Schlettwein, Carl

by Celine Graber

Carl Schlettwein founded the Basler Afrika Bibliographien (BAB) in 1971 with the purpose of providing bibliographical information on Namibia in particular. Originally from Germany, he had lived in former South West Africa (today Namibia) during the 1950s and early 1960s before settling in Basel in 1964. By the 1980s his Namibia library was regarded as the most extensive library outside Southern Africa, not the least due to the Namibian National Bibliography (NNB) project of the 1970s. As a publisher he initiated numerous publications and series, including the ‘Mitteilungen/Communications’ (1971-1991), the ‘Nachrichten/Newsletter’ (1977-1991), ‘Geomethodica’ (1976-1995) and the ‘Beiträge zur Afrikakunde’ (1978-1993). With the establishment of the Carl Schlettwein Foundation in 1994, the BAB has established itself as ‘Namibia Resource Centre and Southern Africa Library’ in Switzerland and maintains numerous transnational partnerships and cooperations.

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