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The Oxford Handbook of Modern African History

Colonialism was predicated on the negation of African history or, as one of the two editors of this volume, John Parker, wrote in his African History: A Very Short Introduction (2007): a ‘general European perception [...] that Africa, especially Sub-Saharan Africa, had no history to speak of’. The emergence of sub-Saharan African history in both western and African universities is thus squarely to be placed in the context of decolonisation and what contributor Jean Allman describes as the ‘nationalist fervour of the 1950s and 1960s’.Read more »
More articles by Giacomo Macola

Edward III and the Triumph of England

There aren’t enough books on Edward III. Decades of neglect have left his achievement obscured by huge clouds of pungent hot air generated by Victorian scholars, who were determined to label him a high-taxing, anti-free-trade warmonger. In my opinion he ranks among the most important leaders in the history of the western world for the impetus he personally gave to projectile warfare and the idea of nationalism. Although Barber does not directly deal with these aspects in his book, he too recognises that the achievement of the English under Edward was truly remarkable.Read more »

Ian Mortimer is author of The Perfect King: the Life of Edward III (Vintage, 2008).

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Video: West Germany Win the 1954 World Cup

Germany and Portugal will make their debut in the 2014 World Cup later today when they meet in the city of Salvador, Brazil.

This year marks the 60th anniversary of Germany's first World Cup win, as the country (then known as West Germany) defeated a fancied Hungarian side in Switzerland to lift the Jules Rimet trophy. You can watch highlights from the match above, including rarely-seen colour footage beginning at the 0:51 mark.

Dean Nicholas is the digital manager at History Today and a former editor at Londonist.

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Disabled Children During the Second World War

Physical and mental disabilities have existed as long as life itself, but historians have paid little attention to them. On the other hand, much has been written about the evacuation of British children in the Second World War, but rarely mentioned are the large numbers of disabled children involved, their experiences and treatment, and the impact on perceptions of them. This is changing, as Sue Wheatcroft’s book attests.Read more »
More articles by Pat Thane

Remaking the Male Body

Gaston Doumergue, president of the Third Republic from 1924 to 1931, would wake at 5 am, throw himself into a vigorous regime of physical culture before taking a brisk hour-long walk, believing it helped him cope with the rigours of presidential office. Around the same time, working-class Marcel Hansenne was growing up as a scrawny, knobbly-kneed child in the industrial town of Tourcoing, north of Lille. Friends and bullies sarcastically nicknamed him ‘Hercules’. He later claimed that athleticism was responsible for his success as France’s 800m Olympic bronze medallist.Read more »
More articles by Joanna Bourke

Confronting Amnesia and Political Change in the Arab World

Poster for They Are The DogsThey Are the Dogs is one of the most remarkable films to come out of the Middle East and North Africa in the past decade. Directed by Hicham Lasri, it confronts political revolution in contemporary Morocco as Casablanca spills out into the screen – chaotic, unnerving and above all angry.

More articles by Martin Evans
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