Blogging Africa’s Urban Revolution

The Memory Bank has never truly been a blog. Its purpose has always been self-publishing, the first place to put my papers and videos, and where from the beginning I made my book of the same name available.

Now I have decided to blog about a book I want to write in the coming months. It’s working title is Africa’s Urban Revolution. It is about what happened in Africa during the twentieth century (as opposed to what didn’t happen — ‘development’) and the prospects for significant economic improvement in the next half-century. It is about Africa’s place in world history and its relationship to the shift of economic power from West to East. This book has been brewing for over four decades since my first and only prolonged fieldwork experience in the slums of Accra. It is thus about building a vision of world history out of ethnography.

I announced this book four years ago. It was then called The African Revolution. There are some thirty posts listed here under that category for anyone interested in exploring the prehistory of this moment.

I hope to post 3-5 times a week until I am done. What I plan is a counter to Afro-pessimism, not exactly Afro-optimism, but on that end of the spectrum.

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