History | Reflections of the Past in the Present: Africa to the 1800's
E331 | 10011 | Moyd


A portion of the above class reserved for majors
Above class carries Culture Studies credit
Graduate students register for HIST E531
Above class open to undergraduates and Education MA’s only

How can Africa’s pre-colonial past help us understand African
politics, cultures, and societies today? To answer this question,
this course connects historical examples taken from Africa’s pre-
19th century past to current controversies and debates over African
identities. For example, how can we understand recent conflict in
Sudan as a product of the region’s more distant past? What are the
roots of African Christianities? What has it meant in the past to be
a Hutu or a Tutsi, and what does it mean now? Using examples drawn
from different times and places in Africa’s history, this course
introduces students to the diversity of the continent’s peoples and
geographies, the dynamics behind African social and political
upheavals, and the ways Africans have organized their lives and
communities. One of the course’s primary goals is to examine the
many ways that Africa has been connected to other parts of the world
from the earliest times. The course also draws attention to the
challenges of writing African history, highlighting the creativity
and contemporary concerns involved in thinking about the past.