Kwasi Konadu

Projects in Progress

"Our Own Way in This Part of the World”: Biography of an African Community, Culture, and Nation

"Our Own Way in This Part of the World”: Biography of an African Community, Culture, and Nation. Status: in press, Duke University Press.

This project starts from a ground zero in reconstructing the life of healer and blacksmith Kofi Dɔnkɔ, showing how a subject made invisible through record-keeping and archiving could become legible with only a slight documentary trail. In the book, he and his community and nation become a useful window to understand culture, health and healing, and well-known transformations of the twentieth century world such as colonial empire, religious and medical missionaries, and nationalist and military governments in everyday, human perspectives.

Empires of God, Lands of Gold

Empire of God in the Land of Gold: Slaving, Religion, and Racial Ideology in Making the “Modern” World. Status: draft manuscript completed, but requires further revisions.

This book will contribute to major debates in African, Atlantic, and world history concerning the Iberian origin of transatlantic commerce, the place of religious and racial ideology in transoceanic slaving and in the making of “Atlantic” societies, and how African gold, captives, and a network of ideas about Africa(ns) became foundational in the creation of the “modern” world.

Africa’s Gold Coast through Portuguese Sources, 1471-1671

Africa’s Gold Coast through Portuguese Sources, 1471-1671. Status: under contract with the British Academy, Fontes Historiae Africanae, New Series – Sources of African History.

This two volume set will provide the most comprehensive set of documents in English translation for the African history of the Mina/Gold Coast, but also for the history of Portugal and its global empire and the formation of the so-called Atlantic world. The volumes will feature over 200 translated documents drawn from António Brásio's 22 volumes of transcribed Portuguese materials and from newly discovered archival sources.

Other projects at various stages

A People's History of Jamaica   |   The Transatlantic Slaving Diet    |   The Story of the African Peoples

Select Book Chapters and Articles

[ Click to download PDFs of each chapter/article ]

“African Diaspora and Postcolonial Africa,” in Handbook of African Colonial and Postcolonial History, eds. Toyin Falola and Martin S. Shanguhyia (New York: Palgrave, 2018)

“Healing Works: Nana Kofi Dɔnkɔ and the Business of Indigenous Therapeutics,” in Entrepreneurship in African History, ed. Moses Ochonu (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2018)

From Africa to the Americas” and “Transatlantic Slaving (Diet) and Implications for Health in the African Diaspora,” in Legacy of the Crossing: Life, Death and Triumph among Descendants of the World's Largest Forced Migration, ed. Thomas A. LaVeist (New York: Diasporic Africa Press, 2017).

“Atlantic and African Slaving: A Big Book with Big Numbers,” African Studies Review 58, no. 3 (2015): 260-264.

“Was Abina Mansah a ‘Slave’,” in Trevor R. Getz and Liz Clarke, Abina and the Important Men: A Graphic History, 2nd ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2015).

“Africans and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade,” in African Voices of the Global Past: 1500 to the Present, ed. Trevor R. Getz (Boulder, Colorado: Westview Press, 2013).

“The Calendrical Factor in Akan History,” International Journal of African Historical Studies 45, no. 2 (2012): 217-46.

“Accessing the Archives: Sources, Subjects, and Subjugation in the African World,” in Black Subjects in Africa and its Diasporas: Race and Gender in Research and Writing, eds. Benjamin Talton and Quincy Mills (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011)

“The Civil Rights-Black Power Nexus in African American History,” History News Network [online], November 11, 2009.

“Henry M. Turner,” in Encyclopedia of African American History: From the Age of Segregation to the Twenty-first Century (1896-2005), ed. Paul Finkelman (New York: Oxford University Press, 2009).

“Euro-African Commerce and Social Chaos: Akan Societies in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries,” History in Africa 36 (2009): 265–92.

“Akan Medicine and Encounters with (Medical) Anthropology in Twentieth Century Africa,” African Studies Quarterly 10, nos. 2-3 (2008)