War in Pre-Colonial Eastern Africa examines the nature and objectives of violence in the region in the nineteenth century. It is particularly concerned with highland Ethiopia and the Great Lakes. It will be of use to those interested in military history and to anyone involved in modern development and conflict resolution seeking to understand the deeper historical roots of African warfare.
I THEORY & CONTEXT African War in Historical & Theoretical Perspective Antiquity & Inheritance Restorative Violence & the Weight of History
II ARMIES Tools & Tactics Organisation & Function
III PROCESS, IMPACT & CULTURE Cost & Profit War & Economic Change Violence & Society The Resolution & Avoidance of Conflict The Culture of Conflict Conclusions: War & the Making of State & Society
“An important and thoughtful overview that reminds us that African military history is worth studying in its own right, and that it illuminates much else about ‘state and society.’”
— African Studies Review
“(A) much needed counterpart to studies already done on precolonial warfare in other geographical regions of Africa.... Through well-organized chapters, Reid shows how the East African societies...had a refined sense of the meaning of warfare and its influence on identity, respect, royal inheritance, nationhood, and community.”
— International Journal of African Historical Studies