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Section 1 Human Origins and Early Civilizations Section 2 Great Empires of West Africa Section 3 Kingdoms of East and South Africa Human history began in Africa ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Section%201%20%20Human%20Origins%20and%20Early%20Civilizations

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Beginnings in Africa
  • Section 1 Human Origins and Early Civilizations
  • Section 2 Great Empires of West Africa
  • Section 3 Kingdoms of East and South Africa

Section 1 Human Origins and Early Civilizations
Main Idea Africa was home to some of the worlds
earliest known humans and to several advanced
  • Reading Focus
  • What do scientists know about humanitys origins
    in Africa?
  • What were some accomplishments of the ancient
  • How was the ancient kingdom of Kush influenced by

Building Background
It is not possible to fully understand African
American history without first gaining a basic
understanding of its roots in Africa. Therefore,
before we can begin our study of the
contributions African Americans have made to the
United States, we must briefly study the history
of the African continent.
Human Origins in Africa
  • Human history began in Africa
  • Hominids appeared in East Africa about 3 million
    years ago
  • Early hominids learned to make stone tools
  • Hominids could control fire
  • Homo sapiens
  • Scientists not exactly sure but think first
    appeared 200,000 years ago in East Africa
  • Wise man
  • Every person alive today belongs to species Homo

  • Humans as hunters and gatherers
  • Hunted deer and bison
  • Scavenged for plants to eat
  • Learned to grow own food planted crops and
    raised animals
  • Began the domestication of plants and animals
  • Developing societies
  • People settled down and formed societies
  • Societies developed cultures with languages,
    religion, and art
  • Over time people migrated all over the world
  • Advanced civilizations developed in Africa
  • All played roles in shaping later cultures and

Reading Check
Interpret Why can Africa be called the
birthplace of human history?
Answer(s) The worlds first hominids lived in
Africa, and some of the worlds first
civilizations developed there as well.
Ancient Egypt
Egypt was one of the greatest civilizations in
world history. Its location was importantthe
Nile valley was fertile with rich layers of soil.
  • A Mighty Kingdom
  • Strong central government
  • Ruling pharaohs considered gods on Earth had
    nearly unlimited power tremendous
  • Thousands of officials and priests helped rule
    slaves assisted
  • Dynasties
  • Pharaohs divided by dynasties, or ruling families
  • 28 dynasties in 1,500 years Old, Middle, and New
    Kingdoms are studied
  • To collect taxes, pharaohs took census
    population of four million largest in Africa

Egyptian Achievements
  • Tombs
  • Pharaohs buried in pyramids
  • Gigantic structures masterworks of ancient
  • Elaborate temples
  • Later pharaohs buried in temples
  • Used stone columns as support
  • Innovation copied by other civilizations
  • Hieroglyphics
  • Writing that covered tomb walls
  • Intricate pictures and symbols
  • Represented objects and ideas
  • One of first writing systems shaped writing of
    later cultures
  • Greek scholar Herodotus
  • Traveled to Egypt in 450 BC wrote about his
  • Amazed by achievements he saw calendars,
    record-keeping, and mathematics

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Daily Life
  • Average Egyptians
  • Majority were farmers
  • Grew crops to survive
  • Forced to work on building projects during flood
  • Farmers and families moved to settlements near
    work projects
  • Fed and housed in settlements
  • Career Paths
  • Learning to write important meant career
  • Skilled writers could become scribes
  • Egypts bureaucratic network helped run
    government opportunities limited to men
  • Egyptian women could sign contracts and own

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Reading Check
Identify What were the major achievements of the
ancient Egyptians?
Answer(s) Building of pyramids and temples,
invention of columns, hieroglyphics, calendar,
record keeping, math
Ancient Kush
  • Nubia
  • Located south of Egypt along the Nile name meant
    land of the blacks
  • Home to another advanced civilization called Kush
  • Egypt and Kush had complicated relationship
  • Egypt and Kush
  • Traded goods with Egypt obtained from Africans
    farther south
  • 1500s BCEgyptian troops conquered Nubia and much
    of Kush
  • Introduced elements of culture such as clothing
    styles and pyramid building
  • 750 BC
  • After centuries of Egyptian rule, Kushites took
    advantage of decline in power
  • Kush invaded and took over Egypt made Kush ruler
    new pharaoh
  • Kush ruled Egypt for several centuries

