Philip J. Jaggar: The Blacksmiths of Kano City [PDF]


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A Study in Tradition, Innovation and Entrepreneurship in the twentieth century

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ISBN 978-3-927620-43-8 SKU: 43 Category: Tags: , , , , , ,


X, 110 pp.
6 maps, 7 tables

Text language: English

The present book examines the factors involved in the expansion, during the colonial and post-colonial periods, of a traditional pre-European craft. It discusses the art of blacksmithing in Kano City, northern Nigeria, and its eventual conversion into a modern metalworking industry. In doing so, it challenges the widely-held and simplistic assumption that such traditional professions declined before the economic and technological onslaught of colonialism. The book deals with historical, economical, and ethnographical questions and their relationship to the changes in the craft brought about by alterations in the political landscape. This includes for instance World War II and its implications for the blacksmiths of Kano, the development of a strategy for dealing with imported goods, or the substitution of formerly traditionally produced scrap iron. Numerous biographies of individual blacksmiths enable the reader to take the point of view of the persons concerned as well as of the author.