Announcing the Second Edition of the Journal of West African History

Tara Reyelts Discussion

Announcing the Second Edition of the Journal of West African History

Founding Editor-in-chief: Nwando Achebe
Associate Editors: Hilary Jones and John Thabiti Willis
Book Review Editor: Harry Odamtten



The Journal of West African History (JWAH) is a new interdisciplinary peer-reviewed research journal that publishes the highest quality articles on West African history. Located at the cutting edge of new scholarship on the social, cultural, economic, and political history of West Africa, JWAH fills a representational gap by providing a forum for serious scholarship and debate on women and gender, sexuality, slavery, oral history, popular and public culture, and religion. The editorial board encourages authors to explore a wide range of topical, theoretical, methodological, and empirical perspectives in new and exciting ways. The journal is committed to rigorous thinking and analysis; is international in scope; and offers a critical intervention about knowledge production. Scholarly reviews of current books in the field appear in every issue. And the publication is in both English and French; an abstract in both languages will be provided. Michigan State University Press publishes JWAH in collaboration with the MSU African Studies Center and the History Department.

Editor’s Note

Nwando Achebe, “Nkiruka: the Best is Still to Come”


1.Mariano Pavanello, “Foragers or Cultivators? A Discussion of Wilks’s ‘Big Bang’ Theory of Akan History”

2. Jonathan Reynolds, “Stealing the Road: Colonial Rule and the Hajj from Nigeria in the Early Twentieth Century”

3. Simon Ottenberg, “Conflicting Interpretations in the Biography of a Modern Artist of African Descent”

4. Elisha P. Renne, “Small-Scale and Industrial Gold Mining Histories in Nangodi, Upper East Region, Ghana”

5. RETROSPECTIVE: Merrick Posnansky, “Begho: Life and Times”

6. RETROSPECTIVE: Ifi Amadiume, “Of Kola Nuts, Taboos, Leadership, Women’s Rights, and Freedom: New Challenges from Chinua Achebe’s There Was a Country: A Personal History of Biafra”

Book Reviews

1. Chinua Achebe, There Was a Country: A Personal History of Biafra, Reviewed by Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe

2. Mary Ellen Higgins, Hollywood’s Africa after 1994, Reviewed by David Afriyie Donkor

3. Manuel Barcia, The Great African Slave Revolt of 1825: Cuba and the Fight for Freedom in Matanzas, Reviewed by Madalina Florescu

4. Bessie House-Soremekun, Toyin Falola, Globalization and Sustainable Development in Africa, Reviewed by Irene Dzidzor Darku

5. Emily Lynn Osborn, Our New Husbands are Here: Households, Gender, and Politics in a West African State from the Slave Trade to Colonial Rule, Reviewed by Saheed Aderinto

6. Fatima Massaquoi, Vivian Seton, Konrad Tuchscherer, Arthur Abraham, The Autobiography of an African Princess, Reviewed by Paul Alkebulan

7. Dorothea E. Schulz, Muslims and New Media in West Africa: Pathways to God, Reviewed by Reginold A. Royston


The editorial board invites scholars to submit original article-length manuscripts (not exceeding 10,000 words including endnotes, 35 pages in length) accompanied by an abstract that summarizes the argument and significance of the work (not exceeding 150 words). Review essays (not exceeding 1,000 words) should engage the interpretation, meaning, or importance of an author’s argument for a wider scholarly audience. Please contact our book review editor at for more information. Manuscripts submitted to the Journal of West African History should be submitted online at