African Studies Reading Room


About the Collection

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This special non-circulating collection on African history and the humanities is located on the 6th floor of Butler Library, opposite the elevators on the east side of the building. Since its grand opening in December 2003, the African Studies Reading Room collection has continued to grow slowly and will eventually reach full capacity at 6,200 volumes.

The advanced or novice scholar is invited to browse the books and to be immersed in a quiet and intellectually inspiring context. Announcements about library resources, literary and other major current events—local and international—are posted on a regular basis in the room.

On the shelves, one can find an array of selected African studies reference titles standing alongside hundreds of great works of African literature, collected historical documents from Africa, classic ethnographies and travellers' accounts, written transcriptions of Africa's oral heritage—history, epic poetry, folktales, songs, and proverbs—and major contributions in the interpretation of Africa's past and present and of the African diasporas' engagement with the continent.

Many of the titles selected are winners of prizes such as the Melville J. Herskovits Award for the Best Book on Africa awarded every year by the African Studies Association of the United States; Africa's 100 Best Books of the 20th Century issued in 2002 ; as well as The Nobel Prize for Literature and The Man Booker Prize.

The collection includes a representative sample of Africa's literature and history written in African languages, such as Hausa, Igbo, Bamanan, Mandinka, Pulaar/Fulfulde, Swahili, Wolof, Yoruba, and Zulu ; with the corresponding African language/English dictionaries. There are also some works in Arabic, but most are in English, French, or Portuguese, and a few in German.

Also on offer are the Annual Papers of the African Literature Association and other Africana conference proceedings, seminal works on African art, music, and film --including publications from the Festival Panafricain du Cinéma et de la Télévision de Ouagadougou (FESPACO), as well as back issues of some of the most important humanities journals published in Africa or by Africans during the twentieth century, such as Bulletin de l'Institut fondamental d'Afrique noire (Dakar), Transition (Kampala), Odu (Ibadan), Black Orpheus (Ibadan), and Présence africaine (Paris). In addition, you will find the back issues of key African studies journals published in North America and the UK, including African Affairs, African Studies Review, Canadian Journal of African Studies, Journal of African History, Journal of Modern African Studies, Journal of Southern African Studies, and Munger Africana Library notes.

Sample Acquisitions from 2006-2013

  • Achebe, Chinua. There was a country: a personal history of Biafra.
    New York: Penguin Press, 2012.
  • Acteurs du livre au Togo : auteurs, éditeurs, imprimeurs, critiques, libraries, bibiothèques: avec un panorama de la littérature togolaise. Lomé: Graines de Pensées, c2009.
  • Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi. Americanah. New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2013. [A novel]
  • Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi. Half of a yellow sun. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2006. [A novel]
  • Afolabi, Segun. Goodbye Lucille. London: Vintage Books, 2008. [A novel]
  • Africa and trans-Atlantic memories : literary and aesthetic manifestations of diaspora and history. Edited by Naana Opoku-Agyemang, Paul E. Lovejoy, and David V. Trotman. Trenton, NJ : Africa World Press, c2008.
  • African violet : and other stories : the Caine Prize for African writing 2012. Oxford : New Internationalist, 2012.
  • Africans in global migration : searching for promised lands. Edited by John A. Arthur, Joseph Takougang, Thomas Owusu. Lanham, Md. : Lexington Books, c2012.
  • Afropolis : city media art. Edited by Kerstin Pinther, Larissa Förster, Christian Hanussek. Auckland Park : Jacana, 2012.
  • Alagoa, Ebiegberi Joe. Festac remembered: cultural intolerance in the Nigerian Nation. Lagos [Nigeria]: Centre for Black and African Arts and Civilisation, 2007.
  • Ancient Nubia : African kingdoms on the Nile. Edited by Majorie M. Fisher...[et al.] ; with photographs by Chester Higgins Jr. Cairo ; New York : American University in Cairo Press, c2012.
  • Atta, Sefi. News from home : short stories. Slough, UK : Lubin and Kleyner, 2009.
  • Autesserre, Séverine. The trouble with the Congo: local violence and the failure of international peacebuilding. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010.
