Open Access Open Access  Restricted Access Subscription Access

The American View of Africa in the 1960's

Volodymyr Latenko


Based on dissertation researches on Congo and Nigeria.

The author of the article attempts to analyze the scientific achievements of American researchers on the subject of Africa in the 1960s, using the example of two countries in the region – the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Nigeria. In both countries, which decolonized in 1960 and embarked on an independent path of development, during the first decade of their existence, various stormy events took place that shook the entire region and largely reflected on processes in other parts of the continent. Therefore, these countries are a particularly striking example on the basis of which this study was conducted. Based on a thorough review of the dissertations on the list, developed and defended in the United States by different generations of researchers over the course of half a century, the main priorities and areas of interest to the American scientific community have been identified. Although this paper does not claim to be a comprehensive and complete analysis, statistics based on available material are systematized in chronological and thematic dimensions. In particular, the events and phenomena of the history of the Congo and Nigeria, which particularly attracted the attention of American scholars, are highlighted. Predictably, the lion's share of the research was devoted to the events of the Congolese crisis of 1960-1965, as well as the civil war for Biafra independence that unfolded in Nigeria. At the same time, it is found that most researchers were not so interested in the fate of the African countries themselves as the role and place of the United States in the region, their foreign policy, and the advancement of American national interests.


Congolese Crisis; Civil War

Full Text:


Biafran War Database.
Editor: Azuka Nzegwu.

Published by Africa Resource Center, Inc. All inquiries about rights, permissions, reprints and license should be directed to AfricaResource.

Copyright © Africa Resource Center, Inc., 1999 - .