Question: What is “modern” about modern African history? What does it mean to be
Economic measures-technology, industrialization, development, infrastructure
Political measures- nation-state autonomy, individual rights, public welfare system, tax
Cultural measures- dress, fashion, architecture, entertainment, gender expression,
Question: What is “African” about African History?
Many people have a negative connotation when they think of Africa. Africa is a huge
continent and most peoples views are wrong.
Question: What is “history” in Africa?
Economic history- africa’s place in the world economy, economic transformations over
Political history- European imperialism, anti-colonial struggles, political independence,
Social/Cultural history- changes in everyday life, gender relations, class relations,
Global history- exploring transnational connections, against Euro-centrism
Historical Pathwways to the modern world
How is the transition made from the pre-modern to the modern?
What is the role of internal dynamics? What is the role of external dynamics?
Africa and the problem of sterotypes
Africa is seen as a place without history
Africa is seen as a primitive place, without modern attributes
Colonial Period (pre-1885)
Early modern empires-spanish, portuguese, dutch
Economic trade-atlantic, trans-saharan,indian ocean