Africa

A scholarly journal devoted to the study of African societies and cultures. Editorial emphasis is placed on an interdisciplinary approach to African studies by the inclusion of topics in social sciences, history, the environment, and life sciences. Each i

Articles from Vol. 67, No. 2, Spring

Cosmologies in Turmoil: Witchfinding and Aids in Chiawa, Zambia
As AIDS deaths increase in the rural areas, so we must expect to see an increase in witch-hunting of the kind that has just taken place in Chiawa. This is where we expect you social scientists to help us. [A Zambian minister] I am a Christian. I do...
Read preview Overview
Creating 'Union Ibo': Missionaries and Igbo Language
Most of the earliest descriptions of African ethnic groups were produced by missionaries. They were often the first -- or among the first -- Europeans to visit African communities and, for many years, their information shaped the Westerners' perception...
Read preview Overview
Fathering, Mothering and Making Sense of Ntamoba: Reflections on the Economy of Child-Rearing in Colonial Asante
INTRODUCTION: THE CASE In 1992, as part of a broader study of gender and social change in colonial Asante, I found myself ploughing through volumes of customary court cases at Manhyia Record Office -- the archive attached to the Asantehene's (king's)...
Read preview Overview
Initiation into the Ugao: Rethinking the Structure of Tharaka Symbolism
The Tharaka live in the Eastern Province of Kenya(1) and are part of the Highland Bantu (Sutton, 1974: 82). Whether they are to be considered as a separate `tribe' (Gedge, 1892; Hobley, 1910; Champion, 1912; Dundas, 1913, 1915; Lindblom, 1914; Lowenthal,...
Read preview Overview
Kickin' It: Leisure, Politics and Football in Colonial Zanzibar, 1900s-1950s
As C. L. R. James demonstrated in Beyond a Boundary (1963), organised team sports could easily be read as an allegory of life in the British colonial empire. In Africa, as well as other parts of the empire, members of the colonial service, missionaries...
Read preview Overview
Sticks and Stones: Colonialism and Zanzibari Housing
[The] shibboleth of this little island [is] the word, dasturi(1) [custom]. It is dasturi to do this and not dasturi to do that, and between the two the finicking path of conduct and action is mapped out with the extreme of accuracy. Experience having...
Read preview Overview