Category Archives: Africa-West

Mungo Park, Explorer and Scientist in Sumatra and Africa

Following his trip to Sumatra [described below] Park traveled to west Africa under the tutelage of the Royal Society, which was keen to obtain more information on the river Niger and groups inhabiting the area.     Park’s love of … Continue reading

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Posted in Africa-West, African rice, Agriculture, Colonialism, Explorers & exploration, Mungo Park | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Mungo Park, an 18th Century Ethnologist in the Western Sahel

Mungo Park is the first explorer/writer of the 18th century to interpret local people and places from a local point of view   He was influenced by principles and practices of the Enlightenment, which he took to the field and … Continue reading

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Posted in Africa-West, Agriculture, Arab traders, Colonial, Cuisine, Ethnography, Food, Mungo Park | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Missionaries in Nineteenth Century Africa – A Few Considerations

The Rev. Robert Nassau, who first landed in West Africa in 1861, spent the following 30+ years in this region, as a religious official and graduate of Princeton University.  And while there is much to be criticized in these early years of … Continue reading

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Posted in Africa-West, Christianity, Colonialism, European colonizers, Explorers & exploration, Robert Nassau | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Magicality of Cuisine 4: A Special Dish for a Woman Cultivator, 19th Century Liberia, West Africa

As with other ‘magical dishes’ in this series, it is the context and activities associated with the dish that render it effective – not merely the specified ingredients: Pre-modern cuisine in many parts of the world can be more fully understood … Continue reading

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Posted in Africa-West, Agriculture, Cuisine, European colonizers, Food, Indigenous crops & medicinal plants, Organic Gardenig, Robert Nassau | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

An Account of the Plague in Barbary, North Africa, 1799 – Part II

Some Account of a peculiar Species of Plague which depopulated West Barbary in 1799 and 1800, and to the Effects of which the Author was an eyewitness. By James G. Jackson, Mogodor/ Essaouira Part I, can be found here. From various … Continue reading

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Posted in Africa-North, Africa-West, Colonialism, Ebola, European colonizers, European explorers, Indigenous crops & medicinal plants, Sahel | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

An Account of the Plague in Barbary, North Africa, 1799 – Part I

Plagues have been important – and often deadly – aspect of long distance trade and travel for millennia.   As we enter into the 21st century plague that is now gripping West Africa, what can be learned from reports of ‘the plague’ … Continue reading

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Posted in Africa-North, Africa-West, Caravan routes, Colonialism, Indigenous crops & medicinal plants, Niger River | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Magicality of Cuisine 5 – A Spicy Warriors’ Stew, Gabon West Africa

Cuisine in premodern societies may contain a variety of ingredients that are meant to imbue the dish with magical attributes directed to specific ends.  In past blogs on this topic we have seen dishes that are to secure love for … Continue reading

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Posted in Africa-West, Agriculture, Cuisine, Ethnography, Food, Indigenous crops & medicinal plants, Magic | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments