The World and Africa: An Inquiry into the Part Which Africa Has Played in World History

The World and Africa: An Inquiry into the Part Which Africa Has Played in World History

The World and Africa: An Inquiry into the Part Which Africa Has Played in World History

The World and Africa: An Inquiry into the Part Which Africa Has Played in World History

Excerpt

Since the rise of the sugar empire and the resultant cotton kingdom, there has been consistent effort to rationalize Negro slavery by omitting Africa from world history, so that today it is almost universally assumed that history can be truly written without reference to Negroid peoples. I believe this to be scientifically unsound and also dangerous for logical social conclusions. Therefore I am seeking in this book to remind readers in this crisis of civilization, of how critical a part Africa has played in human history, past and present, and how impossible it is to forget this and rightly explain the present plight of mankind.

Twice before I have essayed to write on the history of Africa: once in 1915 when the editors of the Home University Library asked me to attempt such a work. The result was the little volume called The Negro, which gave evidence of a certain naive astonishment on my own part at the wealth of fact and material concerning the Negro peoples, the very existence of which I had myself known little despite a varied university career. The result was a condensed and not altogether logical narrative. Nevertheless, it has been widely read and is still in print.

Naturally I wished to enlarge upon this earlier work after World War I and at the beginning of what I thought was a new era. So I wrote Black Folk: Then and Now, with some new ma-

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