Africa: Past and Present By: Jayna, Karlee, & Zander

Land Use

The main way people use the land in the Sub-Saharan Africa is Subsistence farming. The problem this might cause is that the family farming doesn't sell their food, they keep it for themselves and their family. They don’t make any money by doing this.

Natural Resources

2 very precious or valuable resources found in Africa are, gems and gold. These are also the natural resources that Africa has a lot of. There is 40%-60% of the worlds supply of gold in Africa.

Democratic Republic of Congo

The 3 “T” minerals that the Dem. Rep. of Congo has are Tantalum, tin, and tungsten. They go into making Cell phones, Laptops, etc. The Dem. Rep. of Congo is possibly the poorest nation in the world because, Armed rebel groups take control of the mines, force people to work in them, smuggle and sell the minerals themselves, pocket the money and buy more weapons.

GDP Per Capita

The 5 nations that have the highest GDP per capita in the region are: Mauritius ($12,800) South Africa ($11,100) Botswana ($9,200) Seychelles ($7,800) Namibia ($7,300) There are 16 nations that have a GDP per capita below $1,000. A country with higher GDP per capita has better jobs, welfare, schooling, etc. One with a lower GDP per capita may have these things but it’s more poor. A country with higher GDP per capita also trades more and gets more money. A lower one does not.

Life Expectancy

There are 28 out of the 31 lowest life expectancies that are from Sub-Saharan Africa.The main cause of this is HIV/AIDS. Out of the 1.1 million people who died of AIDS last year, 770,000 of them are from Africa. There is an estimate that 24 million Africans are infected with HIV currently.

The Three Kingdoms Of West Africa: Powerful Trading Empire

The Three Kingdoms of West Africa are, Ghana, Mali, and Songhai. They all existed between 800 CE and 1600 CE. They used the Trans-Saharan trade network. The West Africans traded gold for salt with the North Africans. They also traded slaves using this trading network.

Slaves on the Trans-Saharan Trade Network

The Koran states that Muslims are not allowed to enslave other Muslims. So, North African traders had to have slaves from West Africa. Many of these slaves were prisoners of war, and they worked for the Military Services. These slaves were treated way better than European slaves. They were treated better, had more freedom, could own their own land, and could have slaves of their own.

King Mansa Musa and Timbuktu

King Mansa Musa was a very powerful king of all three of the kingdoms in Africa. The King was Muslim, in 1325 he went on a haij, this trip became well known throughout the world. The haij included 60,000 people and 80 camels each carrying 300 lbs. When he returned, he brought back Muslim scholars and architects to build cities, and also mosques and schools in Timbuktu. Timbuktu then became the center of trade and learning in West Africa. Many Muslims from all over the world came to study religion, law, music, mathematics, and others there.

The first person to make the Three West African Kingdoms known to others in the world was the Muslim explorer Ibn Battuta. When he turned 21 he left his home city of Tangier, Morocco to go on a hajj to Mecca. He did not come back for 30 years. He traveled 75,000 miles all over Africa and Asia, he wrote about all the places he was going to travel to. When he came home, he put all his writings about his traveling in a book called the Rihla. This book is actually still available today. It was the first ever travel book.

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