africanhistory

Portrait of Thai and Naia

Pre- Ramessid period; beginning of

Dynasty XIX, fourteenth century B.C.

Limestone; height 35".

From the necropolis at Sakkara.

In type, this group statue of a married couple could belong to the end of the eighteenth Dynasty. That period could have produced the husband’s wig in two tiers, falling to his breast, as well as the wife’s, with its mass of braids. The same is true of the simplicity of the costumes, especially the woman’s. However a certain difficulty of expression and rusticity signify that the mechanical felicity of the Eighteenth Dynasty has been left behind. Some of the old modes reappear: the folds on  the belly of the man, to state anatomical demarcations; the indifference to the features of the faces, which are practically the same in both figures; and the geometric form of the volumes. A new and more modest beginning has been made. The old traditions have been investigated again, without the brashness of the artist who seeks to show himself superior to his teacher The interest is in rediscovering the tradition against which Tell el Amarna had rebelled.

The Republic of Zaïre ( /zɑːˈɪər/; French: République du Zaïre; was the name of the present Democratic Republic of the Congo between 27 October 1971 and 17 May 1997. The name of Zaïre derives from the Portuguese: Zaïre, itself an adaptation of the Kongo word nzere or nzadi, or “the river that swallows all rivers”.

Thanks to justkeepdoing for letting me share this list publicly. She asked me to list a couple of books that will help with learning Nigerian history. 

Book 1: A History of Nigeria by Toyin Falola and Matthew Heaton. Cambridge Press, 2008. Covers history from 1500 AD.

Book 2: Nigerian Perspectives: An Historical Anthology by Thomas Hodgkin. Oxford University Press, 1960.

Book 3: Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe. Heineman. 1958.

Book 4: Groundwork of Nigerian History by Obaro Ikime. Africa Books Collective. 1999.

Book 5: The West and the rest of us by Chinweizu. Random House. 1976.

I hope this list helps as many people as possible. 

Ijeoma Umebinyuo.

Don’t Be Blind This Time
This story was historically the same all over the continent for example “Ivory coast” originally got its name from the immense Elephant herds that once existed there reflecting the major trade that occurred on that particular stretch of the coast: the export of ivory (Now there are approximately only 800 Elephants left in the Ivory Coast). Similarly you had the Gold coast and slave coast all names awarded to these places by Europe. However the current instability and situation in some parts of the DRC Conflict is fueled by the need for its resources.
It makes me think of a quote from Cheikh Anta Diop:
“Belgian-American interests preparing for the political instability that would prevail in the colonies following World War II, working at maximum rate and beyond, mined all the uranium of the then Belgian Congo in less than ten years and stockpiled it at Oolen in Belgium. The Shinkolobwe mines in Zaire today are emptied having supplied the major part of the uranium that went into the Nagasaki and Hiroshima bombs. Until 1952, Zaire was the world’s leading uranium producer; now it ranks sixteenth in reserves and has ceased to be counted among the producers. This one example shows how fast our continent can have its nonrenewable treasures sucked away while we sleep.”

Cheikh Anta Diop. (The Economic and Cultural Basis for a Federated State)

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PBS Egalite for All: Toussaint Louverture and the Haitian Revolution

Unveiled Unlocked would like to say:

Happy PRIDE Day to the LGBT Community!

Often than not most people of color feel it is ‘un-natural’ to be homosexual or have same sex relationships.

African Historians, S. Murray and W. Roscoe have researched extensively and found just the opposite - homosexuality HAS been a usual and common occurrence in some tribes of Africa.

In their work anthropologists Stephen Murray and Will Roscoe provide wide‐ranging evidence in support of the fact that throughout Africa”s history, homosexuality has been a ‘‘consistent and logical feature of African societies and belief systems.”

Thabo Msibi of the University of Kwazulu‐Natal documents many examples in Africa of same-sex desire being accommodated within pre-colonial rule.”

Drawing on anthropological studies of the pre-colonial and colonial eras, it is possible to document a vast array of same-sex practises and diverse understandings of gender across the entire continent.

- One notably ‘‘explicit” Bushmen painting, which depicts African men engaging in same-sex sexual activity.

- In the late 1640s, a Dutch military attaché documented Nzinga, a warrior woman in the Ndongo kingdom of the Mbundu, who ruled as ‘‘king” rather than ‘‘queen”, dressed as a man and surrounded herself with a harem of young men who dressed as women and who were her ‘‘wives”.

- Eighteenth century anthropologist, Father J-B. Labat, documented the Ganga-Ya-Chibanda, presiding priest of the Giagues, a group within the Congo kingdom, who routinely cross-dressed and was referred to as ‘‘grandmother”.

- In traditional, monarchical Zande culture, anthropological records described homosexuality as ‘‘indigenous”. The Azande of the Northern Congo ‘‘routinely married” younger men who functioned as temporary wives – a practise that was institutionalised to such an extent that warriors would pay ‘‘brideprice” to the young man”s parents.

- Amongst Bantu-speaking Pouhain farmers (Bene, Bulu, Fang, Jaunde, Mokuk, Mwele, Ntum and Pangwe) in present-day Gabon and Cameroon, homosexual intercourse was known as bian nkû”ma– a medicine for wealth which was transmitted through sexual activity between men.

- Similarly in Uganda, amongst the Nilotico Lango, men who assumed ‘‘alternative gender status” were known as mukodo dako. They were treated as women and were permitted to marry other men.

- the Baganda. King Mwanga II, the Baganda monarch, was widely reported to have engaged in sexual relations with his male subjects.

- A Jesuit working in Southern Africa in 1606 described finding ‘‘Chibadi, which are Men attired like Women, and behave themselves womanly, ashamed to be called men”.

- In the early 17th century in present-day Angola, Portuguese priests Gaspar Azevereduc and Antonius Sequerius encountered men who spoke, sat and dressed like women, and who entered into marriage with men. Such marriages were ‘‘honored and even prized”.

- In the Iteso communities, based in northwest Kenya and Uganda, same-sex relations existed amongst men who behaved as and were socially accepted as women.
Same-sex practises were also recorded among the Banyoro and …
the Langi.

- In pre-colonial Benin, homosexuality was seen as a phase that boys passed through and grew out of.

- There were practices of female-female marriages amongst the Nandi and …
Kisii of Kenya, as well as …
the Igbo of Nigeria,
the Nuer of Sudan and
the Kuria of Tanzania.
Among Cape Bantu, lesbianism was ascribed to women who were in the process of becoming chief diviners, known as isanuses.

Given the overwhelming evidence of pre-colonial same-sex relations which continued into the colonial and post-colonial eras, as well as historical evidence of diverse understandings of gender identity, it is clear that homosexuality is no more ‘‘alien” to Africa than it is to any other part of the world.

As stated by Murray and Roscoe: Numerous reports also indicate that in the highly sex-segregated societies of Africa, homosexual behaviour and relationships were not uncommon among peers, both male and female, especially in the years before heterosexual marriage. These kinds of relations were identified with specific terms and were to varying degrees institutionalized.

What the colonisers imposed on Africa was not homosexuality “but rather intolerance of it — and systems of surveillance and regulation for suppressing it.”