ANTHRARC 383 - Prehistory: Africans
Section: 001
Term: FA 2017
Subject: Anthropology, Archaeological (ANTHRARC)
Department: LSA Anthropology
Requirements & Distribution:
Waitlist Capacity:
Advisory Prerequisites:
Sophomore standing.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

No continent is more central to the story of humankind than Africa. The earliest humans or ‘hominins’ first evolved in Africa some 6 million years ago. Later, around 2.5 million years ago, some of their descendants began manufacturing the very first tools, which let them complete with apex predators on the dangerous African plains. African hominins were the first to master fire, a key innovation that made food more digestible, scared away predators, and probably helped them take their first footsteps out of Africa and into Eurasia. Africa is also the cradle of our own species – Homo sapiens – which evolved there some 200,000 years ago. And all non-African people today are the product of another great dispersal out of Africa, one that began about 130,000 years ago. Even the world’s earliest signs of symbolic and artistic expression made their appearance in Africa at least 70,000 years ago, some 30,000 years earlier than in Europe or Asia. Later in prehistory, some African hunter-gatherers independently invented agriculture, animal husbandry and metal technology, and developed complex sociopolitical systems leading to states and great empires. Others remained hunter-gatherers, interacting with these more complex cultures for millennia and in countless ways ranging from inter-marriage to war. This course examines the prehistory of African hunting and gathering societies, from the earliest hominins to resistors of European colonialism. Investigating their archaeological record – the world’s oldest and longest – is essential for tracing the great developmental trajectory that has shaped all of us.

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ANTHRARC 383 - Prehistory: Africans
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
TuTh 1:00PM - 2:30PM
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