School of Social Sciences

Humanities Academics Publish The Oxford Handbook of the Sociology of Africa


Professor Radhamany Sooryamoorthy from the School of Social Sciences and Professor Ernest Khalema, the Dean and Head of the School of Built Environment and Development Studies, recently edited a timely volume: The Oxford Handbook of the Sociology of Africa, published by Oxford University Press, New York.

‘The volume originated as there is a gap for a book on the sociology of Africa that compiles a range of sociological areas pertinent to the study of African societies. No book on African sociology that covers different key areas of sociology written from a decolonial mindset is currently available on the market. Publications on the sociologies in some countries exist on the continent, which is not enough either to develop a sociology of Africa or to gain a sociological understanding of African societies,’ explained Sooryamoorthy.

‘The volume for the first time compiles the works of social scientists that make a significant contribution to the advancement of African sociology. The volume incorporates the sociological contributions made by scholars across other disciplinary backgrounds and (is) influenced by sociological thinking on the continent and its diaspora around the world toward understanding African societies. The volume is significant for both Africa and for sociology as a discipline by presenting current debates, perspectives, and approaches to the study of African societies in major realms,’ said Khalema.

The Handbook comprises a series of scholarly and interdisciplinary perspectives on current debates over how best to unpack sociological imaginations in the African context. It illuminates the particularity of African lives, the unique contextual challenges, and the resourcefulness with which challenges are being negotiated and mitigated.

The book is structured into seven sections covering themes such as the context and perspectives; race, ethnicity, and religion; gender, sexuality, and intersectionality; medical sociology: political economy and development; crime and violence; and the family and education.

The online version of the book is available at:

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