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Thomas Spear – One of the best experts on this subject based on the ideXlab platform.

  • Approaching African History
    African Studies Review, 2014
    Co-Authors: Thomas Spear

    Abstract:

    Michael Brett. Approaching African History. Oxford: James Currey, 2013. xi + 356 pp. List of Maps. Bibliography. Index. $90.00. Cloth.This book, about the development of African History from the mid-twentieth century, has a complex tripartite structure and a complex goal: to examine that History in terms of the historical literature explaining it, to explicate that historical narrative, and to explore the relationships between the the History and the historiography. This is a daunting undertaking, and Brett is to be commended for attempting such a sweeping account of one of the most significant scholarly enterprises of the later twentiety century. To accomplish this, however, he is forced to limit his field, which he does by focusing largely on multivolume historical compilations such as the Cambridge History of Africa (1986) and the UNESCO General History of Africa (1990), together with broad interpretative accounts, such as Roland Oliver and John Fage’s Short History of Africa (Penguin, 1962), Graham Connah’s African Civilizations (Cambridge University Press, 2001), John Iliffe’s The Africans (Cambridge University Press, 2007), and Anthony Hopkins’s Economic History of West Africa (Columbia University Press, 1973), some of which are several decades old. In taking these as his subjects, he ends up skating over the surface of the interpretative tertiary literature rather than probing into the methodological literature of how the field developed or the specialized secondary monographs that continue to provide the most detailed and innovative historical accounts. The result is dueling interpretations of events rather than original analysis.A case in point is that of the development of the Swahili city-states of the East African coast. Brett’s sources consist of dated articles in the Cambridge and UNESCO histories, Insoll’s Archaeology of Islam in SubSaharan Africa (Cambridge University Press, 2003), Chaudhuri’s Trade and Civilization in the Indian Ocean World (Cambridge University Press, 1985), and Horton and Middleton’s The Swahili: The Social Landscape of a Mercantile Society (Wiley-Blackwell, 2001). Only the latter is both a recent account and one that is based soundly on research in the primary sources. Yet Swahili History is one of the most developed, vibrant, and debated topics in African History and historiography, with a voluminous literature based on extensive archaeological, linguistic, ethnographic, and written sources that deserve first-hand analysis.It is not clear who is likely to benefit from the approach of this book, as it is neither an introductory account of African History and its development that students might find informative nor a probing critique of them that might appeal to scholars. Developed over thirty chapters averaging fewer than ten pages each, it alludes to the historical literature and narrative rather than developing either in detail, resulting in progressively more abstract interpretations of interpretations that will mystify a reader who is not already familiar with the History or the texts and provide few fresh insights for the scholar who has read the material. …

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  • METHODS AND SOURCES FOR African History REVISITED Writing African History. Edited by JOHN EDWARD PHILIPS. Rochester: University of Rochester Press, 2005. Pp. xii+531. $75 (ISBN 1-58046-164-6).
    The Journal of African History, 2006
    Co-Authors: Thomas Spear

    Abstract:

    WRITING African History pays homage to Daniel McCall’s pioneering text, Africa in Time Perspective: A Discussion of Historical Reconstruction from Unwritten Sources, published at the dawn of the era of modern African History in 1964. Surprisingly, given subsequent developments in the field, there has been no comparable text since, making this volume especially welcome. But it also bears a heavy burden if it is to become the authoritative text for the next generations of students and scholars. Does it meet this difficult test?

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  • METHODS AND SOURCES FOR African History REVISITED Writing African History . Edited by J OHN E DWARD P HILIPS . Rochester: University of Rochester Press, 2005. Pp. xii+531. $75 (ISBN 1-58046-164-6).
    The Journal of African History, 2006
    Co-Authors: Thomas Spear

    Abstract:

    WRITING African History pays homage to Daniel McCall’s pioneering text, Africa in Time Perspective: A Discussion of Historical Reconstruction from Unwritten Sources , published at the dawn of the era of modern African History in 1964. Surprisingly, given subsequent developments in the field, there has been no comparable text since, making this volume especially welcome. But it also bears a heavy burden if it is to become the authoritative text for the next generations of students and scholars. Does it meet this difficult test?

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Hleziphi Napaai – One of the best experts on this subject based on the ideXlab platform.

  • LibGuides: History: Recent peer-reviewed articles on themes in South African History
    , 2013
    Co-Authors: Hleziphi Napaai

    Abstract:

    Using the Library’s resources for History. Recent peer-reviewed, full-text material on South African History

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  • A Select Bibliography of South African History: Journal Articles, Review Articles and Theses 2007
    South African Historical Journal, 2009
    Co-Authors: Hleziphi Napaai, Mary-lynn Suttie

    Abstract:

    (2009). A Select Bibliography of South African History: Journal Articles, Review Articles and Theses 2007. South African Historical Journal: Vol. 61, No. 2, pp. 445-456.

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  • A select Bibliography of South African History : Journal Articles, Review Articles and Theses 2006 : bibliography
    South African Historical Journal, 2008
    Co-Authors: Hleziphi Napaai, Mary-lynn Suttie

    Abstract:

    A Select Bibliography of South African History : Journal Articles, Review Articles and Theses2006

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George Oberle – One of the best experts on this subject based on the ideXlab platform.

  • InfoGuides: Core Sources in Middle Eastern and African History: Get Help
    , 2016
    Co-Authors: George Oberle

    Abstract:

    This InfoGuide contains primary source resources and research strategies for Middle Eastern and African History.

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  • InfoGuides: Core Sources in Middle Eastern and African History: Begin Your Research
    , 2016
    Co-Authors: George Oberle

    Abstract:

    This InfoGuide contains primary source resources and research strategies for Middle Eastern and African History.

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  • InfoGuides: Core Sources in Middle Eastern and African History: Find Secondary Sources
    , 2016
    Co-Authors: George Oberle

    Abstract:

    This InfoGuide contains primary source resources and research strategies for Middle Eastern and African History.

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