University of Botswana History Department

H201 HISTORY OF AFRICA to c.1800
Course Outline 1999-2000

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Course description revised 16 August 1999

A survey of pre-colonial Africa discussing selected themes in prehistory, state formation, trade, and small-scale societies. Topics include the origin and spread of modern humans, their languages, and cultures; Nile civilizations, Christianity, and Islam in north Africa; forest and sudanic states, slavery and slave trading in west Africa; savannah migrations, states, and coastal trade in eastern & southern Africa, with emphasis on the region of Botswana.

H201 builds on the insights of the first semester of H101, and forms a basis for 300 and 400 level History courses on African regions since 1800. It provides essential background on Africa before 1800 for other courses in Humanities, Social Sciences, and Education. The course is compulsory for History Major and Archaeology Major students.

By the end of the course students should be able to understand and evaluate Africa’s distinctive cultural and historical heritage, and to relate that understanding to a wide range of academic disciplines.

Course lecturers

Prof. NEIL PARSONS & Dr. KENNETH MANUNGO with the assistance of teaching assistants for tutorials.

Lectures and tutorials

Lecture periods will be at the following times:

Tutorial periods (groups to be announced):

Prescribed textbooks

Topic Schedule

Introductory notes for Topics 1 & 2 are on the Internet as The Early Prehistory of Modern People in Africa. Introductory notes for Topics 13, 16, 19 should be made available and put on the Internet during Semester II. See also Kicking the Hornet's Nest: a Third View of the Cobbing Controversy on the Mfecane/ Difaqane which touches on Topic 21.

For guidelines on essay writing (including bibliography style) and note-taking see Guide to Writing Essays and How to Take Notes in Lectures.


H201 Books on Reserve in UB Library

Other useful books in UB Library

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Copyright © Neil Parsons & Kenneth Manungo 1999
Last updated 7 September 1999