On Chancellor Williams’s “Destruction of Black Civilization”

The late Chancellor Williams was no slouch when it came to researching African history. As he himself states near the beginning of his book, “(R)esearching African history is more tedious, laborious, and time-consuming than is true in other unsuppressed fields.” He is certainly right about that. Until very recently it was next to impossible to obtain substantial documents and data dealing with the history of sub-Saharan Africa. When “The Destruction of Black Civilization” appeared in 1971 the fabled libraries of Timbuktu were, in the minds of even the most ardent African scholars, largely still a fable. Unfortunately, his decades of thoroughgoing research in Africa, Europe and elsewhere had not amounted to much, if we have just this book to go on. The details in this meager book, generally speaking, and particularly in regards to Egypt and Sudan reveal nothing that one would not just as easily gleamed from other texts. About Ghana, Mali and Songhay he says precious little–in fact, all the information Dr. Williams provides about these three West African states could fill an article in the New Yorker. (There is, to be fair, invaluable, substantial, and much-needed information on the little-known Kingdom of Kuba.) However, in these instances–and much in line with his accounts of Egypt, Meroe, Axum and other kingdoms–the details are all overladen with heavy-handed rhetorical generalizing about “The Blacks” and, most especially, their fateful encounters with Europeans and Asiatics.

The gist of Williams’s generalizations is that a bunch of bloodsucking, homicidal ofays and gooks wrecked the African continent. Which, as nasty as it sounds, is quite true. No doubt about that. The crushing of Songhai at the hands of the Moroccans on March 13, 1591 (mirroring an earlier crushing of Ghana at the hands of the Almoravid Berbers in 1076) is a prime example, as was the Hyksos invasion of Egypt thousands of years earlier. And of course, one need only look at the mad scramble for Africa that took place after the Berlin Conference of 1885 (and let’s not make mention of both slave trades–the European and the Arab–the latter of which lasted far longer and took many more lives). So on one level, Williams is right about Eurasian homicidal mania towards Africa. Where he is wrong–for the most part, that is–is in deducing the intent of Eurasian destruction of Africa, at least before the arrival of the Portuguese.

Williams says (not suggests) that Black Africa was originally one big continent full of Black people who–at one magical, mythical point in its prehistory–all spoke one language and belonged to one tribe: the magical, mythical Black African tribe, who all saw, felt, ate, drank, copulated, lived and died as Blacks. On the one hand, that’s not earth-shattering news: 20,000 years ago, virtually every homo sapien on the planet was more or less still “African” in appearance, if not in language. Williams, on the other hand, was eager to assert that all these mythical Black Africans had “Black Consciousness” in the face of a white enemy waiting with sharpened knives outside the gates of Sinai–and that typical Black moral failings (divisiveness, pettiness, selfishness, greed, self-hatred, disrespect for centralized authority, and naivete in dealing with non-Blacks) led to its destruction.

Ashanti house in Ghana

Another false assertion that he pushes in his little book is that Eurasia’s ancient rape of Africa was really done solely out of racist envy and spite, rather than desperate plunder by barbarous groups of non-Africans (who may not have been nearly as “white” as he imagined them to be) with meager resources and even less patience for the civilized graces of more established nations. The same fate that befell Egypt and Carthage also befell Mycenae, Elam, Sumeria, Sassanid Persia, Mohenjo-Daro, Ancient China, Ancient Vietnam (at the hands of China), and even Rome itself.  There is also the question of the desire of imperial conquest, which naturally drove China to quash and colonize Vietnam for over 1,000 years beginning in 111 BC; or the destruction of medieval Cambodia at the hands of the Siamese c. 1431. Lest anyone think this is entirely race-motivated, one need only research the destruction of Constantinople at the hands of the Venetians in the latter part of the 13th century: both parties were white Europeans, yet clearly despised each other for reasons that had nothing to do with skin color.

The same held true in Africa, whether North or South, east or west. It sounds cliched, but building an empire is much like making an omelette: one has to break some eggs in the process. Medieval Mali and Songhai, respectively, were about the size of the entire European continent. Yet neither empire was built by the consent of the peoples it subjugated–and no group of people, anywhere in the world, has ever really cottoned to the idea of being subjugated to another, whether in the form of vassalage (as was the case with much of Mali’s empire) or outright conquest (also true of Mali as well as Songhay, which were largely built on the ruins of Ghana and Susu). Indeed the very creation of Mali came about as a result of a crippled Mandinka, Sundiata Keita, who not only felt humiliated to be subject to the Sosso (an upstart kingdom which had encroached upon Mandinka land in its expansionist moves across West Africa)–but who, according to the national epic of Mali, was prophesied to be a great leader by the oppressed Mandinka. Mali’s national epic is essentially the story of a liberation struggle against an imperialist nation that was neither European nor Arab, and in human history prior to 1400 this is no anomaly.

