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History 326

HIST 326
20th Century Africa

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HIST 326
20th Century Africa (C)
Three hours lecture: (3)

Prerequisite: Three hours of History at the 100 level.

Analysis of the events and trends that have shaped Africa and its peoples in the 20th century. Topics include the rise of nationalism, the impact of the two World Wars, struggles for independence, the impact of the Cold War, efforts at economic, social and political development in the post-Independence era, Africa in the Age of Globalization.


Detailed Description of Content of Course
•    The Rise of African Nationalism
•    World War I
•    The African National Congress (South Africa)
•    Pan African Movement
•    Labor Unions, Newspapers, Professional Organizations, Independent Schools
•    African Christianity/ Islam
•    Colonial Policies & Underdevelopment
•    The Great Depression
•    Italo-Ethiopian War 1935-41
•    World War II
•    Struggles for Independence
•    The World context
•    Cold War
•    Bandung conference/Third World Movement
•    Independence in British Africa: Ghana
•    Independence in French Africa: Guinea
•    Independence in White Settler Areas
•    Algeria
•    Independence in southern Africa
•    Portuguese colonies
•    Rhodesia/Zimbabwe
•    South Africa
•    The Cold War in Africa
•    Belgian Congo/Zaire
•    Ethiopia and Somalia
•    Angola
•    Economic, Social, Political Developments
•    Legacy of Colonialism
•    Economic Development
•    Development models
•    Neo-colonialism
•    Sustainable development
•    Technology & the Global Market
•    Social Development
•    Education: the Brain drain & intellectual colonialism
•    The decay of communal values & the extended family
•    Medicine: AIDS, Ebola, etc.
•    Political Development
•    Ethnic and National Identity
•    Nigerian civil war
•    The disintegration of Somalia
•    OAU/OAS
•    Prospects for Democracy
•    Africa in the 21st century


Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

The format of this course will be largely lecture and discussion. The instructor considers this to be a broadly introductory course since most students will likely have had only minimal exposure to the history of the continent. Video materials will be used wherever possible to provide students with a visual conception of the areas and topics they are studying. In addition, guest speakers, if and when appropriate, may make presentations or lead discussions. Reading materials for the course may include any of the following: novels, biographies, autobiographies, memoirs, as well as primary documents.


Goals and Objectives of the Course

1. Students will practice thinking critically and analytically about historical issues, acquire a broader knowledge and deeper understanding of pertinent historical events and processes, and cultivate a familiarity with the concepts of historical argument and interpretation.
2. Students will develop disciplinary research skills by designing strategies to locate and analyze primary and secondary source evidence, processing and organizing the resultant data, and composing proper citation and bibliographical entries.
3. Students will apply their critical thinking, research, and compositional skills to the creation and presentation of thesis driven essays that discuss, for example, historical social, economic, political, and/or cultural developments and that address issues such as the causes and consequences of historical change and continuity.

More specifically, students having completed this course:
•    Will have a broad understanding of African history and its themes in the 20 th century and be able to address those issues orally and in writing.
•    Will have a better understanding of current events in Africa, being better able to analyze those events on their own, able to sort out why Africans and westerners often view and report those events differently.
•    Will be able to fit the challenges facing Africa today and in the future into a broader global context.


Assessment Measures

Knowledge and understanding of the material covered in this course may be measured using an array of assessment tools that can include written examinations, class attendance and participation, formal papers (book analyses, research projects, and primary source analyses) and informal writing assignments. All exercises are designed to expand the student's ability to evaluate historical events and to develop his or her ability to compose persuasive arguments.


Other Course Information

Effort is made in this course to give Africans themselves as much voice as possible. This includes choice of reading materials such as biographies and novels by African authors, interviews with Africans on film and on the internet, and personal contact with African students on campus. The course revolves around a series of PowerPoint presentations incorporating lecture outlines, excerpts from primary documents, historic photos, cartoons, graphs, charts, and occasional internet links.


Review and Approval
Date Action Reviewed By
October  2010 Reviewed and Approved by Sharon Roger Hepburn


02/2011