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What if Africa became Imperial?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by lcm1 View Post
    I believe you are a bit of a stirer mate!!

    a bit.

    that said, africa WAS imperial.

    african kingdoms - some of which were vastly richer than european ones - were ruthless and brutal and fought for dominance and expansion without pause for centuries one against the other - mostly over land on which to rampage and seize slaves. 99% of all slaves were captured and sold by African kingdoms that made fortunes on this trade. (40% of slaves "for export" went to the atlantic trade and 60% to the arab merchant - as for "internal" slavery - that still goes on today, no one knows how many millions suffered that fate)
    "Freedom cannot exist without discipline, self-discipline, and rights cannot exist without duties. Those who do not observe their duties do not deserve their rights."--Oriana Fallaci

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    • #17
      Looking at the map I notice the areas south of the wet equitorial region were sparsely inhabited into the 17th or 18th Centurys. Also those areas did not host populations with much of the industrial technology of that era, or many urban centers. The cities of the Zimbabwe area are the one example i'm aware of. Were there others?

      The regions adjacent to and south of the Kalahari Desert have a better climate than the Equitorial regions, some agricultural land, and mineral wealth. Why was there not a large population with a higher developed agriculture and urban/industrial development present in this region.

      Or was there such a population and its existance in not published in the modern literature?

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      • #18
        Originally posted by piero1971 View Post
        a bit.

        that said, africa WAS imperial.

        african kingdoms - some of which were vastly richer than european ones - were ruthless and brutal and fought for dominance and expansion without pause for centuries one against the other - mostly over land on which to rampage and seize slaves. 99% of all slaves were captured and sold by African kingdoms that made fortunes on this trade. (40% of slaves "for export" went to the atlantic trade and 60% to the arab merchant - as for "internal" slavery - that still goes on today, no one knows how many millions suffered that fate)
        You have put more eloquently than myself the same thing that I said when the subject first came up for debate, they were to busy fighting among themselves.
        'By Horse by Tram'.


        I was in when they needed 'em,not feeded 'em.
        " Youuu 'Orrible Lot!"

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        • #19
          some African Empires that come to mind were the Mali empire of the 13th and 14th centuries - the current S&T magazine has an article on this one....- the Ashanti empire, the Shona (ok, smaller and they did not even invent the wheel, nor iron...)

          Morocco, was also quite powerful for almost a thousand years... but of course it's north africa.

          Ethiopia was also at many times quite strong

          and of course the Meroe Kingdom conquerred for 80 years ancient Egypt and thus there was a dynasty of black pharoas (this is what some crazy pan-africanists use as a base to say that ALL ancient egyptians were African, that Africans discovered america, invented filosophy (later stolen by the greeks etc.) and much of that nonsense...)...


          one has to remember what is the dominant culture in africa then as now. it's not one of charity, niceties and peacefulness, it's based on:

          - family and tribal loyalty
          - force
          - prestige

          that explains a lot the current state of African affairs. western colonization, while morally wrong and a financial folly, brought incredible goods to Africa (tens of thousands of schools, hospitals... hundreds of thousands of km of roads, train tracks, etc.) - but the sad problem was that Africa was not ready to receive them. nor is now.
          "Freedom cannot exist without discipline, self-discipline, and rights cannot exist without duties. Those who do not observe their duties do not deserve their rights."--Oriana Fallaci

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Carl Schwamberg View Post
            You mean in contrast to the unity Europe achived between the fall of Rome and ... 1945?

            Back in my university days thirty years ago I took a couple semesters of Africa history. Simple survey courses. One clear point was the lack of English language publication about African civilizations. The instructor drew the vast majority of his information from publications in other languages. Much information about civilization in Africa and particularly sub Saharan Africa did not seem to be available in English.

            A second point rested on the constant three way interchange of trade, technology, ideas, and general culture between Africa, Europe, and the Middle East through history. The view that this interchange flowed only towards Africa and never the opposite direction became a dominate view, which still colors modern English language discourse, particularly in the US. Another professor of the Classical Greek and Roman age suggested you cant look at that era in terms of African, or European or Middle Eastern, but rather as a "Mediterranian" civilization.

            Third has been the modern perspective of judging 'civilization' against the guage of the 19th Century industrial revolution of Europe and North America and 20th Century industrial development. Compare the general or brod view of 17th, 12th, or 8th Century Africa, Europe & the Middle East and the differnces are much smaller.

            Last the view is distorted by the vast changes wrought by the colonial era begaining in the 19th Century. Both the economic and cultural changes and the replacement of older African culture with European & Middle Eastern culture obscures the pre 19th Century picture.
            all very true, especially the part in bold. there is good litterature in french, a great author is Bernard Lugan - and some of his books have been now translated in English.
            "Freedom cannot exist without discipline, self-discipline, and rights cannot exist without duties. Those who do not observe their duties do not deserve their rights."--Oriana Fallaci

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            • #21
              It wouldn't be worse than it is.
              "The spirit is willing, but the flesh is spongy and bruised"
              Zap Brannigan. Futurama

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              • #22
                Originally posted by cecilia View Post
                It wouldn't be worse than it is.
                you have to be optimistic : it can always be worse.

                seriously, the question is, worse for who? for them, for us (who have to keep bailing them out from our tax money - and ther's a billion of them starving , uneducated, fast reproducing, urban-sprawl-shack-living poeple...) it can be worse! we can import them and their behaviour in europe and the americas (see how asians are smarter - no immigrants from africa into china, japan, etc.)...

                oh, well, we should have never colonized the place - for sure it and us would have been better if we left it alone.
                "Freedom cannot exist without discipline, self-discipline, and rights cannot exist without duties. Those who do not observe their duties do not deserve their rights."--Oriana Fallaci

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