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Volume 16: MIDEAST & AFRICA 1700-1950


Ottoman Empire 1700-1907

Ottoman Empire 1700-1826
Ottoman Reforms 1826-53
Ottoman Reforms 1853-75
Ottoman Empire under Abdulhami 1876-1908
Young Turks and Armenians 1889-1907

Ottoman Fall and Turkey 1908-1950

Revolution by Young Turks 1908-11
Ottoman War Losses 1911-15
Armenian Genocide and the War 1915-18
Ottoman and Turkish Split 1919-20
Turkish War of Independence 1920-23
Turkey Republic under Ataturk 1923-38
Turkey Republic under Inonü 1938-50
Halide Edib, Karaosmanoglu, and Güntekin

Persia (Iran) and Afghanistan 1700-1950

Persia of Nadir and Zands 1726-94
Persia under Qajars 1794-1876
Persia under Qajars 1876-1905
Iran and its Constitution 1905-25
Iran under Reza Pahlavi 1925-41
Iran and Its Allies 1941-50
Bábis and Bahá’u’lláh
Afghanistan 1880-1919
Afghanistan Independent 1919-50

Arabia, Yemen, and Iraq 1700-1950

Wahhabis and Saudi Arabia 1744-1810
Arabia 1810-1906
Arabia 1907-21
Saudi Arabia 1922-50
Yemen and the Persian Gulf
Iraq 1700-1930
Iraq 1931-50

Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan 1700-1950

Syria and Lebanon 1700-1920
Syria under the French 1920-26
Syria under the French 1927-39
Syria and Lebanon 1940-50
Gibran and The Prophet
Trans-Jordan 1917-50

Palestine and Zionism 1700-1950

Palestine 1700-1922
Zionism and Herzl 1839-1904
Zionism 1905-20
Palestine under the British 1920-39
Palestine under the British 1939-47
Israel and War 1948-50

Egypt, Sudan, and Libya 1700-1950

Egypt under the Ottomans 1700-1805
Egypt of Muhammad ‘Ali 1805-48
Egypt and the British 1848-1921
Egypt and the British 1922-50
Sudan 1700-1950
Tripoli and Libya 1700-1950

Algeria, Tunisia, and Morocco 1700-1950

Algeria in the Ottoman Empire 1700-1830
Algeria under the French 1830-1919
Algeria under the French 1919-50
Tunisia under the Ottoman Empire 1700-1881
Tunisia under the French 1881-1950
Morocco 1700-1873
Morocco 1873-1911
Morocco under France and Spain 1912-39
Morocco under France and Spain 1939-50

West Africa and the French 1700-1950

West Africa and Slavery 1700-1800
Bornu and Hausaland 1700-1900
Segu 1700-1787
Futa Jallon and Tukulor 1700-1950
Guinea and Ivory Coast 1849-1916
Dahomey, Togo and Cameroun 1700-1918
French West Africa 1900-50

West Africa and the British 1700-1950

Gold Coast and Slavery 1700-1807
Asante and the British 1700-1867
Asante and the British 1867-1901
Gold Coast Colony 1901-50
Oyo and Nigeria 1700-1888
Nigeria 1888-1950
Gambia 1700-1950
Sierra Leone 1787-1950
Liberia 1816-1950

Ethiopia and Somaliland 1700-1950

Ethiopia and Somalia 1700-1868
Ethiopia and Menelik II 1868-1913
Ethiopia and Haile Selassie 1913-1950
Somaliland and Eritrea 1869-1950

East Africa 1700-1950

East Africa, Arabs, and Europeans 1700-1856
East Africa and the British 1856-1918
Kenya 1918-50
Africa’s Lakes Region 1700-1875
Buganda and the British 1875-94
Uganda and the British 1894-1950
East Africa and the Germans 1884-1918
Tanganyika and the British 1918-50

Congo, Angola, and Mozambique 1700-1950

Kongo, Angola, and the Portuguese 1700-1875
Stanley, Leopold, and the Congo 1875-1908
French Congo and Equatorial Africa 1839-1950
Belgian Congo and Rwanda 1908-50
Angola under the Portuguese 1875-1950
Mozambique 1700-1884
Mozambique under Portugal 1884-1950
Madagascar 1700-1950

Southern Africa 1700-1950

Southern Africa and the Dutch 1700-1800
South West Africa 1806-1950
Southern Africa and Rhodes 1835-1902
Rhodesia 1901-50
Zulus and Sotho 1800-75
British and Boers in South Africa 1800-42
British and Boers in South Africa 1842-75
South Africa and Imperial Wars 1875-1902
Gandhi in South Africa
South Africa and Segregation 1902-50
ANC and Dissent in South Africa 1912-50

