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Getting Started: Reference Materials
New Encyclopedia of Africa by
Publication Date: 2007
Covers the entire continent, from the Europe-facing shores of the Mediterranean to the commercial bustle of Cape Town, and addresses the entire history of African cultures from the pharaohs and the ancient civilizations of the south through the colonial era to the emergence of 53 independent countries. Available both in print (at Fondren) and online.
Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa by
Call Number: DS43 .E53 2004
Publication Date: 2004
Presents some 3,000 entries covering the modern history of the Middle East and North Africa, with major sections on Colonialism and Imperialism, the World Wars, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and the United Nations involvement in the region.
Encyclopedia of Africa South of the Sahara by
Call Number: DT351 .E53 1997
Publication Date: 1997
Covers its people, its cultures, and its complex history and provides current information in more than 1,000 articles on the sub-Saharan region.
Finding Scholarly Articles
Historical Abstracts This link opens in a new window
The first place to go for scholarly journal articles relating to history.
World Heritage Sites: Africa This link opens in a new window
Explore the archaeology, history and culture of Africa through its heritage sites and landscapes. Formerly called "Aluka: African Cultural Heritage Sites and Landscapes."
JSTOR This link opens in a new window
Provides access to many of the core English-language history journals.
Africana Periodical Literature Bibliographic Database
An extensive bibliography of literature on African history from the 1970s to the (roughly) present day. Use interlibrary loan to request access to any articles and books listed here that aren't available through SMU Libraries.
Run by historians and librarians, this is a clearinghouse for tables of contents of journals in leading journals and is a great way of keeping up with new developments in the field.
Recommended Online Resources
Digital Archives & Collections
Africa Focus: Sights and Sounds of a Continent
A collection at the University of Wisconsin that includes primary and secondary sources for African culture and history.
African Online Digital Library
An open access digital library of African cultural heritage materials created by Michigan State University in collaboration with museums, archives, scholars, and communities around the world.
American Museum Congo Expedition, 1909-1915
A research guide and materials inventory for this expedition to the Congo led by Herbert Lang and James Chapin. Created by the American Museum of Natural History.
A program at the British Library that digitizes archives around the world that are in danger of destruction, neglect or physical deterioration. Use the Project Country section on the left to filter by country.
Digital Imaging South Africa (DISA)
Includes several digital collections focusing on the history of South Africa.
African Language Materials Archive (ALMA)
A multi-partner project focusing on the promotion and documentation of literature and literacy in the languages of Africa.
African Media Program
Offers an online, comprehensive database of films, videos, and other audio-visual materials concerning Africa, as well as education services about African media.
African Oral Narratives
A free, open access digital library featuring 6 collections of oral and life histories, folklore, and songs from Ethiopia, Ghana, and South Africa.
An African-led series of national public attitude surveys on democracy and governance in Africa.
Animated Atlas of African History
An interesting visualization of African history according to a number of layers and criteria, including territory names; changing boundaries, imperial rulers and political systems; violent conflicts; and economic and demographic trends.
Archives of Popular Swahili
An electronic archive of spoken and written Popular Swahili texts.
Women in World History (Africa)
List of entries on women in Africa in this larger digital encyclopedia on women.
Activism, Post-Colonialism, & the Legacy of Slavery