  • Black Europe and the African diaspora. Edited by Darlene Clark Hine, Trica Danielle Keaton, and Stephen Small. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press, 2009.
  • Boggs, Richard. Becoming plural : a tale of two Sudans. Reading, Berkshire : Garnet, c2013.
  • Branch, Adam. Displacing human rights: war and intervention in northern Uganda. New York: Oxford Univeristy Press, c2011.
  • The Cambridge companion to the African novel. Edited by F. Abiola Irele. Cambridge, UK; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2009.
  • Campbell, Penelope. Africare : Black American philanthropy in Africa. New Brunswick, N.J. : Transaction Publishers, c2011.
  • Carney, Judith Ann and Richard Nicholas Rosomoff. In the shadow of slavery: Africa's botanical legacy in the Atlantic world. Berkeley, Calif.: University of California Press, c2009.
  • Carpentier, Alejo. ¡Écue-yamba-ó!. Madrid : Akal, 2010. [A novel]
  • Cartooning in Africa. Edited by John A. Lent. Cresskill, NJ: Hampton Press, c2009.
  • Casely-Hayford, Gus. The lost kingdoms of Africa. London: Bantam Press, 2012.
  • Chinodya, Shimmer. Strife. Harare: Weaver Press, 2006. [A novel]
  • Cissé, Momar. Parole chantée et communication sociale chez les Wolof du Sénégal. Paris: Harmattan, c2009.
  • Corbould, Clare. Becoming African Americans: Black public life in Harlem, 1919-1939. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2009.
  • Currey, James. Africa writes back: the African writers series & the launch of African literature. Oxford: James Currey; Johannesburg: Wits University Press ; Athens, Ohio: Ohio University Press, 2008.
  • Datas e documentos de história da FRELIMO: de 1960 a 1975--ano da independência de Moçambique. Edited by Armando Pedro Muiuane Jr. Maputo: CIEDIMA, SARL, 2006.
  • Diagne, Souleymane Bachir. Léopold Sédar Senghor: l'art africain comme philosophie. Paris: Riveneuve éditions, c2007.
  • Diawara, Manthia. African film: new forms of aesthetics and politics. Munich; New York: Prestel, c2010.
  • Diome, Fatou. Le ventre de l'Atlantique. Paris : Anne Carrière, 2003. [A novel]
  • Diop, Papa Momar. Guide des archives du Sénégal colonial. Paris: L'Harmattan, c2011.
  • Diouf, Sylviane A. Dreams of Africa in Alabama: the slave ship Clotilda and the story of the last Africans brought to America. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2007.
  • Documenting the Ethiopian student movement: an exercise in oral history. Edited by Bahru Zewde. Addis Ababa: Forum for Social Studies, c2010.
  • Emergent themes and methods in African studies: essays in honor of Adiele E. Afigbo. Edited by Toyin Falola and Adam Paddock. Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press, c2009.
  • Field, Roger. Alex la Guma: a literary & political biography. Woodbridge, UK; Rochester, NY: James Currey, 2010.
  • From global apartheid to global village: Africa and the United Nations. Edited by Adekeye Adebajo. Scottsville, South Africa: University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, 2009.
  • Gadjigo, Samba. Ousmane Sembène: the making of a militant artist ; translated by Moustapha Diop. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, c2010.
  • Gaines, Kevin Kelly. American Africans in Ghana: Black expatriates and the civil rights era. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, c2006.
  • George Padmore: pan-African revolutionary. Edited by Fitzroy Baptiste and Rupert Lewis. Kingston, Jamaica; Miami, Florida, USA: Ian Randle Publishers, 2009.
  • Getahun, Solomon Addis. The history of Ethiopian immigrants and refugees in America, 1900-2000: patterns of migration, survival, and adjustment. New York: LFB Scholarly Pub. LLC, 2007.
  • Getatchew Haile...[et al.] Catalogue of the Ethiopic Manuscript Imaging Project. Eugene, Or.: Pickwick Publications, 2009-
  • Gikandi, Simon. Slavery and the culture of taste. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, c2011.
