My Sword and Soul Reference Library

This week I’ll participate on two panels at DragonCon that involve developing alternate histories and stories based on non-European cultures. Inevitably I’m asked to provide a list of books I used for my research. So to make it easy, I’m posting the title and list of every book in my Sword and Soul reference library. This is by no means a comprehensive list. I’ve gathered information from books in various libraries as well as internet articles and conversations with friends and aquaintances from various African countries. I’m sure some will see books on my list they despise  and books that they feel should be included. Please feel free to send me recommendations; my library is constantly growing. So without further ado, here’s my list.

A History of West Africa J.D. Fage
A Treasury of African Folklore Harold Courlander
Africa Adorned Angela Fisher
Africa in History Basil Davidson
African Arms and Armor Christopher Spring
African Art Frank Willet
African Cites and Towns before the European Conquest Richad W. Hull
African Kings Daniel Laine
African Religions and Philosophy John S. Mbiti
Amazons of Black Sparta Stanley B. Alpern
An African Classical Age Christopher Ehret
Ancient African Civilizations – Kush and Axum Stanley Burstein
Ancient Nubia David O’Conner
Daily Life in Ancient and Modern Timbuktu Larry Brooks/Ray Webb
Gassire’s Lute Alta Jablow
Kingdoms of Kush Derek A. Welsby
Kingdoms of the Yoruba Robert S. Smith
Medieval West Africa Nehemia Levtzion/Jay Spaulding
Oya – In Praise of an African Goddess Judith Gleason
Peoples and Empires of West Africa G.T. Stride/C.Ifeka
Precolonial Black Africa Cheikh Anta Diop
Sundiata – An Epic of Old Mali D.T. Niane
Sunjata Bamba Suso/Banna Kanute
Tarikh al fattash Al Hajj Mahmud Kati
Tarikh al Sudan Abd Al Sadi
The African Genius Basil Davidson
The African Knights Conrad Cairns
The Anatomy of the Zulu Army Ian Knight
The Aquarian Guide to African Mythology Jan Knappert
The A-Z of African Proverbs Jan Knappert
The Bamana Empire by the Niger Sundiata A. Djata
The Book of African Names Molefi Kete Asante
The Daily Life of the Nubians Robert Steven Bianchi
The Diwan Revisited Augustin F.C. Holl
The Encyclopedia of African History and Culture Volume II Wille F. Page
The Epic of Askia Mohommed Nouhou Malio/Thomas Hale
The Heart of the Ngoni Harold Courlander
The History of African Cities South of the Sahara Catherine Coquery-Vidrovitch
The Kanuri of Bornu Ronald Cohen
The Lost Cities of Africa Basil Davidson
The Sacred Ifa Oracle Afolabi A. Epega
The Washing of the Spears Donald R. Morris
The World of the Swahili John Middleton
Warfare and Diplomacy in Pre-Colonial West Africa Robert S. Smith
Warfare in Atlantic Africa 1500 – 1800 John K. Thornton
Warfare in the Sokoto Caliphate Joseph P. Smaldone
Warrior Chiefs of Southern Africa Ian Knight
Wonderul Ethiopians of the Ancient Cushite Empire Drusilla Dunjee Houston

Me and DragonCon 2014!

So this year will be my third year attending DragonCon, second as an attending pro. I have five panels this year, but one will not be the Current State of Black Science Fiction.  The powers that be chose not to do it this year despite our standing room only turnout.  I’ll leave it at that. Anyway, here’s my schedule. If you happen to attend drop by and say hi. Most of all, have fun!

Fiction & the Silk Road
Description: Open discussion about scifi & fantasy literature written about and inspired by the Silk Road.
Time: Fri 04:00 pm Location: Piedmont – Hyatt (Length: 1 Hour)

Pulp Fiction
Description: Pulp has made an extraordinary comeback in recent years. We discuss what and why.
Time: Sat 05:30 pm Location: Embassy A-B – Hyatt (Length: 1 Hour)

Race & Gender Issues in Alternate History
Description: Do we pick the best parts of the past and ignore the rest? How do we handle gender and race roles? This discussion panel explores this and more.
Time: Sat 07:00 pm Location: Augusta 3 – Westin (Length: 1 Hour)


Race within SF and Fantasy Media
Description: Is it easier to be an alien than it is to be minority in genre? Be open to ideas and concepts. Let’s keep it friendly though!
Time: Sat 08:30 pm Location: M301-M302 – Marriott (Length: 1 Hour)

Crossculture in History
Description: Non-English and non-American cultures in history focusing on Africa and India. Warning: may blow the mind.
Time: Sun 05:30 pm Location: Augusta 3 – Westin (Length: 1 Hour)