Course Spotlight: Africa Since 1940

Course Descriptionimages copy 3 (2)

This course surveys the history of sub-Saharan Africa from the 1940s through the present day. Students will examine how various African communities have defined well being, pursued prosperity, and imagined collective futures in the years since World War II. Over the course of the semester, we will examine how African communities and individuals have grappled with matters of faith, power, identity, morality and survival in light of major historical processes, including colonialism and decolonization, the articulation of African nationalisms, labor movements, urbanization, global health crises and economic change. We will shift our lens frequently, at times engaging with the big picture narratives of African and global histories, and at other times, focusing in on stories of individual lives and locations. Course materials combine academic texts with memoirs, political and philosophical writings, films, photographs, fiction and works of art.

Sample readings

Binyavanga Wainaina, One Day I Will Write About This Place
James Ferguson, Global Shadows: Africa in the Neoliberal World Order
Steve Biko, I Write What I Like
Mariama Ba, So Long a Letter

Enrollment details

History 105: Africa Since 1940
4 credits
TH 9:30-10:45am, 1140 Gymnasium-Natatorium
Fall 2014

About the instructor

Assistant Professor Emily Callaci is a historian of modern East Africa, with a research focus on twentieth century urban Tanzania. My teaching interests include urban African history, gender and sexuality, popular culture, Islam in Africa, and African intellectual history. I am currently at work on a book about urban migration and cultural politics during Tanzania’s socialist era, from 1967 through 1985.