[T/A Hans Zell Publishing Consultants]

Obaakofo Mmu Man - one man does not rule a nation

'Obaakofo Mmu Man' Kente cloth above courtesy of Kwadwo Boahene



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"A tradition of excellence in African studies reference resources"

In continuation of the Hans Zell Publishers imprint previously part of Bowker-Saur/Reed Reference Publishing (terminated in 1998), Hans Zell Publishing - now operating from a small village in the north-west Scottish Highlands - are developing a new series of information sources on Africa, African studies, and African publishing, published both in print and electronic formats.  

Print vs electronic, and the 'digital revolution' in Africa by Hans M. Zell (Preview version)
This article takes a critical look at the print vs digital debate in Africa, taking stock of the current position as it relates to electronic publishing and the use of electronic reading devices in (English-speaking) sub-Saharan Africa, and the rapidly changing publishing environment on the continent. It describes and critically examines a number of projects and initiatives that are concerned with digital printing and publishing, and provision of e-book reading devices.

The article also touches upon another topic that is closely associated with digital media, namely that of the somewhat contentious area of self-publishing, and the phenomenal rise in digital self-publishing in Africa in recent years.

In an Appendix it offers a review of the now rapidly increasing amount of literature that has been published about digital publishing in Africa over the last year or two.

Now freely accessible
Web search for local communities in the Highlands of Scotland: An online self-tutoring guide
This publication reflects a departure from our traditional publishing programme of reference resources on Africa and African studies. 
Published primarily for local communities in the Highlands of Scotland, this self-tutoring guide and online learning resource is designed to assist you to acquire Web search and evaluation skills, learn about tips and techniques that will improve your searching, and how to explore the Web as a rich information resource. The guide focuses on Google and how to acquire ?Google literacy?, and enables users to learn more about the numerous Google products, tools, and applications, and how to get the most out of Google?s many search services, whether for personal, leisure, or business interests. 

Additionally, the guide also describes a diverse range of other Web search tools that are worth exploring as an alternative or as an adjunct to Google, together with an annotated listing of 100 outstanding websites and resources, grouped under a number of topic headings. The guide consists of a package of 4 self-tutoring modules in PDF format ? each liberally illustrated with screenshots of Google pages and many other websites and resources.
Since January 2013 it is now freely accessible without password and without the need to register. 

The African Studies Companion: A Guide to Information Sources
Print and online
4th revised and expanded edition 
by Hans M. Zell 
The fourth edition of this sine qua non of African studies reference works, thoroughly revised and updated, and greatly expanded. The new edition includes several entirely new sections to further enhance the utility of this rich information resource. It contains a total of over 2,900 for the most part extensively annotated entries, providing a wide array of specifics for each entry. 

The 4th edition print edition is now out-of-print.

Online version of the 4th edition (2006) 
Now free access!

Click here for the new updated edition (2012) 
(paid access, now published by Brill)

Other titles currently available:

Publishing, Books & Reading in Sub-Saharan Africa: A Critical Bibliography
Print and online. Continually updated online. 
by Hans M. Zell With an introductory essay by Henry Chakava

This much acclaimed reference resource charts the growth of publishing and book development in the countries of Africa south of the Sahara, as well as containing a very large number of entries on many other topics as they relate to books and reading in Africa, including digital media and electronic publishing. 

The online version offers access to a database that has now grown to almost 2,800 records at this time, making it the most comprehensive documentation, and ongoing analysis, of the state of the book sector and the ?book chain? in Africa. The database is updated and expanded with many new entries three or four times a year, all with abstracts or critical annotations, and covering books, articles, studies, reports, theses, and Internet documents that have been published since the cut-off date of the 2008 print edition. Select blog postings, as well as video recordings and radio/TV broadcasts are now also included on a regular basis. Additionally, frequent updates are made to listings of organizations and African book professional associations, and agencies, networks, book charities, etc. supporting the book and information sector in Africa.

Africa: A Guide to Reference Material 
2nd revised and expanded edition 
by John McIlwaine, Professor Emeritus of the Bibliography of Asia and Africa, School of Library, Archive and Information Studies, University College London
First published in 1993, this is a new revised and substantially expanded edition of a highly acclaimed reference resource that evaluates the leading sources of information (other than bibliographies) on Africa South of the Sahara. The second edition contains 3,600 for the most part annotated entries, covering encyclopaedias, dictionaries, directories, handbooks, atlases and gazetteers, almanacs, yearbooks, topographic reference sources, directories of organizations, as well as biographical and statistical sources.

Consultancy services
We provide consultancy services to publishers and academic institutions, especially the book community in Africa. We specialize in scholarly publishing, journal publishing management, reference book publishing, and marketing and promotion. 

More about our consultancy services ?


More about us and our consultancy services
About Hans M. Zell
Publishing, Books &
Reading in Sub-Saharan 
Africa: A Critical 
Africa: A Guide to
Reference Material
The African Studies Companion: A Guide to Information Sources
Web search for local communities in the Highlands of Scotland: An online self-tutoring guide 
Old Hans Zell
backlist titles
Some recent books and articles by 
Hans M. Zell
Read review extracts 
about Hans Zell

News & Press
Press Releases
Publish with us
Manuscript proposals
Some Lochcarron & Wester Ross links


[T/A Hans Zell Publishing Consultants]

Glais Bheinn   Lochcarron   
Ross-shire   IV54 8YB Scotland   UK

Telephone: +44-(0)1520-722951   
Email: Web: www.hanszell.co.uk
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