By Michael A. Gomez

A groundbreaking background that places early and medieval West Africa in a world context

Pick up virtually any e-book on early and medieval international historical past and empire, and the place do you discover West Africa? at the outer edge. This pioneering e-book, the 1st in this interval of the region’s background in a new release, tells a distinct tale. Interweaving political and social historical past and drawing on a wealthy array of resources, together with Arabic manuscripts, oral histories, and up to date archaeological findings, Michael Gomez unveils a brand new imaginative and prescient of the way different types of ethnicity, race, gender, and caste emerged in Africa and in international heritage extra more often than not. students have lengthy held that such differences arose in the course of the colonial interval, yet Gomez exhibits they built a lot earlier.

Focusing at the Savannah and Sahel sector, Gomez lines the trade of rules and impacts with North Africa and the crucial Islamic Lands in terms of retailers, students, and pilgrims. Islam’s development in West Africa, in tandem with intensifying trade that incorporated slaves, led to a sequence of political experiments specific to the quarter, culminating within the upward thrust of empire. a huge preoccupation was once the query of who should be legally enslaved, which including different components resulted in the development of latest rules approximately ethnicity, race, gender, and caste—long ahead of colonialism and the transatlantic slave trade.

Telling a significantly new tale approximately early Africa in international background, African Dominion is determined to be the normal paintings at the topic for a few years to come.

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