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History of Africa and the African Diaspora


Scholarly Research

This is a guide to sources available through Boston College on African history.

Studying African History

This is a guide to preliminary research into African History and the History of the African Diaspora. On this page, you'll find suggestions for reference material (i.e., dictionaries, encyclopedia, and more) as well as information on how to access books and journals. 

On the sub-pages, you'll find recommended primary source collections for North, West, East, and Southern Africa as well as on African American History. 

Please contact your subject liaison if you would like assistance. 

What's on This Page

This page has a lot on it. You can use the following anchors (links down the page) to jump straight to a relevant box.

    Reference Shelf


    Books: Find & Request from BC & Beyond

    Your local libraries have excellent monographs and anthologies located in O'Neill library as well as through the BC libraries portal. Try searching for books (only books) through the WorldCat library system to see if we have what you need. If we don't, you can order material through Interlibrary Loan (ILL).

    WorldCat Catalog

    Books Only   All Formats  

    Accessing the Stacks at O'Neill

    The stacks at O'Neill Library are organized in accordance with Library of Congress (LOC) subjects. For you, that means the first two letters of a "call number" will guide you to your subject. To access Boston College's books on DT, look in the library catalog or on the shelves for "DT."

    For further subdivisions, you might look for:

    • DT160-177 North Africa 
    • DT181-346 Maghrib. Barbary States (includes Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, and the Sahara)
    • DT365-545 Eastern Africa (includes Eritrea, Somalia, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, etc.)
    • DT470-671 West Africa (includes Upper and Lower Guinea, Gambia, Ghana, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Benin, Côte d'Ivoire, Gabon, Congo, CAR, Chad, Niger, Senegal, Mali, Mauritania, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Togo, Guinea-Bissau, Sao Tome and Principe, Liberia, Democratic Republic of Congo)
    • DT1001-1190 Southern Africa (Angola, Namibia, South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Mozambique, etc.)

    Journal and e-Book Database Recommendations

    Journal Recommendations (Individual Titles)

    Podcasts about Scholarship on African History

    History Liaison

    African & African Diaspora Studies Librarian

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    Lawrence Busenbark
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    O'Neill Library 212