North and West Africa
Exploring the Region Today
North Africa reaches from the Atlantic Ocean to the Red Sea. Many factors have shaped this region's history, from the building of the pyramids by the ancient Egyptians, through the Islamic conquests and Arab empires of the Middle Ages, to the modern struggle for independence.
Many indigenous cultures flourish in the region of West Africa, where colonial boundaries set up by European powers often disregard traditional distinctions. In the 1950s,West Africa led the struggle for African independence, with Ghana becoming the first nation south of the Sahara to free itself from European colonialism.
Egypt: A Nation Shaped By Islam
Egyptians differ from each other in many ways. Some live in cities while others live in rural areas. Some make a living in technology, while others farm the land using ancient techniques. Despite these differences, most Egyptians are unified by one thing—their Islamic faith.