Dannemora mine, Sweden, before 1852

Humans for Voyage Iron: The Remaking of West Africa

Europeans used standardized bars of iron mined in northern Europe to purchase humans during the slave era, transforming the coastal landscape of West Africa.
Luanda, Angola

Luanda, Angola: The Paradox of Plenty

This vast Atlantic coast nation seems poised to become a tourist hot-spot, but uneven political and economic development may be standing in the way.
Mbarak Mombée

Mbarak Mombée: An African Explorer Robbed of His Name

Kidnapped and sold into slavery, Mbarak Mombée was critical to the success of the most celebrated nineteenth-century European expeditions in Africa.
Portrait of Ranavalona I, Queen of Merina from 1828 to 1861

How Madagascar’s Queen Ranavalona Helped Define Queen Victoria

In the nineteenth century, Queen Ranavalona became a foil to Queen Victoria, her “savage” queenship held in contrast to that of the “civilized” female monarch.
Covers for Plusieurs vies by Rachid O.; l’Enfant de sable by Tahar Ben Jelloun; and Une mélancolie arabe by Abdellah Taïa

Queer Literature from North Africa and the Maghreb: A Reading List

Theoretical and literary works that explore themes of queerness, identity, and resistance within the context of North Africa and the Maghreb.
Basel Mission catechist William Timothy Evans raised his two daughters in the mission community in Accra and Akropong after his Ga wife, Emma Evans (née Reindorf), died during childbirth in 1900.

Exposing the Sexual Hypocrisy of European Colonists

In the early twentieth century, white colonizers’ exploitation of women in West Africa’s Gold Coast stoked anti-colonial politics.
From a 1964 stamp from Tanzania

Tanzania in the Cold War Crucible

After the US-Belgian assassination of the Congo’s first Prime Minister, leaders in Tanganyika and Zanzibar worried they would be given the same treatment.
Benito Mussolini on a visit to inspect Italian troops in a North African battle zone, 1942

Mussolini’s Colonial Inspiration

In its plans for the conquest of Eastern Europe, the Third Reich looked to the example set in Africa by Fascist Italy.
Igbo women

Women Leaders in Africa: The Case of the Igbo

In the precolonial Igbo states of West Africa, power was often wielded by male chiefs or elders, but women had their own forms of authority as well. 
A View of the Pearl-Fishery, created for George Henry Millar's The new and universal System of Geography, 1782

African Swimmers in American Waters

Although most enslaved people worked in the fields, captive workers with strong swimming and diving skills were also exploited by plantation owners.