The Rise of Ethnic Politics in a Global World
In this and the next seven chapters of this book, we will explore the way
that global forces have affected different regions of the world and the way
that these areas have contributed to global culture, society, economy, and
political life. You might call this the â€œglobal-inâ€ and â€œglobal-outâ€ approach.
We are interested in the global currents that have flowed into a particular
region at different moments in history (global in) and the way that
elements of those societies have gone out into other areas of the world
We begin with Africa. It is a logical place to start, since the African
continent is the birthplace of all humanity. In Ethiopia, bones have been
discovered from precursors of ancient African Homo sapiens who roamed
the earth 190,000 years ago. Archeologists have found evidence of our
human predecessors in the Olduvai Gorge in Tanzania that are over a
million years old. Eventually, the descendants of these ancient Africansâ€”
humans, or Homo sapiensâ€”spread out from Africa to the Middle East,
Europe, Asia, and everywhere else. What we think of as ethnic differences
of skin and hair color and eye shapes are all later adaptations to the
environmental conditions in different parts of the world. So the
propagation of the human species from Africa throughout the planet is
Africaâ€™s first global out.
In more recent historyâ€”the past thousand years or soâ€”Africa has
continued to play a global role. In the thirteenth century, a great empire
was established in West Africa, based in what is now the country of Mali,
extending over much of the adjacent region. The wealth of this Manden
Kurufaba empire was based on three huge gold mines; other resources
included copper, salt, and profits from overland trade. For several
centuries, it was one of the richest and most influential empires in the
Beginning in the sixteenth century, Africa began to feel the effects of
European maritime trade. Initially, this was a case of global in, as
European ships plied their wares along the West African coast and traded
their goods for local resources. But soon this trade turned into a global out
of disastrous proportionsâ€”the slave trade, called by some the â€œAfrican
The slave trade involved the buying and selling of Africans. Some local
African leaders rounded up individuals from their enemies and sold the
captured men and women to European traders. The Europeans, in turn,
loaded them onto boats and sailed across the Atlantic in what was called
â€œthe Middle Passage.â€ Crowded into cargo holds like cattle, many of these
unfortunate Africans died en route of disease, starvation, and brutality.
Those who survived found themselves in Havana and other slave ports of
the New World, where they were sold as workers for cotton fields in the
United States and for sugar plantations in the Caribbean islands and the
northeast coast of South Americaâ€”from the three Guianas (Dutch, French,
and British) all the way down to Brazil. Exact figures are hard to come by,
but it is estimated that ten million to twenty million Africans were exported
from the continent before the trade in enslaved Africansâ€”and later,
slavery itselfâ€”came to an end in the nineteenth century.
This wretched trade had a crippling effect on Africa both economically
and socially. Not only did it rob the continent of some of its most able
workers, but it also disrupted traditional social patterns and cultural
homogeneity. At the same time, it enriched the European countriesâ€”
especially Portugal, Spain, and Englandâ€”that were involved in the trade.
Some historians claim that the wealth gained from the trade of enslaved
Africans helped to fuel the economies that made the Industrial Revolution
possible. Others argue that the slave trade provided the excess wealthâ€”
the capitalâ€”to develop European capitalism into a formidable economic
engine. Though other historians dispute these assertions, there is no
question that the slave trade had a global economic impact.
There were also cultural effects from the global diaspora of Africans
following the years of the slave trade. In some areas of North and South
America and the Caribbean basin, the numbers of enslaved Africans were
vastly greater than those of white European settlers. Descendants of the
African diaspora became leading citizens of countries such as Haiti, Cuba,
Jamaica, the Dominican Republic, Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Brazil,
and the United States. African music, religion, and customs became
integral parts of the cultures of these areas of the New World, creating a
new synthesis of African, European, and Native American cultures in the
In time, the trade with European commercial interests led to further
plundering of African resources and political control of African regions. By
the nineteenth century, the map of Africa began to look like a crazy quilt of
different European-controlled colonies, including those ruled by Spain,
France, England, Germany, and Belgium. In the twentieth century, when
the colonial powers retreated and these regions gained their
independence, what remained were the nation-states of contemporary
Africa. Thus, the colonial period of global-in European control resulted in
the African nationalisms of the latter part of the twentieth century.