The best I can say about “Destruction” is that it is superbly written. It would have made an excellent historical novel. As for straightforward history, the book is marred by false and romantic assumptions about African history. My point is not to argue whether or not the Ancient Egyptians were Africans, since most of the evidence gathered about them strongly suggests that they were of sub-Saharan origin. (Actually most of the period portraiture, mummies and DNA evidence speaks for itself.) My point is that in no period of pre-colonial African history did Africans have the kind of “black consciousness” that Dr. Williams so vehemently espouses, and with which he so vehemently lambastes Africans for lacking. “Black consciousness” (notwithstanding the revealing name KEMET) was almost entirely a product of an anti-colonial and anti-slavery sentiment that began long after the fall of Songhai in 1591.

Aside from the chapter dealing with the Bushongo of Central Africa, there is very little nuance anywhere to be found in The Destruction of African Civilization. This book, had it purported to deal with the myriad factors and fine details as to what caused the collapse of African civilization–should have been at least four times as long as it is. Of course, even today, it is extremely difficult to write cogently about sub-Saharan African history without filling in the gaps with conjecture and outright solipsism, so maybe one should at least give some credit to Dr. Williams in opening up a discussion on a subject which had been previously ignored. But that is not enough, for there is a more troubling issue at stake here.

Pharaoh Menkaure, 4th Dynasty (Egypt)

Williams was naive enough to assume that pre-colonial Africans were actually infected with the profound self-loathing and depersonalization–what Dr. Du Bois rather politely called “double consciousness”–that Africans suffer today. He was even more naive in assuming that all black people everywhere were essentially the same in nature and outlook. Indeed, the last thing that Africans anywhere in the world need is yet another piece of work that reduces them down to a common denominator, however positive that denominator may appear to be. This alone should be enough for a half-way intelligent person to put the book down. What Dr. Williams says concerning Africa’s downfall could just as well apply to the Chinese downfall, the Arab downfall, the Roman downfall, the Byzantine downfall, the various downfalls of India, South East Asia, and naturally the total annihilation of Pre-Columbian America. Dr. Williams projects the anxieties of a mid-twentieth century Black American pan-Africanist back into Africa’s pre-colonial past, and as a result, THE DESTRUCTION OF BLACK CIVILIZATION should be taken with a cup of salt.

Ancient Egypt and Africans: Enough Already!!

“the whites are the implacable foe, the traditional and everlasting enemy of the Blacks’. . . The necessary re-education of Blacks and a possible solution of racial crises can begin, strangely enough, only when Blacks fully realize this central fact in their lives: The white man is their Bitter Enemy. For this is not the ranting of wild-eyed militancy, but the calm and unmistakable verdict of several thousand years of documented history.”

Chancellor Williams, The Destruction of Black Civilization, p.310

After fuming over some racist nonsense that an Egyptian (!!) shat on YouTube, I had to put this out–if only in lieu of putting my foot up this dumb motherfucker’s ass.

It seems that everybody and his brother is still pulling their hair out from the roots about the ethnic origins of the Ancient Egyptians. I had hoped this matter had been settled in the 1970s, but you can’t keep a good bunch of honky assholes down. Not for too long. They always need to have the last word on everything.

Why all the words, sweat, bile and tears wasted on bodies that haven’t breathed a breath of life in over 4,000 years? Because these bodies laid the fundamentals of our current civilization. That civilization is also currently rotting, for various reasons, but this is beside the point.

Or maybe it isn’t. The white, right-leaning intellectual would have us believe (usually inadvertently) that the rot in our current civilization is due to the unwanted presence of blacks in the halls of power, when (according to them) they should be in the fields, picking cotton or watermelons, or in the kitchen, frying chicken, or otherwise back in the jungle—where we supposedly belong. The liberation of the “blacks” resulted in the decay of learning, the decay of morals, the decay of music, of the cities, of the economy, of the environment, of the weather, of everything.

“Multiculturalism” is code-talk for niggers, or spics, or—in Europe—towelheads; specifically, “multiculturalism” is (to the neocons and neo-liberals) a heavy-handed attempt to force primitive peoples and their primitive, superficial cultures into the halls of a sophisticated and venerable Western civilization. The only thing they can do is piss all over the walls and shit on the floors of this great, white Parthenon. Schiller? What the hell do niggers know about him, anyway? Or Voltaire? Kant? Schopenhauer? Etc., etc.

