The Archaic Mode of Production:
Archaic West Africa

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Archaic West Africa (1st millenium BC)

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1. A midden at Agorass in-Tast contains the nearly complete skeleton of a short-horn domestic cow (ca. 3810 BC). By 2000 BC, the region was too dry to support pastoralism, and people moved to the southern savannah. As a result of economic intensification, by the end of the second millenium agriculture appeared at the edge of the forest in West Africa. [full sized image lost]

[ Excavation at Kintampo, Ghana]

2. Although little work has been done, it seems there was cultivation of crops such as cereals, yams and palm oil, in the 2nd millenium BC where savannah meets forest. This excavation at Kintampo, Ghana, dates to about middle of that era. Here were villages consisting of substantial wattle-and-daub houses, pottery, and evidence of a broad spectrum economy that probably included agriculture. Here is a sandstone query factory that suggests cereals were an important part of the diet.

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