History In Africa

History In Africa is a magazine focusing on History

Articles from Vol. 35, 2008

African Words, Academic Choices: Re-Presenting Interviews and Oral Histories1
IThere are many things that it is like, this storytelling business. One of them (so she says in one of the paragraphs she has not crossed out yet) is a bottle with a genie in it. When the storyteller opens the bottle, the genie is released into the world,...
Are Unpublished Sources Best? Reflections on a Seventeenth-Century Dutch Source
In his excellent edition of the abortive Dutch expedition to capture Elmina Castle on the Gold Coast in 1625, Henk den Heijer has transcribed from records in the Algemeen Rijksarchief the journal by Admiral Jan Dirksz Lam and the resolutions passed by...
Beyond Diversity: Women, Scarification, and Yoruba Identity
IOn 18 March 1898 Okolu, an Ijesa man, accused Otunba of Italemo ward, Ondo of seizing and enslaving his sister Osun and his niece. Both mother and daughter, enslaved by the Ikale in 1894, had fled from their master in 1895, but as they headed toward...
Cartographical Quandaries: The Limits of Knowledge Production in Burton's and Speke's Search for the Source of the Nile
IWhen he sighted the southern end of Lake Victoria on 3 August 1858, John Hanning Speke (1859b:397) realized that he had discovered the "source" of the White Nile, the most important tributary of the Nile proper, and so had "almost, if not entirely,...
Chipimpi, Vulgar Clans, and Lala-Lamba Ethnohistory1
ICommon to the matrilineal peoples of eastern central Africa is their clan system, and the reciprocal joking or "funeral friendship," relations that exist between clans with figuratively complementary names (Cunnison 1959:62-71; Richards 1937; Stefaniszyn...
Examining Text Sediments-Commending a Pioneer Historian as an "African Herodotus": On the Making of the New Annotated Edition of C.C. Reindorf's History of the Gold Coast and Asante1
(ProQuest: ... denotes non-US-ASCII text omitted.)IIn 1995 Paul Jenkins, the former Basel Mission archivist, called my attention to Carl Christian Reindorf's Gã manuscripts kept at the archives in Basel, knowing that I had lived and worked in Ghana in...
Exotic Plants of Western Africa: Where They Came from and When
IHistory in Africa carried an article in 1992 entitled "The European Introduction of Crops into West Africa in Precolonial Times."1 I wrote this to correct an impression left by several historians that only maize and cassava were worth mentioning. My...
Finding Bosutswe: Archeological Encounterswith the Past1
Two WorldsBi-lingual, Bi-culturalable to slip from "How's life"to M'estan volviendo loca,able to sit in a paneled officedrafting memos in smooth English,able to order in fluent Spanishat a Mexican restaurant,American but hyphenated,viewed by Anglos as...
Forgotten Expedition into Guinea, West Africa, 1815-17: An Editor's Comments
ILate in 1818 Major William Gray (Royal African Corps) and Staff Surgeon (Captain) Duncan Dochard (RAC) launched a mission of discovery along the Gambia River, intending to determine the source of the Niger River and follow its course to the point that...
Mapping Shekgalagari in Southern Africa: A Sociohistorical and Linguistic Study
IThe Bakgalagari were classified by Guthrie (1948) as S30 and by Cole (1954) as 60/2/5. They incorporate ethnic groups such as Bangologa, Bashaga, Babolaongwe, Balala, Bakhena, Baritjhauba, and Bakgwatheng and Baphaleng, the latter of which do not speak...
Mombasa Cathedral and the CMS Compound: The Years of the East Africa Protectorate1
IExactly when Islam arrived on the Swahili coast is difficult to say, but Mombasa was a Muslim town long before the arrival of Vasco da Gama in 1498. During the two centuries or so that the Portuguese-Christians occupied this part of the sea route from...
Nehanda and Gender Victimhood in the Central Mashonaland 1896-97 Rebellions: Revisiting the Evidence*
IIn 1998 David N. Beach revisited the 1896-97 central MaShonaland rising in colonial Zimbabwe in an article titled "An Innocent Woman Unjustly Accused? Charwe, Medium of the Nehanda Mhondoro Spirit, and the 1896-97 Central Shona Rising in Zimbabwe."1...
Perspectives on Fifty Years of Ghanaian Historiography
IThis paper seeks to contribute to the ongoing debate on African methodology-sources, issues, methods, challenges-by presenting a Ghanaian case study, for, whereas there are a number of broad overviews of African methodology, some of which include surveys...
Reflections on the Oral Traditions of the Nterapo of the Salaga Area
IThis paper presents initial thoughts on the historical, linguistic, and archeological significance of the oral traditions of Nterapo communities in the Salaga area. As members of a minority, and a commoner group in the Gonja traditional sociopolitical...
Spoken Reminiscences of Political Agents in Northern Nigeria Ii1
Alkali Alhaji AliWaziri2Q. Sir, I would like to know something about messengers and interpreters like Adamu Jakada.A. Adamu Jakada was the messenger between Emir Abbas and the Europeans. 3 Some of the messengers and interpreters were employed by the...
The Benin Kingdom in British Imperial Historiography
IThe body of knowledge that constituted British imperial writing, and the expression that interacted with it were attempts to engage European readership on the imperial adventure in Africa in the age of the new imperialism. This study is an attempt to...
The Historiography of HIV and Aids in Uganda
IUganda has been in the world headlines since the mid-1980s, first as a nation severely hit by HIV and AIDS, and later, from the late 1990s onwards, as the first country in sub-Saharan Africa that has managed to reverse a generalised HIV epidemic. Countless...
"The Lost Province": Neglect and Governance in Colonial Ogoja
IThe notion that the colonial entity administered as Ogoja Province represented a Nigerian form of "the frontier" persisted right through the period of British rule in Nigeria. In a late colonial geography, Ogoja and eastern Calabar are referred to as...
The Role of N.C. Ejituwu in the Development of Niger Delta Historiography
IThe history of history-writing in the Niger Delta was first developed by E.J. Alagoa.1 However, his work, which covers the periods from 1508 to 1988, does not go into the twenty-first century. This is the case as well for N.C. Ejituwu, who extended...