Chapter 16 section 4 outline

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Chapter 16 section 4 outline

  1. 1. “Society and Culture” I. Society in West African Empires a. early African history is not know because of oral traditions b. the society was male oriented (i.e. leadership, warfare, and Islamic learning) c. caste system: determined an individual’s social structure based on the family he or she was born into A. Social Structure a. top of class system was the emperor of the kingdom b. nobility and kings were next in highest caste system (i.e. lead armies and governed) c. traders and free people of town d. skilled workers (a.k.a. labor specialization) B. Slavery in West Africa a. lowest in caste were slaves b. born into slavery, war captives, political prisoners, and kidnapped victims c. W. African slaves could buy freedom and had rights C. Importance of Kinship a. lineage: a group of people descended from common ancestor (i.e. cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents, etc.) b. family/ancestor—lineage---clan (close related)---village (multiple clans)---a social group called an ethnic group D. City and Village Life a. language is divided urban (Arabic for trade and Islam) and rural (family/village language) b. rural income was from farming and herding c. urban income was based on trade from caravans II. African Religions a. although Islam and Christianity were prevalent, many ancient Africans chose to follow family religions A. Religious Rituals a. people worshipped gods on a daily basis and prayed to get advice through religious officials B. Honoring Ancestors a. the people believed that their ancestors became spirits after death b. by honoring ancestors through shrines and sacrifices, the spirits were happy Mr. David Masenhimer
  2. 2. III. Cultural Legacy a. oral tradition: spoken history, poetry, folk tales to teach past and entertain A. A Rich Oral Tradition a. proverb: as known as a wise saying that is quick and full of wisdom b. griot: professional storyteller. Often people of nobility were assigned their own griot c. griots functioned as a sound/justice oriented voice for kings and rulers, but it was mostly history and culture they were passing B. Music, Dance, and Art a. dances marked stages of life, for example, birth, marriage, and death b. the most popular instrument was the drum c. art included wooden masks, plaques, sculptures of soldiers Mr. David Masenhimer

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