Joseph Ki-Zerbo

Joseph Ki- Zerbo ( born June 21, 1922 in Toma, Upper Volta, now Burkina Faso, † December 4, 2006 in Ouagadougou ) was an historian and politician from the West African nation of Burkina Faso. In France, he studied at the Sorbonne and at the Institut d' études politiques de Paris history and politics. He became professor of history in Orléans and Paris, finally returned in 1957 back to Africa and became politically active. From 1972 to 1978 he was Professor of African History at the University of Ouagadougou. In 1983 he had to go into exile in Senegal and was until 1992 to return.

In 1994 he founded the Social Democratic Party Parti pour la démocratie et le progrès / Socialist Party (PDP / PS ) for which he 2006 a deputy in parliament Burkinabe was until August and chaired position he held until 2005.

Ki- Zerbo was awarded in 1997 for his work as a historian and for his analysis of African problems with the Right Livelihood Award. He was together with Adu Boahen from Ghana and KF Ayaji Ade from Nigeria as the most important black African historian.

Ki- Zerbo was socialist and an advocate of an independent development of Africa and of the unity of the continent.


  • Histoire de l' Afrique noire. Libraire Hatier, Paris, 1978 ( The History Black Africa. Wuppertal in 1979 and Frankfurt 1981)
  • Le Monde africain noir. Libraire Hatier, Paris 1964