African Archaeological Review

, Volume 34, Issue 1, pp 145–148 | Cite as

John Beardsley (ed.): Cultural Heritage Landscapes in Sub-Saharan Africa

Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, 2016, 486 pp., ISBN 9780884024101
  • Matthew DaviesEmail author
Book Review

This collection of essays is important and timely. While much research in the fields of archaeology, history, anthropology, and geography has focused on ‘landscape’ in an empirical sense, fewer works have tackled African landscapes from a more theoretical and synthetic angle. While presenting strong empirical case studies, this volume is therefore most useful as the starting point for deeper critical debate concerning the nature of African landscapes—particularly how communities have and continue to modify their physical context, how they act and ascribe meaning to the wider world, and how daily practices, improvisations, innovations, and agencies (often political) play out across spatial scales. This volume should be essential reading for Africanist archaeologists and students.

The volume is well produced with copious colour images, although I am surprised that there were not more maps in a volume dealing with space. Beardsley must be congratulated for assembling such an engaging...


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  2. Pikirayi, I. (2013). Stone architecture and the development of power in the Zimbabwe tradition, AD 1270–1830. Azania: Archaeological Research in Africa, 48(2), 282–300.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Advanced StudiesUniversity College London, G04LondonUK

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