African Connections: Archaeological Perspectives on Africa and the Wider World (African Archaeology Series)

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9780759102590: African Connections: Archaeological Perspectives on Africa and the Wider World (African Archaeology Series)

From the exodus of early modern humans to the growth of African diasporas, Africa has had a long and complex relationship with the outside world. More than a passive vessel manipulated by external empires, the African experience has been a complex mix of internal geographic, environmental, sociopolitical and economic factors, and regular interaction with outsiders. Peter Mitchell attempts to outline these factors over the long period of modern human history, to find their commonalities and development over time. He examines African interconnections through Egypt and Nubia with the Near East,
through multiple Indian Ocean trading systems, through the trans-Saharan trade, and through more recent incursion of Europeans. The African diaspora is also explored for continuities and resistance to foreign domination. Commonalities abound in the African experience, as do complexities of each individual period and interrelationship. Mitchell's sweeping analysis of African connections place the continent in context of global prehistory and history. The book should be of interest not only to Africanists, but to many other archaeologists, historians, geographers, linguists, social scientists and their students.

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About the Author:

Peter Mitchell is University Lecturer in African Prehistory at St. Hugh's College and Curator of African Archaeology at the Pitt Rivers Museum, University of Oxford.

Review:

I was quite delighted to come across Peter Mitchell's African Connections as a potential text. . . Mitchell is an archaeologist with a breadth of vision and who sees the material record less as a record of discreet cultures than as a foundation of historical patterns of interaction. His narrative is, in fact, far more lively and comprehensive than one might fear from an archaeologist since he often uses the first person and allows the reader a sense of the interpretive subjectivity that pre-modern history often requires. (International Journal of African Historical Studies)

Highly recommended. (CHOICE)

[Mitchell] does succeed, without fanfare, in destroying entirely the useless boundary between prehistoric and historic archaeology. This success if founded upon an ability to keep the archaeology front and center while niether ignoring nor being overwhelmed by documentary sources. He also manages to steer well away from the tyranny of the ethnographic present and the analogies that lurk therein. Overall, a job well done. (Journal Of African Archaeology)

The book is richly complemented by extensive maps, charts, illustrations, and tables. It is required reading for Africanists and world historians, while other archaeologists, historians, and social scientists will find the wealth of information, approach, conclusions and insights richly rewarding. (History: Reviews Of New Books)

Having compressed an amazing amount of information into 241 pages of text, this tour-de-force will be a welcome addition to any Africanist's library, and is highly recommended for graduate student use. I hope that African historians get to know about it, as archaeology is too often seen by them as a Cinderella discipline. (H-Net: Humanities and Social Science Reviews Online)

A most welcome effort. . . . Mitchell's command of the literature, sources, theoretical debates in the field and areas of contention is sweeping, and backed up by an extensive familiarity with work in such related fields as historical linguistic reconstruction, botany, and palynology which have played important roles in enriching our knowledge of the African past. His approach is measured and evenhanded in its assessment of the evidence. . . . An immense amount of reading and a great deal of thought and care went into the writing of this book. . . . Mitchell succeeds in bringing to light many specifics of African innovation and independent agency across a variety of areas of culture and history. (Journal of Anthropological Research)

Mitchell. . . presents an impressively wide-ranging synthesis around his chosen theme of Africa's centrality to human development. (Antiquity)

In short African Connections is a worthy attempt to synthesize a tremendous amount of information about a continent that is incredibly diverse―both culturally and ecologically. (Journal Of The Royal Anthropological Institute)

Peter Mitchell's book must be read by anyone with any interest not only in Africa, but also in archaeology and history. As the world shrinks through telecommunication and mass transportation, Mitchell's book reminds us that we have always been connected and that Africa was always part of the world. To deny or underestimate the role of Africa in the future of humankind would be a grave mistake. (Fekri Hassan African Archaeological Review)

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Book Description Altamira Press. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Paperback. 328 pages. Dimensions: 8.9in. x 5.8in. x 0.9in.From the exodus of early modern humans to the growth of African diasporas, Africa has had a long and complex relationship with the outside world. More than a passive vessel manipulated by external empires, the African experience has been a complex mix of internal geographic, environmental, sociopolitical and economic factors, and regular interaction with outsiders. Peter Mitchell attempts to outline these factors over the long period of modern human history, to find their commonalities and development over time. He examines African interconnections through Egypt and Nubia with the Near East, through multiple Indian Ocean trading systems, through the trans-Saharan trade, and through more recent incursion of Europeans. The African diaspora is also explored for continuities and resistance to foreign domination. Commonalities abound in the African experience, as do complexities of each individual period and interrelationship. Mitchells sweeping analysis of African connections place the continent in context of global prehistory and history. The book should be of interest not only to Africanists, but to many other archaeologists, historians, geographers, linguists, social scientists and their students. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Bookseller Inventory # 9780759102590

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