African cities demonstrate the failure of models of development with the aim and ideal of industrialization. This course examines the empty promises of modernity through the lens of African urban history using fiction, film, and city archives. Beginning with Timbuctu and Cairo, the course explores the emergence and decline of trade entrepots, the rise of colonial cities, and the dilemmas of postcolonial economies and polities. Dar es Salaam, Nairobi, Kampala, Kinshasa, Harare, Johannesburg, Lagos, Accra, and Dakar are among the cities studied. Designed for those seeking only an introduction to development as well as those with further ambitions, it assumes no previous knowledge of Africa.