Purpose of AODL
AODL provides free universal access to cultural heritage materials from and about African countries and communities. It brings together tens of thousands of digitized photographs, videos, archival documents, maps, interviews and oral histories in numerous African languages, many of which are contained in curated thematic galleries and teaching resources.
AODL is aimed at a broad international constituency, from university researchers and secondary school teachers to individuals seeking to inform themselves about African people on the continent and in the diaspora.
Who is using AODL?The vast geographic coverage and breadth of digital materials contained in AODL allow researchers, students, and curious users to explore a variety of African experiences and gain a nuanced understanding about African people's lives, histories, and cultures.
25,000 unique monthly users in South Africa, the U.S., and internationally visit Overcoming Apartheid: Building Democracy in South Africa, an educational web resource. Through African Oral Narratives, language learners access audio and video interviews and oral histories in African languages ranging from Twi (Ghana) to Amharic (Ethiopia) and Tswana (South Africa and Botswana). The Africa Past and Present podcast has listeners in 131 countries; it features interviews with African Studies scholars, authors, and activists. Finally, advanced undergraduates and graduate students mine original source materials from AODL collections like the Community Video Trust Archive and the African Activist Archive for research projects, presentations, and publications.