But the presence of barbarians in the halls of western civilization could be better tolerated if these same barbarians did not try and rewrite the history of Western Civilization to suit “their” purposes. Of course, on close scrutiny, these black “barbarians” are merely attempting—often awkwardly—to set the historical record straight. Westerners are actually attempting to maintain an historical fantasy which deems them, with incredible arrogance and presumptuousness, the only Civilized.

From the Afrocentrists

Much of Afro-centrism is indeed silly. Chancellor Williams, the virtual Dean of Afrocentrists, has done a good deal of damage in regards to excavating and reassessing African history. His book, The Destruction of Black Civilization, is essentially a Nationalist polemic against Whitey. Nothing wrong with that, of course, if taken strictly at face value: the white man brought the bulk of his miseries upon himself–not least of all because he refuses to look at himself in the mirror; he refuses to ask himself whether or not there is anything about him that is worth liking. But that is beside the point. The point is that those among us who are responsible for writing our history as Africans are fundamentally incapable of objectivity of any sort. Hence, Professor Williams and his Destruction.

Williams’s anger at the white and Asiatic world was perfectly understandable. He was well-versed in virtually all aspects of African history and knew, like the open-minded among us, that Ancient Egypt was in fact an African civilization that originated in Africa, and that the people who made up that civilization were, of course, black Africans. But Egypt was also the first empire the world had ever seen, and like all empires it subjugated and attracted people from all over the known world at the time. This is what empires always do. And like all imperialists, the Egyptians naturally came to see themselves as being somehow “greater” than the people they subjugated, who subsequently began to be perceived as “lesser” folk.

In world history there have been utterly no exceptions, and this includes both so-called “Black Africa” (an invention of Arabs and Europeans) and “pre-Columbian America” (an invention of Euro-Americans).  The great Mali Empire was built upon the ruins of Ghana and the Soso Kingdom. The grander Songhai was carved from the weakening Mali State (which, ironically, outlasted Songhai by roughly a half-century). Songhai, like Mali, depended at the very least upon the semi-subjugation of numerous vassal states which, not long after this empire’s establishment, chafed under Songhai rulership. The Fall of Songhai in March 1591 had been, in reality, a long time in building. A handful of military miscalculations–such as the use of elephants to quash the invading Moroccan army–sealed the empires’ fate. But Afrocentrists such as Professor Williams would have us believe otherwise.

In The Destruction of African Civilization, Williams constructed his own fantasy of “black history,” the history of the African people, as being an eternal conflict between Africans and white outsiders. He has stated that the Africans were trusting and naïve saps who allowed Europeans, Arabs, Romans, etc., into their continent and were enslaved and exploited in return. This does not explain why Africa was the very last continent to resist European or Arab domination. It also does not explain why Arab domination of Africa was impossible without the Arab’s enlistment of African help. The Arab colonization of “Sub-Saharan Africa,” so-called, was extremely short-lived in the West and largely backed by the power of Europeans (namely, the Portuguese) in the East. Although well-written, Williams’s writings are simply slightly more sophisticated “ghetto scholarship,” seeing ancient Africa as a mere extension of mid-twentieth century Harlem.

Afrocentrism gets sillier when it attempts to claim certain Europeans, such as Beethoven, as Africans. Although Beethoven has been described as “swarthy” and having rather broad features this does not necessarily mean he was a mulatto. He may, in fact, have been a Romany/Gypsy, and his musical innovations rooted in Romany heritage.

Some Afrocentrists such as Runoko Rashidi have gone so far as to claim the Shang dynasty as “black.” How can we know they were indeed “Africans”? They may have been darker-complected than the Mongolian Han peoples, but not necessarily “black.” The Montagnards and Cambodians of the south (some of whom are visibly black) may be the descendants of the Shang people. “Shang,” according to some unverified sources, means dark-skinned. (But not necessarily “black” as in African black.) India, on the other hand, is clearly another case altogether: several unrelated anthropological studies clearly reveal that the Buddha was depicted as a “negro.”

Unquestionably the most obvious bit of foolishness from Afrocentrism comes from the notion that there was a “black empire” in the U.S. South thousands of years ago. There has been—unlike the obviously Negroid Pushkin or Alessandro De Medici, the blatantly Negroid Olmec heads, or blatantly Negroid pharaohs of Egypt or Buddha statues of Southeast Asia—absolutely no evidence to back up these wild claims, and appear to be lame attempts to link black Americans to the U.S. Southern soil.

