Saffron Books’ series, Afriscopes: Illustrated Arguments about African Culture, was launched in September 2005 with the publication of the first title in the series, Column to volume: Formal innovation in Chamba statuary, by Richard Fardon and Christine Stelzig. Browse this book | Buy this book
The series ( ISSN 1748-6262) is co-edited by Richard Fardon, Graham Furniss and Francis Nyamnjoh.
Richard Fardon’s volume, Fusions: Masquerades and thought style east of the Niger-Benue confluence, West Africa, followed. Browse this book | Buy this book
According to the editors,
“Afriscopes aims to bring the varied and vibrant world of African expressive cultures to an international audience. Across the continent, in many different accents, people have always created innovative ways to express themselves in music, video, photography, and the plastic arts, and through clothing, architecture, crafts, and the styles of the body. Working and re-working the available expressive media of identity and emotion, artists – craftsmen and ordinary people – have not just captured but shaped daily experiences felt by millions. Whether in the eclectic mix of languages and cultures that make up Africa’s cities or in the sometimes precarious world of rural agricultural life, achieving a view of self and others is a common human concern.
“The richness and complexity of African expressive cultures will be reflected in a series of monographs combining academic study with visual exemplification that allows readers to join their own perceptions with specialist explanation and understanding. Volumes in the series will sometimes provide ancillary material in the form of audio or video data to complement the visual imagery contained with the text. But whether about the past, present or future they will strive to enhance the reader’s appreciation of African expressive cultures.
“Afriscopes will have a seriousness of purpose, distinguishing them from coffee table books, while offering a richness of illustration usually missing from most serious texts on African expressive cultures other than exhibition catalogues.
“The series editors are pleased to launch this collaboration with Saffron Books dedicated to publishing finely illustrated arguments about African cultures, and they may be sent book proposals at the Centre of African Studies of the University of London (write to the Centre of African Studies, SOAS, Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG; or e-mail CAS@SOAS.AC.UK) .”