The old colonial divisions that created the new boundaries of nationstates did not always follow the cultural boundaries of traditional ethnic
and linguistic groups. In Rwanda, for example, the Hutus and Tutsis
warred over which group would dominate the independent nation. In other
places, such as the countries of South Africa and what was Rhodesiaâ€”later
renamed Zimbabweâ€”the issue was the role of the European settler
communities that controlled the politics and economy of the countries, even
though they were in the minority numerically as compared with the
indigenous African populations. In both countries, the white Europeans
have learned to live with black majority rule.
In the twenty-first century, African resources have again become an
important aspect of the global economy. In the contemporary situation,
however, it is unlikely that these resources will be exploited from the
outside without providing substantially greater benefit to Africans than
was the case in preceding centuries. The new situation is one in which
investment in the region and extraction of its resources come not from
Europe but from Asian countries, especially China.
In the readings that follow, several of these aspects of global influences
in, and global impact out, will be explored. In the first reading, the African
origin of global humanity is described by Nayan Chanda. Chanda was born
in India and trained in history in Kolkata and in international relations at
the Sorbonne in France. He then became a foreign correspondent during
the Vietnam War and served as an editor of the Far East Economic Review
in Hong Kong before launching a new career in the emerging field of global
studies. Based at Yale University, where he edits the Internet journal
YaleGlobal Online, Chanda has written an introductory book of global
history, Bound Together, from which this excerpt is taken.
The next excerpt is also by a journalist and historian born in South Asia.
Dilip Hiro, based in London, writes on historical themes and issues of
contemporary global politics, including jihadi activism in South Asia. In the
excerpt below, he puts the trade of enslaved Africans into global and
historical context. The diaspora of African culture and society as a result of
the forced dispersion of Africans to the Western hemisphere is described in
the succeeding excerpt by Jeffrey Haynes, a political scientist studying the
relation of religion and politics in Africa and the Middle East who teaches
in London. Following it is an excerpt from an essay by Jacob Olupona, who
explores the cultural aspects of Africaâ€™s experiences with globalization.
Olupona traces the development of Christianity and Islam in the continent
and shows how these traditions have become intertwined with traditional
religious cultures. Olupona, originally from Nigeria, is a scholar of
comparative religion who specializes in West African society. He taught at
the University of California, Davis, before becoming a professor of African
Studies at Harvard.
The final excerpt in this chapter is from an essay by Okwudiba Nnoli, an
African political scientist who focuses on one of the enduring problems
created by the nation-state system left behind by retreating European
colonial powers. This is the problem of the relationship between national
identity and ethnic communities. Because colonialism and nationalism are
worldwide, this is a global problem, a continuing issue that confounds
Africa, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, and other parts of the world where
the idea of nationalism is still an unfinished project.
THE HIDDEN STORY OF A JOURNEY
How do we know that we all are originally from Africa? Twenty years ago
the proposition was mostly guesswork. In his work on human evolution The
Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex (1871), Charles Darwin
suggested that because Africa was inhabited by humansâ€™ nearest allies,
gorillas and chimpanzees, â€œit is somewhat more probable that our early
progenitors lived on the African continent than elsewhere.â€ Although
voluminous biological and paleoanthropological evidence gathered since
this statement has fortified the evolutionary history of life on earth, it has
been a long wait to validate Darwinâ€™s insight about Africa. Opportunity
emerged with our new ability to look deep into our cells and decode the
history written there. The first step was taken in 1953 when British
scientist Francis S. Crick and his American colleague James D. Watson
discovered the structure of DNA. â€œWeâ€™ve discovered the secret of life,â€
Crick announced with justifiable pride. With the discovery of the double
helix structure of DNAâ€”the complex molecules that transmit genetic
information from generation to generationâ€”we received the most powerful
tool to dig into our ancestral history. As Watson wrote, â€œWe find written in
every individualâ€™s DNA sequences of a record of our ancestorsâ€™ respective
journeys.â€ Since these early days, sequencing DNA has gotten much easier,
faster, and cheaper. With help from archaeologists, climatologists, and
linguists, geneticists and paleoanthropologists have been able to
reconstruct the histories of human populationsâ€”a reconstruction that was
unimaginable only two decades ago.
