Universiteit Leiden

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Research project

Patterns of Living in Southern Africa, 1780s to the present

Southern Africa has a rich tradition of social history, one inspired by the tumultuous changes that have regularly convulsed the region from the 1780s onwards. Scholars have always sought to understand what these changes meant for everyday life and emphasised a perspective of marginal groups, how these people themselves made history, and how this history made them.

Jan-Bart Gewald

This Collaborative Research Group intends to engage with and expand the social history of the region and incorporate insights and perspectives from other regions and disciplines. The primary focus of this group will be on three broad overlapping historical themes: consumption, urbanisation and industrialisation. The group will explore developments in these broad themes from before the imposition of colonial rule, during the decades of colonialism and in the period after the collapse of colonial and white minority states to the present. Going beyond the boundaries of the nation-state, a somewhat meaningless category for much of this period, this group will encompass the study of modern-day South Africa, Lesotho, Eswatini, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Angola, Zambia, Malawi and southern Democratic Republic of Congo.

Read more about this CRG.

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