Cross Cultural Encounter: the Europeans Influence in Africa Essay

2717 Words Mar 30th, 2007 11 Pages
The cross-cultural encounter between Europe and Africa began as Europe aggressively initiated an era of exploration of Africa south of the great savanna. Europe's curiosity, exploration and greed transformed the history of African people. In the study of the cultural history of Africa, much innovation has been attributed to outside origins and influences. Historians and archaeologists have learned a great deal about the developments that emerged from the European influence in Africa. The age of exploration commences as European powers began new pursuits in geographical determinism toward non-European lands and peoples. Against this background, begins the European discovery, exploration and expansion into Africa, Asia, the Americas and the …show more content…
Within two decades, the barrier of the Sahara had been overcome and trade in gold and slaves began in what is today Senegal. Progress continued as trading forts were built at Elmina and Sao Tome e Principe became the first sugar producing colony. In 1482, an expedition under Diogo Cao made contact with the Kingdom of Kongo. The crucial breakthrough was in 1487 when Batholomeu Dias rounded (and later named) the Cape of Good Hope and proved that access to the Indian Ocean was possible. In 1498, Vasco da Gama made good on this promise by reaching India." (2006) Luciano Amaral writes, "The explorations along the African coast had two main objectives: to have a keener perception of how far south Islam's strength went, and to surround Morocco, both in order to attack Islam on a wider shore and to find alternative ways to reach Prester John. But the major navigational feat of this period was the passage of Cape Bojador in 1434, in the sequence of which the whole western coast of the African continent was opened for exploration and increasingly (and here is the novelty) commerce. As Africa revealed its riches, mostly gold and slaves, these ventures began acquiring a more strict economic meaning. And all this kept on fostering the Portuguese to go further south, and when they reached the southernmost tip of the African continent, to pass it and go east. And so they did. Bartolomeu Dias crossed the Cape of Good
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