Listed below are some wonderful books about Mali, its people, cultures, politics, and history. Most are scholarly and written in English. If you’d like to recommend a book that doesn’t appear here, please leave a comment at the bottom of the page.


Rémi Carayol, Le mirage sahélien : La France en guerre en Afrique. Serval, Barkhane et après ?


Attaher A. Maïga, Entre Terrorisme et Militaires Etrangers : Quels devenirs pour l’armée malienne ?

Ophélie Rillon, Le Genre de la Lutte : Une autre histoire du Mali contemporain (1956-1991)


Monique Bertrand, Bamako : De la ville à l’agglomération

Candace Keller, Imaging Culture: Photography in Mali, West Africa

Dorothea Schulz, Political Legitimacy in Postcolonial Mali

Laura Ann Twagira, Embodied Engineering: Gendered Labor, Food Security, and Taste in 20th-Century Mali


Camilla Toulmin, Land, Investment and Migration: Thirty-five Years of Village Life in Mali

Marc-Antoine Pérouse de Montclos, Une Guerre Perdue : La France au Sahel.


Michael Gomez, African Dominion: A New History of Empire in Early and Medieval West Africa

Choguel Kokalla Maïga, Les Rébellions au Nord du Mali : Des origines à nos jours


Rosa de Jorio, Cultural Heritage in Mali in the Neoliberal Era


Jaimie Bleck, Education and Empowered Citizenship in Mali

Ryan Skinner, Bamako Sounds: The Afropolitan Ethics of Malian Music

Greg Mann, From Empire to NGOs in the West African Sahel: The Road to Nongovernmentality

Emily Burrill, States of Marriage: Gender, Justice, and Rights in Colonial Mali


Sarah Brett-Smith, The Silence of the Women: Bamana Mud Cloths in Mali

Jean-Christophe Notin, La Guerre de la France au Mali


Andy Morgan, Music, Culture, and Conflict in Mali


Dorothea Schulz, Muslims and New Media in West Africa: Pathways to God

Judith Scheele, Smugglers and Saints of the Sahara: Regional Connectivity in the Twentieth Century


Robert Fowler, A Season in Hell: My 130 Days in the Sahara with Al Qaeda

Cheick M. Chérif Keita, Outcast to Ambassador: The Musical Odyssey of Salif Keita

Brian J. Peterson, Islamization from Below: The Making of Muslim Communities in Rural French Sudan, 1880-1960


Baz Lecocq, Disputed Desert: Decolonisation, Competing Nationalisms and Tuareg Rebellions in Northern Mali


Marie Rodet. Les migrantes ignorées du Haut-Sénégal (1900-1946)


Molly Roth, Ma Parole S’achête: Money, Identity, and Meaning in Malian Jeliya

Daouda Gary-Tounkara, Migrants soudanais/maliens et conscience ivoirienne : Les étrangers en Côte d’Ivoire (1903-1980)


Kris Holloway, Monique and the Mango Rains: Two Years with a Midwife in Mali


Benjamin F. Soares, Islam and the Prayer Economy: History and Authority in a Malian Town


Saskia Brand, Mediating Means and Fate: A Socio-Political Analysis of Fertility and Demographic Change in Bamako, Mali


Banning Eyre, In Griot Time: An American Guitarist in Mali

4 Responses to Bookshelf

  1. Marie says:

    I believe it’s Andy Morgan and not Martin.
    You can also add my book: Les migrantes ignorées du Haut-Sénégal (1900-1960) (Paris: Karthala).

    • brucewhitehouse says:

      Nothing wrong with a little self-promotion… and you’re right, I’ll fix Andy’s last name. Andy Martin is a different writer!

  2. Marie says:

    Daouda Gary-Tounkara (2008) Migrants soudanais/maliens et conscience ivoirienne. Les étrangers en Côte d’Ivoire (1903-1980 ). Paris: L’Harmattan.

  3. Hello Bruce, I’ve been enjoying your blog, and just wondered if you might be interested in my book, which is coming out soon. It’s called ‘The Timbuktu School for Nomads’, and it’s about my journeys in Morocco, Mauritania and especially Mali. It delves into the history and culture of various nomadic communities, from the Tuareg and Berabiche around Timbuktu, to Fulani communities in Central Mali, Bozo on the Niger and Moors, Saharawis & Berber/Amazighen in Mauritania and Morocco. Cheers, Nick

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