HISTORY 247 - Modern Africa
Section: 001
Term: WN 2018
Subject: History (HISTORY)
Department: LSA History
Requirements & Distribution:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

This course offers students the tools they need to understand current events in Africa in historical perspective. The crises that seem to cripple African politics today are shaped by the economic, political and social changes that attended the 19th and 20th century. Any student of political science, economics, psychology, business or literature who wishes to understand Africa must first study its history, for that history sets the stage for the present.

The course will begin by examining how wide-ranging processes — the slave trade, colonial rule, nationalism, independence — transformed the social and political lives of African people. In the middle part of the course we will explore the dynamics of human rights in contemporary Africa, using a detailed study of a recent court trial in Kenya. Toward the end of the semester we’ll study a series of specific issues — governance in Zimbabwe; the Rwanda genocide; the end of apartheid in South Africa — in relation to longer-term histories.

The core reading will be a set of “primary” documents dealing with issues addressed in lectures. By the end of the course, students will have learned how to interpret evidence, synthesize disparate sources, and create compelling arguments about the relation between past and present.

Course Requirements:

Map quiz; two short (3-5 page) essays; mid-term essay exam; and final (7-8 page) essay exam.

Intended Audience:

This is an introductory course. Anyone interested in the history of modern Africa is welcome.

Class Format:

Lecture, with films and general discussion, twice a week; and seminar-style discussion in sections once a week.

HISTORY 247 - Modern Africa
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
TuTh 10:00AM - 11:30AM
002 (DIS)
W 12:00PM - 1:00PM
003 (DIS)
W 1:00PM - 2:00PM
NOTE: Data maintained by department in Wolverine Access. If no textbooks are listed below, check with the department.

ISBN: 9780435080631
Burying SM the politics of knowledge and the sociology of power in Africa, Author: David William Cohen ; E. S. Atieno Odhiambo., Publisher: Heinemann [u.a.] 2. [Dr.] 1995
ISBN: 0435909592
God's bits of wood, Author: Sembene Ousmane. Transl. by Francis Price, Publisher: Heinemann New ed. 1998
ISBN: 0865439990
Matigari., Publisher: Africa World Press
ISBN: 1478609575
Mhudi, Author: Sol T Plaatje., Publisher: Waveland Press 2014
ISBN: 0316230847
We need new names : a novel / NoViolet Bulawayo, Publisher: Back Bay Books First Back 2014
ISBN: 0142437166
The interesting narrative and other writings, Author: Olaudah Equiano ; ed. with an introduction and notes by Vincent Carretta., Publisher: Penguin Books Rev. ed. 2003
Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

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