The discovery of fossils of Homo erectus in Indonesia and Chinaâ€”the
so-called Java and Peking menâ€”showed that the ancestors of Homo
sapiens, or anatomically modern humans, had begun to travel and colonize
Asia and the Old World about two million years ago. The dedicated work of
paleoanthropologists like Louis and Mary Leakey in the 1950s and a slew
of researchers in the following thirty years established that ancestors of
modern humans lived in East Africaâ€™s Rift Valley. The remains of a hundredthousand-year-old Homo sapiens were found in Israel, but that species met
a biological dead-end, blocked perhaps by the more robust Neanderthals
who then inhabited the area. Amazingly, so far the only other remains of
modern man dating back to forty-six thousand years have been found in
Australia. Did these anatomically modern humansâ€”Homo sapiensâ€”have
multiple origins, or did they evolve as a single species in Africa? The first
intriguing evidence that those fossil finds in Africa were, not just the
earliest humans, but our direct ancestors, came to light, not in some
ancient fossils, but in the history contained in cells of modern women. This
startling discovery was built on the earlier discovery of the structure of
DNA. By analyzing the DNA of living humans from different parts of the
world, geneticists can reconstruct the movement of their ancestors and
track the prehistoric human colonization of the world. We now know that
around sixty thousand years ago, a small group of peopleâ€”as few as
perhaps one hundred fifty to two thousand people from present-day East
Africaâ€”walked out. Over the next fifty thousand or so years they moved,
slowly occupying the Fertile Crescent, Asia, Australia, and Europe and
finally moving across the Beringia land bridge to the American continent.
The rising waters at the end of the Ice Age separated the Americas from
the Asian continent. It was not until Christopher Columbusâ€™s encounter
with the Arawak on the shores of San Salvador in 1492 that the longseparated human cousins from Africa would meet each other. . . .
A MOTHER IN AFRICA
The discovery that all humanity stems from the same common parents
came in 1987. The New Zealand biochemist Allan Wilson and his American
colleague Rebecca Cann reached this conclusion at the University of
California, Berkeley, by looking into a so-far ignored part of human DNA.
Wilson and Cannâ€™s team collected 147 samples of mitochondrial DNA from
baby placentas donated by hospitals around the world. Unlike the DNA
that is recombined as it is passed from one generation to the next,
mitochondrial DNA (abbreviated mtDNA) has tiny parts that remain
largely intact through the generations, altered only occasionally by
mutations that become â€œgenetic markers.â€ MtDNA is maternally inherited,
transmitted only from a mother to her offspring, and only daughters can
pass it on to the next generation. The mtDNA leaves intact all the
mutations that a daughter inherits from her maternal ancestors, thus
allowing one to find the traces of the earliest mutation. Since the rate of
mutation is roughly constant, the level of variation in mutations allows us to
calculate the age of the family tree created by the mtDNA string passed
down through the generations. The result of Wilson and Cannâ€™s research
was a bombshell. Going down the human family tree of five geographic
populations, they found that all five stemmed from â€œone woman who is
postulated to have lived about 200,000 years ago, probably in Africa.â€ The
press inevitably, if misleadingly, called her the â€œAfrican Eve.â€ She indeed
was, as James Watson put it, â€œthe great-great-great . . . grandmother of us
all,â€ who lived in Africa some two hundred thousand years ago. Obviously,
she was not the only woman alive at that time: she was just the luckiest
because her progenies survived to populate the world, while the lines of
descendants of other women became extinct. Or, in genealogical terms,
their lines suffered a â€œpedigree collapse.â€ Children of the three surviving
lines of daughtersâ€”identified by mtDNA markers L1, L2, and L3â€”now
populate the world. While the first two lines mostly account for the African
female population, the non-African women of the world all carry in their
cells the inheritance of the two daughters of L3 lineâ€”M and N. A scientist
has given these lines the nicknames Manju and Nasrin based on the
assumption of where the two mutations are likely to have occurred: India
and the Middle East.
