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Look Inside A History of African Popular Culture

A History of African Popular Culture

$24.99 (G)

Part of New Approaches to African History

  • Publication planned for: January 2018
  • availability: Not yet published - available from January 2018
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107624474

$ 24.99 (G)
Paperback

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About the Authors
  • Popular culture in Africa is the product of everyday life: the unofficial, the non-canonical. And it is the dynamism of this culture that makes Africa what it is. In this book, Karin Barber offers a journey through the history of music, theatre, fiction, song, dance, poetry, and film from the seventeenth century to the present day. From satires created by those living in West African coastal towns in the era of the slave trade, to the poetry and fiction of townships and mine compounds in South Africa, and from today's East African streets where Swahili hip hop artists gather to the juggernaut of the Nollywood film industry, this book weaves together a wealth of sites and scenes of cultural production. In doing so, it provides an ideal text for students and researchers seeking to learn more about the diversity, specificity and vibrancy of popular cultural forms in African history.

    • Proposes the first comprehensive historical account of popular culture in Africa
    • Provides the first comparative overview of popular culture across sub-Saharan Africa
    • Raises central questions and issues about the nature of different popular cultural forms and how they are generated in specific historical circumstances
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    Reviews & endorsements

    Advance praise: ‘In chapters packed with sparkling new visions of a field she helped to define a quarter-century ago, Karin Barber's book combines historical depth, careful attention to ‘life on the ground', and discussions of popular culture from the whole continent without losing the complexity of each art form. This book is a transformative must-read for anybody with an interest in African everyday cultures.' S. Newell, Yale University, Connecticut

    Advance praise: ‘Barber has written yet another milestone in the study of African popular culture. The quality of its prose and the wide range of scholarship covered make this book an instant classic. Music, dance, and other aesthetic forms are carefully yet critically situated in their social contexts, such as migrant labor, city life, and electronic modernity. A must for anyone interested in African societies, cultural history and popular arts.' Katrien Pype, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium

    Advance praise: 'Barber's exploration of popular culture producers and the reservoirs they tap of local resonance and trans-local flows is magisterial. Extracting fresh insight from studies across Africa, she upends existing theoretical models by showing how publics produce meaning through the act of consumption, and how producers continually consume to create anew.' Kelly Askew, University of Michigan

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    Product details

    • Publication planned for: January 2018
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107624474
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 mm
    • availability: Not yet published - available from January 2018
  • Table of Contents

    Acknowledgements
    1. Introduction
    2. Popular culture before 1900
    3. Mines, migrant labour and township culture
    4. The city and the road
    5. The crowd, the state – and songs
    6. The media – globalisation and deregulation from the 1990s till today
    7. Conceptualising change in African popular culture
    Bibliography
    Index.

  • Author

    Karin Barber, University of Birmingham
    Karin Barber is a Fellow of the British Academy and Professor Emerita of African Cultural Anthropology at the University of Birmingham. She was appointed CBE in 2012 for services to African studies. She is the author of a number of books and articles on African popular culture, including The Generation of Plays: Yoruba Popular Life in Theatre (2000) and Yoruba Print Culture and the First Yoruba Novel (2012).

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