Africa supplies the majority of the world's diamonds, yet consumers generally know little about the origins and history of these precious stones beyond sensationalized media accounts of so-called blood diamonds.
Stones of Contention explores the major developments in the remarkable history of Africa's diamonds, from the first stirrings of international interest in the continent's mineral wealth in the first millennium A.D. to the present day. In the European colonial period, the discovery of diamonds in South Africa ushered in an era of unprecedented greed during which monopolistic enterprises exploited both the mineral resources and the indigenous workforce. In the aftermath of World War II, the governments of newly independent African states, both democratic and despotic, joined industry giant De Beers and other corporations to oversee and profit from mining activity on the continent.
The book also considers the experiences of a wide array of Africans - from informal artisanal miners, company mineworkers, and indigenous authorities to armed rebels, mining executives, and premiers of mineral-rich states - and their relationships to the stones that have the power to bring both wealth and misery. With photos and maps, Stones of Contention illustrates the scope and complexity of the African diamond trade as well as its impact on individuals and societies.
Click to the right or left of the sample to turn the page.
(If no book jacket appears in a few seconds, then we don't have an excerpt of this book or your browser is unable to display it)
"Starred Review. Cleveland's work is necessarily accessible and important, as diamonds will continue to play a prominent role in world events." - Publishers Weekly
"Stones of Contention is the best introduction to the history of diamond-mining in Africa - short and easy-to-read." - Stephen Ellis, Desmond Tutu Professor of Youth, Sport, and Reconciliation, Faculty of Social Sciences, Vrije University, Amsterdam, and author of Season of Rains: Africa in the World
"Todd Cleveland expertly mines the social, political and economic history of Africa's diamond industry, explaining the phenomenon of 'blood diamonds,' the regulatory efforts of the past decade and a growing sense of optimism that these 'stones of contention' may, at long last, contribute to meaningful development." - Ian Smillie, author of Blood on the Stone: Greed, Corruption and War in the Global Diamond Trade and Diamonds
The information about Stones of Contention shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.
Todd Cleveland is an assistant professor of history at Augustana College (Illinois). He has been a Fulbright scholar in both Angola and Ghana. He is the author of numerous book chapters and articles on the history of diamond mining and on soccer within the former Portuguese empire in Africa.
Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!
A classic is a book that has never finished saying what it has to say
Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!
Solve this clue:
and be entered to win..
Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.
Your guide toexceptional books
BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.