From the Eurocentrists

But Afro-centrism is an attempt, as I said, to set the record straight. According to the “official” record, the Ancient Egyptians were in fact Caucasians who bore little or no relationship to the people of Sub Saharan Africa simply because, of course, they were not “negroes” or so-called “true Negroes.” Although the theory of the “true Negro” has been officially debunked, many historians and anthropologists write and speak as if it hasn’t. Many of these historians are in fact themselves Egyptians or even other Africans who are either incapable of drawing their own independent conclusions about the history of Africans or—as is usually the case of the Egyptians—so violently prejudiced against darker Africans, so ashamed of their own ethnic heritage, that they take great pains to disassociate themselves with anything “African”—African in their minds being Inky, Rastus, Al Jolson, and all the spearchuckers who tried to kill Tarzan.

However, there has never been a consideration for who or what exactly is the “true Mongolian” or who is the “true Caucasian”; apparently there have been several varieties of “Caucasians,” the most notable being those in India who founded the great civilizations of Mohenjo-Daro, and those in the Middle-East, so-called, who gave us Sumeria, Babylonia, Elam, and so on; and those in North Africa who gave us Phonecia, Carthage, and naturally, Ancient Egypt. It is tacitly assumed that the Caucasian is some sort of superior man who can in fact do anything (except, maybe, dance, fuck or eat watermelons), who has started everything, who has created “Our World.” According to a piece of Neo-Nazi drivel circulating around the web, “the white man has sailed the seven seas,” etc. These notions were called into question 40 and 50 years ago during that dreadful moment in history called The Sixties (when everything began to fall apart), but thanks to brilliant scholarship by enlightened minds such as Mary Lefkowitz and Dr. Zahi Hawss, things are once again being set right, in ways that reinforce our sense of superiority as white people.

The African “true negro,” on the other hand, is a pepper-corn haired, long-armed, narrow-hipped, flat-footed, thick-lipped creature—a little monkey who has really done nothing but hang from the trees until the European had the hindsight to remove him from these wretched conditions and put him into slavery, in the New World (so-called). Sure, the slavery was nasty, it was degrading and dehumanizing, and maybe a few hundred thousand “blacks” perished in the long, arduous trip across the Atlantic (the true number is closer to 85-150 million; for each of the 11-15 million Africans who are known to have arrived in America, 8-10 more did not). But there were benefits as well. The African learned to speak a civilized tongue—English, French, or Spanish—instead of babbling like a gorilla. He learned to wear clothes instead of a grass skirt. He learned to wipe his ass with toilet paper rather than using a banana leaf or his left hand. Moreover, he became a Christian. It was out of his exposure to the Christian faith that his heart-rending “spirituals” arose. From this, arose other forms of music that revealed to the white West (and subsequently to the world) his “natural” sense of rhythm, his innate “sensuality,” unequaled and unparalleled by any group of people in the world. It had come from Africa, of course; it had come from his gene pool.

Although this doesn’t exactly explain Timi Yuro, Dusty Springfield, Christian Rannenberg, Muggsy Spanier, Paul Butterfield, Jamie Lidell, Amy Winehouse, Bix Beiderbecke, or Benny Goodman—all of whom sing or play with obvious soul, and neither of whom were or are Africans.

So goes the official explanation of Africans or their place in history—as the servant, the buffoon, the hip cat, or the spear-chucking, oversexed jungle-bunny. These are the inventions of a fear-stricken, panicking white mind which may not actually conceive of itself as being “racist” in the classic sense, yet nevertheless feels its universe threatened on all sides. The threat comes from the “loony” Afrocentrics who dare to tamper with “The Truth” as this white Western mind sees it. This mind can be as liberal and broad as it wants, so long as its basic preconceptions are not threatened. The more “liberal” Western mind will dispense (publicly, anyway) with the spearchuckers stereotype, or at least grant it a degree of dignity which it does not need: a stereotype, after all, is a stereotype, a lie is a lie. The “noble savage” is a lie; Africa as a land of “soul” and “rhythm” and “dance,” bereft of human knowledge, is a lie. No matter how hard one clings to the obsequious rubbish of Africa’s alleged “friends” (such as Ryzyard Kapuczinski), they will never be made right.

There are attempts to patronize black students by offering them the examples of Mali and Songhay, or Benin, and usually in ways which separate their histories from the rest of humanity, the better to reduce their relevance. Images of rickety mud mosques and half-decayed buildings held up as examples of the “brilliance” of African architecture—assuming, of course, that these buildings were as half-decayed, crooked and rickety in 1411 as they are in 2011. Mali and Niger are extremely poor nations; they barely have the funds to maintain their manuscripts and buildings, which are in a sorry state. Today’s Mali mosques and today’s Timbuktu is no more reflective of their medieval state than today’s Roman forum, a collection of bits and pieces, reflects the way it used to look 1500 years ago.

