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African Books Collective


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African Books Collective

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Closing the Books Cover

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Closing the Books

Governor Edward Carstensen on Danish Guinea 1842-50

Sitting on the terrace of the royal plantation Frederiksgave, his favourite retreat, Governor Edward Carstensen came to see the inevitable: Denmark had to give up her ìpossessionsî in Africa. As fate would have it, he came to be the instrument by which two centuries of Danish involvement on the Gold Coast was terminated, thereby making way for the emergence of the colonial system that developed there. After the abolition of the slave trade, Denmark had struggled to find ways and means to legitimate her continued stay at the Coast. At an early stage the Danes initiated a number of attempts to establish experimental plantations to cultivate export crops such as cotton, coffee and sugar. But a transition from slave trade to ìlegitimateî products required stability and peace, and a need for control, which the rather limited Danish presence was not able to maintain. Closing the Books comprises a compilation of the official reports that the last Danish Governor sent home during his term of office at the Gold Coast. The reports reflect his personal views regarding the economic and political situations there, as well as his ideas on the ìcivilization of Africaî.

Coils of Mortal Flesh Cover

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Coils of Mortal Flesh

"The diverse voices in the poems in this collection are unified in the single voice of the omnipresent persona who appears to be searching for a collective voice, some kind of order or rhythm that would impose meaning to life. Reading the poems constitutes an individual journey. This poetic journey from Awakening that takes the reader to Moonlight Spells & Wreaths and leads her/him through Laments to the Epilogue is a continuous movement in the search for humanity's existence. As a metaphor of self-discovery, the poetic quest is both an expression of, and a search for mankind's elusive self-that single, unbroken umbilical cord that is firmly rooted in the African experience and identity. Ba'bila Mutia teaches oral and written literatures, creative writing, advanced writing and research methodology, at the University of Yaound? I. His poetry and short stories have been featured in anthologies and reviews worldwide, and his work has been broadcast on the BBC. In June of 1993 Mutia was honoured by the Berlin Academy of Arts as special guest writer in an international writers' reading. He is the author of Whose Land? (Longman), Before This Time, Yesterday (Silex/Nouvelles du Sud) and ""The Miracle"" in the Heinemann Book of Contemporary African Short Stories."

Coloniality of Power in Postcolonial Africa Cover

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Coloniality of Power in Postcolonial Africa

Myths of Decolonization

This lively book interrogates the African postcolonial condition with a focus on the thematics of liberation predicament and the long standing crisis of dependence (epistemological, cultural, economic, and political) created by colonialism and coloniality. A sophisticated deployment of historical, philosophical, and political knowledge in combination with the equi-primordial concepts of coloniality of power, coloniality of being, and coloniality of knowledge yields a comprehensive and truly refreshing understanding of African realities of subalternity. How global imperial designs and coloniality of power shaped the architecture of African social formations and disciplined the social forces towards a convoluted ëpostcolonial neocolonizedí paralysis dominated by myths of decolonization and illusions of freedom emerges poignantly in this important book. What distinguishes this book is its decolonial entry that enables a critical examination of the grammar of decolonization that is often wrongly conflated with that of emancipation; bold engagement with the intractable question of what and who is an African; systematic explication of the role of coloniality in sustaining Euro-American hegemony; and unmasking of how the ëpostcolonialí is interlocked with the ëneocolonialí paradoxically. It is within this context that the postcolonial African state emerges as a leviathan, and the ëpostcolonialí reality becomes a terrain of contradictions mediated by the logic of violence. No doubt, Sabelo Ndlovu-Gatsheniís handling of complex concepts and difficult questions of the day is remarkable, particularly the decoding and mixing of complex theoretical interventions from Africa and Latin America to enlighten the present, without losing historical perspicacity. To buttress the theoretical arguments, detailed empirical case studies of South Africa, Zimbabwe, DRC and Namibia completes this timely contribution to African Studies.

Combats pour le Sens: Un Itineraire Africain Cover

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Combats pour le Sens: Un Itineraire Africain

The Struggle for Meaning is a landmark publication by one of African philosophy's leading figures, Paulin J. Hountondji, best known for his critique of ethnophilosophy in the late 1960s and early 1970s. In this volume, he responds with autobiographical and philosophical reflection to the dialogue and controversy he has provoked. He discusses the ideas, rooted in the work of such thinkers as Husserl and Hountondji's former teachers Derrida, Althusser, and Ricoeur, that helped shape his critique. Applying his philosophical ideas to the critical issues of democracy, culture, and development in Africa today, he addresses three crucial topics: the nexus between scientific extraversion and economic dependence; the nature of endogenous traditions of thought and their relationship with modern science; and the implicationsófor political pluralism and democracyóof the emergence of ìphilosophies of subjectî in Africa. While the book's immediate concern is with Africa, the densely theoretical nature of its analyses, and its bearing on current postmodern theories of the ìother,î will make this timely and elegant translation of great interest to many disciplines, especially ethnic, gender, and multicultural studies.

