By John Iliffe
This background of Africa from the origins of mankind to the South African basic election of 1994 refocuses African historical past at the peopling of an environmentally antagonistic continent. The social, monetary and political associations of the African continent have been designed to make sure survival and maximize numbers, yet within the context of clinical growth and different twentieth-century strategies those associations have bred the main quick inhabitants progress the area has ever obvious. The heritage of the continent is therefore a unmarried tale binding residing Africans to the earliest human ancestors.
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The interval coated during this quantity is one that starts off with the emergence of anti-slave alternate attitudes in Europe, and ends at the eve of ecu colonial conquest. yet aside from white conquests in Algeria and South Africa, and colonies of loose Blacks at the west coast, the topic is that of African independence, initiative and model within the final section of its pre-colonial historical past.
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Additional info for Africans: The History of a Continent (African Studies)
But copper and iron generally occur mixed with other minerals as ore and must be purified of them by smelting at high temperatures. Copper is easier to smelt; the process began in western Asia soon after 4000 bc and was discovered independently in several regions, including pre-Columban America. To smelt iron is more complicated, for iron is usable only if it has certain physical and chemical properties that smelting must produce.
The desiccation that drove food-producers southward into East Africa also impelled southward expansion in the west. During the third millennium bc, declining rainfall in the Sahara obliged its pastoralists either to concentrate in especially favoured areas or to drift southward into the river valleys draining into Lake Chad and the Niger, free now to exploit regions where the bush had hitherto been dense enough to support tsetse flies carrying trypanosomes fatal to cattle. By the first half of the second millennium bc, cattle were herded close to the top of the Niger bend and on the southern shores of Lake Chad.
Copper is easier to smelt; the process began in western Asia soon after 4000 bc and was discovered independently in several regions, including pre-Columban America. To smelt iron is more complicated, for iron is usable only if it has certain physical and chemical properties that smelting must produce.
Africans: The History of a Continent (African Studies) by John Iliffe