To offer up the Great Wall of Zimbabwe as a prime example of “African” architecture is an insult. Naturally, it does not begin to compare to anything in the West, let alone the East, in terms of architectural design. This is just as stupid as offering up Stonehenge as a prime example of Western architecture, which no historian anywhere in the world would be so foolish to do. It is just as stupid as saying that Italian architecture is the same as Russian or German architecture because, after all, it is “European.” With African civilization or “culture” one can afford to be slapdash and casual, because, after all, it’s “African,” nothing important.

The notion of the non-existence of African history was a carefully constructed lie, already in full throttle by the time of the Berlin Conference of 1885. Note that the British conquerors did not bother taking any photographs (any known ones; the British Government may be keeping them under wraps) of the old Benin City they soon destroyed. There is one sketch, of a small section of the city, only.

The true flowering of African civilization was in the East rather than the West, just as the true flowering of European civilization lay in the west, rather than the East of Europe. And all anthropological evidence suggests that the flow of civilizing spirit was Northward from Africa—namely, from the Sudan and present-day Somalia—than the other way around. All this phrenology babble about the shape of ancient Egyptian skulls being akin to Nordics; all these absurd speculations about the shape of the pharaoh’s noses, or the color of their skins (were they light or dark?), or the texture of their hair, is belied by evidence that can be gleamed by recent (and relatively unbiased) research:

