M. Krings / E. Platte: Living with the Lake – Perspectives on History, Culture and Economy of Lake Chad [PDF]


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SzK Studien zur Kulturkunde Volume 121

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293 pp.
17 maps, 5 drawings, numerous tables and charts

Text language: English

As a water reservoir between desert and savannah, Lake Chad has attracted many immigrating groups and individuals from times immemorial until present. The annual fluctuation of the water level and the flood accompanying that cyclical change gave space for cultivation, fishery and hunting but also room for hide-outs and refuge. The political dynamics of the area is of similar importance. Lake Chad served as crossroads for ruling dynasties and commoners, as a region where new political formations developed but also as a natural barrier which diverted trade and interaction.

Despite its important role in the development of the wider region’s cultural history, the social sciences – unlike the natural sciences – discovered Lake Chad as a rich and promising field of study only comparatively late. The present volume attempts to address this shortcoming in drawing together essays from the academic fields of anthropology, archaeology, geography and history.

Most contributions to this volume originated within the context of the Collaborative Research Centre Cultural Development and History of Languages in the West-African Savannah (1995–2002) at the University of Frankfurt/Main (Germany). The contributors draw on their rich experiences in the field and present both new findings on historical and recent social and cultural transformations, and previously published data in re-interpretation.


Matthias Krings / Editha Platte: Living with the Lake – An Introduction
Heinrich Thiemeyer: Environmental and Climatic History of Lake Chad during the Holocene
Peter Breunig: Environmental Instability and Cultural Change in the Later Prehistory of the Chad Basin
Carlos Magnavita: Zilum – Towards the Emergence of Socio-Political Complexity in the Lake Chad Region
Karsten Brunk / Detlef Gronenborn: Floods, Droughts, and Migrations – The Effects of Late Holocene Lake Level Oscillations and Climate Fluctuations on the Settlement and Political History in the Chad Basin
Gisela Seidensticker-Brikay: Lake Chad – Arabic and European Imagination and Reality
Ulrich Braukämper: Towards a Chronology of Arabic Settlement in the Chad Basin
Nikolaus Schareika: Bush for Beasts – Lake Chad from the Nomadic Wodaabe Point of View
Mohammed Adam: The Chad Basin Development Project – Rise and Fall of a Giant Irrigation Project in West Africa
Matthias Krings: Fishing for Naira – Some Social Trends in Lake Chad Fishery – An Overview
Bärbel Freyer: The Pains of Temporary Sojourning – Igbo Migrants at Lake Chad
Editha Platte: Sex, Drugs and goge – The Amusement Quarter of Jibrillarum
Matthias Krings: Farming the Frontier – Hausa Migrants and the Politics of Belonging on the Former Lake Floor of Lake Chad (Nigeria)

Under these links you will find further paper collections that originated in the context of the Collaborative Research Center 268 “Kulturentwicklung und Sprachgeschichte in der westafrikanischen Savanne” of the universities of Frankfurt am Main/Germany and Maiduguri/Nigeria. Furthermore, you will find studies of the conceptualization of nature, space, landscape and environment in African languages and cultures:

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