ending their sense of unity, which makes them easy targets for the Abbasid authorities whenthey reassert control.But the origins of the slave trade during this time as a result of contact with the Islamic world lay the foundations for the Atlantic slave trade that takes hold in the 17thto 19thcenturies. See, the way that slaves actually get sold isn’t the way it gets portrayed in Roots, where the Europeans just show up out of nowhere and capture Kunta Kinte and his friends. No, what happens with the Atlantic slave trade is that Africans warring with each other capture slaves in battle, and sell them off to the Europeans. Remember, that if a European were to simply walk into the jungles of West Africa, he’d have about twelve seconds to live before getting ravaged by a wild animal or succumbing to disease, so it’s actually the stronger African tribes conquering the weaker ones, who then bring the people they have enslaved out to the Europeans to sell. This system ultimately is ended first by the efforts of the British to ban the slave trade in 1807, then by the events of the American Civil War, then by the banning of slavery in Brazil in 1888. What’s interesting, however, is that the slave trade STILL continues in East Africa, where the normally ‘Evil’ European imperialists find themselves fighting slave traders well into the 19thand 20thcenturies (the battle of Khartoum in the Sudan in the late 19thcentury is widely cited as an example of ‘Evil British Imperialists,’ but the main reason that battle was fought was to expel Islamic slave traders from the Sudan in order to keep the population there from being dragged off into slavery). Shifting gears, let’s move onto the religions of medieval Africa, which consist of your more tribal, animist, religions; Christianity; and Islam. First, the tribal animist religions. These religions are largely monotheistic in nature, some of which have grown from the belief in the god Nyamba, a creator God responsible for the workings of the world as well as keeping order. This creator god is also responsible for not only sustaining the world, but indirectly intervening in the affairs of humans via spirits so that he can influence the course of human affairs. The creator God is widely regarded as omnipotent and omniscient. There are many lesser gods and spirits who exist below the creator God who participate actively in world affairs, conferring or withholding benefits and bringing favour or injury to mortal men. Many Africans believe that their ancestors are included amongst these spirits, and honour their ancestors accordingly to receive benefits from those dearly departed. So in this religion, youhave to honour your god, the lesser gods, the spirits and your ancestors in order to have a good life. If you don’t you will be punished. Many Africans practicing this form of religion display their piety by prayer, animal sacrifices, and ceremonies to celebrate births, marriages, etc.