  1. “Recent work on skeletons and DNA suggests that the people who settled in the Nile valley, like all of humankind, came from somewhere south of the Sahara; they were not (as some nineteenth-century scholars had supposed) invaders from the North. See Bruce G. Trigger, “The Rise of Civilization in Egypt,” Cambridge History of Africa (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1982), vol I, pp 489-90; S. O. Y. Keita, “Studies and Comments on Ancient Egyptian Biological Relationships,” History in Africa 20 (1993) 129-54. (Mary Lefkowitz (1997). Not Out of Africa: How Afrocentrism Became an Excuse to Teach Myth as History. Basic Books. pg 242) [/QB][/QUOTE]
  2.  “not surprisingly, the Egyptian skulls were not very distance from the Jebel Moya [a Neolithic site in the southern Sudan] skulls, but were much more distance from all others, including those from West Africa. Such a study suggests a closer genetic affinity between peoples in Egypt and the northern Sudan, which were close geographically and are known to have had considerable cultural contact throughout prehistory and pharaonic history… Clearly more analyses of the physical remains of ancient Egyptians need to be done using current techniques, such as those of Nancy Lovell at the University of Alberta is using in her work..” (Mary Lefkowitz)
  3. “There is now a sufficient body of evidence from modern studies of skeletal remains to indicate that the ancient Egyptians, especially southern Egyptians, exhibited physical characteristics that are within the range of variation for ancient and modern indigenous peoples of the Sahara and tropical Africa.. In general, the inhabitants of Upper Egypt and Nubia had the greatest biological affinity to people of the Sahara and more southerly areas.” (Nancy C. Lovell, ” Egyptians, physical anthropology of,” in Encyclopedia of the Archaeology of Ancient Egypt, ed. Kathryn A. Bard and Steven Blake Shubert, ( London and New York: Routledge, 1999) pp. 328-332)
  4. “The Nubian tribute-bearers are painted in two skin tones, black and dark brown. These tones do not necessarily represent actual skin tones in real life but may serve to distinguish each tribute-bearer from the next in a row in which the figures overlap. Alternatively, the brown-skinned people may be of Nubian origin, and the black-skinned ones may be farther south (Trigger 1978, 33). The shading of skin tones in Egyptian tomb paintings, which varies considerably, may not be a certain criterion for distinguishing race. Specific symbols of ethnic identity can also vary. Identifying race in Egyptian representational art, again, is difficult to do- probably because race (as opposed to ethnic affiliation, that is, Egyptians versus all non-Egyptians) was not a criterion for differentiation used by the ancient Egyptians… (Lefkowitz)
  5. “Overall, when the Egyptian crania are evaluated in a Near Eastern (Lachish) versus African (Kerma, Kebel Moya, Ashanti) context) the affinity is with the Africans. The Sudan and Palestine are the most appropriate comparative regions which would have ‘donated’ people, along with the Sahara and Maghreb. Archaeology validates looking to these regions for population flow (see Hassan 1988)… Egyptian groups showed less overall affinity to Palestinian and Byzantine remains than to other African series, especially Sudanese.” (Keita 1993)
  6. “When the unlikely relationships [Indian matches] and eliminated, the Egyptian series are more similar overall to other African series than to European or Near Eastern (Byzantine or Palestinian) series.” (Keita 1993)
  7. “Populations and cultures now found south of the desert roamed far to the north. The culture of Upper Egypt, which became dynastic Egyptian civilization, could fairly be called a Sudanese transplant.”(Egypt and Sub-Saharan Africa: Their Interaction. Encyclopedia of Precolonial Africa, by Joseph O. Vogel, AltaMira Press, Walnut Creek, California (1997), pp. 465-472 )
  8. “Analysis of crania is the traditional approach to assessing ancient population origins, relationships, and diversity. In studies based on anatomical traits and measurements of crania, similarities have been found between Nile Valley crania from 30,000, 20,000 and 12,000 years ago and various African remains from more recent times (see Thoma 1984; Brauer and Rimbach 1990; Angel and Kelley 1986; Keita 1993). Studies of crania from southern predynastic Egypt, from the formative period (4000-3100 B.C.), show them usually to be more similar to the crania of ancient Nubians, Kushites, Saharans, or modern groups from the Horn of Africa than to those of dynastic northern Egyptians or ancient or modern southern Europeans.”
  9. (S. O. Y and A.J. Boyce, “The Geographical Origins and Population Relationships of Early Ancient Egyptians”, in Egypt in Africa, Theodore Celenko (ed), Indiana University Press, 1996, pp. 20-33)
  10. “There is no archaeological, linguistic, or historical data which indicate a European or Asiatic invasion of, or migration to, the Nile Valley during First Dynasty times. Previous concepts about the origin of the First Dynasty Egyptians as being somehow external to the Nile Valley or less native are not supported by archaeology… In summary, the Abydos First Dynasty royal tomb contents reveal a notable craniometric heterogeneity. Southerners predominate. (Kieta, S. (1992) Further Studies of Crania From Ancient Northern Africa: An Analysis of Crania From First Dynasty Egyptian Tombs, Using Multiple Discriminant Functions. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL ANTHROPOLOGY 87:245-254)”
  11. “The predominant craniometric pattern in the Abydos royal tombs is ‘southern’ (tropical African variant), and this is consistent with what would be expected based on the literature and other results (Keita, 1990). This pattern is seen in both group and unknown analyses… Archaeology and history seem to provide the most parsimonious explanation for the variation in the royal tombs at Abydos.. Tomb design suggests the presence of northerners in the south in late Nakada times (Hoffman, 1988) when the unification probably took place. Delta names are attached to some of the tombs at Abydos (Gardiner, 1961; Yurco, 1990, personal communication), thus perhaps supporting Petrie’s (1939) and Gardiner’s contention that north-south marriages were undertaken to legitimize the hegemony of the south. The courtiers of northern elites would have accompanied them.
