New Books Network

Nwando Achebe and Claire Robertson

Holding the World Together

African Women in Changing Perspective

University of Wisconsin Press 2019

New Books in African StudiesNew Books in Gender StudiesNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Politics & Society August 5, 2020 Elisa Prosperetti

“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 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.