The GENHIS-AFRICA Research Project

How can we rethink reading and writing change in African gender history?

Rethinking African Gender Histories: Time, Change, and the Deeper Past in Northern Mozambique (GENHIS-AFRICA) questions the current ways in which gender is connected to a teleological notion of history. This single narrative categorizes African gender history into three stages: an idealized monolithic precolonial past, a disruptive and oppressive colonial period, and a postcolonial present that focuses on ‘liberation’. GENHIS-AFRICA focuses on oral narratives of pastness in Niassa in northern Mozambique to analyze the gendered ways that deeper historical knowledge is passed from generation to generation. It suggests that looking at how people interpret and relate to the deeper past, and how this knowledge shapes gender identities and trajectories in the present can allow for a more multitemporal understanding of gender history.

GENHIS-AFRICA is based at Ghent University and funded through the Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions – Individual Fellowship scheme.