Best books on african history: The history of Africa is a vast and complex topic, spanning thousands of years and covering a diverse range of cultures, societies, and events. Some key themes in the history of Africa include the development of early human societies, the rise and fall of powerful empires, the impact of colonialism and slavery, and the ongoing struggles for independence and self-determination.Many books have been written on the history of Africa, and the specific introduction of a book will depend on the author’s perspective and focus.
However, a general introduction to the history of Africa might include information on the continent’s physical geography and climate, the diverse array of languages and cultures found on the continent, and the key events and periods that have shaped Africa’s past. This article will walk you through the top 8 best books to read on African history.
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Top 8 Best Books On African History and Culture
1. Africa: A Biography of the Continent by John Reader: The non-fiction book “Africa: A Biography of the Continent” by John Reader was first released in 1998. The book presents a thorough history of the African continent, tracing its development from the beginnings of humankind to the present. The evolution of human communities, the effects of colonialism and slavery, and the contemporary political and economic difficulties the continent is facing are just a few of the many themes it covers.
The book offers a thorough and nuanced overview of the convoluted history of Africa and is well-researched. It is regarded as a classic on the history and culture of Africa.
2. The Scramble For Africa By Thomas Pakenham: The Scramble for Africa” is a history book written by Thomas Pakenham and published first published in 1991. This book is without a doubt among the best ones ever published about African history, particularly during the colonial era. The book covers the period of European colonization of Africa in the late 19th century, known as the Scramble for Africa. Pakenham provides a detailed account of the political and economic motives of the European powers, as well as the impact of their actions on the indigenous peoples and cultures of Africa.
The book also covers the resistance and rebellion of African people against the European colonization. It received positive reviews for its comprehensive and well-researched account of the period and its balanced perspective on the actions of the European powers.
3. A History Of Africa By J.d. Fage And William Tordoff: J.D. Fage and William Tordoff’s A History of Africa is a book on African history that provides a comprehensive narrative history of the continent from its inception to the twenty-first century. This book discusses the events of the 1990s and beyond and has long been recognized as a pioneer in African Studies.
The topics covered include post-apartheid South Africa, the prospects for democratization in Africa at the start of the new millennium, developments in Muslim North Africa, including the threat of Islamic fundamentalism, economic and social developments, including the devastating effects of Third World debt and the provision of debt relief, as well as cultural, environmental, and gender issues in Modern Africa.
4. The Cambridge History Of Africa Edited By John E. Flint: The Cambridge History of Africa, a multi-volume history of the continent, was published by Cambridge University Press. The series, edited by John E. Flint, covers the entire history of the continent, from prehistory to the present. Each book is prepared by a team of subject-matter specialists and covers a specific time period or topic.
With a focus on the social, economic, and political developments of the continent, the series aims to provide viewers with a comprehensive and up-to-date picture of African history. The first volume, “From the Earliest Times to About 500 B.C.,” came out in 1975, and the last volume, “From About 1975 to the Present,” came out in 2010.
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5. The African Past Speaks: Essays On Oral Tradition And History By Isidore Okpewho: This history book , written by Nigerian literary critic Isidore Okpe, is a very thorough history book about Africa. The book is a compilation of essays that examines the connection between African history and oral tradition. Oral tradition, according to Okpewho, can be regarded as a reliable source of historical data because African societies have long used it to transmit knowledge and cultural values.
The book also examines the various African oral traditions, including songs, proverbs, and storytelling, and how they might be utilized to comprehend the history of the continent. In general, the book is a useful tool for academics and students who are interested in African history and culture.
6. The Oxford History of Africa Edited By John Iliffe: “The Oxford History of Africa” is another book series edited by John Iliffe that provides a comprehensive history of the African continent from ancient times to the present day. The series was first published in 1981 by Oxford University Press and includes contributions from various experts in the field of African history.
The books in the series cover a wide range of topics, including the prehistory of Africa, the rise of ancient civilizations, the impact of colonialism, and the political and economic developments of modern Africa. The series aims to provide a comprehensive and balanced understanding of Africa’s past and present.
7. The Africa Trilogy by CHinua Achebe: Chinua Achebe, a Nigerian author, has written three books in a sequence called “The Africa Trilogy.” The works which include “Things Fall Apart,” “No Longer at Ease,” and “Arrow of God” examines how colonialism and the fight for freedom affected the Nigerian Igbo people.
The most well-known and widely read book by Achebe, “Things Fall Apart,” is regarded as a masterpiece of African literature. The themes, conflicts, and characters introduced in Things Fall Apart as well as the history of the village of Umuofia and its residents are continued in the remaining two works of the trilogy. Because of how well they depict African culture, the books are regarded as significant pieces of African literature.
8. The African Experience by Vincent Khapoya: “The African Experience,” written by Vincent B. Khapoya, is a comprehensive book on African history that saw its first publication in 1998.The history of Africa is covered in detail throughout the book, from the earliest periods of human habitation to the present. It covers many different subjects, such as precolonialism, the slave trade, colonialism, and postcolonialism.
The book is broken into three sections: Part 1 deals with the pre-colonial period and the slave trade; Part 2 covers the colonial period; and Part 3 deals with the post-colonial period. Aiming to dispel popular myths and stereotypes about the continent, the book seeks to give a fair and objective account of African history. In terms of African history and culture, it is regarded as a reliable resource and a classic.
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In summary, numerous authors have been influenced by Africa’s heartbreakingly romantic beauty, tragic history, valiant liberators, and alluring blend of cultures and customs. The mother continent, which is filled with unrestrained adventure, wisdom, protagonists, backdrops, and strife, is, however, far too frequently represented through western eyes.
The pursuit of greater inclusivity and representation is necessary for sustainability and social and climatic justice, and reading literature provides the ideal venue for discovering the many diverse, forward-thinking tales that affirm our shared humanity. We encourage you to broaden your literary and African knowledge horizons by reading these books about Africa listed in this article, especially if you intend to visit her enigmatic shores. These books can be biographies, mind-blowing historical works, or engrossing works of fiction.
Edeh Samuel Chukwuemeka ACMC, is a Law Student and a Certified Mediator/Conciliator in Nigeria. He is also a Developer with knowledge in HTML, CSS, JS, PHP and React Native. Samuel is bent on changing the legal profession by building Web and Mobile Apps that will make legal research a lot easier.