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Perspectives on Africa: A Reader in Culture, History and Representation, 2nd Edition

ISBN: 978-1-4051-9060-2
713 pages
May 2010, ©2010, Wiley-Blackwell
Perspectives on Africa: A Reader in Culture, History and Representation, 2nd Edition (1405190604) cover image
The second edition of Perspectives on Africa: A Reader in Culture, History, and Representation is both an introduction to the cultures of Africa and a history of the interpretations of those cultures. Key essays explore the major issues and debates through a combination of classic articles and the newest research in the field.
  • Explores the dynamic processes by and through which scholars have described and understood African history and culture
  • Includes selections from anthropologists, historians, philosophers, and critics who collectively reveal the interpenetration of ideas and concepts within and across disciplines, regions, and historical periods
  • Offers a combined focus on ethnography and theory, giving students the means to link theory with data and perspective with practice
  • Newly revised and updated edition of this popular text with 14 brand new chapters and two new sections: Conflict and Violent Transformations; and Development, Governance and Globalization
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I. Representation and Discourse

1. Jean and John Comaroff. 1991. “Africa Observed: Discourses of the Imperial Imagination

2. Cheikh Anta Diop. 1974. “The Meaning of Our Work,”

3. Kwame Anthony Appiah. 1993. “Europe Upside Down: Fallacies of the New Afrocentrism

4. V.Y. Mudimbe. 1988. “Discourse of Power and Knowledge of Otherness,”

II. From Tribe to Ethnicity: Kinship and Social Organization

5. Evans-Pritchard, E.E. The Nuer: Time and Space

6. Southall, Aidan W. The Illusion of Tribe

7. Vail, Leroy. Ethnicity in Southern African History

III. Economics as a Cultural System

8. Douglas, M. Lele Economy Compared with the Bushong

9. Coquery-Vidrovitch, C. Research on an African  Mode of Production

10. Hutchinson, S. The Cattle of Money and the Cattle of Girls among the Nuer, cf. Smith

IV. Hunter-Gatherers in Africa

11. Turnbull, C. M. The Lesson of the Pygmies

12. Grinker, R.R. Houses in the Rainforest

13. Wilmsen, E. Land Filled with Flies

14. Solway, J. S. and R. B. Lee. Foragers, Genuine or Spurious?

V. Witchcraft, Science and Rationality

15. Livingstone, D. Conversations on Rain-making

16. Evans-Pritchard, E.E. The Notion of Witchcraft Explains Unfortunate Events

17. Winch, P. Understanding a Primitive Society

18. Austen, Ralph A. 1993. “The Moral Economy of Witchcraft.”

VI. Ancestors, Gods, and the Philosophy of Religion

19. Griaule, M. Conversations with Ogotommeli

20. Houtondji, P. J. African Philosophy, Myth and Reality

21. Kopytoff, I. ancestors as Elders in Africa, cf. Lubkemann, West

VII. Arts, Aesthetics, and Heritage

22. Simon Ottenberg. 1972. “Humorous Masks and Serious Politics among the Afikpo Igbo,”

23. Olu Oguibe. 1999. “Art, Identity, Boundaries: Postmodernism and Contemporary African Art,”

24. Kelly M. Askew.  As Plato Duly Warned: Music, Politics and Social Change in Costal East Africa

25. Bayo Hosley. “In Place of Slavery: Fashioning Coastal Identity.”

VIII.Sex and Gender Studies in Africa

26. Boserup, E. The Economics of Polygamy

27. Van Allen, J. “Sitting on a Man”

28. LeClerc, S. Virginity Testing: Managing Sexuality in a Maturing HIV/AIDS Epidemic

IX. Europe in Africa: Colonization

29. Lugard, F.D. The Dual Mandate

30.Rodney, W. How Europe Underdeveloped Africa

31. Ranger, T. The Invention of Tradition in Colonial Africa

32. Ngugi, W. T. Detained: A Writer’s Prison Diary

X. Nations and Nationalism

33.Senghor, L. S. Negritude: A Humanism of the Twentieth Century

34. Fanon, F. On National Culture

35. Berman, B. Nationalism, Ethnicity, and Modernity: The Paradox of Mau Mau  

36. Steiner, C.B. The Invisible Face: Masks, Ethnicity, and the State in Cote d’Ivoire

XI. Violent Transformations: Conflict and Displacement

37. Gluckman, Max. Order and Rebellion in Tribal Africa

38. Richards, P. "Fighting for the Rainforest"

39. Taylor, C. Sacrifice as Terror: The Rwandan Genocide of 1994

40. Lubkemann, S. Where to be an Ancestor

XII. Development, Governance and Globalization

41. Ferguson, J. “Expectations of Modernity”

42. Uvin, P. Development Aid and Structural Violence: The case of Rwanda

43. Daniel J. Smith. “Culture of Corruption”

44. J.Francois-Bayart. “The Politics of the Belly.”

45. West, H. “ ‘Govern Yourselves’, Democracy and Carnage in Northern Mozambique”

46. Shandy, D. “Nuer-American Passages”

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Roy Richard Grinker, Ph.D. is Professor of Anthropology and International Affairs at George Washington University, Director of the GW Institute for Ethnographic Research, and Editor-in-Chief of Anthropological Quarterly.  He   is author of four other books, including In the Arms of Africa: The Life of Colin M. Turnbull , Houses in the Rainforest:  Ethnicity and Inequality Among Farmers and Foragers in Central Africa, and Unstrange Minds:  Remapping the World of Autism.

Christopher B. Steiner is the Lucy C. McDannel ’22 Professor of Art History and Director of Museum Studies at Connecticut College.  He is the author of the award-winning book African Art in Transit, and co-editor (with Ruth Phillips) of Unpacking Culture:  Art and Commodity in Colonial and Postcolonial Worlds

Stephen Lubkemann is Associate Professor of Anthropology and International Affairs at George Washington University.  He is author of Culture in Chaos: An Anthropology of the Social Condition in War and is associate editor for Anthropological Quarterly and a co-founder of GWU’s Diaspora Research Program.

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Newly revised and updated edition of this popular text with 14 brand new chapters and two new sections: Conflict and Violent Transformations; and Development, Governance and Globalization
See More
  • Explores the dynamic processes by and through which scholars have described and understood African history and culture
  • Includes selections from anthropologists, historians, philosophers, and critics who collectively reveal the interpenetration of ideas and concepts within and across disciplines, regions, and historical periods
  • Offers a combined focus on ethnography and theory, giving students the means to link theory with data and perspective with practice
  • Newly revised and updated edition of this popular text with 14 brand new chapters and two new sections: Conflict and Violent Transformations; and Development, Governance and Globalization
See More
REVIEWS OF FIRST EDITION:

"Here is an excellent anthology that illustrates magnificently processes of Africa's invention, the complexity of her cultures, the paradoxes and predicament of discourses that claim to render her being." V. Y. Mudimbe Stanford University.

"A volume for all students and teachers seriously interested in understanding the unity and diversity of African cultures, and engaging in a dialogue with African Studies literary ancestors and their creative and critical successors. Grinker and Steiner have offered a doorway for those who dare to embrace the masters of the field and join new academic worlds in the making." Sulayman S. Nyang, Professor, Howard University and Director of the African Voices Project, Smithsonian Institute.

"Perspectives on Africa is a much needed addition to African studies and literature. They attempt, quite successfully, to place each article within, not only an historical time frame, but also within a theoretical progression. Its bibliographies contain a useful starting point and reference on all the major trends and subjects." Sean Pratt, Department of Social Anthropology, University of Cambridge.

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