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Global History Test- Africa

This time around I will only answer the questions on the review sheet she gave us. If you already
have the answers than you probably don’t need this.

Major Climate Zones


Desert (Sahara, Kalahari) - The Sahara is in the northern parts of Africa while the Kalahari is in
the south-west. The characteristics of the desert climate zone are arid climate and little to no rain.
Rainforests- They are near the equator, are humid, and feature dense vegetation.
Savanna- The grassy plains with good soil but little rainfall, most of Africa
Mediterranean- fertile lands and moderate temperature all year round (think Rome and Greece)
Steppe- a vast tree-less plain with a semi-arid climate, found between the Sahara and the savanna
Subsistence Methods
Desert- hunting and gathering (today limited into the Kalahari)
Bedouins are nomadic pastoralists who are in the Sahara
Rainforest- horticulture or cultivating of crops, they use human power and the slash and burn
subsistence method (grow crops in one area for a few years and then move on)
Savanna- Pastoralism (go around feeding animals on pastures but not necessarily moving)
Mediterranean- farming, intensive agriculture
Steppe- Pastoralists
Variety in Cultures
Hunter-Gatherer Bands- had a small community of 20-30, ruled by person with respect of the
community, had no real power but ruled by respect, these communities mostly family
Horticulture- tribes with chiefs are needed because the people need someone to handle surplus
The chief is a form of centralized government and got power through blood and respect. This
government was informal because there were no formal laws.
Pastoralism- political organization—tribes
Villages that usually come together at times of need
Government- headman like chief/ village leader who also lacks power because of egalitarian
society
Intensive Agriculture- there is a surplus so people need a centralized, formal government which
has real authority and power
Social Glue
People in hunting bands are family. Tribes are united by a common ancestor. There are also age
sets you are born into. You spend your entire life with your age set. An example for a short time
is Class of ’12.
For barriers of movement I’m guessing deserts.

Griots are professional poets that recite ancient stories.

Traditional African religion is the worshipping of many gods associated with nature who the
Africans try to influence through rituals and ceremonies that they practiced. Village elders call
upon spirits like when asking for rain while diviners seek advice about the future from spirits.
They thought that there was one god above the rest who created the universe and was helped by
lower spirits. Africans turn to dead ancestors for help.
Push- Pull Factors
Environment
Push- Used up land, not enough rainfall, etc.
Pull- land, access to sea, surplus of food, etc.
Political
Push- discriminatory laws
Pull- religious or economic freedom (tax)
Economic
Push- unemployment, inflation
Pull- markets
The Bantu migrated because of desertification and it was important because over 400 ethnic
groups are labeled by this. The migration spread the use of iron tools for farming, leading to a
surplus of food which supports larger populations. There is also a language that 66% of Africans
now had in common

12.2
Something is made valuable by scarcity, quality, and context (meaning one places on something).
Gold and salt were traded in the trans- Saharan trade and they were made valuable for the quality
of gold and the scarcity of salt. They were of equal value because of this.
Ghana became wealthy by monopolizing the gold-salt trade. They imposed taxes on traders who
were often in these parts. They also made gold seem scare to increase value.

Islam spread to North Africa through conquest. Islam spread to West Africa through trade.
The camel was very important because it was similar to a ship that rode through the desert.
Islam influenced the kingdom of Ghana because they had Muslim scholars in government. A lot
of people converted to Islam even though the majority remained animistic.
Mali and Ghana
Once again they monopolize the gold-salt trade for profit. Mali was a little different as they were
a Muslim kingdom whose body of law was the Shari’a.
The effects of Mansa Musa’s hajj were that he made alliances, caused inflation in Egypt,
increased interest in African gold, and attracted scholars to Timbuktu.

In Songhai the leader is Askia Muhammad, a Muslim ruler. What he did was centralize power by
getting countries under control and then setting up a good bureaucracy. What he did in the end
was standardize stuff like a system of weights etc. Islam also takes hold.

12.3

Christianity spread to East Africa b/c of trade with Mediterranean. In the kingdom of Axum
conversion to Christianity left it isolated after Islam began to dominate in North Africa, leading
to Axum declining.
Axum and Eastern African city-states became centers of trade because it set up a triangular trade
with India, Africa, and the Mediterranean. They were also near the port city of Adulis.
Trade made cultural diffusion happen. This spread Judaism, Islam, and Christianity which led to
the creation of the language of Swahili.
Swahili is a language made of mixed cultures fusing Arabic words onto Bantu bases.
Great Zimbabwe is thought to be a center of trade because porcelain from China and beads from
India were found in the ruins. Historians think Great Zimbabwe declined because of over-
farming and civil war along with traders trying to get to the gold by excavating.
I couldn’t find my notes for the Great Zimbabwe thing: Good luck on that part.