Randolph on Harvey, 'Look What Came from Africa'

Author: 
Miles Harvey
Reviewer: 
Brenda F. Randolph

Miles Harvey. Look What Came from Africa. New York: Franklin Watts, 2002. 32 pp. $23.00 (cloth), ISBN 978-0-531-16626-0.

Reviewed by Brenda F. Randolph (Africa Access) Published on H-AfrTeach (November, 2003)

Look What Came from Africa contains much useful information. The author has done a good job of researching Africanisms in American culture. However, the concept for this book is faulty. Each of the other books in the series focuses on a single country. There are twelve books on European countries, three on Asian countries, and two on North American countries. Yet of all of Africa, except Egypt, is collapsed into one book. This reinforces the erroneous idea that Africa is a country and that Egypt is not a part of Africa.

Most of the content focuses on the arts (instruments, dance, and dress), animals, and agricultural products. No mention is made of Africa's vast mineral resources, on which the United States heavily relies. Also lacking are religious ideas and practices in the United States that can be traced to Africa. Still the book is very attractive. It has a great layout and nice color photographs. The text is upbeat and begins with important information about human origins in Africa. Teachers could use the book to introduce the continent then move on to in-depth regional and country studies.

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Citation: Brenda F. Randolph. Review of Harvey, Miles, Look What Came from Africa. H-AfrTeach, H-Net Reviews. November, 2003. URL: http://www.h-net.org/reviews/showrev.php?id=8396

Copyright © 2003 by H-Net, all rights reserved. H-Net permits the redistribution and reprinting of this work for nonprofit, educational purposes, with full and accurate attribution to the author, web location, date of publication, originating list, and H-Net: Humanities & Social Sciences Online. For any other proposed use, contact the Reviews editorial staff at hbooks@mail.h-net.org.