Kushite Achievements
  • Kushite civilization centered on capital city of
  • Located just north of present-day Khartoum, in
    the Sudan
  • Great trading center traders went north through
    Meroë east to Red Sea and China and Japan west
    to central Africa
  • Iron working most famous industry iron traded
    for luxury goods
  • Achievements
  • Developed own form of writing still undeciphered
  • Built huge brick buildings, small pyramids, and
    temples made pottery
  • Attacks from outsiders
  • Roman army attack in 23 BC failed desert people
    began attacks
  • Meroë destroyed in AD 350 by Aksum
  • Kushite civilization dominated middle Nile region
    for 2,000 years
  • Created own Egyptian-Nubian culture that
    influenced generations

Reading Check
Describe How did the relationship between Egypt
and Kush change over time?
Answer(s) At first, the two kingdoms traded with
each other. Then Egypt conquered and ruled Kush.
Centuries later, Kush conquered Egypt.
Section 2 Great Empires of West Africa
Main Idea Three powerful empires that grew rich
from trade were established in West Africa.
  • Reading Focus
  • How did old trade contribute to the growth of
  • What were the significant achievements of Mali?
  • How did Songhai become a powerful empire?
  • Why do modern historians study traditional
    African culture?

Building Background
After Egypt and Kush, the next African
civilizations that came to the attention of other
parts of the world were the fabulously wealthy
kingdoms of West Africa. Separated from Egypt by
the vast Sahara, practically an ocean of sand and
wasteland, these kingdoms grew in total isolation
from the civilizations of northern Africa.
Merchants crossed the Sahara in search of
valuable products. Sub-Saharan West Africa grew
wealthy from trade in slaves and gold.
  • Trade
  • Ancient Ghana trading center
  • Camel caravans from north brought
    commoditiescopper, horses, luxury goods, and
  • Traded for gold, ivory, slaves
  • Taxes supported powerful army
  • Location of gold mines secret from 700 to 1000
    Ghana at height of power
  • Wealth and Splendor
  • Ghana so wealthy it was known as kingdom of
  • Writers told of rulers surrounded in luxury
    worshiped as gods
  • Wealth and fame attracted invaders constant
    attacks scared merchants off
  • Loss of trade weakened empire Ghana collapsed

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Reading Check
Identify How did Ghanas rulers grow rich and
Answer(s) By controlling the trade in several
valuable goods and using their money to build an
  • New Empire
  • Small kingdom within Ghana rose to take Ghanas
  • Took control of caravan routes across Sahara
  • Wealth and power followed became leading power
    in West Africa
  • Mansa Musa
  • Reigned from 1307 to 1337 known for peace and
  • Devout Muslim took famous pilgrimage to holy
    city of Mecca
  • Travel took a year lavished gifts along the way
  • Achievements
  • Emphasis on education built great universities
    for religion and law
  • Books in Arabic appeared on trade routes
    scholars came to study in Mali
  • Spread Islam built mosques converted thousands
    to Islam

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Reading Check
Describe What were the main achievements of the
rulers of Mali?
Answer(s) Built a huge empire, grew wealthy from
trade, supported education, spread Islam
  • Developed from Mali empire won back independence
  • Growth
  • 1464, King Sunni Ali Ber in power brilliant
  • Equipped army with horses built canoe navy to
    patrol Niger River
  • Skilled politician maintained rural and town
  • Three main citiesGao, Timbuktu, and Djenné
  • Excelled in philosophy, law, and medicine
  • Decline
  • Conquered states reasserted independence
    weakened Songhai defeated by army of Spaniards
    and Moroccans
  • Europeans brought shift in trade routes to
    Atlantic coast
  • Portuguese explorers built forts and trading
  • City of Benin grew wealthy from trade created
    art not empire

Reading Check
Identify Cause and Effect What led to the
decline of Songhai?
Answer(s) Uprisings within the empire followed
by a shift in trade routes and the arrival of
Traditional West African Culture
  • No written languages
  • Great wealthy empires little known of daily life
  • Some information of ruling classes knowledge
    comes from writings of visitors
  • Advanced civilizations of West Africa lacked
    written languages
  • First-person accounts important
  • Two means to learn
  • Oral histories critical spoken record from
    generation to generation accounts of great deeds
    and customs of ancestors
  • Anthropologists also study traditions still
    practiced in region
  • People study village and family life, religion,
    and the arts

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  • Village and Family Life
  • Extended family typical father, mother,
    children, and close relatives
  • In West African society each person loyal to
  • Age-sets formed special bonds worked at specific
    tasks together
  • Religion
  • Central feature of village life ancestors
    spirits stayed nearby after death carved statues
    marked sacred places
  • Practiced animismbelief that natural objects
    have spirits
  • The Arts
  • Detailed carvings from wood and bronze created
    fantastic masks
  • Music and dance part of rituals and ceremonies
    griots kept history alive through storytelling,
    acted as advisors to kings

Reading Check
Summarize Why do modern historians study
traditional ways of life in West Africa?
Answer(s) Because there are no written records
of life in ancient West Africa, traditional
customs provide some of the few clues to life in
the past.
Section 3 Kingdoms of East and South Africa
Main Idea Powerful trading societies emerged in
East, Central, and South Africa.
  • Reading Focus
  • How did Arabs influence the culture and trade of
    East Africa?
  • How were the kingdoms of central and southern
    Africa organized?

Building Background
Just as the West African kingdoms became rich
through trade, so too did other civilizations to
the east and south. Along the eastern and
southern coasts of Africa, other advanced
cultures grew up that based their success on
trade. These cultures left behind a legacy that
is still felt in the region today.
East Africa
  • Geography
  • Birthplace of first hominids
  • Stunning land savannahs, valleys, and mountains
  • Wild animals included lions, elephants, and
  • Indian Ocean to east led to Middle East and India
  • Persian sailors came in 900s
  • Beginning of long-term trade with others
  • Trade with Other Lands
  • Dealt with people from other continents
  • Middle Eastern and Asian traders came for ivory
    and exotic animals
  • Main trade was in slaves
  • Introduced new foods like bananas, yams, and
    coconuts these foods became diet staples

Trade Influences
  • Arab traders
  • Came between 1000 and 1300 married local women
    set up trade centers
  • Became intermediaries with African interior
  • Serviced ships that sailed Indian Ocean
  • Exchanged Arab axes, glass, and wheat for African
    ivory, tortoise shells, cinnamon, rhinoceros
    horns, and palm oil
  • Chinese connection
  • Chinese porcelain heavily traded
  • Remnants from seventh-century Tang dynasty to
    thirteenth century Song dynasty
  • Evidence shows in 900s Chinese depended on East
    African ivory for ceremonial objects

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Rise of Powerful Kingdoms
  • By 100 ships from Middle East and Asia traveled
    along the coastline as far as Tanzania
  • Powerful states had developed
  • Greek Egyptian published small handbook
    describing Azania and city of Rhapta
  • Men had great stature each place within region
    had own ruler
  • Zanj
  • Later in 900 Arab al-Masudi wrote of Zanjs
    leopard skins used to make saddles and clothing
  • King of ZanjWaklimi, supreme lord known for
    fairness and integrity
  • If ceased to rule justly, would be killed

Swahili Culture
  • Swahili coast
  • Swahili Arabic word for coasts
  • Bantu-speaking farmers and fishermen also traded
  • Blended cultures of African and Arab life
  • Language
  • Arabic words introduced
  • Swahili speakers adopted thousands of Arabic
  • Copied Arabic alphabet as means of writing own
  • New ideas
  • Before land owned by whole community everyone
  • Arabs brought ideas of individual land ownership
  • Islam gained influence spread
  • Customs changed
  • Dress changed imported cloth worn as modest
  • No central empire civilization spread for 1,000
  • City of Kilwa highly praised

Reading Check
Draw Conclusions Why was trade so central to
East African cultures?
Answer(s) Because the region lay on the coast
and trade with distant lands was relatively easy
Kingdoms of Central and Southern Africa
  • Rise of mighty kingdoms in central and southern
  • Cultures had less contact with outside influences
  • Meant no writing systems no travel narratives to
    give details of life
  • The Kongo Kingdom
  • Farmers on Congo River since AD 800 by 1400
    small states emerged
  • By 1500 king ruled over area with excellent
    government structure
  • Provincial governors, judges, and administrators
    dealt with local disputes, tax and trade matters
  • By 1480s Kongo traded heavily with Portuguese
  • Bantu Migrations
  • With growing populations, people of different
    ethnic groups moved south
  • Spoke related Bantu languages
  • These people often called Bantu and movement
    south known as Bantu Migrations

Great Zimbabwe
  • Bantu Kingdoms
  • One of greatest arose in 1400s called Zimbabwe
  • 10,00020,000 people major trading center
  • ZimbabweShona term for court or house of a chief
  • Most zimbabwes consisted of small clusters of
    buildings on hills
  • Great Enclosure
  • Massive wall 32 feet tall and 17 feet thick
    masterpiece of architecture and design
  • Continent of movement and change could not hold
    out against European influences slave trading
    ripped Africans from their homes to distant lands

Reading Check
Contrast How did the cultures of Southern Africa
differ from those of East Africa?
Answer(s) The people of Southern Africa spoke
different languages and practiced different
religions. They were also less influenced by
outside groups.