chapter  6
The EurAfrican construction
Pages 8

The relations between Europe and Africa date back to beyond recorded history. As explained in Chapter 2, the fossil record of human remains in Kenya’s Rift Valley and recent genetic evidence strongly suggest that human beings originated in Africa.1 They then diffused throughout the world in the original diaspora. Relations between Europeans and Africans are thus relations between close relatives, but relatives who have not always understood each other well. The earliest map-makers considered that Africa was the same size as Europe-or smaller-and comparable misunderstandings have persisted up to the present.2