  • Gikandi, Simon and Evan Mwangi. The Columbia guide to East African literature in English since 1945. New York: Columbia University Press, c2007.
  • Gilroy, Paul. Black Britain : a photographic history. London: Saqi in association with GettyImages, 2007.
  • Githiora, Chege J. Afro-Mexicans : discourse of race and identity in the African diaspora. Trenton, NJ : Africa World Press, c2008.
  • Gnaoulé-Oupoh, B. Dictionnaire des romans ivoiriens. Paris : Harmattan, c2012.
  • Green, Toby. The rise of the trans-Atlantic slave trade in western Africa, 1300-1589. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2012.
  • Gueye, Abdoulaye. Aux nègres de France: la patrie non reconnaissante. Achères, France: Dagan, c2010.
  • Hall, Bruce S. A history of race in Muslim West Africa, 1600-1960. Cambridge ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2011.
  • Harrison, Hubert H. When Africa awakes. Baltimore : Black Classic Press, 1997. Originally published in 1920.
  • Heywood, Linda M. and John K. Thornton. Central Africans, Atlantic Creoles, and the foundation of the Americas, 1585-1660. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2007.
  • History of the Urhobo people of Niger Delta. Edited by Peter P. Ekeh. Buffalo, N.Y.: Urhobo Historical Society, 2007.
  • A house with two rooms : final report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Liberia Diaspora Project. Saint Paul, Minn. : DRI Press, c2009.
  • Human rights NGOs in East Africa: political and normative tensions. Edited by Makau Mutua. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, c2009.
  • Hutchinson, Thomas J. Impressions of Western Africa : with remarks on the diseases of the climate and a report on the peculiarities of trade up the rivers in the Bight of Biafra. [Charleston, SC] : Nabu Press, [2011] Originally published in 1858.
  • Ilahiane, Hsain. Historical dictionary of the Berbers (imazighen). Lanham, Md.: Scarecrow Press, Inc, 2006.
  • Jansen, Jan. Entretiens avec Bala Kanté: une chronique du Manding du XXème siècle. Leiden; Boston: Brill, 2006.
  • Jambula tree: a selection of works from the Caine Prize for African Writing. Oxford: New Internationalist Publications; Auckland Park, South Africa: Jacana Media, 2008.
  • James, Winston. The struggles of John Brown Russwurm : the life and writings of a pan-Africanist pioneer, 1799-1851. New York : New York University Press, 2010.
  • Jeune Afrique, 50 ans : une histoire de l'Afrique. [ouvrage dirigé par Jean-Louis Gouraud et Dominique Mataillet]. Paris : La Martinière, c2013.
  • Johnson, Lemuel A. Carnival of the Old Coast. Trenton, N.J. : Africa World Press, Inc., c1995.  [Poetry]
  • Kane, Ousmane. The homeland is the arena: religion, transnationalism, and the integration of Senegalese immigrants in America. New York: Oxford University Press, c2011.
  • Kenya National Commission on Human Rights. An evening with Tom Mboya: speeches, lectures, and remarks from prominent personalities: an advocacy and lobbying strategy. Nairobi: KNCHR, 2006.
  • Kesteloot, Lilyan and Andrée-Marie Diagne. Précis de littérature africaine et antillaise: histoire, auteurs et œuvres. Dakar: IFAN-CAD & FASTEF, [2010]
  • Konadu, Kwasi. The Akan diaspora in the Americas. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.
  • Larkin, Brian. Signal and noise: media, infrastructure, and urban culture in Nigeria. Durham: Duke University Press, 2008.
  • LeRiche, Matthew and Matthew Arnold. South Sudan: from revolution to independence. New York: Columbia University Press, 2012.
  • Limb, Peter. The ANC's early years: nation, class and place in South Africa before 1940. Pretoria, South Africa: Unisa Press, c2010.
  • Lydon, Ghislaine. On Trans-Saharan trails: Islamic law, trade networks, and cross-cultural exchange in nineteenth-century Western Africa. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2009.
  • Maathai, Wangari. Unbowed: a memoir. New York: Knopf, 2006.
