UNESCO’s General History of Africa [full documentary series]

Pharaoh Taharka, King of Kush who ruler over Egypt and the Levant

The BBC recently uploaded the first 15 episodes of it documentary series, The History of Africa with Zeinab Badawi, to stream on YouTube in their entirety free of charge. The series is based on the 8-volume General History of Africa originally published by UNESCO from 1981-1993. Despite being produced by a Western network, the documentary never strays too far from the books on which the series is based. Zenaib Badawi, a Sudanese-British radio and television journalist, covers the earliest origins of all humanity in east and southern Africa some 200,000 years ago. She discusses the African origins of civilization in the Nile Valley and the conclusions of those who compiled the second volume of the General History of Africa in 1974 (such as Cheikh Anta Diop) that those who created the ancient civilization of Kemet were in fact Black people. Other civilizations chronicled throughout the series include the extraordinary kingdoms of Kush, Meroe, Axum and Great Zimbabwe, along with the West African empires of Ghana, Mali and Songhai. Scroll through the pages below to view each episode along with a brief description.

UNESCO’s General History of Africa volumes

Season One:

Episode 1 – Mother Africa

Badawi examines the history of human evolution and travels to the place where the earliest human remains were ever uncovered in modern-day Ethiopia.

Click the numbers below to access the next episodes.

10 thoughts

  1. This looks amazing…thanx for the links…..years ago I was in Mali and learned about Mansa Musa….since then I have tried to keep up with the history of Africa especially the Sahel region….chuq

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