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Image Nations Nègres et Culture by Cheikh Anta Diop, a Senegalese historian, anthropologist, physicist, and egyptologist who studied the human race's origins and pre-colonial African culture.
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Cathy Vikulchik 2019-09-15 at 08:26

WHY HIS DOCTORAL THESIS WAS REJECTED 1951. Cheikh Anta Diop is a 27-year-old PhD student of philosophy in the Faculty of Arts of the Sorbonne -- the famous University of Paris. His doctoral dissertation is entitled: 'Who Were the Pre-Dynastic Egyptians', in which he claims that the Egyptian civilization was black, that it was anterior to all other civilizations, and that the Egyptian language and culture subsequently spread throughout Africa. The thesis is rejected, officially because it fails to gather a jury. But, the real reason was elsewhere: the academic world, at the time, was not willing to accept the truth uncovered by a 'Negro'. Which truth challenged all the colonial literature written about the origin of the ancient Egyptians. His work is criticized as revisionist and pseudohistorical. Cheikh Anta Diop is disparaged as a 'Negro' trying to spread myths. His critics and foes do everything possible to kill his career. He should not become a teacher, he should not have contact with students from African universities ... Aimé Césaire, a friend, then struggles to find him a publisher. The rejected dissertation comes out in 1954 in the form of a book, edited by Présence Africaine, a publishing house founded by Alioune DIOP -- another Senegalese intellectual, writer and editor -- under the mythical title of 'Nations Nègres et Culture'. The book meets a historic success. The young African intellectual is invited in debates and begins to animate conferences in amphitheatres. "The most audacious book a negro has ever written," Aimé Césaire will say of the book in his 'Discourse on Colonialism'. 1957. Cheikh Anta Diop registers his new thesis title 'Comparative study of political and social systems of Europe and Africa, from Antiquity to the formation of modern states'. In order to avoid new obstacles, the new topic does not relate to ancient Egypt but is concerned with the forms of organisation of African and European societies and how they evolved. 1960. The strategy works. The University of Paris reluctantly accepts his final thesis. He obtains his doctorate with honorable mention. Diop had used radiocarbon technique and microscopic analysis to determine the melanin content of Egyptian mummies. He had found scientific evidence that permitted him to conclude that ancient Egyptians were of Black color. Diop was scientist, a physicist. In 1953, he met Frédéric Joliot-Curie, Marie Curie's son-in-law, and in 1957 Diop began specializing in nuclear physics at the Laboratory of Nuclear Chemistry of the College de France which Frederic Joliot-Curie ran until his death in 1958, and the Institut Pierre et Marie Curie in Paris. He ultimately translated parts of Einstein's Theory of Relativity into his native Wolof. African intellectuals' work is being hampered today and efforts to constrain their Academic Freedom still exist. Scientists like Cheikh Anta Diop must be forgotten, their work discredited, so that the colonial thought continues to dominate the world of ideas in Africa and to enslave the consciences.
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Tim Hortons 2019-09-15 at 08:22

Image Dr. Cheikh Anta Diop. Cheikh Anta Diop University --formerly known as the University of Dakar, in Dakar, Senegal, is named after him.
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