Our most recent common mother may have been African, but what
about the father? Significant recent progress in elucidating the paternal Y
chromosome has filled in the gap. In a groundbreaking research paper in
2000, Italian geneticist Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza and his colleague Peter
Underhill established that the Y chromosome that determines male sex
also has an African ancestry. Just as mtDNA is transmitted only from a
mother to her children, the Y chromosome that is passed on from a father
to his son also does not undergo the shufflingâ€”or recombinationâ€”that the
rest of the chromosomes do. But there are mutations just like mtDNA. The
result is that the history of our fathers is carried in perpetuity by sons.
Human ancestors who left Africa all carried in their cells either the African
Adamâ€™s Y chromosome, which has been given the prosaic label â€œM168,â€ or
the mtDNA of one of the African Eveâ€™s daughters. Based on extensive study
of the worldâ€™s population, geneticists now say that the most recent common
ancestor of us all left Africa just fifty thousand years ago.
Wilson and Cannâ€™s thesis of the human out-of-Africa origin was, of
course, not unchallenged by some anthropologists and geneticists. The
school that believed in multiregional evolution of the modern human
refused to accept a recent or unique origin of Homo sapiens. Its
proponents argued that the abundant Homo erectus fossils found in China
and other regions in East Asia (such as Peking Man and Java Man)
demonstrate a continuity, and to these researchers it was evident that
Homo sapiens emerged out of frequent gene exchanges between
continental populations, since the earlier species Homo erectus came out
of Africa about a million years ago. Besides, they argued, the
archaeological evidence does not mesh with the out-of-Africa hypothesis,
thus making this conclusion at best premature. At least in the case of
Chinese critics, one also suspects that the disclaimer about African origins
may be linked to national pride about the antiquity of the Chinese
civilization. However, as research in the migration of the human genome
has continued to produce more and more evidence of African origins, the
scientific opinion has increasingly tilted toward the out-of-Africa school.
Some Chinese objections have been countered with a large new body of
research based on a massive DNA database collected by both Chinese and
international geneticists. In 1998 a consortium of seven major research
groups from China and the United States, funded by the National Natural
Science Foundation of China, conducted a DNA analysis of twenty-eight of
Chinaâ€™s official population groups and concluded that â€œmodern humans
originating in Africa constitute the majority of the current gene pool in
East Asia.â€ Several other researchers, including Chinese, have since
sampled a large number of Chinese from all over China and reached the
same conclusion. Interestingly, research on both mtDNA and the Y
chromosome has shown evidence even in Africa of the early colonization by
the original group within Africa. The remaining cousins left in East Africa
also spread out to the interior of the continent in search of survival. A
strong school of thought in South Africa actually suggests the possibility
that the ancestors of the Bushmen also are our ancestors and that the
spread of those humans who all became our ancestors was from south to
north. Whichever way they moved, their imprint is left in the DNA of the
Bushmen or Khoisan of the Kalahari Desert and in certain pygmy tribes in
the central African rain forest.
The genome revolution and the discovery of the African Eve have
sparked a new interest in finding oneâ€™s roots. The dark-haired New York
Times columnist Nicholas Kristof thought he knew who he was. His father
came to the United States from Europe, so Kristof assumed himself to be of
a typical American-European heritage. But he wanted to find out who he
really was under the skin and learn more about his origins, and so he sent
his DNA sample for analysis. He was in for a surprise. A mere two
thousand generations ago his great-great-great-grandmother was an
African, possibly from Ethiopia or Kenya. Under his white skin and
Caucasian features, exclaimed Kristof, â€œI am African-American!â€ After the
publication of his column he received a flood of e-mails. One particularly
droll one read, â€œWelcome to the club. But look out while driving in New
Jersey.â€ However, the African continent alone cannot lay sole claim to
Nicholas Kristof. The genetic markers found in his DNA showed he was
also related to people who now inhabit Finland, Poland, Armenia, the
Netherlands, Scotland, Israel, Germany, and Norway. â€œThe [DNA] testing
just underscored the degree to which weâ€™re all mongrels,â€ Kristof told me.