The Coming African Hour Cover

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The Coming African Hour

Dialectics of opportunities and constraints

The Coming African hour is not a slogan, nor wishful thinking. It is a conclusion that derives from an insightful analysis of the current situation pertaining on the continent. Several African scholars, coming from different regions and academic backgrounds are elaborating ideas and arguments in order to explain the constraints and to illustrate the opportunities. The result of that scientific gathering is a book that synthesizes and renews the reflections on development. What is at stake is not to be pessimistic or optimistic about Africa. The epistemological challenge is to understand what is going on. By focusing on converging and diverging African realities, on the issues of state, civil society, gender and development strategies, the authors of the book show under which conditions the African hour is coming. At that level, the commitment for political science meets the commitment for Africa. The main success of this book is to overcome the preconceived ideas and self-fulfilling prophecies about Africa. Here, the analysis avoids the trap of indulgence; then hope is based on truth. Consequently, the coming African hour is not inescapable: it is, as analyzed, a possibility that its achievement depends on institutional, human, political, social and economic factors.

Companion of Life Cover

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Companion of Life

Poems from Zimbabwe

This is a dense, erudite collection of finely crafted poems that powerfully reflect on vices such as war, bad governance, deforestation, dissipation, greed, oppression and cruelty. The poems also tackle other important phenomena of life such as love, anxiety, weather, time, politics, morality, economics, justice, culture and the environment. The virtue of these finely tuned poems does not only lie in their philosophical questioning, but their artistic merit and audacious reflection of issues pertinent in human life of all ages. While some of the poems provoke amusement and others tears, the corpus of the collection educates through entertainment. The poetry penetrates into the greater depths of the public’s psyche to appraise, query, empty and expose their concerns in such a manner that should hopefully make those who cause or ignite human tribulations to rethink their actions and those haunted by the same to stay vigilant.

A Comprehensive Tax History of Nigeria Cover

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A Comprehensive Tax History of Nigeria

This book discusses the evolution of taxation in Nigeria within the framework of eight broad themes i.e., The Origin and Practice of Fiscal Federalism in Nigeria, The Constitutional Context for Taxation, The Three Eras of Taxation in Nigeria, The Structure and Jurisdiction of Nigerian Tax Authorities, Instruments of Tax Policy, Statutory Developments, Beyond Oil Revenue: The Case for Tax Reform and Making the Nigerian Tax System Globally Competitive.

The Concept of Botho and HIV/AIDS in Botswana Cover

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The Concept of Botho and HIV/AIDS in Botswana

Ever since the publication of Placide Tempel's epoch-making work Bantu Philosophy, African philosophers have worked to dispel the myth that there is no metaphysics in Africa. In the East African context we remember the names of Joseph Nyasmi and Odera Oruka, and in the West African context, Pauline Hotoundji and Kwesi Wiredu have made monumental contributions to elucidate African metaphysics. This compendium, presented by a group of scholars from the University of Botswana, seeks to build bridges between the seemingly estranged disciplines of African metaphysics, existential philosophy, and economics in the contexts of HIV/AIDS.

The Concept of Human Rights in Africa Cover

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The Concept of Human Rights in Africa

Hitherto the human rights debate in Africa has concentrated on the legal and philosophical. The author, Professor of Law at the University of Dar es Salaam, here moves the debate to the social and political planes. He attempts to reconceptualise human rights ideology from the standpoint of the working people in Africa. He defines the approach as avoiding the pitfalls of the liberal perspective as being absolutist in viewing human rights as a central question and the rights struggle as the backbone of democratic struggles. The author maintains that such a study cannot be politically neutral or intellectually uncommitted. Both the critique of dominant discourse and the reconceptualisation are located within the current social science and jurisprudential debates.

Conduit Cover

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Conduit

'These are poems of drowning and coming up again. Of surviving with lungs that breathe water and sunlight. These are poems of longing and loss. Of searching for a foothold in a world where all slides and changes. Sarah Frost is a new voice in South African poetry. A clear and strong and exciting voice. Read her.'- Kobus Moolman Sarah Frost is 37 years old and a single mother to a six year old boy. She works as an editor for Juta Legalbrief in Durban, South Africa. Sarah has been writing poetry for the past fourteen years. She has completed an MA in English Literature, and also a module on Creative Writing.

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