This course is designed to both introduce major and recent works that have helped shape the field of African history, and to use those works as portals into certain historiographic and methodological issues that historians of Africa encounter. As such, students will acquire an understanding of the ways in which the literature has built upon itself, as well as examine those means by which histories of the continent have been researched and written. The course is also intended to help prepare students for the comprehensive exam in African history.
In attempting to cover such a vast continent both spatially and temporally in a single semester, lacunae and unevenness are unavoidable.
This course introduces students to the major themes, scholarly approaches, and sources for African history.