Until the incursion of the Europeans in the 14 th century , Africa was a thriving continent with organized political structures and flourishing economies fueled by agriculture and mineral exchange and linked by its elaborate trade routes. However the destiny of Africa and Africans was circumvented by the west to feed Europe's conquest for wealth and domination. In this paper, I will review two publications which cover a similar subject “African History”. The first paper, Issues in African History was written by Professor James Giblin of the University of Iowa. The second paper titled Africa in Perspective was written by Professor Toyin Falola of the University of Texas and published in Africa now: people, policies and institutions (1996). I will also respond to questions regarding myths in African history, cultural diffusion and problems with teaching and discussing African history as it relates to slavery and imperialism.
Though Giblin's Issues in African History and Falola's Africa in perspective,1996 discuss African History, they do so in non similar context . Professor Giblin was more concerned with the Europeans misrepresentation of African history for economic gain and how this has affected in his words “our notions of the African past”. Falola on the other hand was interested in Africa's past and how it serves as a reference for studying Africa's current political and development issues.
As students of African art begin to consider the African past, they must also consider how Western conceptions of "race" and "racial" difference have influenced our notions of the African past.(J.Giblin Issues in African history). Before the Europeans discovered Africa, Africa was a civilized continent with powerful dynasties and political structures such as the Oyo empire (shillington pg 197) and the Asante Kingdom(shillington pg 200), Africans
where also engaged in salt and gold trade with one another via trade routes across the Sahara...
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