  12. Given all of the above, it is probably not possible to view the Abydos royal tomb sample as representative of the general southern Upper Egyptian population of the time. Southern elites and/or their descendants eventually came to be buried in the north (Hoffman, 1988). Hence early Second Dynasty kings and Djoser (Dynasty 111) (Hayes, 1953) and his descendants are not buried in Abydos. Petrie (1939) states that the Third Dynasty, buried in the north, was of Sudanese origin, but southern Egypt is equally likely. This perhaps explains Harris and Weeks’ (1973) suggested findings of southern morphologies in some Old Kingdom Giza remains, also verified in portraiture (Drake, 1987). Further study would be required to ascertain trends in the general population of both regions. The strong Sudanese affinity noted in the unknown analyses may reflect the Nubian interactions with upper Egypt in predynastic times prior to Egyptian unification (Williams, 1980,1986)…” (S. Keita (1992) Further Studies of Crania From Ancient Northern Africa: An Analysis of Crania From First Dynasty Egyptian Tombs, Using Multiple Discriminant Functions. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL ANTHROPOLOGY 87:245-254)
  13. “When the Elephantine results were added to a broader pooling of the physical characteristics drawn from a wide geographic region which includes Africa, the Mediterranean and the Near East quite strong affinities emerge between Elephantine and populations from Nubia, supporting a strong south-north cline. (Barry Kemp. (2006) Ancient Egypt: Anatomy of a Civilization. p. 54)
  14. “Distance analysis and factor analysis, based on Q-mode correlation coefficients, were applied to 23 craniofacial measurements in 1,802 recent and prehistoric crania from major geographical areas of the Old World. The major findings are as follows: 1) Australians show closer similarities to African populations than to Melanesians. 2) Recent Europeans align with East Asians, and early West Asians resemble Africans. 3) The Asian population complex with regional difference between northern and southern members is manifest. 4) Clinal variations of craniofacial features can be detected in the Afro-European region on the one hand, and Australasian and East Asian region on the other hand. 5) The craniofacial variations of major geographical groups are not necessarily consistent with their geographical distribution pattern. This may be a sign that the evolutionary divergence in craniofacial shape among recent populations of different geographical areas is of a highly limited degree. Taking all of these into account, a single origin for anatomically modern humans is the most parsimonious interpretation of the craniofacial variations presented in this study. (Hanihara T. Comparison of craniofacial features of major human groups. Am J Phys Anthropol. 1996 Mar;99(3):389-412.)
  15. “.. all their features can be found in several living populations of East Africa, like the Tutsi of Rwanda and Burundi, who are very dark skinned and differ greatly from Europeans in a number of body proportions.. There is every reason to believe that they are ancestral to the living ‘Elongated East Africans’. Neither of these populations, fossil and modern, should be considered to be closely related to the populations of Europe and western Asia.. In skin colour, the Tutsi are darker than the Hutu, in the reverse direction to that leading to the caucasoids. Lip thickness provides a similar case: on an average the lips of the Tutsi are thicker than those of the Hutu.” [Jean Hiernaux, The People of Africa (1975), pgs 42-43, 62-63)
  16. “In sub-Saharan Africa, many anthropological characters show a wide range of population means or frequencies. In some of them, the whole world range is covered in the sub-continent. Here live the shortest and the tallest human populations, the one with the highest and the one with the lowest nose, the one with the thickest and the one with the thinnest lips in the world. In this area, the range of the average nose widths covers 92 per cent of the world range: only a narrow range of extremely low means are absent from the African record. Means for head diameters cover about 80 per cent of the world range; 60 per cent is the corresponding value for a variable once cherished by physical anthropologists, the cephalic index, or ratio of the head width to head length expressed as a percentage…..”- Jean Hiernaux, “The People of Africa” 1975 p.53, 54
  17. “We also compare Egyptian body proportions to those of modern American Blacks and Whites… Long bone stature regression equations were then derived for each sex. Our results confirm that, although ancient Egyptians are closer in body proportion to modern American Blacks than they are to American Whites, proportions in Blacks and Egyptians are not identical… Intralimb indices are not significantly different between Egyptians and American Blacks. ..brachial indices are definitely more ‘African’… There is no evidence for significant variation in proportions among temporal or social groupings; thus, the new formulae may be broadly applicable to ancient Egyptian remains.” (“Stature estimation in ancient Egyptians: A new technique based on anatomical reconstruction of stature.” Michelle H. Raxter, Christopher B. Ruff, Ayman Azab, Moushira Erfan, Muhammad Soliman, Aly El-Sawaf, (Am J Phys Anthropol. 2008, Jun;136(2):147-55
