative that politics, environment, and culture receive far greater attention in the exploration of daily life.

Editors


Jean Allman, Series Editor
Professor of African and African American Studies
Washington University in St. Louis
Center for the Humanities
208 Umrath
St. Louis, MO 63130

Allen Isaacman, Series Editor
Professor of History
University of Minnesota
267 Nineteenth Ave. South
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Derek R. Peterson, Series Editor
Professor of History and African Studies
University of Michigan
1029 Tisch Hall
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Cover of 'Age of Concrete'

Age of Concrete
Housing and the Shape of Aspiration in the Capital of Mozambique
By David Morton

Age of Concrete is about people building homes on tenuous ground in the outer neighborhoods of Maputo, Mozambique, places thought of simply as slums. But up close, they are an archive: houses of reeds, wood, zinc, and concrete embodying the ambitions of people who built their own largest investment and greatest bequest to the future.

African History · Human Geography · Urban Planning · Mozambique · African Studies

Cover of 'Powerful Frequencies'

Powerful Frequencies
Radio, State Power, and the Cold War in Angola, 1931–2002
By Marissa J. Moorman

Radio technology and broadcasting played a central role in the formation of colonial Portuguese Southern Africa and the postcolonial nation-state, Angola. Moorman details how settlers, the colonial state, African nationalists, and the postcolonial state all used radio to project power, while the latter employed it to challenge empire.

African History · Media Studies · Angola · African Studies

Cover of 'Water Brings No Harm'

Water Brings No Harm
Management Knowledge and the Struggle for the Waters of Kilimanjaro
By Matthew V. Bender

Water Brings No Harm explores the history of community water management on Mount Kilimanjaro. Using the concept of waterscapes—describing how people “see” water and how physical resources intersect with beliefs, needs, and expectations—Bender argues that water conflicts should be understood as struggles between competing forms of knowledge.

Environmental History · African History · Tanzania · World History

Cover of 'Modernist Art in Ethiopia'

Modernist Art in Ethiopia
By Elizabeth W. Giorgis

If modernism initially came to Africa through colonial contact, what does Ethiopia’s inimitable historical condition—its independence save for five years under Italian occupation—mean for its own modernist tradition?

Art History · Ethiopia · African Studies · African Art

Cover of 'Buying Time'

Buying Time
Debt and Mobility in the Western Indian Ocean
By Thomas F. McDow

Thomas F. McDow synthesizes Indian Ocean, Middle Eastern, and East African studies to explain how in the nineteenth century, credit, mobility, and kinship knit together a vast interconnected Indian Ocean region. McDow's new historical analysis of the Indian Ocean reveals roles of previously invisible people.

African History · African Studies · Legal and Constitutional History · Social History · 19th century · World History · Middle East

Cover of 'Reel Pleasures'

Reel Pleasures
Cinema Audiences and Entrepreneurs in Twentieth-Century Urban Tanzania
By Laura Fair

Reel Pleasures brings the world of African moviehouses and the publics they engendered to life, revealing how local fans creatively reworked global media—from Indian melodrama to Italian westerns, kung fu, and blaxploitation films—to speak to local dreams and desires.

Media Studies · African History · 20th century · African Studies · Tanzania · African Film

Cover of 'Internal Frontiers'

Internal Frontiers
African Nationalism and the Indian Diaspora in Twentieth-Century South Africa
By Jon Soske

In this ambitious new history of the antiapartheid struggle, Jon Soske places India and the Indian diaspora at the center of the African National Congress’s development of an inclusive philosophy of nationalism. In so doing, Soske combines intellectual, political, religious, urban, and gender history to tell a story that is global in reach while remaining grounded in the everyday materiality of life under apartheid.

African History · Nationalism · South Africa · Race and Ethnicity

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.

African History · Popular Culture · 20th century · Social History · African Studies · Ghana · Western Africa

Cover of 'Living with Nkrumahism'

Living with Nkrumahism
Nation, State, and Pan-Africanism in Ghana
By Jeffrey S. Ahlman

In the 1950s, Ghana, under the leadership of Kwame Nkrumah and the Convention People’s Party, drew the world’s attention as anticolonial activists, intellectuals, and politicians looked to it as a model for Africa’s postcolonial future. Nkrumah was a visionary, a statesman, and one of the key makers of contemporary Africa. In Living with Nkrumahism, Jeffrey S. Ahlman reexamines the infrastructure that organized and consolidated Nkrumah’s philosophy into a political program.

African History · Nationalism · Colonialism and Decolonization · 20th century · African Studies · Cold War · Ghana · Western Africa

Cover of 'We Do Not Have Borders'

We Do Not Have Borders
Greater Somalia and the Predicaments of Belonging in Kenya
By Keren Weitzberg

Though often associated with foreigners and refugees, many Somalis have lived in Kenya for generations, in many cases since long before the founding of the country. Despite their long residency, foreign and state officials and Kenyan citizens often perceive the Somali population to be a dangerous and alien presence in the country, and charges of civil and human rights abuses have mounted against them in recent years.

African History · Anthropology · Nationalism · Somalia · Eastern Africa · Kenya