Key Events in African History: A Reference Guide / Edition 1

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This reference guide to African history provides substantive entries on 36 watershed events that shaped the history of the continent from the prehistoric past to the dawn of the 21st century. Noted African scholar Toyin Falola clearly and articulately chronicles the growth and change of the continent from the agricultural revolution through colonial rule to African independence and the end of apartheid, examining the powerful moments at which Africa became drawn into the global world. Each entry appears in chronological order and consists of a comprehensive essay on the event, its historical, social, and geographic context, and its long-term significance. Many illustrations and maps provide valuable visual tools for the reader. Each entry concludes with suggestions for further reading. A narrative introduction to the history of the continent and a timeline of events place the events in historical and global context.

Based on the latest scholarship, this reference work analyzes the major events in African history and their ramifications, and draws connections between the past and the present. Key themes recur throughout: the development of diverse African cultures, Arab and European incursions and influence, and the efforts of African peoples to gain independence in the 20th century. Among the events recounted are the Iron Age, the rise of the Kush, the spread of Islam, the 19th-century outbreak of Islamic Jihad, the Atlantic slave trade, European conquest and the African response, Pan-Africanism, the women's decade of 1965-1975, and environmental and political challenges of the last years of the 20th century. Well written and objective, this work is an essential reference tool for students and an excellent complement to the study of African history.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 10 Up-A compact overview and summary of events that have shaped the history of the African continent. Preceding the text is a time line covering 40,000 B.C. to A.D. 2001, divided into four periods: "Ancient," "Precolonial," "Colonial," and "Postcolonial." The 36 scholarly chapters that follow take a chronological approach. They examine the growth of kingdoms and various cultures on the continent, the diverse peoples and geographies that contribute to its history, and outside influences. Chapters include: "The Iron Age and the Spread of Bantu Speakers, 730 B.C.+," "The Rise of Kush and Aksum, 730 B.C.+," and "The Atlantic Slave Trade, 1440-1870." Aspects of Islam, apartheid, national liberation, and recent environmental challenges are also addressed. Simple black-and-white maps and some average-quality photos and reproductions appear throughout. A bibliography concludes each chapter. This survey will prove useful as a reference source for advanced students. It should also find a home in circulating collections.-Janet Woodward, Garfield High School, Seattle, WA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313313233
  • Publisher: Greenwood Publishing Group, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/30/2002
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 376
  • Lexile: 1200L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

TOYIN FALOLA is the Frances Higginbothom Nalle Centennial Professor in History at the University of Texas, Austin. A distinguished Africanist, Falola serves on the editorial board of many journals, co-edits the Journal of African Economic History, and serves as the series editor of the University of Rochester's Studies in African History and the Diaspora. He is also series editor of the Greenwood Press series Culture and Customs of Africa. His publications include many essays and books on Nigeria, including Decolonization and Development Planning (1996); Violence in Nigeria: The Crisis of Religious Politics and Secular Ideologies (1998); and The History of Nigeria (Greenwood, 1999).

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Table of Contents

Preface ix
Acknowledgments xi
Timeline of Historical Events xiii
Part I. The Ancient and Precolonial Period
Africa: An Overview 3
1. The Prehistoric Past: The Evolution of Homo sapiens sapiens, 40,000 B.C. 18
2. The Agricultural Revolution, 5000 B.C.+ 26
3. The Civilization of Ancient Egypt, 3100 B.C.+ 34
4. The Iron Age and the Spread of Bantu Speakers, 730 B.C.+ 43
5. The Rise of Kush and Aksum, 730 B.C.+ 54
6. The Greeks and Romans in North Africa, 332 B.C.+ 62
7. Ethiopia: The Emergence of a Christian Kingdom, A.D. 1250+ 69
8. The Spread of Islam, A.D. 622 Onward 79
9. Kingdoms of West Africa: Ghana, Mali, and Songhay, A.D. 1000-1600 90
10. The Rise of the Swahili City-States of East Africa, Tenth-Fourteenth Century A.D. 102
11. The Atlantic Slave Trade, 1440-1870 110
12. The Organization of Societies, Fifteenth Century A.D. Onward 119
Part II. The Nineteenth-Century Period
13. The Outbreak of Islamic Jihad, 1804 131
14. Wars and Revolution among the Yoruba, 1817-93 140
15. The Spread of Christianity, 1804 Onward 149
16. The Rise of Muhammad Ali of Egypt, 1811-47 159
17. The Mfecane: Shaka and the Zulu Kingdom, 1816-40 167
18. European Conquest and African Response, 1885-1900 175
Part III. The Twentieth-Century Period
19. The Colonial Experience, 1900-1939 187
20. The Entrenchment of Apartheid in South Africa, 1948 197
21. Africa Drawn into the Second World War, 1940-45 205
22. The End of European Rule, 1951-90 212
23. Violence to Gain National Liberation, 1952-62 221
24. Confrontation with the Gains and Pains of Independence, 1958-70 231
25. The Formation of the Organization of African Unity, 1963 239
26. Coups, Counter Coups, and Military Regimes, 1963 Onward 246
27. Ujamaa and Policy Choices, 1967 Onward 254
28. The Creation of the Economic Community of West African States, 1975 262
29. Portuguese Colonies Attain Freedom, 1975 270
30. Cultural Revival and Cultural Inventory: The Second World Black Festival of Arts and Culture, 1977 281
31. The Women's Decade, 1975-85 289
32. A Continent in Deep Crisis, 1980 Onward 297
33. Environmental Challenges, 1980s Onward 305
34. African Refugees, 1980 Onward 312
35. Africa in World Politics in Transition, 1980s Onward 320
36. The Fall of Apartheid and the Advent of Nelson Mandela's Government, 1994-99 328
Index 337
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