Africa is the birthplace of all human life of earth, and the people of Africa today reflect this.  Many tribes' cultures and histories are centuries old, and have remained relatively unchanged.  In other places modern es and civilizations have sprung up, and life in these areas is very similar, in some places almost identical to life anywhere else in the world.

Most of the African people live in poverty and are illiterate, that is not to say however that all the people here are.  Africa has come a long way in the last 50 years.  Industry, agriculture, and commerce have raised many areas of the continent substantially.

The people in Africa themselves are widely varied, from modern city dwellers to tribal villagers and nomadic wanderers.  The most common trait of the African peoples is their unwavering adherence to their own individual cultures.  In many cases  it is this and this alone that have kept these people alive.  In the north the majority of people are arabic, most of them muslim.  Islam was for the most part wiped out by continuous battering by disease, war, and famine.  The rest of the country is dominated by blacks of innumerable tribes.  Europeans are still a major minority, especially in those countries controlled by the EEC.

For the purposes of space and time we will limit the descriptions of daily life in Africa to two groups: City and Tribal.  For those living in the city there is supposedly more money, food and shelter, however jobs are scarce, poverty is high and the majority of people live in shanty towns and slums.  Most of the housing in the es is taken up by either foreigners or those who have been lucky enough to have the money to pay for it.  Of course this always varies depending where in Africa you are.  In Morocco there is housing for most of the people, while in Kenya more people sleep in the streets of the es than under a roof.  And just like anywhere else in the world there is always the promise that if you work hard enough (or steal enough) then you can achieve anything, after all that is the human spirit at its most base.  In short life in the larger es in Africa is pretty close to life in the es anywhere else.  In the smaller es and towns it is somewhere in-between city an tribal life.  Occasionally modern conveniences can be found, always right next to traditional ways of life.  The smaller es and villages can be quite confusing, as a semi modern hotel will stand above a row of grass huts and shacks made from sheet metal.  Coca-Cola billboards fading in the sun next to bleached animal bones and skins hanging out to dry.  It is in these small towns that you will find the best glimpse of the African people.  The major es are to influenced by the west, and the small villages are too much of a culture shock for those not native to Africa.

Tribal life in Africa is vastly different from life in the es.  Where in the city people try to "catch up" to the west, in the tribal villages life has remained virtually unchanged since the dawn of time.  Hunter gatherer societies are the norm, and the tribal warrior is master of his domain.  The people here still fish, hunt, and farm by hand.  Using simple home made tools most of the time, though occasionally the luckier villages will have more modern tools such as tractors and other vehicles.  These people are one with the land.  Lifestyles, cultures and religions vary greatly from tribe to tribe, and it is impossible to go into the differences that make each unique, still if you have ever seen a National Geographic special, or a Discovery documentary then you will have a good idea of what it is like.  The biggest threat to these people comes from other tribes, and wars are a constant threat.  Some tribes are almost always at war, while the more nomadic groups often try to simply escape conflict.  Most of the tribes will be very wary of strangers, especially foreigners.  If a small party encounters a large tribe it is entirely possible the me be attacked without warning or provocation.  This has given many of the tribes a bad name, however inside the tribe life is usually warm and peaceful, with everyone working together for the greater good of the tribe.



(Written by Deric "D" Bernier.)