One trait of the human community makes it possible to track the
genomic journey. Humans prefer to settle down in one place if conditions
permit, but they are equally ready to migrate in search of a better life. The
result has been that people who settled along the path of the human
journey are marked by a lineage associated with geographic regions. The
fact that humans have mostly practiced patrilocalityâ€”in which women
come to their husbandâ€™s homes after marriageâ€”enables one to associate
the Y chromosome with a particular location. Looking at my DNA,
geneticists could tell I was from the Indian subcontinent. My M52 Y
chromosome, shared by a large number of Indians, was a giveaway. This
ability has allowed geneticists and anthropologists to sketch out a better
picture of when and how the progenies of the African Eve left the old
continent and found themselves in their current habitat. DNA shows that
this migration, spanning forty to fifty thousand years, came in successive
waves, mostly in gentle ripples and sometimes in large swells. The Wilson
team found that all the world populations they examined, except the
African population, have multiple origins, implying that each region was
THE BEACHCOMBER EXPRESS TO AUSTRALIA
The lack of archaeological evidence does not allow us to answer with
certainty why our ancestors left Africa. Probably a dry spell of the late Ice
Age shrank the forests and dried the savannas that provided game for the
hunter-gatherer population. When a small group took the momentous step
of crossing the Red Sea into the southern Arabian coast, the whole world
was open. Following game herds up into the Middle East or following the
shellfish beds around the Arabian Peninsula and on into India, the humans
were launched on a journey that would result in populating the entire
One of the most striking of those journeys was the arrival of the
ancestral population from Africa to Australia in just seven hundred
generations. Some have called this journey an â€œexpress trainâ€ to Australia.
Of course, the ancestors did not know they were headed to Australia: they
were just following food. But the eastward movement of generations of
people along the Indian and Southeast Asian coasts brought them to a
continent twelve thousand miles from their East African origins.
Slavery has had an enormous impact on the history of the global economy
in the past five centuries and has a long checkered history dating back to
antiquity. It evolved differently in war and peace: In armed conflicts,
victors sometimes turned their prisoners of war into slaves. During peace,
it became a form of punishment for crimes or failure to discharge loans.
Records show the existence of slavery in such ancient civilizations as
Assyria, the Nile Valley, Greece, and the Roman Empire. In their expanding
realm, the Roman conquerors resorted to enslaving large groups in the
vanquished territories, and the slave trade became commonplace in the
empire. The Romansâ€™ captured territories included land that is now known
as England, Wales, and Scotland. When Roman Emperor Septimius Severus
(ruled 193â€“211 CE), a North African, governed Britain, he once remarked
that the British made â€œbad slaves.â€ . . .
The capture of slaves and slave trading thrived in the Christian world,
where the pope had authority in religious and moral affairs. After taking an
equivocal position on slavery and slave trading, the Pope in the mid-15th
century allowed the Portuguese ruler to make slaves of pagans and other
nonbelievers. Because the Portuguese, known for their maritime skills, had
been exploring West Africa since 1415, the papal clearance opened the
gate for taking West Africans first as servants and then as slaves. In 1444,
the port of Lagos in southern Portugal saw the establishment of the first
slave market for Africans in Europe. In a little over a century, 1 out of 10
residents of the capital, Lisbon, was an African slave.
When, in the latter half of the 16th century, the Iberian kings ended
their slave trading monopoly, private slave traders transported slaves to
the Iberian colonies in the Western Hemisphere, where there were vast
plantations producing labor-intensive products, such as cotton, sugar cane,
and tobacco, for export to Europe. The pace of development depended on
the availability of labor, consisting of native Indian tribes, poor Whites, and
African slaves. As the supply of American Indians and poor Whites
dwindled, the Iberian plantation owners began to lean more heavily on the
expediency of securing slave labor from Africa.
Meanwhile, England, an important European maritime nation, was
busily developing contacts with West Africa and Asia through trade by sea.