  • Mabanckou, Alain. Mémoires de porc-épic: roman. Paris: Seuil, c2006.
  • Mamdani, Mahmood. Define and rule: native as political identity. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2012.
  • Mamdani, Mahmood. Saviors and survivors: Darfur, politics, and the War on terror. New York: Pantheon Books, c2009.
  • Manghezi, Nadja. The Maputo connection: the ANC in the world of Frelimo. Auckland Park, South Africa: Jacana, 2009.
  • Mann, Kristin. Slavery and the birth of an African city: Lagos, 1760-1900. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, c2007.
  • Marshall, Paule. Triangular road: a memoir. New York: BasicCivitas Books, c2009.
  • Matar, Hisham. Anatomy of a disappearance. Toronto ; New York : Hamish Hamilton Canada/Penguin Group, 2011. [A novel]
  • Mda, Zakes. The heart of redness. New York : Picador, 2003. [A novel]
  • Mda, Zakes. The Madonna of Excelsior. New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2004. [A novel]
  • The meanings of Timbuktu. Edited by Samil Jeppie and Souleymane Bachir Diagne. Cape Town: HSRC Press in association with CODESRIA, 2008.
  • Mokoena, Hlonipha. Magema Fuze: the making of a kholwa intellectual. Scottsville, South Africa: University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, 2011.
  • Mozambique-Réunion: esclavages, mémoire et patrimoines dans l'océan Indien: actes des conférences du deuxième Festival de L'Ile de Mozambique, les 25 et 26 juin 2004. Edited by Séverine Cachat. Saint-Maur-des-Fossés: Sépia, c2008.
  • Mqhayi, S.E.K. Abantu besizwe: historical and biographical writings, 1902-1944. Edited and translated by Jeff Opland. Johannesburg, South Africa: Wits University Press, 2009.
  • Mtshali, Oswald Mbuyiseni. Sounds of a cowhide drum = Imisindo Yesigubhu Sesikhumba Senkomo. [Bilingual ed. in English & Zulu] Auckland Park, South Africa : Jacana Media, 2012. [Poetry]
  • Mudimbe, V. Y. On African fault lines : meditations on alterity politics. Scottsville, South Africa : University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, 2013.
  • Ndebele, Njabulo S. Rediscovery of the ordinary: essays on South African literature and culture. Scottsville, South Africa: University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, 2006.
  • Ndlovu-Gatsheni, Sabelo J. Coloniality of power in postcolonial Africa : myths of decolonization. Dakar : Codesria, c2013.
  • Ndlovu-Gatsheni, Sabelo J. Do 'Zimbabweans' exist?: trajectories of nationalism, national identity formation and crisis in a postcolonial state. New York: Peter Lang, c2009.
  • Nelson Mandela: the authorised comic book. Nelson Mandela Foundation with Umlando Wezithombe. Johannesburg: Jonathan Ball, 2008.
  • New encyclopedia of Africa. John Middleton, editor in chief; edited by Joseph C. Miller. 5 vols. Detroit: Thomson/Gale, c2008.
  • New perspectives on Islam in Senegal: conversion, migration, wealth, power, and femininity. Edited by Mamadou Diouf and Mara A. Leichtman. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009.
  • New perspectives on the Sierra Leone Krio. Edited by Mac Dixon-Fyle and Gibril Cole. New York: Peter Lang, c2006.
  • New writing from Africa 2009 : original short stories by African writers, selected by the South African Centre of International PEN. Cape Town [South Africa] : Johnson & KingJames Books, 2009.
  • Ngũgĩ wa Thiongʼo. In the name of the mother : reflections on writers & empire. Woodbridge, Suffolk : James Currey, 2013.
  • Ngũgĩ wa Thiongʼo. Re-membering Africa. Nairobi: East African Educational Publishers, 2009.
  • Nkosi, Lewis. Mandela's ego. Roggebaai, South Africa : Umuzi, c2006. [A novel]
  • Noël-Kodia-Ramatta. Dictionnaire des oeuvres littéraires congolaises . Paris: MAKITECEditions Paari, [2010].
