Turn on thread page Beta

Africans and progress watch

    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    Im not trying to be racist or anything but I was wondering what made the Egyptian, British, Roman, Greek, Persian and Chinese civilizations/empires what they were. And why the African Blacks never ever had a "civilization" so to speak, nor invented anything of usefulness prior to the arrival of Europeans and why large parts of Africa are still so backwards (culturally as well as economically) compared to the rest of the world?
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    You won't get any decent responses on here (most will descend into plain racism or ignorance). I'll point out two books for you that will answer you're question. In fact they're focused on the rise and fall of societies, and how global shifts in power came to be.

    1) Guns, Germs and Steel - The Fates of Human Societies. (Jared Diamond - 1997)
    2) Why the West Rules ~ For Now - The Patterns of History and what they Reveal about the Future. (Ian Morris - 2010)

    I've read the first book and am halfway through the second book. They're both great reads and I highly recommend them if you are interested in this area. Basically, the massive overriding factor in determining the evolution of civilisation depends on geography (latitudes, land mass shape, climate change, initial factor endowment in terms of domesticable mammals and grass species etc). In essence, Africa drew the short straw when it came to these factors during the early days of history around 14000 years ago (as well as many other areas such as Australia and the Americas).

    Edit: There have been countless civilisations, kingdoms and empires in sub-saharan Africa over history, do some research. Plus your definition of "backwards" is very subjective. Technological innovation appears through necessity - subsistence and nomadic tribes in Africa never needed advanced technology; they had developed a symbiotic and sustainable relationship with their environment which suited their lifestyles.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    I can see this thread descending into racism.
    Offline

    16
    ReputationRep:
    they did have multiple civilisations and had done quite a bit of trade with asia. you're just ignorant
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by ikoghoo)
    This should just be shut down now.
    Just because a few posters with some off the wall racist comments may pop up, it doesn't mean it has to be shut down. Im truly interested (even though my degree has nothing to do with it) as to why no great civilizations/inventions have come about from Sub-Saharan and South Africa (geographically speaking).

    To the poster who recommended the books ill take a look and thanks.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by didgeridoo12uk)
    they did have multiple civilisations and had done quite a bit of trade with asia. you're just ignorant
    What did these "civilizations" contribute to the world and what commodities did they trade in? Im guessing mostly slaves with the Arabs.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by -Invidious-)
    Just because a few posters with some off the wall racist comments may pop up, it doesn't mean it has to be shut down. Im truly interested (even though my degree has nothing to do with it) as to why no great civilizations/inventions have come about from Sub-Saharan and South Africa (geographically speaking).

    To the poster who recommended the books ill take a look and thanks.
    You know where threads like these end, so why ask on here? Why not do your own research?
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by -Invidious-)
    Im not trying to be racist or anything but I was wondering what made the Egyptian, British, Roman, Greek, Persian and Chinese civilizations/empires what they were. And why the African Blacks never ever had a "civilization" so to speak, nor invented anything of usefulness prior to the arrival of Europeans and why large parts of Africa are still so backwards (culturally as well as economically) compared to the rest of the world?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...olonial_Africa

    Here is a list of all the african empires that existed before the colonisation, from the kingdom of Jimma to the Mutapa empire.

    Have a nice read, there are quite a lot

    Oh, and how did Africa contrubuite to the western society?

    "Africans had developed various systems of government, from the extended family to regional empires and the Village State. Many of them consisting of those attributes of a modern state (i.e., armies, courts, etc.). According to Melville J. Herskovits, a known anthropologist, "of the areas inhabited by non-literate people, Africa exhibits the great incidence of complex governmental structures. Not even the kingdom of Peru and Mexico could mobilize resources and concentrate power more effectively than could some of these African monarchies, which are more to be compared with Europe of the middle ages then referred to the common conception of the 'primitive' state."

    http://www.theperspective.org/africacontribution.html
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by ikoghoo)
    This should just be shut down now.
    why? is the truth too much to bear?
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    Here come the racists.


    Besides, not many people on this forum have seen Africa aside from what they see on the TV and what they have read in their GCSE History textbook.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by ussumane)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...olonial_Africa

    Here is a list of all the african empires that existed before the colonisation, from the kingdom of Jimma to the Mutapa empire.

    Have a nice read, there are quite a lot

    /thread
    A lot are Sultanate's from Saharan Africa, these were mostly run by Arabs. Also a lot of these "empires" have no lasting legacy in the modern world, had no contribution to mankind and were generally "small-fry". Even now, Africa is generally full of poverty.
    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by -Invidious-)
    A lot are Sultanate's from Saharan Africa, these were mostly run by Arabs. Also a lot of these "empires" have no lasting legacy in the modern world, had no contribution to mankind and were generally "small-fry". Even now, Africa is generally full of poverty.
    Study the history of Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa in general. Enough information about civilisation to drown the whole of Europe
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by -Invidious-)
    A lot are Sultanate's from Saharan Africa, these were mostly run by Arabs. Also a lot of these "empires" have no lasting legacy in the modern world, had no contribution to mankind and were generally "small-fry". Even now, Africa is generally full of poverty.
    Only 3 were Sultanate. As for contrubuitions, although I agree there is hardly none, check my first post, I added something for that.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by therealOG)
    You won't get any decent responses on here (most will descend into plain racism or ignorance). I'll point out two books for you that will answer you're question. In fact they're focused on the rise and fall of societies, and how global shifts in power came to be.

