Only $2.99/month

History of Sub-Saharan Africa Midterm Topics

Terms in this set (15)

Philosophers and Scientists.
-Johann Blumenbach and his 5 races: Caucasian, Mongolian, Malayan, Ethiopian, American.
-Scientific racism: Justified African slavery during the trans-atlantic slave trade.
-Craniometry: attempted to describe traits of race by outward appearance, including by the shape of skulls, measured via craniometry. Skulls of black people and other indigenous people were displayed between apes and white men. A large skull meant a large brain and high intellectual capacity, and a small skull indicated a small brain and decreased intellectual capacity.
-Polygenesis: All races had evolved separately. No common point of origin
-Unilineal Evolution or Social Evolutionism (Comte, Spencer, Morgan): used Darwins theory and applied it to societies. Believed societies would evolve into more advanced societies. Provided reassurance to the powerful middle-classes of Europe and America that their territorial conquests were for a larger, global purpose of human progress.
Historians of the 19th/20th Centuries
- "Africa has no history": In the 19th century, German philosopher Hegel declared that Africa has no history. This was repeated by Hugh Trevor-Roper, a History professor at Oxford University, as late as 1963.
-Great Zimbabwe: in 1870 someone said aliens created it. Dismissed as a continent because of lack of written documents. Only animals live a life of no history.
-The importance of written sources; written sources in Africa.
- Why did Africa not develop writing? The environment created a barrier to ever having a written language. There was no way to get through the Sahara desert at this time. Population density and governments.
The African Association (1788):
-Found that Africa must be improved through outside intervention and it could not happen otherwise.
-Idealism vs. economics
- Abolition of slavery at its peak (120,000/year in one year in 1780s)
- Pre-1760s European views on slavery
- 2 revolutions necessary: 1) in intellectual thought; 2) in vested interests of slavery
- The French Enlightenment (Diderot/Voltaire) and attacks on organized religion
- The Eric Williams thesis
- Jean-Jacques Rousseau & the "Noble Savage"; attacks on profit-seeking Europe
- The Scottish Enlightenment Francis Hutcheson's System of Moral Philosophy (1755): innate sense of justice based on reaction to the sufferings of others (basis for reason)
- Adam Smith's Theory of Moral Sentiments (1759) and Wealth of Nations (1776): economic basis for ending slavery (and mercantilist protectionism) for free trade/labor. his approbation of Abolitionism. Held power in 1792 Parliamentary debates.
- Changing Christian views on slavery, based on the Protestant Reformation. St. Augustine's old-fashioned City of God (and Original Sin); equality of humankind
- These ideas coalesce in the Abolitionist Movement
- Capt. Luke Collingwood and The Zong
- Society for the Abolition of the Slave Trade, and its support by William Wilberforce
- The postponement of abolition: The French (1789) and Haitian revolutions (1792)
-By the mid-1830s most Europeans states had outlawed the trade, but it was extremely difficult to enforce because it was seen as an essential economic and political activity.
- The final years to abolition: 1870s-1880s in part due to the efforts of the Britich anti-slavery squadrons protrolling Africa's Atlantic coast line but mostly due to the expansion of "legitimate" (raw materials: palm oil, groundnuts, rubber, ivory, beeswax) commerce. Opposition to the slave trade represented a growing sense of obligation to Africa.
-It would be Britain's self-appointed role to actively promote the export of Africa's natural produce
-Many who were powerful during the slave trade were slowly losing their power during the abolition.
Islam had been introduced to west Afrtica from the North a millennium before the 19th century via the trans-Saharan trade. Ruling elites, urban populations, and local traders generally embraced the faith before rural populations did.
-Began states-building in Western Africa.
- Transformation in the nature of Islam in West-central Africa: European colonial invasion during the 1870s and 1890s, island provided a greater unity of purpose and action in term of resistance. Taught to fights rather than submit to non-Muslim authority. Provided a unity which transcended ethnicity and language.
- The ideal Muslim community, or umma: brotherhood and cooperation
- The jihads of the heart, mouth, hand, and sword: personal strife, preach, beat, and physical violence to all be able to live together.
- The hijira (NB Muhammed: Mecca to Medina, 622 AD)
- 2) The coming of the Mahdi? The delivered, not mentioned in Koran. This held enormous prominence to renew Islam in West Africa.
- 3) Wahhabbis (strict Sunnis)
- 4) Sufi brotherhoods: Tijaniyya/Qadiriyyah: Expansion in parts of West Africa, mystical Islam.
- 5) Environmental factors: Attractiveness of these religions was high due to the quality of living as well as ancestral beliefs.