  18. “However, Brace et al. (1993) find that a series of upper Egyptian/Nubian epipalaeolithic crania affiliate by cluster analysis with groups they designate “sub-Saharan African” or just simply “African” (from which they incorrectly exclude the Maghreb, Sudan, and the Horn of Africa), whereas post-Badarian southern predynastic and a late dynastic northern series (called “E” or Gizeh) cluster together, and secondarily with Europeans. In the primary cluster with the Egyptian groups are also remains representing populations from the ancient Sudan and recent Somalia. Brace et al. (1993) seemingly interpret these results as indicating a population relationship from Scandinavia to the Horn of Africa, although the mechanism for this is not clearly stated; they also state that the Egyptians had no relationship with sub-Saharan Africans, a group that they nearly treat (incorrectly) as monolithic, although sometimes seemingly including Somalia, which directly undermines aspects of their claims. Sub-Saharan Africa does not define/delimit authentic Africanity.” (S.O.Y. Keita. “Early Nile Valley Farmers from El-Badari: Aboriginals or “European” Agro-Nostratic Immigrants? Craniometric Affinities Considered With Other Data”. Journal of Black Studies, Vol. 36 No. 2, pp. 191-208 (2005)
  19. “The Mahalanobis D2 analysis uncovered close affinities between Nubians and Egyptians. Table 3 lists the Mahalanobis D2 distance matrix… In some cases, the statistics reveal that the Egyptian samples were more similar to Nubian samples than to other Egyptian samples (e.g. Gizeh and Hesa/Biga) and vice versa (e.g. Badari and Kerma, Naqada and Christian). These relationships are further depicted in the PCO plot (Fig. 2).
  20. The clustering of the Nubian and Egyptian samples together supports this paper’s hypothesis and demonstrates that there may be a close relationship between the two populations. This relationship is consistent with Berry and Berry (1972), among others, who noted a similarity between Nubians and Egyptians.
  21. Both mtDNA (Krings et al., 1999) and Y-Chromosome data (Hassan et al., 2008; Keita, 2005; Lucotte and Mercier, 2003) indicate that migrations, usually bidirectional, occurred along the Nile. Thus, the osteological material used in this analysis also supports the DNA evidence.
  22. On this basis, many have postulated that the Badarians are relatives to South African populations (Morant, 1935 G. Morant, A study of predynastic Egyptian skulls from Badari based on measurements taken by Miss BN Stoessiger and Professor DE Derry, Biometrika 27 (1935), pp. 293–309. Morant, 1935; Mukherjee et al., 1955; Irish and Konigsberg, 2007). The archaeological evidence points to this relationship as well. (Hassan, 1986) and (Hassan, 1988) noted similarities between Badarian pottery and the Neolithic Khartoum type, indicating an archaeological affinity among Badarians and Africans from more southern regions. Furthermore, like the Badarians, Naqada has also been classified with other African groups, namely the Teita (Crichton, 1996; Keita, 1990).
  23. Nutter (1958) noted affinities between the Badarian and Naqada samples, a feature that Strouhal (1971) attributed to their skulls possessing “Negroid” traits. Keita (1992), using craniometrics, discovered that the Badarian series is distinctly different from the later Egyptian series, a conclusion that is mostly confirmed here. In the current analysis, the Badari sample more closely clusters with the Naqada sample and the Kerma sample. However, it also groups with the later pooled sample from Dynasties XVIII–XXV.
  24. The reoccurring notation of Kerma affinities with Egyptian groups is not entirely surprising. Kerma was an integral part of the trade between Egypt and Nubia.
  25. However, the archaeological evidence actually showed slow change in form over time (Adams, 1977) and the biological evidence demonstrated a similar trend in the skeletal data (e.g. Godde, in press; Van Gerven et al., 1977). These conclusions negate the possibility of invasion or migration causing the shifts in time periods. The results in this study are consistent with prior work; the Meroites and X-Group cluster with the remaining Nubian population and are not differentiated.
  26. Gene flow may account for the homogeneity across these Nubian and Egyptian groups and is consistent with the biological diffusion precept. Small geographic distances between groups allow for the exchange of genes.
  27. The similarities uncovered by this study may be explained by another force, adaptation.. resemblance may be indicative of a common adaptation to a similar geographic location, rather than gene flow
  28. Egypt and Nubia have similar terrain and climate. Because of the similarity between and the overlapping of the two territories that would require similar adaptations to the environment, common adaptation cannot be discounted.
  29. Gene flow appears likely between the Egyptians and Nubians, although common adaptations to a similar environment may have also been a factor in their cranial similarities. This study does not rule out the possibility that in situ biological evolution occurred at other times not represented by the samples in this analysis. “– Godde K. (2009) An Examination of Nubian and Egyptian biological distances: Support for biological diffusion or in situ development? Homo. 2009;60(5):389-404.
  30. The analysis (also) found Rameses’ hair to be cymotrich or wavy, again a characteristic quite within the range of overall African or Nile valley physical and genetic diversity. A “pure” Nordic type of straight hair was thus not established for Rameses. Hence the notion of white Europeans or red-headed Caucasoids from other areas flowing into ancient Egypt to add hair variation is dubious. Inflows occurred during the Greek and Roman eras but reddish or brown hair is within the range of African variation. Genetic studies (Tishkoff 2009, 2000) show Africans have the highest diversity in the world. Skeletal/cranial studies confirm the pattern. Relethford (2001) shows that “.. methods for estimating regional diversity show sub-Saharan Africa to have the highest levels of phenotypic variation, consistent with many genetic studies.” (Relethford, John “Global Analysis of Regional Differences in Craniometric Diversity and Population Substructure”. Human Biology – Volume 73, Number 5, October 2001, pp. 629-636) Hanihara 2003 notes that [significant] “..intraregional diversity are present in Subsaharan Africans..” While ancient Egypt had gene flow in various eras, hair variations easily fall under this pattern of built-in, indigenous diversity, as well as the above noted cultural practice of using wigs with hair from different places obtained through trade.

Okay, iam(NOT!)egyptian. Okay, alt-righters. Okay, Dr. Haw-ass. Choke on that you fat motherfucker.