Unit 3 Chapter 6 Lesson 1 Central and Southern Africa

In this course you will learn about ancient African cultures.

Lesoon 1- Growth of Coastal Trading Cities

Introduction

Lesson 1 explores the Bantu migrations as well as the development of eastern coastal city-states and the Indian Ocean trade network.

Quick Look

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CJdT6QcSbQ0

Terms and Names

Here are some terms and names you should write in your notes.

Bantu migrations a movement of Bantu speaking peoples from West Africa to the south and east 

Kilwa an ancient city-state on the eastern coast of Africa 

Swahili an African language that blends Bantu and Arabic elements

Storytelling

Four types of tales are commonly told in Africa. The animal-trickster tale is one of the most easily recognizable. In Bantu Africa, the trickster is the hare, who brings misfortune upon himself through his deceit and unscrupulous behavior. A second type of trickster tale shows the main character in a positive light, able to find his way out of a difficult situation by using his wits. A third type of story explains the origins of various animal features. For example, there are several tales explaining why the tortoise has a cracked shell. The fourth type of tale presents a dilemma to entertain the listeners.

The Snake's Daughter


Tshiama was the python’s daughter. She was very beautiful. Many animals in the forest wanted to marry her. There was one problem, however. Any animal that wished to marry her had to ask her father’s permission. The old python was big and mean and could squeeze the life out of anyone who angered him. He caused great fear throughout the forest. One day, the buffalo told the animals that he would go see the old python. “I’m not afraid,” he declared. “After all, I am stronger than most pythons.” So the buffalo went before the python and asked to marry his daughter. The snake raised his body high in the air and glared at the buffalo. The buffalo turned around and ran all the way home. A short time later, the leopard announced that he would visit the old python. “I don’t scare so easily,” he said. But when he encountered the giant snake, he, too, turned and ran home. Some time after that, the tiny groundhog told everyone that he would see the python. The rest of the animals all laughed at him. He was one of the smallest creatures in the forest, they told him. He most certainly would run away upon seeing the giant snake. The groundhog ignored the other animals. He set out one day for the python’s home in the rocks. The groundhog called out to the great snake and announced that he wished to marry his daughter. The python rose into the air and hissed at the tiny creature. The groundhog thought about running home. However, he stood his ground and repeated why he had come. The old python was impressed. He told the groundhog that he had the biggest heart and the most courage of any animal in the forest. And he gave the groundhog his permission to seek his daughter’s hand in marriage. 

Think about it

• Why do the leopard and the buffalo think that they can stand up to the python? (Possible answer: They are both strong, and the is fierce.)

• Why do the other animals laugh when the groundhog declares his intention of seeing the python? (He is , so they assume he has little courage.)

• What makes the groundhog’s decision to stand his ground particularly admirable? (He is frightened and wants to run .)

Lesson 1 Objective

Lesson 1 traces the pattern of the Bantu migrations and examines the factors that influenced the development of eastern coastal city-states and the Indian Ocean trade network.

Here are the main ideas;

Geography  Bantu-speaking people spread out across central and southern Africa to create new cultures.
Economics  African coastal city-states established profitable trade relationships with Arab traders.
Culture Islam had a great influence on the culture and government of East Africa.

 

 

Essential Question 1- What were the Bantu migrations?

Central and southern Africa are vast regions. Because they are so large, they have a great variety of geographic features. A Diverse Geography Huge tropical rain forests cover much of central Africa. Such forests are home to thousands of species of colorful birds. In southern Africa, immense grasslands are more common. Elephants, giraffes, lions, zebras, and many other animals live in the grasslands. The human geography of central and south Africa is also diverse. The peoples of these regions belong to hundreds of different ethnic groups. Many groups have their own languages, customs, and religions. However, many of these different peoples come from a single group known as the Bantu speakers.

Essential Question 1- Cont. What were the Bantu migrations?

