Egypt, Nigeria, Algeria, and Ghana


Religious culture: Egypt is across the Red sea where the messenger of Islam, Muhammad was born. Islam is the major religion in Egypt.

Muslims Beliefs: They believe that the Quran their holy book contains the words of God. They pray 5 times a day.

Islamic Renewal: Praying and fasting are 2 ways that Egyptians Muslims have brought their religion into their daily life. Most Muslims believe that the laws of Egypt should be based on Islamic laws. One area of disagreement is the public behavior of women. They feel that women should be cover their faces except for their eyes.

Diversity of Life: In the urban life about half of all Egyptians live in cities. Cairo is the nations capital and largest city. Some parts of Cairo are more than 1 thousand years old. Many people from rural areas move to the city hoping to find jobs and better education. In the rural life in Egypt most people live in villages around the Nile or Suez canal. Most villagers make their living by farming, these farmers are called fellaheen.


Ethnic groups: Berbers are nomads that have survived in the Sahara for hundreds of years. Berbers have lived in North Africa at least 3000 B.C. They settled in the Atlas mountains and plains near Algeria's coast. The Berber way of life changed in the A.D. 600's when Arabs spread across north Africa. About half of Algeria's people live in the city. Because France ruled Algeria for part of its history, many Berbers and Arabs speak French.


Nigeria's History: The reason why Nigeria has so many ethnic groups and languages is because it was ruled by many ethnic groups , including the Hausa , the Yoruba , and the Ibo. Nigeria became independent of Great Britain in 1960.

Different Cultures: The Hausa and Fulani make up about 33% of Nigeria's people and most are Muslims. the Hausa-Fulani made an important part of their living by trading goods and building cities. The oldest city in west Africa is Kano. About 20% of Nigeria's people are Yoruba they settled in Lagos a city built about 500 years ago. Lagos was a center for European slave and most Yoruba's are farmers. The Ibo are traditionally lives as rural farmers in the southeast and haven't built large cities. the ibo ruled themselves with a democratic council of elders. When Nigeria does a census there is always a debate because the largest group will have the most power of the government.


Moving Toward Independence: Nkrumah, a student that sailed from Ghana to the US believed that the people should benefit from the wealth of their own country, so he began traveling all over the country to convince people to demand independence from Great Britain.

Traditional Government: The Akan are the largest ethnic group in Ghana; they are democratic. The Akan's formed the Asante kingdom which became very rich from trade and used their power to try to stop Europeans from taking west Africa. In 1874 Great Britain made the Gold Coast and people started to grew food crops, so people spent more time in farming and less on traditional crafts. Christianity began to replace traditional religions. Ghana became independent in 1957.

Independence: Nkrumah gave motivating speeches to his people for cheering them to go to streets and crowds sang victory , Nkrumah became a leader and later on the president. Ghana was the first African colony south of the Sahara to become independent. Nkrumah's became an enemy when the people blamed him for the economic problems of the country. In 1980s Jerry Rawlings became Ghana's president and economy began to grow.

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