Background: In The Philosophy of History (1837), Georg Hegel, an influential German philosopher, stated: “At this point we leave Africa, not to mention it again. For it is no historical part of the World; it has no movement or development to exhibit . . . . What we properly understand by Africa, is the Unhistorical, Undeveloped Spirit, still involved in the conditions of mere nature, and which had to be presented here only as on the threshold of the World’s History.” More than one hundred years later, the British professor, Hugh Trevor-Roper, echoed Hegel’s assertions in his book, The Rise of Christian Europe: “Perhaps in the future there will be some African history to teach. But at the present there is none; there is only the history of Europeans in Africa. The rest is darkness, and darkness is not the subject of history” (1964).
Assignment: Write an essay in which you critically reflect and respond to Hegel’s and Trevor-Roper’s comments above about Africa. Your essay should be 4-5 pages, typed and doubled spaced and must conform to the current edition edition of the APA (Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association) and submitted through Safeassign as a Microsoft Word attachment (PDF or other file types will not be graded).
Instructions: Your essay must include the following components:
1.An introductory paragraph that provides a critical overview of Hegel’s and Trevor-Roper’s statements. The overview must place the statements within the historical context of the widespread myths and stereotypes of Africa held in the Western world.
2.A body of the essay that includes several paragraphs. In this section, you will identify and select two or three areas—political, economic, social-cultural institutions/practices (education, family, religion, etc). Then, critically evaluate and discuss how the areas functioned in pre-colonial Africa and the changes and exchanges that transpired in those areas during the colonial and post-colonial periods.
3.Your concluding paragraph should summarize your ideas about this topic. It should examine to what extent the new knowledge of Africa obtained from AFA 201 has reinforced or debunked the widespread myths and stereotypes of Africa held in the Western world such as the one embraced by Hegel and Trevor-Roper.
4.The question tests your understanding of the entire course content for AFA 201. Your essay will need to include references to at least five articles discussed in class during the semester. You may include additional materials from other sources (articles/books/videos relevant to our course). But, the five cited materials from your course are a minimum. Your references need to be well integrated into your essay.
5.Your essay must be clearly written, using correct grammar and spelling. It is expected that you will approach the writing of this essay seriously. The current edition of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (APA) will be the required reference for the writing and citation guidelines for this essay. Please contact your instructor if you have questions.
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