In this revealing new book, Boas and Dunn explore the phenomenon of 'autochthony' in contemporary African politics. Autochthony discourses enable the speaker to establish a direct claim to territory by the assertion of being an original inhabitant, a native - literally a 'son of the soil.' In contemporary Africa, questions concerning origin - in the case of autochthony literally a 'son of the soil' - are currently among the most crucial and contested issues in political life, directly relating to the politics of place, belonging, identity and contested citizenship. Thus, land claims and autochthony disputes are the hallmark of political crises in many places on the African continent. Examining the often complex reasons behind this recent rise of autochthony across a number of high-profile case studies - including the Democratic Republic of Congo, Cote d'Ivoire, Liberia, and Kenya - this is an essential book for anyone wishing to understand the impact of this crucial issue on contemporary African politics and conflicts.