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African Studies: Home

Purpose of this guide

This guide is intended for students and researchers at the University of Oxford seeking support in African Studies, although students and researchers from any field may find it useful.  Use this guide to find out about books, special collections and online resources for African Studies, including ebooks, ejournals,  bibliographic databases and archives.

Finding books for African Studies

Oxford has a wide range of ebooks and printed books for African Studies, including the main reference collection in the Weston Library.  For more detailed information about our book collections visit our books page of this guide.

Key journals

Many journals, as well as being available in print, are available online and can be searched via SOLO. Below are a few of the top journals for African Studies but you can find a longer list on the journals page of this guide.

Key databases

Oxford subscribes to many bibliographic databases. They can be used to locate journal articles, conference proceedings, books, images, data, archives and more. You can find some of the key databases for African Studies below, but take a look at the databases page of this guide for more titles.


The Bodleian Libraries hold a range of manuscripts and archives in print and online which are relevant to the study of Africa. Below are a few key resources but for more detailed information about our archive collections visit the archives page of this guide.

Key news sources

The Bodleian libraries provide access to a wide range of current and historical news sources for African Studies. Key printed African Newspapers including the Cape Times, East African Standard, and the Rhodesia Herald are held in the Weston Library. Browse or search SOLO if you are looking for printed newspapers held in the collections.

Oxford also provides access to current online news sources, subscriptions, analytical materials, and historical newspaper archives. You can find some of the key databases for African Studies below, but take a look at the new sources page of this guide for more titles.

Free online resources

In addition to resources the Bodleian Libraries purchase, there are a number of alternative free online resources to support the study of African Studies.  These include portals, blogs, podcasts, film, links to associations and additional search tools.  Take a look at the free online resources page for links to a selection of these.

Subject Librarian

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Sarah Rhodes
Bodleian Social Science Library,
University of Oxford, Manor Road Building,
+44(0)1865 2-85998

Senior Archivist

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Lucy McCann
Bodleian Library
Weston Library
Broad Street
+44 (0)1865 2-70911

Key libraries


Social Science Library (SSL)

One of the University's busiest lending and reference libraries supports students and staff in the Social Sciences Division, offering a wide range of workspaces, printing & IT facilities, borrowing services, and research support. This, along with the History Faculty Library, is the key lending library for Africa-related books.

The Weston Library 

Houses the main research and reference collections for African Studies. There is a selection of books on open shelves in the Charles Wendell David Reading Room with many additional items available on request for delivery from the Bodleian Storage Facility.

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