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Describe traditional agriculture in Africa


Describe traditional agriculture in Africa



Traditionally, the vast majority of Africans have been farmers and herders who
raised crops and livestock for subsistence. Manufacturing and crafts were generally
carried on as part-time activities. Most markets were local, although numerous states over
the centuries developed long-distance trade systems, and in these places complex
exchange facilities as well as industrial specialization, communication networks, and
elaborate governmental structures maintained the flow of commerce. They included the
medieval West Africa kingdoms and empires of Ghana, Songai, Kanem-Bornu; and o
great Zimbabwe in southern Africa; trans-Saharan trade, which began before the Romans,
continued until well into the 19th century.

Gold, slaves (on a small scale), Kola, copper, kola nuts, ostrich feathers, and salt,
were all items in Africa’s export trade for many hundreds of years before the advent of
Europeans. With the Europeans, initially, there came increased demand for one of the
traditional staples of African trade- slaves (see slavery: slavery in the modern period).
The numbers required, however, were vastly more than had ever been traded before,
leading to distortions and disruptions in Africa politics and society, and robbing the west
and center of the continent of millions of its people. Colonization brought overseas
demand for new agricultural and mineral products and internal labour migration; new and
faster communication systems were constructed; European technology and crops were introduced, not always, by any means, beneficially; and a modern exchange economy
evolved. Local industries and crafts-textiles and iron making, for example –were
frequently undermined by cheaper or more prestigious European goods. Modern
processing industries developed, as did new ports and administrative centres. A variety of
consumer industries sprang up to fill newly created local consumer needs. A feature of
the African economy is the side-by-side existence of both subsistence and modern
exchange economies. Future growth depends on the availability of investment funds, the
world demand for local raw materials, fair world prices for these raw materials, the
availability of energy sources, the size of local markets, a solution to the foreign debt
problem which is crippling so many African economies, and the willingness of the
industrialized economies to reduce trade barriers to processed and manufactured African
Titany answered the question on January 18, 2022 at 05:25

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