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Sub-Saharan Africa. Geography East Africa West Africa. Geography: Sub-Sahara. The plateau: “upside down bowl” – rivers flowing to the sea have rapids. Nile – cataracts Zambezi – Victoria Falls Sahara Desert: north ¼ of Africa – natural barrier – Mediterranean coast – lower 3/4.

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sub saharan africa

Sub-Saharan Africa

Geography

East Africa

West Africa

geography sub sahara
Geography: Sub-Sahara
  • The plateau: “upside down bowl” – rivers flowing to the sea have rapids.
  • Nile – cataracts
  • Zambezi – Victoria Falls
  • Sahara Desert: north ¼ of Africa – natural barrier – Mediterranean coast – lower 3/4
geography continued
Geography continued
  • Sahel region: southern edge of Sahara Desert – little rainfall – harsh droughts – poor farming and herding difficult.
  • Savannas: large grasslands - sorghum, millet, rice - cereals/bread; herd cattle, Masai: cattle for wealth, trade, “bride price”
  • Tropical rainforests: 100” rain; diseases – malaria, yellow fever, river blindness, and sleeping sickness
geography continued7
Geography continued
  • Great Rift Valley: Tectonic Plates slowing pulling apart – Chapter 1: Leakey Family and finds of early hominids (Lucy) Ethiopia
  • Kalahari, Namid Deserts - South
early culture
Early Culture
  • Great diversity: 1,000 ethnic groups, four major languages
  • Bantu language: migration pattern – west Africa to east – central and south Africa – major language group
  • Griots: Oral historians – family, clan, tribe – story tellers, moral lesson, entertainment
early culture11
Early Culture
  • Small villages: farming, herding, fishing
  • No advanced irrigation, community centered, mud, brick, straw, clay, stylized and decorative
  • Matrilineal: trace ancestors through mother, property – strong influence
  • Religion: animists – spiritual world – places, animals, nature (sun, moon)
kush kingdom in the east
Caravans: Gold, ebony, ivory, & Ostrich feathers

Meroe: “iron”

pyramids, temples, pottery, metal ornaments, & written language

Kush: Kingdom in the East
aksum 100 bc 650 ad
Location: trade with Red Sea and African interior: ivory, gold & exotic animal hides

Decline: Due to Arab traders re-organizing the trade routes

Aksum: 100 BC – 650 AD
axum christianity ethiopian christianity
Axum: Christianity & Ethiopian Christianity
  • King Ezana – after years of influence with Christian world – trade – missionaries became isolated by Arab traders
  • Ethiopia – isolated due to highlands –
  • King Labibela – had churches built
bantu
Bantu
  • Linguistic group: various adaptations: Tutsi – cattle; cash-crops; The Nok (Nigeria): iron workers & lost wax bronze work; Congo: hard wood – fire for iron
  • Shared characteristics: higher deity; ceremonial carved masks & other icons, family centered, balance with nature; age grades & gender division (education); rites of adulthood; Gender division in labor; male adult government participation – varied governments
west africa
Gold and Salt; ivory, slaves, jewels, copper

Timbuktu: center of learning

Mansa Musa: Muslim on a pilgrimage to Mecca

West Africa
ghana 750 1076
Ghana:750 - 1076
  • Gold (Volta R) – salt trade (Sahara) also - copper, ivory and some slaves
  • 1076, the Almoravids, a Muslim group, conquered Ghana
mali 1200 to present
Mali: 1200 to present
  • Rise: strategically located between the West African gold mines agriculturally rich Niger River floodplain
  • Mansa Musa, most famous Malian Emperor elaborate pilgrimage to Mecca
  • Decline: Due to Rise of Songhai in late 1400s
songhai 1375 1591
Songhai: 1375 - 1591
  • Rise: Conquered region from Mali – Major trade route – gold – salt
  • Decline: Civil War weakened state – Conquered by Moroccan army -
eastern trading nations
Cultural Diffusion: Arabs traders, merchants spread Islam by 700s

Interior: Gold, Ivory, hides

India, SE Asia, China: cotton, silk, glassware, spices, porcelain

Swahili: Bantu language with Arabic and Persian influences - culture: architecture, dress, food

Eastern Trading Nations

Eastern Cities

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