African History: Most Popular Articles
Why was Africa so rapidly colonized?
A brief review of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade, with particular reference to the triangular trade and recent statistics.
A biography of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.
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.
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 Chronological List of Independence Dates for Africa. Country Independence Date Prior ruling country
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 significance of South Africa's national holidays.
A Gallery of Images of African Slavery and the Slave Trade
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.
Unsure when Apartheid ended in South Africa? Find the answer in this Apartheid FAQ.
What happened when the South African government tried to force women to carry passes.
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 1: Background to the uprising.
The Origin of South Africa's Human Rights Day
How has Pan-Africanism developed over the last couple of centuries into a socio-political movement?
What is the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS?
A chronology of colonization and independence.: south west africa dutch east indies walvis bay gold ivory africa independence
Unsure when Apartheid started in South Africa? Find the answer in this Apartheid FAQ.
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. (Part 2 of 2). Page 2.
A short biography of Steve Biko, founder and martyr of the Black Consciousness movement in South Africa.
What are Political Institutions?
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.
A selection of quotes by Steve Biko
A selection of quotes by Nelson Mandela
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.
A selection of quotes by Idi Amin Dada, president of Uganda from 25 January 1971 to 13 April 1979.
What was Apartheid? Find the answer in this FAQ.: apartheid government racial segregation union of south africa geographical boundaries afrikaans word
What was Ujamaa and how did Nyerere's social and economic policy affect Tanzania in the 1960s and 70s?
Color in Ancient Egypt. African History.
When Africans talk of slavery they inevitably mean the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Is this a true representation of the practice in Africa?
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.
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 Selection of Quotes About The Rwandan Genocide.
A chronology of key events in Algeria's War of Independence -- From French Colonization to the End of the 'Battle of Algiers'.
A brief introduction to the history of Kenya from the time of early humans to the present day.
Why was there such strong antagonism between the Hutu and Tutsi in Rwanda? What Role did European colonization play? Was the 1994 genocide the first outbreak of violence? Find out more about the origins of the Rwandan Genocide.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Plans of Slave Decks, Slave Ship Brookes. Page 12.
A brief introduction to the history of Ghana from the time of early humans to the present day. Part 1 - Early Kingdoms to Independence
The Origin and Meaning of Adinkra Symbols.: adinkra symbols traditional cloths africanhistory akan symbols abstract shapes
What was the Black Consciousness Movement (BCM)?
Portuguese exploration and trade: 1450-1500.
What was the Kingdom of Kush? 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.
A explanation of the term Mfecane and why the subject is controversial.
A brief introduction to the history of Cameroon from the time of early humans to the present day.
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.
Joseph Ephraim Casely Hayford was a teacher, author, lawyer, politician, Pan-Africanist, and founder of the National Congress of British West Africa (one of the continent's first Pan-African organizations). In the period following WWI Casely Hayford was probably the most important nationalist leader in Africa. Part 1 -- An Early Life
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.
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.
Full Text of the General Act of the Berlin Conference on West Africa as signed on 26 February 1885
From the Afrikaans' word for 'separation,' Apartheid was a social philosophy which enforced racial and economic segregation on the people of South Africa.
A Biography of Julius Kambarage Nyerere, the father of Tanzania.
A Selection of Quotes by Julius Kambarage Nyerere
What was the Truth and Reconciliation Committee (TRC)?
Dusé Mohamed Ali was an influential Pan-Africanist, a supporter of Islam, and traveled widely throughout the African Diaspora. He founded the 'African Times and Orient Review' in 1911, which spread the call for African nationalism, and later founded 'The Comet' in Lagos, Nigeria.
Jomo Kenyatta, the first president of Kenya, lived a fascinating life. Read a selection of his most famous quotes.
A chronology of key events in Algeria's history
Since the end of apartheid, a number of town and geographical names in South Africa have changed. Here's a list of them.
A potted history of Morocco. 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
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Indigenous African Slavery
Timeline for the Suez Canal Crisis: suez canal zone hassan el banna son farouk caliph of islam king farouk
A brief introduction to the history of Zambia from the time of early humans to the present day.
Biography of Albertina Sisulu. Prominent leader in the African National Congress and 'Mother of the Nation'. Part 1 1918-1958.
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.
A brief introduction to the history of Mali from the time of early humans to the present day.
In February 2002 a list of Africa's Top 100 books was announced. Find out why.
A brief history of the colonization and independence of Egypt. Page 2.
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.
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
18 countries in Africa are currently part of the Commonwealth of Nations (with Zimbabwe having departed in 2003).
Walter Max Ulyate Sisulu Influential anti-Apartheid activist and co-founder of the African National Congress
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.
Made to the South Africa Parliament on 3 February 1960: It is, as I have said, a special privilege for
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Testing an African Slave For Sickness. Page 10.
Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade: Origins of Slaves Details of where slaves were taken from Africa and how
A chronology of key events in Tanzania's history: vasco da gama john hanning speke lake tanganika lettow vorbeck german protectorate
The Islamic faith and Muslims have played a crucial role in the development of Africa, not only in North Africa and West Africa where it is still the dominant religion, but also in East Africa, where its dominance decreases as one moves south, and in Southern Africa, where it was introduced through slaves and political exiles and is most prominent today in the cities of Durban and Cape Town.
The Population Registration Act required South Africans to be identified and registered as belonging to one of four distinct racial groups. Find out more...
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Slave Decks on the Slave Bark Wildfire. Page 13.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: A Slaver's Canoe. Page 2.
The politicking behind the scenes for the formation of the Union of South Africa allowed the foundations of Apartheid to be laid.
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.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Diagram of the Slave Ship Brookes. Page 11.
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.
Historical Background, Factors Which Influenced the Spread Of Christianity, Christianity Reaches North Africa
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Inspection of an African Slave. Page 9.
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.
The Group Areas Act No 41 of 1950 forced physical separation between races by creating different residential areas for different races. Find out more
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Indigenous African slavers Traveling From the Interior. Page 4.
An introduction to the history of the African nation. This part confronts the effect of nationalistic shifts and the new constitution.
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.
What was the Gukurahundi? African History.
A chronology of colonization and independence.: french west africa french protectorate grand popo africa independence portuguese guinea
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: African Captives Being Sent Into Slavery. Page 3.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: A Slave Barracoon. Page 6.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Young African Boys Captured for Slave Trade. Page 8.
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 potted history of Tanzania. African History.
A brief introduction to the history of Ghana from the time of early humans to the present day. Part 2 - Nkrumah to Rawlings
What was the Prohibition of Mixed Marriages Act No 55 of 1949?
Freedom Charter. African History.
Data on School Enrollment for Blacks and Whites in South Africa in 1982.
A chronicle of events in African history on 14 April.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Cape Coast Castle, Gold Coast. Page 5.
A brief introduction to the history of Sudan from the time of early humans to the present day. Part 1 - Kingdoms to Independence
A short history of island that housed the most notorious prison of the South African apartheid regime.
A chronicle of events in African history on 10 April.
Léopold Sédar Senghor (1906 - 2001), first president of Senegal, internationally acclaimed poet, writer and statesman.
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.
A gallery of images of Apartheid Era Signs from the mid 1950s to late 1970s.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Female East African Slave. Page 7.
When the plane carrying President Juvénal Habyarimana of Rwanda and President Cyprien Ntaryamira of Burundi was brought down by a missile on its approach to Kigali airport on 6 April 1994 it signaled the start of what in now known as the Rwandan Genocide.
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...
A chronology of key events in Nigeria's history: british protectorate british colonial rule frederick lugard kingdom of benin southern nigeria
A review of the Rwandan Genocide film 'Shooting Dogs'.
A brief introduction to the history of Botswana from the time of early humans to the present day.
Image of African Slavery and the Slave Trade: Exercising Slaves on a Trans-Atlantic Slave Ship. Page 14.
What were the Pass Laws in Apartheid era South Africa?
A chronicle of events in African history on 15 April.
A collection of free stencils with an African theme. For personal, non-commercial use only.
Today we consider chemistry to be a science, but its roots, back in Ancient Egypt, lie in art and the creation of synthetic pigments.
A brief introduction to the history of Mozambique from the time of early humans to the present day. Part 1 - Indigenous Peoples to Independence
South African Apartheid Era Identity Numbers How the Apartheid Era Identity Number Recorded Racial Categories
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.
Where is Africa's Great Rift Valley?
A brief introduction to the history of Angola from the time of early humans to the present day. Part 1 - Kingdoms to Independence
A list of when various African countries joined the Commonwealth of Nations.
A potted history of Côte d'Ivoire
A brief introduction to the history of Swaziland from the time of early humans to the present day.
A biography in three parts of Mary Henrietta Kingsley, a Victorian explorer and writer who greatly influenced European ideas about Africa and its people. Part 1: Early Life in England
A chronology of key events in Nigeria's history: kanem bornu bantu migration gao mali kingdoms and empires western nigeria
A map showing the location of the Republic of Guinea in Africa. Page 2.
A list of common Zulu terms relevant to the Anglo-Zulu War of 1879.
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.
A brief introduction to the history of Benin from the time of early humans to the present day.
A map showing the location of the Republic of Zambia in Africa. Page 5.
A brief introduction to the history of Eritrea from the time of early humans to the present day. Part 1 - Warlords to Independence
An apartheid notice on a beach in 1976 near Cape Town, denoting the area for whites only. Page 4.
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What was the Afrikaner Broederbond?
A potted history of Chad. African History.
A Timeline of Key Apartheid Events from 1912 to 1959.
A brief introduction to the history of Tunisia from the time of early humans to the present day.
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.
A Timeline of Key Events in the Life of Idi Amin Dada.
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.
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.
What is Quinine? African History.