HIS 271 African History to 1885
Precolonial African history, focusing on the sociocultural, economic, and political realities of sub-Saharan societies between the neolithic Period and the Partitioning of the Continent by European powers inaugurated in 1885. Special emphasis will be placed on the tools scholars use to write African history, with particular reference to oral tradition, linguistic and archaeological evidence, and the material cultural record. Important themes include the indigenous, trans-Saharan, and trans-Atlantic slave trades, gender, the role of women in African history, Islam, art, and music. Course will culminate in regional vistas of Africa on the event of imperialist expansion of European powers. Expanding general geographic knowledge will be highly encouraged. This course is offered some fall semesters.