Textiles in Africa

  • Gloria T. Emeagwali
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-4425-0_8884

Historians of African textiles now have at their disposal a wide range of oral and written documented sources. These describe significant centers of textile production over time, the raw materials, implements, and techniques used by the various cloth producers, varieties of fabric and techniques of dyeing and coloration, symbolic expression as reflected in the finished products, and the many functions for which the latter were used. The process of technological transfer within various parts of the continent and the elaborate structure of guilds and schools of apprenticeship are also better known to us as a result of the systematic collection of oral history in some areas.

From the Northeast African Nile region to West Africa and elsewhere, travel reports, missionary reports, and even autobiographies have provided details about aspects of the development of cloth making techniques. Herodotus in his travels in Egypt as far as the first cataract obtained specific knowledge about the...

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg New York 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gloria T. Emeagwali

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