Two time winner of the prestigious Herskowits Prize
2005: Jan Vansina, How Societies Are Born: Governance in West Central Africa Before 1600, (University of Virginia Press)
In memoriam: William Allen Brown (1934-2007). Professor Emeritus Brown first began his career at the University of Wisconsin-Madison as a graduate student. His dissertation, “The Caliphate of Hamdullahi, ca. 1818-1864: A Study in African History and Tradition,” (1969), remains the authoritative study of the area. He then published “Toward a Chronology for the Caliphate of Hamdullah,” Cahiers D’etudes Africanines; “A New Bio-bibliographical Aid: ‘The Izalat Al-Rayb’ of Muhammad Boul Araf” and “‘Nasiwal Asudan’: A Guide to Legal History in Mali,” both in the Research Bulletin Center of Arabic Documentation, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria; and Great Rulers of the African Past. In honor of his memory, a group of his friends, colleagues, and alumni/e have launched a drive to establish the William A. Brown Memorial Lecture Fund. Income from the fund will be used to fund an annual lecture on Islam and Islamic Culture in West African History, Professor Brown’s specialty.