“The most interesting women in the world!” That’s how Claire Robertson
describes African women, and it’s hard to disagree with her after reading Holding the World Together: African Women in Changing Perspective
(University of Wisconsin Press, 2019), co-edited with Nwando Achebe
. In 16 chapters, 19 contributors explore everything from issues of representation in novels and cinema, to political organizing, religious fundamentalism, slavery, love, and sexuality. Each essay is written by an expert in the field, balancing an overview of the scholarship with key examples that portray the diversity of women’s experiences on the continent. Holding the World Together
represents a lively, interdisciplinary effort to invite readers into the fascinating lives of African women, past and present.
Elisa Prosperetti is a Visiting Assistant Professor in African history at Mount Holyoke College. Her research focuses on the connected histories of education and development in postcolonial West Africa. Contact her at: www.elisaprosperetti.net.