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New African economic history is challenging earlier wisdom by showing, for example, that railways have had profound effects, both positive and negative on African societies. Reuters/Thomas Mukoya

The renaissance in understanding Africa’s economic past

African economic history has had a renaissance and its most valuable contribution has been to show that Africans have not always been poor, nor are current poverty levels an inevitable destiny.
Rock star economists have been around for a long time, just like Jon Bon Jovi. Umberto Rotundo/Flickr

Coming to an arena near you – economists, the new rock stars

Brian Cox, Mary Beard, Mick Aston, Niall Ferguson are all (just about) household names. They each have academic success – and their own television programs (“Wonders of the Solar System”, “Meet the Romans…

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