    1) Guns, Germs and Steel - The Fates of Human Societies. (Jared Diamond - 1997)
    2) Why the West Rules ~ For Now - The Patterns of History and what they Reveal about the Future. (Ian Morris - 2010)

    I've read the first book and am halfway through the second book. They're both great reads and I highly recommend them if you are interested in this area. Basically, the massive overriding factor in determining the evolution of civilisation depends on geography (latitudes, land mass shape, climate change, initial factor endowment in terms of domesticable mammals and grass species etc).

    Edit: There have been countless civilisations, kingdoms and empires in sub-saharan Africa over history, do some research. Plus your definition of "backwards" is very subjective. Technological innovation appears through necessity - subsistence and nomadic tribes in Africa never needed advanced technology; they had developed a symbiotic and sustainable relationship with their environment which suited their lifestyles.
    Couldn't say it better myself. Recent domination (past 3-4 centuries) by the west/developed has hindered growth in africa, and is still preventing growth through market dictatorship (some countries also have corrupt govts, but that doesn't necessarily cause under development). Africans haven't invented much in modern history, however that's not to say in the past they haven't invented and contributed in civilisation in the past. It's hard to have many inventors in a country where primary education still isn't universal.

    Reasons why african countries are still strugling; poor education and poor health caused by poor govts, cause by unfair trade and trade/production dicatatorship by developed powers.

    Why do you think things like coffee, chocolate, cotton and spices are so cheap, yet no countries in europe grow these products?
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    They are tropical plants, so cannot grow in Europe.

    Africa always was under achieving. It's just too un-PC to say otherwise.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by U.S Lecce)
    Why do you think things like coffee, chocolate, cotton and spices are so cheap, yet no countries in europe grow these products?
    There are thousands upon thousands of small producers in these commodities markets, and therefore none have the market power to raise prices - they must take the price that the world market gives them. Middle-men (in the form of giant multinational corporations such as Tescos) use economies of scale in the purchase and transportation of these commodities and thus keep costs low (and therefore prices low for the consumer).

    The primary producers in developing countries have no negotiation power with these MNC's - they are just too small. If they refuse to sell at Tesco's or whoever's prices then Tesco will just abadon them and move on - the producers really have no choice as the alternative is very limited in the form tiny domestic demand. It's not like they have the resources or capacity to export these good themselves - they need these middle-men to reach overseas markets and are exploited because of that. Fairtrade was set up to cut out the middle-man and to give the primary producers a fair price, however then you have the argument of reduced efficiency and output due to the higher production costs involved.

    And aren't these commodities also produced in South America and Asia?
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by -Invidious-)
    Im not trying to be racist or anything but I was wondering what made the Egyptian, British, Roman, Greek, Persian and Chinese civilizations/empires what they were. And why the African Blacks never ever had a "civilization" so to speak, nor invented anything of usefulness prior to the arrival of Europeans and why large parts of Africa are still so backwards (culturally as well as economically) compared to the rest of the world?


    This is a really good series (based on a book), he basically tries to answer your question.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by therealOG)
    There are thousands upon thousands of small producers in these commodities markets, and therefore none have the market power to raise prices - they must take the price that the world market gives them. Middle-men (in the form of giant multinational corporations such as Tescos) use economies of scale in the purchase and transportation of these commodities and thus keep costs low (and therefore prices low for the consumer).

    The primary producers in developing countries have no negotiation power with these MNC's - they are just too small. If they refuse to sell at Tesco's or whoever's prices then Tesco will just abadon them and move on - the producers really have no choice as the alternative is very limited in the form tiny domestic demand.

    And aren't these commodities also produced in South America and Asia?
    That was my point I was agreeing with you.

    Yes they are, but I was trying to make an example of a cash crop, not a great example addmittedly.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by U.S Lecce)
    That was my point I was agreeing with you.

    Yes they are, but I was trying to make an example of a cash crop, not a great example addmittedly.
    Oh I thought you were asking a question about it. My bad.

    The problems with cash crops are that they encourage specialisation and dependence on a low value primary good, instead of developing manufacturing and service sectors. It's the same problem with countries that base their economies around a certain resource (e.g. Nigeria's oil industry). Although in Africa's situation I don't see how they'd gain a comparative advantage in the secondary and tertiary sectors in the near future....maybe when labour and land costs rise in Asia.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    14
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by U.S Lecce)
    Couldn't say it better myself. Recent domination (past 3-4 centuries) by the west/developed has hindered growth in africa, and is still preventing growth through market dictatorship (some countries also have corrupt govts, but that doesn't necessarily cause under development). Africans haven't invented much in modern history, however that's not to say in the past they haven't invented and contributed in civilisation in the past. It's hard to have many inventors in a country where primary education still isn't universal.

    Reasons why african countries are still strugling; poor education and poor health caused by poor govts, cause by unfair trade and trade/production dicatatorship by developed powers.

    Why do you think things like coffee, chocolate, cotton and spices are so cheap, yet no countries in europe grow these products?
    But what made them lag behind the Europeans/Asians in the first place so as to be easily conquered?

    Edit - I've skimmed the wikipedia page of that Guns, Germs and Steel Book, seems quite a good theory.
 
 
 
The home of Results and Clearing

2,082

people online now

1,567,000

students helped last year
Poll
A-level students - how do you feel about your results?
Useful resources

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reply
Hide
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.