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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Continuity, Revolution or Evolution on the Slave Coast of West Africa? Royal Architecture and Political Order in Precolonial Dahomey
Author:Monroe, J. CameronISNI
Year:2007
Periodical:The Journal of African History
Volume:48
Issue:3
Period:November
Pages:349-373
Language:English
Geographic term:Benin
Subjects:Dahomey polity
political history
State formation
archaeology
architecture
palaces
History and Exploration
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Politics and Government
Anthropology and Archaeology
Architecture and the Arts
Ethnic and Race Relations
External link:http://ejournals.ebsco.com/direct.asp?ArticleID=4FE2B082113B31F416AD
Abstract:The Kingdom of Dahomey has played a central role in our understanding of political organization in West Africa in the era of the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Research has focused on two major questions: whether or not Dahomey possessed revolutionary qualities that allowed it to maintain order in this turbulent era, and the role of militarism in fostering stability. Mounting archaeological evidence from the Republic of Bénin can contribute to our understanding of Dahomean political dynamics over time. Spatial patterns in royal palace construction, materialized regionally and architecturally, are examined in this essay. These data suggest that Dahomey achieved real administrative advances in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, including the expansion of regional control and the successful integration of a complex administrative hierarchy. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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