Summary and Evaluation

Ottoman Empire and Turkey
Persia, Arabia, and Iraq
Syria, Lebanon, and Palestine
North Africa
West Africa
East Africa
Southern Africa
Evaluating the Mideast and Africa 1700-1950


World Chronological Index
Chronology of Asia & Africa to 1800
Chronology of Asia & Africa 1800-1950
Mideast & Africa to 1950


      Anthropologists tell us that the human species evolved on the continent of Africa, and archaeologists have discovered the most ancient civilizations in the Mideast and Egypt, which is actually in Africa and the Mideast. The energetic humans who moved north into Europe were apparently selected for lighter skin because less sunlight caused a vitamin-D deficiency and rickets. The civilizations that developed on the Greek and Italian peninsulas were influenced by the Mideast and North Africa. Beginning in the 7th century CE, the religion of Islam spread from Arabia throughout the Mideast, North Africa, and to the Spanish peninsula where Arabic translations of Greek and Latin classics eventually stimulated the rebirth of learning in Europe known as the Renaissance. The industrious civilization in Europe developed education, technology, and commerce that gave them advantages when they ventured to Africa in the era of exploration that began in the 15th century. The old institution of slavery, usually based on captives taken in wars, was exploited by the Europeans, who began capturing and purchasing African slaves to ship across the Atlantic Ocean to their American colonies.
      By 1700 the Ottoman empire, which was centered on the southern bridge between Asia and Europe, had expanded in the last two centuries into Eastern Europe, the Mideast, and North Africa. The Ottoman empire was about to decline as over-extended imperialistic cultures eventually do. In the 18th century about six million African slaves were transported from Africa to America, but, led by the British in the 19th century, civilization turned against the horrendous crime of slavery and made it illegal. Yet during this century the British, French, Portuguese, Dutch, Belgians, Germans, and Italians turned to the exploitation of resources and cheap human labor through colonialism in Africa and the Mideast.
      The Ottoman empire fought many wars against other empires and nations and finally was defeated in the 1914-18 war (called the Great War) when it allied with Germany. Led by Ataturk, Turkey was born as a nation and became a republic. The Persian empire was also reduced and became the nation of Iran, whose oil was exploited by the British. Arabia, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and Palestine were part of the Ottoman empire until the Great War. Arabia became a monarchy under Ibn Saud while the others were put under mandates by the League of Nations. The British were put in charge of Iraq and Palestine while Syria and Lebanon were handed over to the French. Naturally movements for independence and self-government developed in all these nations as increasingly educated populations demanded democracy. Zionism, which developed as a response to the persecution of Jews in Europe, led to migration to Palestine and the establishment of Israel after World War II.
      Egypt was invaded by Napoleon in 1798 but threw off the French and became more autonomous within the Ottoman empire under Muhammad Ali. However, extravagant spending by the monarchy led to a debt crisis and the British taking control of Egypt from 1882 to 1922. Egypt also took control of Sudan in 1820 and held it with help from the British. Tripoli and others on the “Barbary Coast” irritated Europeans with their piracy. The French invaded Algeria in 1830 and made it a colony. In 1881 they also took over Tunisia, and the French began invading Morocco in 1907. Italy invaded Tripoli in 1911, but they were defeated in 1943. While colonial settlers exploited these countries, indigenous organizations grew into independence movements.
      Sub-Saharan Africa was much less developed, and social and economic progress had to try to catch up under the exploitation of colonialism. The Europeans arrived in sailing ships with cannons and used guns to dominate the peoples they encountered. While Islam was spreading, the French and British came to dominate most of West Africa. The Germans came late to Africa but lost their colonies in the Great War. The British let Sierra Leone become an experiment for ex-slaves, and Americans sponsored the republic of Liberia.
      Ethiopia was one African country that managed to maintain its independence and its Christian religion. Italian Fascists invaded in 1935 but were ejected by the Allies in World War II. Somalia, however, was dominated by the Ottomans, Egypt, and Zanzibar before being divided up by Italy, France, and Britain. The British sent missionaries into East Africa, but later they became colonies. The Portuguese were the first European explorers to reach Africa, and they managed to hold on to Angola and Mozambique as colonies. King Leopold II of Belgium tried to establish a private colony in the Congo which was a disaster of cruel exploitation before it became a Belgian colony in 1908. The French also colonized the islands of Madagascar, Mauritius and Bourbon.
      The Dutch East India Company came early to southern Africa, and the Afrikaners (Boers) became racist exploiters who with the British made southern Africa segregated by racial prejudice. The British in Rhodesia and South Africa exploited diamonds and gold and subdued the Boers. Gandhi experimented with nonviolent action in South Africa in order to gain human rights for the Indians without harming other people. In all these colonies groups like the African National Congress (ANC) sprang up and organized themselves to work for their liberation and independence as nations. By 1950 much progress had been made, but most African nations would become independent in the 1960s.

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