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  • Hodder & Stoughton

African Europeans: An Untold History

Olivette Otele

8 Reviews

Rated 0

General & world history, European history, African history, History: earliest times to present day, Social & cultural history, Ethnic minorities & multicultural studies

A dazzling history of Africans in Europe, revealing their unacknowledged role in shaping the continent.

A Guardian Best Book of 2020

A History Today Book of the Year, 2020

Renowned historian Olivette Otele uncovers the untold history of Europeans of African descent, from Saint Maurice who became the leader of a Roman legion and Renaissance scholar Juan Latino, to abolitionist Mary Prince and the activist, scholars and grime artists of the present day. Tracing African European heritage through the vibrant, complex, and often brutal experiences of individuals both ordinary and extraordinary, she sheds new light not only on the past but also on questions very much alive today - about racism, identity, citizenship, power and resilience. African Europeans is a landmark celebration of this integral, vibrantly complex slice of European history, and will redefine the field for years to come.

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Praise for African Europeans: An Untold History

  • This is a book that all must read now. This story has been lived not just for centuries but for millennia, all the while being consistently suppressed, denied or untold. Searing scholarship and heightened humanity combine to illuminate, appal, explore and ultimately inspire

  • Fascinating . . . One of the book's great pleasures is its cast of memorable characters [and] though this is a work of synthesis, it's an unusually generous and densely layered one

  • People of African heritage have contributed greatly to Europe's music, literature and more. But their achievements have long been overlooked . . . African Europeans works to bring more of this past to public attention

  • Fascinating. Otele reconnects us with the men and women who came from Africa to shape European history: rulers, diplomats, slaves and soldiers-above all, our ancestors

  • Superbly researched . . . This richly layered history brims with stories of how African Europeans contributed to the culture, politics and language in the countries they lived in . . . This book is more than just the stories of interesting lives; it is also a careful study of the scholarship on these individuals

  • A thrilling, informative read

  • A brilliant, important and beautifully written book that forces us to think about the past differently

  • Yoking together the ''African'' and the ''European'', too often treated as entirely separate categories, Otele skilfully invites her reader to navigate the multiple intersecting worlds inhabited by her characters. This is fundamentally reparative writing that undoes the cultivated ignorance around race and blackness in Europe and shows us what is irrefutably true that black history is European history, indeed, world history

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Olivette Otele

Olivette Otele is Professor of the History of Slavery at the University of Bristol and Vice-President of the Royal Historical Society. She is an expert on the history of people of African descent and the links between memory, geopolitics and legacies of French and British colonialism.

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