In 1554, John Locke, an English trader, brought slaves from West Africa to
England and sold them as household servants. Sir John Hawkins, a British
mariner, transported the first â€œcargoâ€ of 500 slaves from West Africa to
the Western Hemisphere in 1562. Later, during the early 1600s, as
England established its own plantation colonies on the North American
mainland and Barbados, its economic and political interests in slave trading
and slavery increased. In 1655, Oliver Cromwell gave a further boost to
this development by seizing Jamaica from Spain.
The rise of vast plantations, worked by slaves who cost their owners the
bare minimum of maintenance, marked a qualitative change in the history
of slavery. Previously, the relationship between a slave and his or her
master had feudal characteristics. Now, it turned capitalist in an agrarian
environment, with the plantation owner extracting maximum profit out of
slave labor by spending just enough to maintain the slaves in a fit state to
work. In another context, in the British plantation colonies in the Western
Hemisphere, race relations emerged in their starkest form: Whites, as
masters, were conceptualized as the superior race, and the Blacks, as
slaves, as the inherently inferior race.
Under the Treaty of Utrecht in 1713, Britain acquired from France the
contract to supply African slaves to the Spanish colonies from its
Caribbean territories. As a result, within 50 years, Britain became the
leading slave trading nation in the world, the foremost slave carrier for
other European nations, and the center of the triangular trade: British
ships ferried manufactured goods to West Africa, transported slaves to the
New World, and brought back sugar, tobacco, and cotton to Britain. The
slavesâ€™ transatlantic journey of 9 to 13 weeks became known as the Middle
As the British involvement in, and the profits from, slavery and the slave
trade increased, the concept of the slave as a commodity began to emerge.
Aboard ship, Africans were considered items of cargo. On plantations,
African slaves were catalogued along with livestock and treated as work
animals, to be worked to the maximum at the minimum cost.
A similar view of slaves as property was taken by the courts in England
where, by the mid-18th century, thousands of households of English
aristocrats and retired planters used African slaves as serving boys and
menservants. They and slave traders had a strong vested interest to
maintain the status quo of slavery and slave trade and often rationalized
these practices. To counter criticism from liberal, humane quarters, slave
masters and merchants argued that African slaves were subhuman. In
other words, essentially to justify their economic gain, while simultaneously
exorcizing themselves of any guilt they might have felt, slave masters and
merchants argued that slaves were subhuman and received the treatment
they (naturally) deserved. The fact that slaves were of a different race led
many British masters and traders to apply their beliefs to the whole race.
They ceased to call slaves African and, instead, referred to them by a
racial labelâ€”negro. Generalizations about negroes proliferated and
became part of popular beliefs and myths in Britain.
Religious and cultural justifications were often advanced to establish
the inherent inferiority of negroes, as a race. It was argued that they were
the descendants of Ham, the Black son of Noah. As such, they were natural
slaves, condemned for ever to remain â€œhewers of wood and drawers of
waterâ€ (Joshua 9:23). This justification reasoned that negroes were not
only physically black, the color of Satan, but also morally black. They were,
in short, savage creatures, who jumped from tree to tree in the steamy
jungles of Africa and ate one another. Thus, from this perspective, to
transport these supposedly subhuman, biologically inferior, mentally
retarded creatures from the hell of African jungles to the tranquility and
order of the plantations of the New World, where they were assured of
protected existence, was an act of Christian charity.
Among small pockets of European settlers in North America, however,
arose objections to slavery. In 1688, the Quakers in Pennsylvania were the
first to air such views. Yet it was not until 1777 that Vermont, then an
independent nation, declared slavery illegal. In Europe, the First Republic
of France outlawed slavery in 1794. Britain outlawed the slave trade in
1807 throughout its empire. It then set out to pressure others to follow
suit. The Netherlands, the last European nation to do so, abolished slave
trading in 1814. In South America, Brazil did so in 1826.
The law abolishing slavery in the British Empire was passed in London
in 1833 and enforced the following year; yet, slavery continued elsewhere.
Slavery was abolished in Brazil in 1853. The end to slavery in the United
States came only at the end of the 1861â€“1865 Civil War between the
proslavery South and the antislavery North. In 1863, U.S. President
Abraham Lincoln signed the Proclamation of Emancipation, liberating
slaves in the United States.
