Power and Landscape in Atlantic West Africa

J. Cameron Monroe, Akinwumi Ogundiran

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

27 Scopus citations


The Atlantic Era, which spanned the seventeenth through the nineteenth centuries, was a period of intense commercial integration linking key economic players in Western Europe, the Americas, the Indian Ocean littorals, and much of West and Central Africa. The period was marked by dramatic increases in the volume of commerce at both the regional and global levels (Curtin 1998), and both the nature and the structure of political organization in all of these core areas was transformed radically. In fact, it is arguable that few communities on earth escaped the wide-reaching effects of commercial expansion and integration in this period (Wolf 1982). In North Atlantic Europe, the rising tides of commerce led to the emergence of a mercantile class, destabilizing feudal power structures and leading to the modern capitalist nation-states of the West. The Americas were transformed into an economic extension of Europe through colonization. Colonial polities thrived in North and South America by exploiting the mineral and agricultural resources that fueled commercial transformations across the entire Atlantic Basin. West Africa was not excluded from these political and economic transformations, the regional manifestations of which are the subject of this volume.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPower and Landscape in Atlantic West Africa
Subtitle of host publicationArchaeological Perspectives
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages46
ISBN (Electronic)9780511921032
ISBN (Print)9781107009394
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)


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