Oxford AASC: About Africana

Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African American Experience, Second Edition

Edited by Kwame Anthony Appiah and Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Covers the history and scope of cultural expression of people of African descent.

Ninety years after W. E. B. Du Bois first articulated the need for "the equivalent of a black Encyclopaedia Britannica," Kwame Anthony Appiah and Henry Louis Gates, Jr., realized his vision by publishing Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African American Experience in 1999. This new greatly expanded edition of the original work broadens the foundation provided by the first edition. More than 4,000 articles cover prominent individuals, events, trends, places, political movements, art forms, business and trade, religion, ethnic groups, organizations and countries on both sides of the Atlantic. African American history and culture in the present-day United States receive a strong emphasis, but the history and culture of blacks throughout the rest of the Americas and their origins in Africa itself have an equally strong presence. The articles that make up Africana cover subjects ranging from affirmative action to zydeco and span over six million years from the earliest known hominid fossil, discovered in Chad in 2001, to Sean "P. Diddy" Combs. With entries ranging from the African ethnic groups to members of the Congressional Black Caucus, Africana conveys the history and scope of cultural expression of people of African descent with unprecedented depth.

Kwame Anthony Appiah is the Laurance S. Rockefeller Professor of Philosophy and the University Center for Human Values at Princeton University. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., is W. E. B. Du Bois Professor of Humanities, Chair of Afro-American Studies and Director of the W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for Afro-American Research, Harvard University.