  • Nwaubani, Adaobi. I do not come to you by chance. New York: Hyperion, c2009. [A novel]
  • Odendaal, André. The founders : the origins of the ANC and the struggle for democracy in South Africa. Auckland Park, South Africa : Jacana Media, 2012.
  • Ogbechie, Sylvester Okwunodu. Ben Enwonwu: the making of an African modernist. Rochester, NY: University of Rochester Press, 2008.
  • Oliveira, Américo Correia de. O grande livro dos provérbios angolanos. Luanda : União dos Escritores Angolanos, c2012.
  • Otero, Solimar. Afro-Cuban diasporas in the Atlantic world. Rochester, NY : University of Rochester Press, 2010.
  • Oyeyemi, Helen. The Icarus girl. London : Bloomsbury, 2005. [A novel]
  • The Oxford encyclopedia of African thought. 2 v. Editors in chief, F. Abiola Irele and Biodun Jeyifo. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.
  • Pargeter, Alison. Libya : the rise and fall of Qaddafi. New Haven, Conn. : Yale University Press, c2012.
  • Patrimoine et sources historiques en Afrique. Sous la direction d'Ibrahima Thioub. Dakar: Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Département d'histoire: Union académique international, Fontes Historiae Africanae, 2007.
  • Peffer, John. Art and the end of apartheid. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, c2009.
  • The people's paper : a centenary history & anthology of Abantu-Batho. Edited by Peter Limb. Johannesburg : Wits University Press, 2012.
  • Pepetela. Jaime Bunda, secret agent: story of various mysteries. Laverstock: Aflame Books, 2006. [A novel]
  • Peterson, Derek R. Ethnic patriotism and the East African Revival : a history of dissent, c. 1935-1972. New York : Cambridge University Press, 2012.
  • Phillipson, D. W. Foundations of an African civilisation : Aksum & the Northern Horn, 1000 BC-AD 1300.. Woodbridge, Suffolk [England] : James Currey ; Rochester, NY : Boydell & Brewer, 2012.
  • Pinho, Patricia de Santana. Mama Africa: reinventing Blackness in Bahia ; original edition translated by Elena Langdon. Durham [N.C.]: Duke University Press, 2010.
  • Portraiture & photography in Africa. Edited by John Peffer and Elisabeth L. Cameron. Bloomington : Indiana University Press, [2013]
  • The Portuguese in West Africa, 1415-1670: a documentary history. Edited by Malyn Newitt. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010.
  • The poverty of ideas: South African democracy and the retreat of intellectuals. Edited by William Gumede & Leslie Dikeni. Auckland Park, South Africa: Jacana Media, 2009.
  • Power and nationalism in modern Africa: essays in honor of Don Ohadike. edited by Toyin Falola and Salah M. Hassan. Durham, N.C.: Carolina Academic Press, c2008.
  • Repercussions of the Atlantic slave trade : the interior of the Bight of Biafra and the African diaspora. Edited by Carolyn Brown...[et al.] Trenton, NJ : Africa World Press, c2011.
  • Rise and fall of apartheid : photography and the bureaucracy of everyday life. Edited by Okwui Enwezor and Rory Bester. New York : International Center of Photography : DelMonico Books ; Munich : Prestel, 2013.
  • The road to democracy in South Africa. 6 vols. Cape Town : Zebra Press, 2004-2010.
  • Roscoe, Adrian A. The Columbia guide to Central African literature in English since 1945. New York: Columbia University Press, c2008.
  • Rwanda : les archives secrètes de Mitterrand, 1982-1995. [présenté par Bruno Boudiguet] [Paris] : Esprit frappeur ; [Watermael-Boitsfort] : Aviso, [2012].
  • Said, Omar ibn. A Muslim American slave : the life of Omar Ibn Said. [Translated from the Arabic, edited, and with an introduction by Ala Alryyes] Madison : University of Wisconsin Press, c2011.
