Call for Papers: History of African Population and Health: Data, Methods & Comparisons

Session proposal for the 5th Conference of the European Society of Historical Demography

Date: August 30 – September 2, 2023

Location: Radboud University Nijmegen, the Netherlands

Submission deadline: 29 November 2022

Call for papers:

Papers are invited in the broad area of African Population and Health History. We encourage submissions of papers which describe and engage with the availability and usability of data sources for historical demography and the history of health, healing and medicine in Africa. Studies which consider the origins and purposes of sources and interrogate their uses and subsequent meanings for (quantitative) reconstruction are welcome.

Submissions might also engage with the benefits of mixed-methods research, describing how multiple sources and approaches can be used to test and underpin estimates of past population dynamics. Evidence-based reflections on the importance of furthering understanding of African population history are welcome. Such reflections might consider the role of African population and health history from the perspective of comparative global or comparative African history, from the perspective of current demographic developments in the region, or from the point of view of contemporary global health inequalities.

How might improving understanding of Africa’s demographic past challenge assumptions and generalities in current and historic global development discourses? Work that engages with postcolonial and critical approaches, the history of health, healing and medicine in Africa, and the history of global health, as well as their interactions are encouraged.

We especially seek papers which speak to the diversity of demographic and health-related change in Africa over the longue durée, including its interaction with political, economic, sociocultural and environmental factors.