Between 1518 and 1853, European nations filled their Western
Hemisphereâ€“bound slave ships with an estimated 20 million Africans, of
which only about 15 million survived the grueling conditions of the
overcrowded African ports and the months-long Middle Passage across the
Atlantic in tightly packed ships, leading to outbreaks of fatal diseases. As a
result, many more Africans arrived in the New World during those 335
years than Europeans.
SLAVERY AND RELIGION
During slavery, knowledge of Christianity was often withheld from the
slaves, although one of the earliest justifications for embarking on the
slave trade and slavery given by Europeans in general, and Sir John
Hawkins in particular, was to â€œChristianize the Africans.â€ (The first ship
that Hawkins used as a slave carrier was named The Jesus.) With the
development of a plantation economy in the West Indies, planters tended to
consider it imperative to deprive their slaves of any knowledge that might
lead to their â€œenlightenmentâ€ and possible disobedience. That included
knowledge of Christian doctrine.
Furthermore, by intermingling slaves from different tribes to form work
gangs, and banning the practice of their respective language and religious
rituals, slave owners encouraged the decline of African religions. Over
generations, through â€œhouse slavesâ€â€”slaves that worked in the ownerâ€™s
house and were sometimes allowed to stand in at the rear of their ownerâ€™s
church on Sundaysâ€”and through periodic, distant observation of the
Whites at church, field slaves were exposed to Christian ritual and
doctrine. The result was an amalgam of orthodox Christianity and African
beliefs in witchcraft, spirits, and the supernatural.
Several slave masters in Jamaica considered this development
disturbing and attempted to formalize it by importing, in 1745, Moravian
missionaries from America to instruct the slaves in Christian doctrine.
Later, Baptist ministers from America and England were brought in to
preach the gospel. By the time all slaves were emancipated in Jamaica, for
instance, almost all had been exposed to Christian doctrine in one form or
The African belief in the supernatural was blended with the Christian
concept of Jesus the Savior. Out of the marriage of Baptist fundamentalist
gospel and African belief grew the Baptize, or Pentecostal school of
Christian doctrine which, in the post-emancipation period, attracted
thousands of ex-slaves, and which today claims the allegiance of about 20%
to 25% of the Jamaican population. The participatory approach to service
at a Pentecostal churchâ€”consisting of congregational singing and
incorporating the spiritualist practices of trances, spirit possession, and
â€œspeaking in tonguesâ€â€”proved particularly popular with the rural and/or
poor African Americans and Afro-Caribbeans.
The claim that slavery, which underwent profound changes during the
past millennia, is now extinct must be qualified. It persists in its feudal form
in remote pockets of the Arabian Peninsula. Some argue that an indirect
form of slaveryâ€”being bound to an economic role from which one cannot
be easily extricatedâ€”is an unfortunate by-product of the 21st-century
AFRICAN DIASPORA RELIGIONS
As many as 10 million Africans were transported from West and Central
Africa to the Americas and the islands of the Caribbean between the 16th
and 19th centuries, creating one of the largest and most jarring events of
forced population change in global history. This Atlantic slave trade
involved their removal from familiar customs and practices, and separation
from families and communities. As a result of this diaspora, Africans were
scattered and dispersed around the world. Yet they often managed to
retain both traditions and identities in their new environments. As a result,
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Delivering a high-quality product at a reasonable price is not enough anymore.
That’s why we have developed 5 beneficial guarantees that will make your experience with our service enjoyable, easy, and safe.
You have to be 100% sure of the quality of your product to give a money-back guarantee. This describes us perfectly. Make sure that this guarantee is totally transparent.Read more
Each paper is composed from scratch, according to your instructions. It is then checked by our plagiarism-detection software. There is no gap where plagiarism could squeeze in.Read more
Thanks to our free revisions, there is no way for you to be unsatisfied. We will work on your paper until you are completely happy with the result.Read more
Your email is safe, as we store it according to international data protection rules. Your bank details are secure, as we use only reliable payment systems.Read more
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