African History: Most Popular Articles
What was Apartheid? Find the answer in this FAQ.: apartheid government racial segregation union of south africa geographical boundaries afrikaans word
South Africa used legislation to implement the segregation of its black population. Here is a descriptive list of the key Apartheid laws enacted by the National Party government.
The Group Areas Act No 41 of 1950 forced physical separation between races by creating different residential areas for different races. Find out more
A biography of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.
A brief review of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade, with particular reference to the triangular trade and recent statistics.
Unsure when Apartheid started in South Africa? Find the answer in this Apartheid FAQ.
The significance of South Africa's national holidays.
The historical background to the June, 16 1976 protest by high-school students in Soweto, South Africa, where police fired teargas and live bullets
Why was Africa so rapidly colonized?
Idi Amin, who became known as the 'Butcher of Uganda' for his brutal, despotic rule whilst president of Uganda in the 1970s, is possibly the most notorious of all Africa's post-independence dictators. Find out more in this biography.
The Population Registration Act required South Africans to be identified and registered as belonging to one of four distinct racial groups. Find out more...
What was the Prohibition of Mixed Marriages Act No 55 of 1949?
Bantu Education, the separate and limited experience encountered by non-whites in South Africa when pursuing an education, was a cornerstone of the apartheid philosophy. The following quotes illustrate the diverse viewpoints about Bantu Education from both sides of the anti-Apartheid struggle.
Blacks (Abolition of Passes and Co-ordination of Documents) Act No 67 of 1952 required all black persons over the age of 16 to carry a reference (or pass) book at all times. Find out more...
What happened when the South African government tried to force women to carry passes.
A Chronological List of Independence Dates for Africa. Country Independence Date Prior ruling country
Although slavery has been practiced for almost the whole of recorded history, the vast numbers involved in the African slave trade has left a legacy which can not be ignored.
Unsure when Apartheid ended in South Africa? Find the answer in this Apartheid FAQ.
There are two countries in Africa which are considered to never have been colonized. The truth, however, is much more complex and open to debate.
A short biography of Steve Biko, founder and martyr of the Black Consciousness movement in South Africa.
The Origin of South Africa's Human Rights Day
What were the Pass Laws in Apartheid era South Africa?
Descriptions of the main apartheid legislation enacted in South Africa.
Walter Max Ulyate Sisulu Influential anti-Apartheid activist and co-founder of the African National Congress
From the Afrikaans' word for 'separation,' Apartheid was a social philosophy which enforced racial and economic segregation on the people of South Africa.
A Gallery of Images of African Slavery and the Slave Trade
A selection of quotes by Steve Biko
How has Pan-Africanism developed over the last couple of centuries into a socio-political movement?
A explanation of the term Mfecane and why the subject is controversial.
A biography of Chief Albert Luthuli, Africa's first winner of the Nobel Prize for Peace and president of the ANC until his death (under mysterious circumstances) in 1967.
When Africans talk of slavery they inevitably mean the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Is this a true representation of the practice in Africa?
What are Political Institutions?
Between the 11th and 15th centuries West Africa was a major trading region, exporting goods to Europe, Arabia, India, and China across the Sahara Desert.
What is Ebola? African History.
What is the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS?
A selection of quotes by Nelson Mandela
Types of Slavery in Africa - What Kinds of Slavery Existed in Africa?
What does Ubuntu mean? Find the answer to what Ubuntu means in this African History Glossary
A gallery of images of Apartheid Era Signs from the mid 1950s to late 1970s.
Data on School Enrollment for Blacks and Whites in South Africa in 1982.
The Mau Mau were a militant African nationalist movement active in Kenya during the 1950s whose main aim was to remove British rule and European settlers from the country.
Unsure who supported Apartheid in South Africa? Find the answer in this Apartheid FAQ.
Unsure how the Apartheid regime came into power? Find the answer in this Apartheid FAQ.
Portuguese exploration and trade: 1450-1500.
First president of Kenya and prominent independence leader. Born into dominant Kikuyu culture, Kenyatta became its most famous interpreter of Kikuyu traditions through his book Facing Mount Kenya. Part 1 of his biography, from his early days to his political awakening.
Information on how many slaves were shipped from Africa across the Atlantic to the Americas during the sixteenth century can only be estimated as very few records exist for this period. But from the seventeenth century onwards, increasingly accurate records, such as ship manifests, are available.
What was the Kingdom of Kush? African History.
Color in Ancient Egypt. African History.
The Origin and Meaning of Adinkra Symbols.: adinkra symbols traditional cloths africanhistory akan symbols abstract shapes
What was the Suppression of Communism Act No 44 of 1950
A selection of quotes by Idi Amin Dada, president of Uganda from 25 January 1971 to 13 April 1979.
What was the Immorality Amendment Act No 21 of 1950
By the mid 1960's the majority of African states were free from colonial rule. Read more about each country's story in this Atlas of Independence.
