Africanorigin and civilization
Itis without a doubt that Egypt was the first civilization in Africa.Despite the harsh geographical position such as a desert surrounding,it rose as a populous settlement and made remarkable contributions tothe history of humanity. One of its source of life for Egyptians wasthe Nile which flooded the surrounding plains and supported plant andanimal life (Jackson, 2015). It is evident that since ancient times,Egypt was made of crossroads of culture and people. The inhabitantswere mostly multiethnic and multiracial people as is usually depictedin their artistic drawing. One ancient civilization that stands outwhen studying Egyptian history is the Kemet who were also referred toas kmt. Ancient Kemet has been considered as the cradles ofhumankind. As a result, to understand the history of the world, onemust first comprehend its origin. This essay outlines some of theunique contributions of this civilization to understand the historyof the world.
Inunderstanding the history of Ancient Kemet, one of the controversiesthat have always existed has been about their skin color orientation.Looking at the historical evidence that points as markers to theactual color of the Egyptians, it has become clear that heterogeneouscolored people occupied ancient Egyptians. The skin colors rangedfrom light colored, brown and ultra-dark tones. The Egyptian Pharos`skin color also varied with their tones being light to ultra-darkcolor. This has been confirmed by several articles that stated thatancient Egyptians were as black as the Greek were white, thussignaling that the population had a multiple skin color.
Yurco,for instance, in his writings say that Egyptians were light-skinnedand without Nubian traits (Carruthers, 1999). From an individual’sperspective, the earliest historian and European scholars are to beblamed for this argument about the skin color of ancient Kemetbecause, in the belief that white is superior to black, they refusedto acknowledge that the ancient Egyptians were of different skincolor. They were willing to compromise the credibility of theirwritings because of their personal beliefs and as a result, theytried to alter history to fit their reality.
Anothervery distinct feature of the ancient Kemet was their gender valuesand respect for women. In this ancient and advanced civilization,there was no dominant or more privileged sex males and females wereequal. This conclusion can be derived at after looking at andanalyzing traditional ancient writings, poems, speeches ortheological scriptures. Additionally, the concept of gender equalitywas easily influenced by theological or scriptural concepts and viewof sexes (Karenga, 2003). Egyptian texts just viewed the creator as aunified entity or with both female and male attributes but noparticular dominant sex. For example, they had both gods and goddesssignifying the unique role that women had in the society. Looking atother civilizations like in the Roman Empire, it is evident thatthere is a lot to admire from ancient Kemet when it comes to theplight of women in the society.
Onthe same topic of gender equality, one can also see that in sometexts containing laws or memoir. Women have clear and honorablepositions in this ancient society. One clearly sees that women haveequal power and opportunity as men. Both can win property, seekeducation, influence decisions and look for a suitor (Capel &Markoe, 1996). It is evident from the readings that both men andwomen were obligated to disavow, resist evil and uphold justice. Toan extent, one can say that it is these attributes that made thesociety stand out because everyone knew his or her role and thuslimiting instances of social conflict. Lastly, gender equality can beaffirmed through the analysis of other literary text like the poemsby Isis. In her writings describes the creator as her meaning thatcreator has both male and female character hence showing that therewas gender equality (Obenga & Saakana, 1991).
Froman individual’s perspective, studying and understanding ancientKemet is critical in understanding human history. The currentorganization of society is different from the Egyptians. In thepresent society, we view organized civilized society as theseparation between, economic, religious, legislative, judicial andexecutive. This concept that organizes a society into hierarchicalgroups often results in social divisions due to the interaction ofwealth and social-political factors. The result is that propertybecomes a privilege of a few. This, in turn, leads to domination ofthe hierarchical seats by one particular sex or group hence resultingin the establishment of dominance (Magesa, 2014). For example,domination of women by men. This was not the case in ancient Egyptiancultures. In Kemet society, there was communal ownership and items.This was most evident were the specific properties were considered toserve the entire community were protected by everyone. To an extent,it can be said that even children belonged to the community becauseeveryone participated in their upbringing. Importantly, it was thedivision of labor that ensured peaceful co-existence and unity intheir society.
Modernsociety has a lot to learn regarding gender equality from ancientKemet. For instance, one can learn that women empowerment does notautomatically lead to deprival of men power. Both genders can coexistpeacefully without one interfering with the other. Additionally,another important concept that can be borrowed is regardingleadership. It is evident that modern women still face a lot ofchallenges competing with men. In the ancient Kemet society, womenwere even elevated to the level of goddesses (Temple, 2012). There isneed for mind changes and women empowerment to allow them to competeequally with men especially in politics, education, and career wise.Other important reasons why it is important to study ancient Kemet isbecause they had their influence on the Mediterranean civilizationoutside Africa because there are some similarities between theirculture and that of the ancient Mesopotamia (Karenga &Carruthers, 1986). Lastly, it is also evident that the understandingof their culture is important when discussing about the unity ofindigenous African communities as is shown in their social structureand areas of linguistics.
Conclusively,ancient Kemet represents an early civilization that upheld genderequality, and this can be said to be one of the contributing factorsto its success. Although there has never been a popular decisionregarding the skin color of the inhabitants, history suggests thatthey were probably colored, brown and ultra-dark tones. Existingrecords show that scholars may have compromised their findings tomeet their personal desires. Some unique observations made about theculture included that there was no dominant or more privilegedgender. Records of these can be found in ancient writings, poems,speeches or theological scriptures. Additionally, women heldinfluential positions, even those of goddesses. The current societyhas a lot to learn from ancient Kemet because they managed to handlethe issue of gender equality.
Capel,A. K., & Markoe, G. (1996). Mistressof the house, mistress of heaven: women in ancient Egypt.Hudson Hills.
Carruthers,J. H. (1999). Intellectual warfare.
Jackson,J. G. (2015). Introductionto African civilizations.Ravenio Books.
Karenga,M. (2003). Maat,the moral ideal in ancient Egypt: A study in classical Africanethics.Routledge.
Karenga,M., & Carruthers, J. H. (Eds.). (1986). Kemet and the Africanworldview: Research,rescue and restoration.University of Sankore Press
Magesa,L. (2014). Africanreligion: The moral traditions of abundant life.Orbis Books.
Obenga,T., & Saakana, A. S. (1991). Ancient Egypt and black Africa: Astudent`s handbook for the study of Ancient Egypt in philosophy,linguistics, and gender relations.
Temple,C. N. (2012). Ancient Kemet in African American literature andcriticism, 1853 to the present. TheJournal of Pan African Studies, 5(4),129-148.