  • Sankalé, Sylvain. A la mode du pays: chroniques saint-lousiennes d'Antoine François Feuiltaine, Saint-Louis du Sénégal 1788-1835. Paris: Riveneuve, [2007]
  • Sarazin, Maurice. Bibliographie de la guerre d'Algérie, 1954-1962 : ouvrages en langue française parus de 1954 à 2009. Paris : Dualpha, c2011.
  • Sénégal 1960-2010: construction et trajectoire d'un État-nation. Cahiers de l'alternance. [Dakar] : Fondation Konrad Adenauer : Centre d'études des sciences et techniques de l'information, [2011]
  • Shachtman, Tom. Airlift to America: how Barack Obama, Sr., John F. Kennedy, Tom Mboya, and 800 East African students changed their world and ours. New York: St. Martin's Press, 2009.
  • Sharia implementation in northern Nigeria 1999-2006: a sourcebook. Edited by Philip Ostien. 5 v. Ibadan, Nigeria: Spectrum Books, 2007.
  • Sheriff, Abdul. Dhow cultures of the Indian Ocean: cosmopolitanism, commerce and Islam. New York: Columbia University Press, c2010.
  • Shivji, Issa G. Accumulation in an African periphery: a theoretical framework. Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania: Mkuki Na Nyota Publishers, c2009
  • Sicherman, Carol. Becoming an African university: Makerere, 1922-2000. Kampala, Uganda: Fountain Publishers, 2006.
  • The Sierra Leone Special Court collection. 2 vols. Edited by C. Tofan. Oisterwijk, The Netherlands: AOLF Legal Publishers, c2008-
  • Sow, Abdoul Aziz. La poésie orale peule: Mauritanie-Sénégal: essai de typologie et choix de textes. Paris: L'Harmattan, c2009.
  • Soyinka, Wole. Of Africa. New Haven: Yale University Press, c2012.
  • Spaulding, Jay. The heroic age in Sinnar. Trenton, NJ: Red Sea Press, c2007.
  • Stephens, Rhiannon. A history of African motherhood : the case of Uganda, 700-1900. New York : Cambridge University Press, 2013.
  • The study of Africa. Edited by Paul Tiyambe Zeleza. 2 vols. Dakar, Senegal: CODESRIA, 2006-
  • Sweet, James H. Domingos Álvares, African healing, and the intellectual history of the Atlantic world. Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, c2011.
  • Tagwira, Valerie. The uncertainty of hope. Harare: Weaver Press, 2006. [A novel]
  • Thomas, Dominic Richard David. Black France: colonialism, immigration, and transnationalism. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, c2007.
  • Tolerance, democracy, and Sufis in Senegal. Edited by Mamadou Diouf. New York: Columbia University Press, c2013.
  • The trans-Saharan book trade : manuscript culture, Arabic literacy and intellectual history in Muslim Africa. Edited by Graziano Krätli and Ghislaine Lydon. Leiden ; Boston : Brill, 2011.
  • Trustee for the human community: Ralph J. Bunche, the United Nations, and the decolonization of Africa. Edited by Robert A. Hill and Edmond J. Keller. Athens: Ohio University Press, c2010.
  • Uganda: a picture history, 1857-2007. Edited by James Tumusiime. Kampala: Fountain Publishers, 2009.
  • Visonà, Monica Blackmun. Constructing African art histories for the Lagoons of Côte d'Ivoire. Surrey, England, UK; Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2010.
  • We have crossed many rivers : new poetry from Africa. Edited by Dike Okoro. Lagos, Nigeria : Malthouse Press, 2012.
  • The Wiley-Blackwell companion to African religions. Edited by Elias Kifon Bongmba. Chichester, West Sussex : Wiley-Blackwell, 2012.
  • Williamson, Sue. South African art now. New York, NY: Collins Design, 2009.
  • Young, Jason R. Rituals of resistance: African Atlantic religion in Kongo and the lowcountry South in the era of slavery. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, c2007.
  • The Zanzibar Protectorate law reports. (1868-1956) 8 vols. Nairobi: LawAfrica, [2009]
  • Zulu identities: being Zulu, past and present. Edited by Benedict Carton, John Laband and Jabulani Sithole. New York: Columbia University Press, c2009.