African military history has only recently come into its own as an acknowledged and viable academic field of considerable variety, scope and sophistication. This study attempts to situate it in the broader context of historical writing. It is argued that African military history is the product of several converging and overlapping fields of history, each with its own trajectory and characteristic source base. These are War Studies including both the traditional or “old” military history along with the “new military history” which has been gaining traction since the 1980s, imperial history, and African history itself. The suggestion is made that two related elements of the new military history are particularly pertinent to the military history of Africa: military culture and masculinity.
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