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Education in Africa is not new. Through a series of comparative case studies within the continent and the adjacent islands, this panel will draw an overview of how Education played a major role in the African societies. We will especially consider: 1. The different types of educative systems and transmission of knowledge during pre-colonial times; 2. The role of education in the development of a new colonial society; 3. The kind of social place and social mobility reached in that new context; 4. The creation of original identities due to education in these different contexts, shaped by different religions (socially and politically). We will pay close attention to the trajectories of individuals and/or groups evolving within this specific context that had a major impact on their identity, social status and standard of living.