|10-01-2010, 01:00 PM||#1|
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Toronto - Banu Shaja'ah
Black Athena: Defying a racist historical perspective
I just came across this title and thought it might be of interest:
Black Athena by Martin Bernal
Overview by author:
Brief Outline of the Black Athena Project.
In my three volumes with the title Black Athena, I argue that the Ancient Egyptian civilization can usefully be seen as African. I also maintain Ancient Egypt and Semitic speaking South West Asia played fundamental roles in the formation of Ancient Greece. I do not claim the Ancient Greeks were Black or that the Ancient Egyptians all looked like stereotypical West Africans.
Greeks of the Classical and Hellenistic periods 500-50 BCE believed that their religion had come from Egypt that there had also been profound Egyptian influences on the formation of their philosophy and mathematics. Similarly they maintained that Phoenicians from what is now Lebanon and Northern Israel/Palestine had introduced cultural artifacts notably the alphabet.
I have called such beliefs, the "Ancient Model" of Greek origins. This Ancient Model was generally accepted until the beginning of the 19th century CE (AD). It then began to fall into disrepute and by the 1840s, it was replaced by what I have called the "Aryan Model." According to this, the Greek stories of their origins were mistaken and Greek culture was "in fact" a mixture of the soft but civilized natives of the Aegean basin and the dynamic Northerners who had conquered them. This mixture was seen as having created the perfect balance of Greek civilisation.
In Volume I of Black Athena I argued that the destruction of the Ancient Model was not the result of any new discoveries. Rather, it came from various ideological forces, one of which was the racism which made it intolerable that Greece, now seen as the pure cradle of Europe should have received its higher culture from Africans and "Semites."............
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