Pre Colonial Africa

1477 Words 6 Pages
INTRODUCTION. Pre colonial Africa was has varied has the continent itself. Different circumstances produced different societies with different tradition, customs, and politics these societies rose, fell and adapted as the centuries passed. Despite this variety, it is possible to divide political organisation amongst these communities into two broad categories states and stateless societies. Low population densities and the production of relatively small economic surpluses, hindered the formation of states in many parts of pre colonial Africa. This was particular the case in the central and southern regions of the continent. These stateless societies however did not lack political organisation, the political system …show more content…
The continent like other parts of the world had to adapt to invasions and imperial rule as history unfolded. Just has Britain experienced eras dominated by Roman and Norman occupation, north Africa played host to Persian, Greek, Roman and Ottoman empires over time Africa was also subject to religious influences Islam spread across the north reaching the Atlantic in the first years of the eight century, while Christianity had gained a permanent foothold in Ethiopia in the fourth century. Further south to some extent, the barrier of the Sahara desert limited cultural exchange between the rest of the world and tropical …show more content…
The most obvious legacy of colonial rules was the division of Africa into modern states, European rule resulted in Africa been fully integrated within the international jigsaw puzzle of sovereign territories. This meant that worldwide states now accounted for the entire land surface of the globe, all of these had clearly delineated and fixed boundaries and all legal political interaction was now channelled through, or at least held accountable to state institutions. As already indicated, pre colonial Africa hosted many stateless societies, and even where there were states they were considerable less well defined than their modern descendants. In this respect few Africans had previously experienced the reality of the modern state. The imperial powers imposition of state borders on African territory had major ramifications. The problem lies with the fact that when they were delineated these state boundaries rarely matched existing pre colonial political, social or economic

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