The Black Authorities Act No 68 of 1951 allowed for the creation of traditional tribal, regional and territorial authorities. Find out more
Promotion of Bantu Self-Government Act No 46 of 1959 allowed for the transformation of reserves into fully-fledged independent Bantustans. Find out more
A brief introduction to the history of Ghana from the time of early humans to the present day. Part 1 - Early Kingdoms to Independence
Unsure what the Foundations of Apartheid were? Find the answer in this Apartheid FAQ.
A short biography of Chris Hani, South African political activist, chief-of-staff of Umkhonto we Sizwe, and Secretary-General of the South African Communist Party, assassinated in April 1993.
A Selection of Quotes by Julius Kambarage Nyerere
South African Anglican cleric, winner of the 1984 Nobel Peace Prize for his non-violent anti-Apartheid role, chairman of the TRC in late 1990s. Tutu was a powerful moral force in South Africa, and a central figure in the anti-Apartheid struggle.
Biography of Albertina Sisulu. Prominent leader in the African National Congress and 'Mother of the Nation'. Part 1 1918-1958.
A chronology of colonization and independence.: south west africa dutch east indies walvis bay gold ivory africa independence
What was Ujamaa and how did Nyerere's social and economic policy affect Tanzania in the 1960s and 70s?
In February 2002 a list of Africa's Top 100 books was announced. Find out why.
Two thousand years ago the first of several waves colonists swept into South Africa. In the first of these waves, the pastoralist Khoikhoi moved down into the western and southern coastal regions - pushing the hunter-gatherer San inland.
On 16 June 1976 high-school students in Soweto, South Africa, protested for better education. Police fired teargas and live bullets into the marching students. Part 2: Students organize a protest.
The. African History.
Over the centuries, explorers have found the allure of the unknown reaches of Africa irresistible. Find out who was who, where they went, and when.
The Bantu Homelands Citizenship Act No 26 of 1970 required that all South African Blacks become citizens of one of the self-governing territories. Find out more
Many South Africans are the descendants of slaves brought to the Cape Colony from 1653 until 1822. Follow the main events in this period of South Africa's history in this timeline.
Helen Suzman -- South African politician and anti-Apartheid activist who spent thirteen years as the lone liberal opposition MP to the Apartheid era National Party
What was the Afrikaner Broederbond?
Full Text of the General Act of the Berlin Conference on West Africa as signed on 26 February 1885
Jomo Kenyatta, the first president of Kenya, lived a fascinating life. Read a selection of his most famous quotes.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Plans of Slave Decks, Slave Ship Brookes. Page 12.
What is a Trance Dance? African History.
A gallery of images of the 16 June 1975 Soweto Uprising.
A Timeline of Key Apartheid Events from 1912 to 1959.
What was the Gukurahundi? African History.
A brief introduction to the history of Liberia from the time of early humans to the present day. Part 1 –Colonization to Civil War
Mungo Park, a Scottish surgeon and explorer, was sent out by the 'Association for Promoting the Discovery of the Interior of Africa' to discover the course of the River Niger. Having achieved a degree of fame from his first trip, carried out alone and on foot, he returned to Africa with a party of 40 Europeans, all of whom lost their lives in the adventure.
South African Apartheid Era Identity Numbers How the Apartheid Era Identity Number Recorded Racial Categories
The politicking behind the scenes for the formation of the Union of South Africa allowed the foundations of Apartheid to be laid.
Unsure what Grand Apartheid was? Find the answer in this Apartheid FAQ.
The Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland lasted for 10 years, part of Britain's approach to independence in Africa. Find out more about the federation and why it ended.
Unsure how? Find the answer in this Apartheid FAQ.
Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade: Origins of Slaves Details of where slaves were taken from Africa and how
Since the end of apartheid, a number of town and geographical names in South Africa have changed. Here's a list of them.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Slave Decks on the Slave Bark Wildfire. Page 13.
A brief introduction to the history of Kenya from the time of early humans to the present day.
South African police and rioters in South Africa's Cape Town informal settlement of Crossroads clashed over an attempt to move residents to the new Township of Kayelitsha.
Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, described by some of her rivals as an Americo-Liberian, the descendant of Liberia's ex-American-slave colonists, has reached the pinnacle o her political career. Awaiting the results of an investigation into alleged (by her main political rival George Weah) election fraud, Johnson-Sirleaf could become Africa's first elected woman president. Find out more
A fairly common road sign around Johannesburg in 1956: "Caution Beware Of Natives"
Colonel John Garang de Mabior was a Sudanese rebel leader and founder of the Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA) which fought a 22 year civil war against the northern dominated, Islamist Sudanese Government. Was made vice president of Sudan on the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in 2005, shortly before his death.
Signs in English and Afrikaans, in Wellington railway station, South Africa, enforcing the policy of
In 1956, in response to the adoption of the Freedom Charter at the Congress of the People, the Apartheid government in South Africa arrested a total 156 people for high treason. The penalty for this was death.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Testing an African Slave For Sickness. Page 10.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Diagram of the Slave Ship Brookes. Page 11.
