Jonathan Fine


Jonathan Fine

African Art


Jonathan Fine’s work focuses on the history of African art and politics. His dissertation analyzes the corpus of Mandu Yenu thrones from the Bamum kingdom in western Cameroon and the shifts in meaning and agency as well as the production of history associated with the thrones and from the 1880s to the present.

Jonathan holds bachelor’s degrees from the University of Chicago and Cambridge, and a J.D. from Yale. His research on Africa goes back to his legal work, which, in part, concerned territorial disputes in Africa and the Middle East, and the litigation of human rights and constitutional issues in United States courts. He has held numerous fellowships, including a Jacob Javits Fellowship and a Federal Chancellor’s Fellowship from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.

Current Research

In addition to his dissertation, Jonathan is currently working on the political implications of the interface between writing and drawing in the invention of dessins Bamum in Cameroon in the early 20th century.