The Fulani
-Islam provided the Fulani with an alternative model of government ion and belief system with which to confront oppressive agricultural rulers who might claim to be Muslim but who clearly neglected she shari'a
- Early movements/state formation (Futa Jallon, Futa Toro) and a Fulani identity: want to bring proper form of Islam to west Africa.
- Conversion to Islam (Torodbe = Muslim Fulani) and migration into the central Sudan
- Reasons for Fulani dissatisfaction: cattle tax, heavily discriminated because they are nomadic.

The Jihad of Usman dan Fodio (1754-1817)
- Positive reception to his "jihad of the mouth"
- Usman's preaching; Usman as a predecessor of the Mahdi: elite and powerful feel threatened by him.
- Flight from Gobir, the spread of the jihad and the creation of the Sokoto Caliphate
- Five changes/effects of Usman's jihad: ​1) Islam à official state ideology
​2) ulema in charge of the state: scholars of Islam
​3) creates unified caliphate
​4) unification of trade
​5) the example of the jihad of the sword

1) Brings literacy to read the Koran.
2) Expansion of Sufi brotherhoods.
3) New towns, new trade routes, new cities, new migrations, and a new religion.
4) Used ideology of Jihad to spread and create states.
Many of the early explorers were missionaries.
Missionaries often saw themselves as pioneers for legitimate trade and
David Livingstone carried the three C's into Africa: Commerce, Christianity, and Civilization.
Sierra Leone:
Where former slaves could begin life anew, in freedom and hope and learning new skills and shown the profit to be had through the fruits of their own free labor. Represented the perfect evangelical field. One of the missionary success stories of the late 18th and early 19th centuries.
White Fathers: staunch advocated of colonialism in Africa because it made life easier for me.
Missionaries do not like dancing, polygyny, premarital sex, bride wealth.
1) African conversion to Christianity: people do not convert to a new religion unless they have very good reasons for doing so. Seemed to offer social and political opportunities, literacy, and access to trade.
​2) Class differentiation among Africans: Assimilation and the creation of black Englishmen.
​3) Resistance to colonial rule
- Dr. John Philip of the London Missionary Society; his views on the Xhosa conflict with Britain during the 19th century: defender of African rights.
- Achieves non-racial franchise in the Cape Colony; promulgation of Ord. 50: guarantees property rights, protection and non-racial franchise (voting rights) for Africans.
-If missionaries could convert the king, they could convert the population. This means legitimacy and money.
Why the Zulu welcomed mission stations:
​1) security from outside attack: protection from anyone else
​2) missionaries as representatives to the colonial administration
​3) social welfare providers: school, health care.
- Protestant mission churches in Natal: attacks on Zulu customs (e.g. lobola)
- Character of a mission station
- Attracts three kinds of people: 1) Rejected children from local society; 2) Immigrant strangers to the region; 3) Misfits from local society
The Amakholwa=Zulu word for black Christians
- Formation of a new social group around the mission stations: People begin to have children born at these mission stations whom are then raised by missionaries.
- Mission stations as an alternative social setting: security
- Changes in local values, bad reputation of mission stations
- "Respectability" and the amarespektabili​
The Comaroffs
- Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism: If you work hard and show devotion to God it is okay to have capital accumulation.
- Missionary impact in proletarianization/economies: Encourage others to work in mines because they use colonialism to accumulate wealth.