Winter ABC 2021: Day 16
There is a euphuism that suggests that European colonization introduced civilization to the indigenous African. A complex that denotes the white man as a savior from the stone age. Africa built Europe for free as the colonizers imposed coercive unrestricted-trade policies, slavery and pillaging our resources at will. The European economic modulus operandi eradicated the diversification of African economies to being solely reliant on manufacturing and conditioning trade to only commodity specialization.
The scramble for Africa began just when African exports reached their highest exchange value. If the colonizers came on ethical terms of governance by engaging natives in business deals and fair trade, Africa will be the most industrialized continent in the world. The industrial revolution depended on African natural and human resources. The scramble would have marked the beginning of an advanced era of African industrialization, putting Africa on top of the world GDP.
Slavery furthered the American colonial economy to the largest industrial power in the world. African slaves became the most efficient labor and America’s biggest financial asset. Cotton was the most exported commodity and African labor increased the farming of cotton by 400%. The profits of cotton propelled America as one of the leading economies in the world. Americas first big business revolved around slavery. African slaves built American capitalism. Without Africa, America would be at the mercy of this continent.
These foreigners destroyed the land and killed the inhabitants so they could steal the native’s resources to advance their own countries. The settlers in Africa used imperialism and apartheid as a tool to subdue Africans and develop Africa for their own benefit by displacing the indigenous people to the bottom of the pyramid. Also creating an open gateway to the resources of Africa. They systematically dismantled our traditions and diluted them with what they believed to be European civilization. History taught us to believe that the native was regressed and savage.
Africa had its own form of commerce, science and art. Our pre-colonial societies were forward thinking and intelligent. Pythagoras, Aristotle, and Picasso were inspired by African innovation. Fractal geometry and the binary system was used in Africa while the white man was still eating raw meat in the caves. The Southern African nomads recorded their history in pictograms, the Bantu had language symbols similar to the Egyptian hieroglyphics and there were the Western African griots, the custodians of history that were wandering human encyclopedias. Egypt invented the 365-day calendar and Ethiopians were literate they wrote poems for performative acts. Africa’s civilization was in motion before colonization. There was potency and an efficient fluid oneness and borderless continent with one economy. Africa was the home of civilization and with most powerful economy because of her abundant resources.
The Great Zimbabwe wall is an example of the African architectural dexterity, stacking granite stones without mortar to create massive walls that still stand after 500 years. The Egyptian pyramids are also an example of African architectural achievement. Africans discovered anesthesia, cesarian birth, episiotomies with handmade scalpels, suturing and experts in herbal medicine. The narrative has to change and we need to tell our own story as Africans. African societies were liberal and broadminded before the white man came with clothes and patriarchy to demonize our cultures. They plundered our resources, killed us, imposed regressive societal norms and an inferior economic structure.
Africa needs to heal and rediscover herself. We could have been an advanced and unique enlightened society, the biggest economic power and the most developed continent in the world. We can only dream of a better Africa, to take each foot forward to building our home and restore motherland to her former glory.