ECONOMIC INTERACTION OF AFRICAN PEOPLE BEFORE COLONIALISM

Africa communities also interacted due to economic factors such as crafts, trade, farming and pastoralism.

 

1.1.1. METAL WORKING

 

African communities used various kinds of metal to make tools, weapons, utensil and ornaments; some of the widely used metals were iron, Bronze, Gold, Copper and tin. Archaeologists have discovered the remains of early in working beneath important religious shrine in the Great lakes religion dating back over 2,000 years ago.

 

Egyptians were the first people known to have used copper; Benin the Bronze casters had guild called Igun Eronwon through making various metal tools people interacted due to the need of the commodities through interactions.

 

1.1.2. AGRICULTURE:

 

Many Africans communities practiced agriculture and different types of interaction took place in the process. Apart from few communities such as the pastoral Maasai who never tilled land; other communities cultivated a variety of crops by using different farming methods, tools and crops were passed from one community to another. The Kwari who were purely pastoral

community eventually became cultivators as the results they interacted with agricultural societies.

 

1.1.3. FISHING

 

Was an economic activity that was practiced by communities that lived near water bodies such as lakes, rivers and the seas. The Luo were and still are named fishermen in Pre-colonial East Africa the Ndengereko’s fished in the river Rufiji while the Zaramo and other coastal people in the Indian Ocean, such fishing communities interacted with pastoral and agriculturalist so as to acquire animal product and agricultural commodities.

 

1.1.4. TRADE

 

Trade conducted in pre–colonial period was in barter system, the trade network was based on the need to access what a community didn’t produce; Example pastoralists exchanged their animals’ products for vegetable and grains. The limbo clans among the Luo specialized in occupation such as iron working and pottery. Between 8th – 16th C. AD community from the Sudanic belt engaged in trade with the communities from north Africa in the Trans – Sahara trade. Among the most important commodities of exchange were iron, gold, slaves and salts.

 

THE NEED TO SEARCH NEW AREAS

 

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Areas with fertile land and reliable rainfall were very attractive to the people within the regions or those coming from outside the regions. Agricultural societies kept on shifting from the area with infertile soil to areas with fertile soil; example in the interlacustrine regions were densely populated compared to areas like Central Tanzania and Northern part of Kenya where population was low.

 

1.2. IMPACTS /RESULTS /EFFECTS/ CONSEQUENCES/ OUTCOMES OF THE INTERACTION OF AFRICAN PEOPLE BEFORE COLONIALISM

 

1.2.1. SOCIAL IMPACTS OF INTERACTIONS AMONG THE PEOPLE OF AFRICA

  1. Loss of originality: in the process of migrations and trade interactions people moved from one place of their origin to various destinations, through this interactions probably there was interactions of new values, customs and
  2. Emergence of new language. As people of different languages like Bantu, Nilotes and Khoisan meet with other groups; they developed new languages which were based on those new related groups of Swahili language developed in East Africa having most of the Bantu vocabularies.
  3. Inter marriage. When people moved from their original areas and established settlement in new areas they got married with the natures and established new social relations. These involved social conflicts since people were united
  4. Population increased. The places which were attractive for people’s settlements become highly Those regions immigration was common than emigration.

 

1.2.2. THE IMPACTS OF ECONOMIC INTERACTIONS.

  1. Growth of towns and cities. Trading activities stimulated the emergence of urban centers along the trade natures and centers. Areas that produced trade commodities in West, North and East Africa become remarkable urban center; example Taghaza, Timbuktu, Gao, Kumbisaleh in West Africa, Alex and Rial in Tripoli and Cairo in north Africa, Malindi, Mombasa. Bagamoyo, Zanzibar, Tabora and Ujiji in East
  2. Exposure of Africa to the external world. The African coast and interior areas were invalided to the outside world. People were engaged in trading activities and slowly they created trading contacts with the Europeans. African was producing goods that were observed by the outside world.
  3. Intensification of agricultural production. Due to good manufacturing and use of better tools and high demands of food stuffs; cash crops and animals products became very important among Africans.
  4. Development of technical skills and new areas. Trading activities stimulated the emergency and growth of technical skills. Africans were able to process gold, iron smelting and cloth
  5. Over exploitation of African resources. Trade items such as ivory, gold, copper and animals skins, supplied within African and later to outside world. Later on those
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resources were highly demanded by the outside world like Asia and Europe. Therefore traders take them to outside world of large quantities.

  1. The decrease of manpower. Many people in the Western Sudan and East Africa interior were captured as slaves to meet the high demands of slaves by long distance and Trans- Saharan trade.
  2. Emergence of classes: The interactions of people on Africa resulted into classes of rich and poor; those who engaged in trade and agricultural activities became economically powerful than those who did not engage in these activities.

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