Tag Archives: West Africa

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 , , , , | 2 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 4: Feeding the Soil a Stew of Leaves and Bark to Guarantee Successful Gardening, 19th Century Gabon, West Africa

Just as people and spirits must be fed, so, too, is the case with the soils that are to be cultivated.  Hence, magically based recipes that are specially destined to nourish the soils and/or spirits associated with a woman’s garden … Continue reading

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Posted in Africa-West, Agriculture, Cuisine, Ethnography, Food, Indigenous crops & medicinal plants, Magic, Missionaries, Recipes, Robert Nassau | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Magicality of Cuisine 3: A Dish of Fish and Plantains to Guarantee Successful Fishing, 19th Century Gabon, West Africa

While early travellers and explorers in Africa tended to ‘extract’ cuisine from its social and cultural context, thus walling off dishes as specific and secularized recipes,  missionaries often did not.  Perhaps due both to their lengthy stays in one region … Continue reading

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Posted in Africa-West, Agriculture, Cuisine, Food, Indigenous crops & medicinal plants, Magic, Missionaries, Recipes, Robert Nassau | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

The Magicality of Cuisine 2: A Recipe for a complicated Love Filtre for Men. 19th Century Gabon

Continuing our survey of pre-modern dishes with examples from the Gabon area of West Africa, I want to give a recipe for a love filtre for men as detailed by Dr. Robert Nassau, who served as missionary, doctor and ethnologist throughout … Continue reading

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Posted in Africa-General, Africa-West, Anthropology, Cuisine, Ethnography, Indigenous crops & medicinal plants, Magic, Missionaries, Recipes, Robert Nassau | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Sahelian City-States in the Western Sahel: Part 2

Recent and ongoing events in the Sahel by way of food crises, religiously based conflict, ethnically based conflict, and military coups are intertwined.  They are the most recent iterations of  interdependent political, economic, religious, social, and cultural changes that have … Continue reading

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Posted in Africa-North, Africa-West, Agriculture, Arab traders, Caravan routes, Colonialism, Ethnicity, History, Ivory, Niger River, Religion, Sahel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments