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Africa In The World: A Historical View

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Chapter Summary

Historians commonly use chronological periods as a way of arranging the data they retrieve from records of the past. If the colonial period appears so central to Africa's history, it is because it was a point on which both colonial rulers and their nationalist successors could agree. Postcolonial regimes that were presided over by Africans rather than Europeans continued to make abundant use of the practices, routines and mentalities of their colonial predecessors. Africa's true postcolonial period ended in the last quarter of the twentieth century. Since then, Africa has entered on a new chapter of its history, as defined by the manner of its insertion in world affairs. This has implications both for understanding Africa's place in the contemporary world and for the academic disciplines used in studying it.

Keywords: African exports; Asian consumer goods; colonial rule; postcolonial period

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