This is an English translation (by Scott Straus) of a scholarly book that successfully stitches together the complex and long story of kingdoms, chiefdoms, traditions, alliances, hatreds, settlements, movements, colonization, political independence and violence that have shaped one of the most fascinating, albeit troubled, regions in Africa.

Published in 2006, the book is not an easy read, for it is a very detailed, at times convoluted story an analysis of complex events. However, it rewards the patient reader. To date, it is the most comprehensive account of the region’s history. Essential.



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