A Biography of Julius Kambarage Nyerere, the father of Tanzania.
West African monarch who ruled Songhai from 1464 to 1492, expanding a small kingdom along the Niger River into one of medieval Africa's greatest empires.
Joe Slovo, anti-Apartheid activist, was one of the founders of Umkhonto weSizwe (MK), the armed wing of the ANC, and was general secretary of the South African Communist Party during the 1980s.
A short history of island that housed the most notorious prison of the South African apartheid regime.
An apartheid notice on a beach in 1976 near Cape Town, denoting the area for whites only. Page 4.
National Party Prime Minister of South Africa from 1958 until his assassination on 6 September 1966, Hendrik Frensch Verwoerd was the chief architect of 'Grand Apartheid', which called for the separation of races in South Africa.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Inspection of an African Slave. Page 9.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Indigenous African Slavery
Freedom Charter. African History.
A chronicle of events in African history on 27 August
Under the Black (Natives) Land Act Blacks were no longer be able to own, or even rent, land outside of designated reserves. Find out more
Thomas Mboya was a Kenyan trade unionist and statesman. Earmarked as Jomo Kenyatta's successor, Mboya was assassinated six years into independence, sparking tribal unrest between Kenyatta's Kikuyu supporters and Mboya's Luo.
A brief history of the colonization and independence of Egypt. Page 2.
A map showing the location of the Kingdom of Lesotho in Africa. Page 4.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: African Captives Being Sent Into Slavery. Page 3.
A map showing the location of the Republic of Zambia in Africa. Page 5.
According to Ancient Egyptian history Menes was the founder of the unified Egyptian state which combined Upper and Lower Egypt.
A brief introduction to the history of Lesotho from the time of early humans to the present day.
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The Native (Black) Urban Areas Act strictly controlled the movement of Black males between urban and rural areas in South Africa. Find out more...
Senzangakhona kaJama was a Zulu chief whose claim to fame is as father of Zulu kings Shaka, Dingane, and Mpande, and as grandfather to Cetshwayo.
Sign on a Cape Town beach in 1979 reserves it for white people only: "WHITE PERSONS ONLY This beach and
The decree that Afrikaans had to be used as a language of instruction in schools contributed to the 16 June 1976 Soweto uprising in South Africa.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Young African Boys Captured for Slave Trade. Page 8.
What was the Black Consciousness Movement (BCM)?
An introduction to the history of the African nation. This part confronts the effect of nationalistic shifts and the new constitution.
A potted history of Morocco. African History.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Female East African Slave. Page 7.
A brief introduction to the history of Cameroon from the time of early humans to the present day.
The Predynastic Period of Ancient Egypt saw the development of grouped communities, the worlds first written language, institutionalised religion, and the development of the plough. Archaeologists have divided the Period into four relatively distinct phases to aid their understanding of the social, scientific, and political developments in Egypt at that time.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Exercising Slaves on a Trans-Atlantic Slave Ship. Page 14.
Sign outside a Johannesburg park in 1971 restricts its use: "This lawn is for the exclusive use of European
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Cape Coast Castle, Gold Coast. Page 5.
The way in which we divide the day into hours and minutes, as well as the structure and length of the yearly calendar, owes much to pioneering developments in ancient Egypt. Page 2.
Considered the oldest recognisable pre-colonial society in sub-Saharan Africa, the Nok Culture is exemplified by its magnificent terracotta sculptures and the development of iron working. Find out more about this ancient African civilization.
Alhaji Umaru Yar'Adua was president of Nigeria from 2007, breaking the cycle of civilian rule and military coup which had dogged the country since independence. Yar'Adua was somewhat reclusive in his dealings with the public and press, and his only major political success was dealing with the civil unrest in the oil-rich Niger Delta -- convincing many to give up their arms during a three-month amnesty in 2009. Part I -- Early Life.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: A Slave Barracoon. Page 6.
A list of common Zulu terms relevant to the Anglo-Zulu War of 1879.
A brief introduction to the history of Ghana from the time of early humans to the present day. Part 2 - Nkrumah to Rawlings
May 1979: Public conveniences in Cape Town in 1979 allocated to white people only: "Whites Only, Net
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Indigenous African slavers Traveling From the Interior. Page 4.
A brief introduction to the history of Zambia from the time of early humans to the present day.
Brief biography of South African newspaper editor and anti-apartheid activist Donald Woods.
A list of when various African countries joined the Commonwealth of Nations.
A brief introduction to the history of Swaziland from the time of early humans to the present day.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: A Slaver's Canoe. Page 2.
A brief introduction to the history of Mauritius from the time of early colonization to the present day.
A chronicle of events in African history on 26 August
Where is Africa's Great Rift Valley?
What was the Banning? African History.
A brief introduction to the history of Mali from the time of early humans to the present day.
A biography of DF Malan, first prime minister of South Africa Apartheid regime