When the sultan heard this, he told his amirs that wrongdoers would be punished and anyone who protected a wrongdoer would be punished as if the crime was his own.
The block quotes are displayed as separate paragraphs, in quotation marks. How did the political structures of West African colonies differ from the political structures of pre-modern West African states? Long before any European power came to Africa, there were states and societies with complex political systems and methods for administration.
The powerful ones usually gained wealth at first by monopolizing trade routes passing through their territory. These states had sophisticated structures for administering their local territory.
In many cases there was a king or sultan, who often had a highly elevated status, which could be seen by his garb and adornments.
Sometimes he was considered divine. He was surrounded, guided, and restrained by lower chiefs and ministers. Yet somehow, when Europeans started conquering the states as colonies, they came to the conclusion that Africans were primitive and unsophisticated, and needed help. The Europeans then made use of existing African political structures, which proved themselves not primitive at all, to run the colonies.
Mostly the colonizers centralized power in the hands of the chiefs of the native administration so that these chiefs could better accomplish the tasks given them, like the collection of taxes. First I consider pre-modern West African states, and the bases of their power.
Then I examine the ways that the states were administered, paying specific attention to the members of the court. Entirely different methods were used to keep control over vassal states, which I study next. Finally I briefly go into how succession affects and reflects the other issues a state faces.
Then the European powers decide to take colonies, so I delve into the political structures they encounter, and what they think of these structures. We next take a look at how the Europeans ran their colonies.
Why did they choose not to rule directly, and what was the nature of their indirect rule? Europeans made very good use of intermediaries. They also centralized power around the native chiefs. Finally, we will look at how, once again, the issue of succession somewhat reflects the issues facing the colonizers.
A list of my secondary sources can be found at the end of this paper. I usually did not quote from these books, but have attempted to use footnotes when a particular idea or phrase comes directly from one of these sources.
These sources are from different times and different locations, including Antonius Malfante, writing from Tawat, to Lord Lugard, who founded the British principle of Indirect Rule.
There were a number of different types of political forms in Africa before European contact. There were empires like Ghana and Mali, which were different than the city-states of the Hausa, both of which were different from the stateless, acephalous communities, such as the Grunshi or Birifor.
Many cities, states and empires gained wealthby regulating and monopolizing trade. Tawat was divided into quarters, each of which was controlled by a local ruler.
Tawat, inside the Sahara, would thus be regarded as an island at which you can stock up on supplies during your trip across the ocean of the Sahara. It was convenient for traders; it would have been convenient for local elites, too, who could earn money from the trade passing through.
Ghana, located on the Sahel, and on two trans-Saharan trade routes, had a similar opportunity to tax traders.
At first Ghana earned money by regulating and taxing regional trade, and later by taxing the developing trans-Saharan trade. More extensive states were desirable in order to better control trade, and the money earned from regulation and taxation enabled the development of such states.
Stronger states allowed not only for better control of trade, but also for better protection, which encouraged trade still more. There were other sources of wealth for a state or empire.
Ghana, for example, had access to gold fields, and it taxed the mining of gold.
States were also founded on agricultural surplus. The Hausa city-states of Kano and Katsina, for example, became wealthy because of agricultural and crafts developments, and only after they were already wealthy did they attract large trade flows.Legendary Tales of an Historic City. Tales of Timbuktu's fabulous wealth helped prompt European exploration of the west coast of Africa.
Among the earliest descriptions of Timbuktu are those of Leo Africanus, Ibn Battuta and Shabeni. Below are some online resources documenting the biographies of two of these Muslim travelers, Leo Africanus and Ibn Battuta.
Both men have fascinating biographies as well as intriguing and valuable accounts of West Africa during this period. Ibn Battuta, an Arab, must have.
Start the three main types of ghosts studying Chapter 6: The Kingdoms of Mali And Songhai. of Timbuktu, Mali - Timbuktu. The Travels of A character analysis on nicks father in indian camp by earnest hemmingway Ibn Battuta.
a visit to Mali. What Happened A review of the story a day at the races to the Ancient Libyans?. a comparison of leo africanus and ibn. Although Ibn Battuta’s Rihlah was not known in Europe until the nineteenth century, a description of Mali produced for Pope Leo X in the sixteenth century sparked European curiosity and fired the imagination of explorers for centuries to come.
This famous account of the mysterious land of gold beyond the Sahara was the work of Leo Africanus. Battuta mentioned the graves of two important men in Timbuktu: the poet Abu Ishaq al-Sahili of Gharnata (Grenada) who was known in Spain as al-Tuwaljin [and who came to Mali with Mansa Musa], and a great merchant from Alexandria named Siraj al-Din ibn al-Tuwaik.
May 17, · Leo Africanus visited around and claimed that manuscripts and books “sold for more money than any other merchandise” in the market—probably an exaggeration, given the town’s lucrative trade in gold, salt, and slaves.