Cheikh Anta Diop (Author of The African Origin of Civilization)Cheikh Anta Diop was an Afrocentric historian, anthropologist, physicist and politician who studied the human races origins and pre-colonial African culture.
Diops first work translated into English, The African Origin of Civilization: Myth or Reality, was published in 1974. It gained a much wider audience for his work. He proved that archaeological and anthropological evidence supported his view that Pharaohs were of Negroid origin. Some scholars draw heavily from Diops groundbreaking work, , while others in the Western academic world do not accept all of Diops theories. Diops work has posed important questions about the cultural bias inherent in scientific research.
Diop showed above all that European archaeologists before and after the decolonization had understated and continued to understate the extent and possibility of Black civilizations.
The Swiss archaeologist Charles Bonnets discoveries at the site of Kerma shed some light on the theories of Diop. They show close cultural links between Nubia and Ancient Egypt, though the relationship had been acknowledged for years. This does not necessarily imply a genetic relationship, however. Mainstream Egyptologists such as F. Yurco note that among peoples outside Egypt, the Nubians were closest ethnically to the Egyptians, shared the same culture in the predynastic period, and used the same pharaonoic political structure. He suggests that the peoples of the Nile Valley were one regionalized population, sharing a number of genetic and cultural traits.
Diop argued that there was a shared cultural continuity across African peoples that was more important than the varied development of different ethnic groups shown by differences among languages and cultures over time.
His books were largely responsible for, at least, the partial re-orientation of attitudes about the place of African people in history, in scholarly circles around the world.
Cheikh Anta Diop (1923-1986)
Jump to navigation. His privileged background ensured that he got a top-class education. At the age of 23, he moved to Paris to take up postgraduate studies in philosophy, maths and chemistry at the Sorbonne, the most famous university in France. Diop benefited greatly from the French education system, and his published works were all written in French, not his native African language. History, Egyptology, languages, physics, anthropology, and economics were among the subjects he studied in Paris. Most students would not have been able to handle such a heavy workload, but Diop had a very sharp mind, and all he wanted to do was study. In his spare time, he edited an arts and culture magazine, and one of the articles he wrote was about African culture and how it had been destroyed by foreigners who colonised African countries.
Cheikh Anta Diop was an African historian who, in a series of studies, dramatically and controversially maintained that the scope of Africa's contribution to world civilization was considerably larger than heretofore acknowledged. Cheikh Anta Diop was born at the end of in Diourbel, Senegal, a city reknowned for spawning great Islamic philosophers and historians. He received his higher education at the University of Paris France , where he earned a doctorate of letters and was active in African student politics. Upon returning to Senegal, he joined what is today the Institut Fondamentale d'Afrique Noire, where he founded and ran the only carbondating laboratory in Africa. Diop experienced the great explosion of independence which began in early in Ghana.
Cheikh Anta Diop 29 December — 7 February was a Senegalese historian , anthropologist , physicist , and politician who studied the human race's origins and pre- colonial African culture. Though Diop is sometimes referred to as an Afrocentrist , he predates the concept and thus was not himself an Afrocentric scholar. However, Diopian thought, as it is called, is paradigmatic to Afrocentricity. Diop's work has posed important questions about the cultural bias inherent in scientific research. Diop's family was part of the Mouride brotherhood, the only independent Muslim fraternity in Africa according to Diop. In , at the age of 23, Diop went to Paris to study. He initially enrolled to study higher mathematics, but then enrolled to study philosophy in the Faculty of Arts of the Sorbonne.
Further Reading on Cheikh Anta Diop
In , he moved to Paris in order to earn a Mathematics degree, with the idea of continuing his studies in aeronautical engineering. At the same time, he enrolled in the Faculty of Philosophy and Literature at the Sorbonne, and he was involved in creating the Association of African Students in Paris. In , the University of Paris rejected his doctorate thesis based on the idea that ancient Egypt had been a black culture. Diop did not give up, and he spent the next nine years adding more precise evidence to his work. This work would transform him into the most controversial historian of his time.