Pub. date: 2012 | Online Pub. Date: May 31, 2012 | DOI: 10.4135/9781452218458 | Print ISBN: 9781412981767 | Online ISBN: 9781452218458| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Children's Lives: 1400 to 1900: Africa
Christina L. Cappy
Children in Africa from 1400 to 1900 were defined as people before the onset of puberty and lived in many different ways according to their class, gender, racial background, and the region in which they resided. While limited literature exists on children's lives in this period, scholars recognize several roles that children played in their communities. For instance, children were educated in traditional—Islamic and Western—ways, worked for their families or outside their families, and were used as slave labor. Children received traditional forms of African education from their local communities to learn how to be members in their societies. Children learned from adults through an apprentice like system. Around the ages of 6 to 8, girls began to work with their mothers and boys with their fathers. At this young age, children generally worked in the domestic sphere, helping with activities that were needed to maintain a household such as ...