Bantu Influences The Bantu speakers are a group of African peoples who speak one of the more than 450 Bantu languages. The first Bantu speakers probably lived near the present-day border of Nigeria and Cameroon in west-central Africa. Starting sometime around 1000 B.C., the many different Bantu-speaking groups began moving south and east through Africa. This movement, called the Bantu migrations , began one of the most important migrations in history. About 1,500 years after the migrations began, the Bantu speakers reached the southern tip of Africa. Bantu speakers adapted to new habitats as they moved throughout the continent. They exchanged ideas and intermarried with the people they met. Such interactions gradually led to cultural blending.

Essential Question 1 Quiz

What were the Bantu migrations?  The Bantu migrations were the mass movement of who spoke Bantu from west-central Africa throughout southern Africa.

What was the result of migrations by Bantu-speaking groups? The interacted with existing groups to create new cultures.

Essential Question 2- How did Africans and Arabs interact?

By 1100, large numbers of Bantu-speaking peoples had migrated across central Africa toward the eastern coast. In East Africa, the Bantu speakers established farming villages as well as lively trading outposts.

Coastal Trade Routes East African merchants participated in trade across the Indian Ocean. They exchanged goods with traders from Arabia, Persia, and India. Persian traders brought Asian manufactured goods to Africa and African raw materials to Asia.

Kilwa By the 13th century, a network of trading towns and city-states dotted the coast of East Africa. (A city-state is a city and its surrounding lands functioning as an independent political unit.) One of the most important of these was the coastal city-state of  . Settlers from Arabia and Persia founded Kilwa in the late 10th century. The city-state prospered because it was as far south on the coast as a ship from India could sail in one monsoon season. Merchants from farther south had to send their goods to Kilwa, where Asian merchants could buy them. Kilwa grew very influential in the late 1200s. 

Kilwa

Kilwa By the 13th century, a network of trading towns and city-states dotted the coast of East Africa. (A city-state is a city and its surrounding lands functioning as an independent political unit.) One of the most important of these was the coastal city-state of  . Settlers from Arabia and Persia founded Kilwa in the late 10th century. The city-state prospered because it was as far south on the coast as a ship from India could sail in one monsoon season. Merchants from farther south had to send their goods to Kilwa, where Asian merchants could buy them. Kilwa grew very influential in the late 1200s.

Essential Question 2 Quiz

How did Africans and Arabs interact? They engaged in with each other across the Indian Ocean.

What factors helped Kilwa become wealthy and powerful? It became a key post for merchants in far southern Africa looking to sell their goods to Asian merchants.

Essential Question 3- What influence did Arabs have on culture and government in East Africa?

Kilwa was one of several African trading states with Arabic ties. As trade across the Indian Ocean increased, Arab traders settled in numerous East African port towns. As a result, coastal Africans borrowed some aspects of Arab culture.

Cultural Influence One result of the cultural interaction between Arabs and Africans was the creation of a new language, known as Swahili. Swahili developed as a Bantu language that borrowed many words from the Arabic language. Arabs also introduced their religion, Islam, in East Africa. The majority of Africans living along the coast kept their traditional religious beliefs. Even so, many chose to convert to Islam. Africans who converted to Islam tended to be middle-class townspeople who were involved in the Indian Ocean trade.

 

 

Influence in Government

Influence in Government Government officials and wealthy merchants also tended to be Muslims. These leaders introduced Islamic ideas about government and law.

As they grew and prospered, these coastal towns remained largely independent. The city-states along the East African coast made few efforts to join together. The main reason for this was that the city-states competed with each other for trade. This lack of unity would make it easier for the Europeans to invade and conquer the area in the 1500s. 

Meanwhile, further inland from the coastal cities, other Bantu groups were establishing powerful empires based on one of the region’s most precious and profitable resources: gold.

 

Essential Question Quiz

What influence did Arabs have on culture and government in East Africa?  A number of middle-class Africans converted to , while government officials introduced Islamic ideas about government and law.

How did Muslims influence the development of East Africa? They helped to create the language of , brought Islam to the region, and shaped government policies and laws

Lesson Summary

 

• The Bantu migrations helped to create new cultures.

• Indian Ocean trade fostered exchanges among the peoples of East Africa, Arabia, Persia, and India.

• Interaction between Arab and African traders led to the spread of Islam in East Africa.

Why It Matters Now . . . More than one-third of Africans today are Muslims.