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Visions of African Unity

New Perspectives on the History of Pan-Africanism and African Unification Projects

Palgrave Macmillan

Editors:

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  • Explores the historiography of various African unification and Pan-African projects, including the OAU, and their impact on the Cold War and liberation struggles

  • Gathers perspectives from a diverse range of scholars across disciplines, including history, law and international relations

  • Considers the sometimes conflicting ideals behind projects aimed at unification.

Part of the book series: African Histories and Modernities (AHAM)

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  • ISBN: 978-3-030-52911-6
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Table of contents (16 chapters)

  1. Front Matter

    Pages i-xix
  2. Introduction

    • Matteo Grilli, Frank Gerits
    Pages 1-19
  3. Postscript

    1. Front Matter

      Pages 399-399

About this book

This collection of essays analyzes different iterations of African unity, exploring the political and cultural visions that informed projects aimed at African unification. It explores the cultural, economic and non-state aspects of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) as the principal institution dedicated to the cooperation of African states, from its establishment in 1963 to its transformation into the African Union (AU) in 2000, as well as how ideas of African unity shaped the Cold War and African liberation struggles. Bringing together contributors from a diverse range of disciplinary backgrounds across Africa, Europe and the US, this book investigates the ideological origins and historiography of Pan-African and unification projects, and considers how African intellectuals, leaders and populations engaged with these ideas. 


Keywords

  • African Unification
  • Organization of African Unity
  • Global Cold War
  • African Liberation
  • International History
  • African decolonisation
  • Nkrumah
  • All-African Trade Union Federation
  • African science
  • Human Rights History

Reviews

At a time when the past and present  empires of the West are turning against neo-liberal globalization, from which they have derived s​​o many benefits at the expense of the rest of the world, this volume foregrounds the imperative of forging Pan-African unity in ways that can reposition the continent to be an active player in global affairs. The volume highlights the travails and triumphs of Pan-Africanism as an ideological and intellectual force on which the struggle for freedom in Africa has been anchored over the past two centuries. The volume is historically informed, rich, balanced and insightful. By linking the past to the future, this volume holds a great potential to contribute to discourses and policies that can foster an integrated continent capable of achieving inclusive development. 

—Samuel Ojo Oloruntoba, Thabo Mbeki School of Public and International Affairs, University of South Africa 

 

 

This is a timely contribution to the study of the ambiguities of Pan-Africanism, African unity and the institutional cooperation that Africa’s states built up in the post-colonial era. In studying the multifarious expressions of Pan-Africanism this volume privileges views from within the African continent rather than the diaspora, giving voice to grass-roots perspectives that have been neglected in studies of the inter-state cooperation after independence. Citizens’ views, the role of labour in the unity project and issues of culture in Pan-African cooperation come to the fore. The institutionalisation of African unity is re-analysed in its complex interplay with global forces, especially the violence of the Cold War and the liberation struggles in southern Africa. The volume reassesses the transformation of the OAU into the African Union, discussing human rights, notions of African-ness and the state of Pan-African archives. A must for those studying the complexities of Africa’s international networks.

—Klaas van Walraven, African Studies Centre, Leiden University, the Netherlands

 

 

The OAU and AU have for too long been on the sidelines of historical scholarship on twentieth-century Africa. This volume not only brings together an important, rich, and multidisciplinary collection of essays that delves into some of the most significant moments in these organizations’ histories, but also pushes its readers to think more broadly and deeply at the changing nature and institutional history of pan-Africanism on the continent. There is little doubt that Visions of African Unity will become a cornerstone for future studies of these two pivotal international organizations.

—Jeffrey Ahlman, Smith College, USA

Editors and Affiliations

  • International Studies Group, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa

    Matteo Grilli

  • Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands

    Frank Gerits

About the editors

Matteo Grilli is a postdoctoral fellow in the International Studies Group at the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein, South Africa. He specializes in decolonization and Pan-Africanism. He is the author of Nkrumaism and African Nationalism: Ghana’s Pan-African Foreign Policy in the Age of Decolonization (Palgrave Macmillan, 2018).

Frank Gerits is Assistant Professor in the History of International Relations at Utrecht University, the Netherlands. He previously held postdoctoral positions at New York University, USA, and the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein, South Africa.


Bibliographic Information

  • Book Title: Visions of African Unity

  • Book Subtitle: New Perspectives on the History of Pan-Africanism and African Unification Projects

  • Editors: Matteo Grilli, Frank Gerits

  • Series Title: African Histories and Modernities

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-52911-6

  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan Cham

  • eBook Packages: History, History (R0)

  • Copyright Information: The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

  • Hardcover ISBN: 978-3-030-52910-9

  • Softcover ISBN: 978-3-030-52913-0

  • eBook ISBN: 978-3-030-52911-6

  • Series ISSN: 2634-5773

  • Series E-ISSN: 2634-5781

  • Edition Number: 1

  • Number of Pages: XIX, 435

  • Number of Illustrations: 5 illustrations in colour

  • Topics: African History, World History, Global and Transnational History, Political History

Buying options

eBook
USD 109.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-3-030-52911-6
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Softcover Book
USD 149.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Hardcover Book
USD 149.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)