Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
African DominionA New History of Empire in Early and Medieval West Africa$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Michael A. Gomez

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780691196824

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691196824.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM PRINCETON SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.princeton.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Princeton University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PRSO for personal use.date: 04 December 2021

The Middle Niger in Pre-Antiquity and Global Context

The Middle Niger in Pre-Antiquity and Global Context

(p.11) Chapter One The Middle Niger in Pre-Antiquity and Global Context
African Dominion

Michael A. Gomez

Princeton University Press

This chapter discusses the consistent omission of early and medieval Africa in world and imperial histories. West Africa is certainly left out of the narrative of early human endeavor, and only tends to be mentioned, with brevity, in conjunction with European imperialism. Nevertheless, substantial archaeological work has been underway in West Africa for decades, particularly in the middle Niger valley. For it was during the period of the Shang, Chou, Shin, Han, and Tang dynasties of China, the Vedic period in India, and the Mayans in central America, that another urban-based civilization flourished in West Africa, in the Middle Niger region. The chapter then considers the history of civilization in the Middle Niger, which is a study of the multiple ways in which communities continually adjust to and engage with one of the more “variable and unpredictable” environments in the world. Indeed, the story of the Middle Niger connects directly with the celestial preoccupations of big history in that much of its climatic variability is explained by slight alterations in solar radiation, produced in turn by the intricacies of the sun's cyclical patterns.

Keywords:   medieval Africa, West Africa, Middle Niger, urban-based civilization, civilization, communities, climate

Princeton Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.