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African Studies- sept 27th.docx

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New College
Thomas Tieku

African Studies- Tues Sept. 27th 9/27/2011 7:02:00 AM Origins of Africans & The Best Ways to Study Africa  Romans coined term ‘Africa’  Arabs first to name Africa, but called it Libya (did not include Egypt)  Then called it ‘billad el Sudan’ (the land of the blacks, still not Egypt included)- talking about in complexion but no stereotype or stigma attached  Latin: Afri= The Berbers (light skin)  Latin: Aprica= Sunny  Greek: Aphrike= Not cold  Using physical features to describe Africa How did we acquire knowledge about Africans? Two Approaches: Discipline & Interdisciplinary Disciplinary Approach - pays particular attention to an aspect of human experience - e.g to understand a society, need to know how power is acquired, used and distributed (so focus on power) (political science) - by paying attention to the past (history) - linguistics (language) Interdisciplinary Approach - pays particular attention to two or more aspects of human experience - not that popular in universities since enlightenment - most knowledge of African studies is from this approach Where Did Africans come from ? Origins of Africans - Africans believed to be part of the hominid family - Ramindus (first one) lived around period between 5 million- 3 million years ago (SA) - Usually classified as brain between 300-350 cubic centimeters (very small brain, limited intelligence) - Ability to walk upright and straight fingers - Afarensis: (southern ape from afar) - brain size 380-480 cubic centimeters - able to colonize surroundings - lived aro
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