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SS Central Africa Test Study Guide

A quick way to study if you're about to take a test on Central Africa. This study guide comes with a combination of fill in the blanks, questions, and definitions. I'll probably be posting a study guide for South Africa soon.


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1. changed his name to Joseph Mobutu 2. came to power in 1965 3. ruled as a dictator 4. changed the Democratic Republic of the Congo to Zaire (a traditionally African name)
Who was Mobutu Sese Seko and what is his historical significance?
The Democratic Republic of the Congo speaks ______.
How do most people in Zambia and Malawi earn a living?
native, European
Central Africa's history and culture have been influenced by n_____ traditions and E_______ colonizers.
negatives: loss of animals, loss of homes or food for people who live near rainforests | positives: farming and logging provide food or income for some people
What economic effects might clearing tropical rainforests have?
ethnic, languages, European
The culture of Central Africa includes many e_____ groups and l________, but it has also been influenced by E_______ colonization.
African, European
Great A______ kingdoms and E_______ colonizers have influenced the history of Central Africa.
humid tropical climate and dense tropical forests (the Congo Basin has a lot of rainfall!)
What kind of vegetation and climate do the Congo Basin and Atlantic coast have?
a government that steals from its own country
What is a kleptocracy?
Europeans introduced Christianity
How has Central Africa's colonial history influences religion in the region?
along the Western Rift Valley
Where are the major lakes and mountains in Central Africa?
1. has made economic growth possible 2. has oil reserves and good conditions for farming (has a high standard of living)
What has been the effect of stable government in Cameroon?
trade (traded animal skins, shells, slaves and ivory along routes to West and East Africa)
What activity helped the Kongo Kingdom to grow?
Hindu and Muslim
If Central Africa had not been ruled by European countries what religious faiths might have been more common?
1. people killed 2. poor economy
How have wars affected the people of Central Africa?
civil war, a bad government and crime have scared away many foreign businesses (which have the capital and technical skills to help get the resources out)
Why haven't the people of the Democratic Republic of the Congo been able to develop the country's mineral resources?
Lake Nyasa and Lake Tanganyika (Lake Nyasa is also called Lake Malawi)
What are the names of the two major lakes?
it made some of them richer
How did contact and trade with Europeans affect Central African kingdoms?
Roman Catholic
French, Spanish, and Portuguese colonies = many are ______ ______
They created a style known as Afro-pop, which combines traditional African music and Latin rhythms
Describe the music of Central Africa.
regional varieties of a language
What is a dialect?
about 100 million people
How many people live in Central Africa?
1. a new government took over 2. the new government renamed the country: the Democratic Republic of the Congo
What happened to the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 1997?
Congo, forests, mineral
The C____ River, tropical f______, and m______ resources are important features of Central Africa's physical geography.
an open-air trading market that is set up once or twice a week (found in rural areas, people trade agriculture goods and other products
What is a periodic market?
Central Africa must develop their natural resources more effectively
What is the situation with Central Africa's resources?
military coups, corrupt leaders, and improper elections
Explain the political issues the Central African Republic has dealt with.
war, disease, environmental
W__, d______, and e____________ problems have made it difficult for the countries of Central Africa to develop stable governments and economies.
after World War 2, some fought wars to win their independence
Explain how and when countries in Central Africa gained their independence?
Protestant Christians
British colonies = many are ______ ______
peace, health
Challenges to p____, h_____, and the environment slow economic development in Central Africa.
a disease spread by mosquitoes that causes fever and pain
What is malaria?
the region's forest products and other resources (such as ivory, which is used for furniture, jewelry, statues and piano keys)
What brought the Europeans to Central Africa in the 1400s?
1. usually live in rural areas 2. they must farm and trade for food
Explain how most of the people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo live?
______ is the official language of Gabon, and is used for trade and government.
flows into the Atlantic Ocean, fed by hundreds of smaller rivers, the 5th longest river in the world
What are the characteristics of the Congo River?
different ethnic groups had to live together and they spoke different languages and had different customs (differences = conflict, especially after the colonies won independence)
How did borders drawn by European powers create problems for Central Africa?
poor, civil
The countries of Central Africa are mostly p___, and many are trying to recover from years of c____ war.
many kinds of tall trees, a variety of animals live in the forest (gorillas, elephants, wild boars, and okapis), little sunlight shines through the canopy
What is the tropical rainforest like?
It's has the Atlantic ocean in the west and the Western Rift Valley in the east
What is Central Africa's relative location?
1. it receives much of its income from oil 2. it also receives income from forest products 3. a civil war in the late 1990s hurt the economy
Describe the government and economy of the Republic of the Congo.
French, Portugese, English
What languages are spoken in Central Africa?
Poorly built or maintained roads, absences of any roads or railroads
What kinds of transportation problems might make it hard to develop natural resources?
flows east towards the Indian Ocean, many rivers in Angola and Zambia and water from Lake Nyasa flows into it
Describe the Zambezi River.
They have set up national park areas in their countries
What are governments doing to promote protection of the environment?
The forests provide timber and the rivers provide a source of transportation and trade
Why are Central Africa's forests and rivers important natural resources?
because they can be very different from each other (different dialects)
Why do people who speak Bantu languages sometimes have trouble understanding each other?
rapids and waterfalls
What prevernts the Congo and Zambezi rivers from being more useful for trade and transportation?
1. poor countries 2. political instability 3. oil as a resource
What do Equatorial Guinea and Sao Tome and Principe have in common?
humid, tropical, dense, forest
Central Africa has a h____ t_______ climate and d____ f_____ vegetation.
They're subsistence farmers, but they're beginning to grow crops for sale
Describe how most people in Central Africa make a living?
the country went into a long civil war and the war ended in 2002. The country has been more stable since then
Describe Angola after independence.
new people began to migrate to Central Africa from West Africa and formed several kingdoms (the most important kingdom = Kongo Kingdom)
What happened 2,000 years ago?
forest, products, minerals, diamonds, copper
Central Africa's resources include f_____ p_____ and valuable m_______ such as d_______ and c_____.
NO! (didn't bring peace to Central Africa, ethnic groups continued to fight within borders of new countries, ALSO: the U.S. and the Soviet Union used Central Africa as a battleground in the Cold War)
Did independence solve all of the East African problems?
a generally flat region surrounded by higher land (mountains and plateaus)
What is a basin?
copper, uranium, tin, zinc, diamonds, gold, cobalt, etc.
What mineral resources does this region have?
Angola speaks ______.
Zambia and Malawi speaks ______.
sculpture, carved wooden masks, cotton gowns
What arts forms are Central Africans known for?
1. the southern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo is part of Central Africa's rich copper belt 2. the country also has gold, diamonds, and cobalt
Explain the Democratic Republic of the Congo's resources.
France, Belgium, Germany, Spain, United Kingdom and Portugal
Which countries are the European colonizers?
1. has had only one president since 1967 2. has held no multi-party elections 3. more than half the country's income comes from oil
Describe the government and economy of Gabon.
Malaria is the most common cause of death in Central Africa. HIV/AIDS is very common in Central Africa
Explain the effects of diseases like malaria and HV/AIDS?
1. many Belgians left 2. few teachers, doctors, and other professionals stayed in the former colonies 3. various ethnic groups fought each other for power
What happened in the Democratic Republic of the Congo after it gained independence?
They changed the way people lived, and had more impact than the people who lived there 1,000 years ago
Describe the impact of outsiders on Central Africa.
1. the government took over foreign-owned industries 2. the government borrowed money from foreign countries to try to expand industry 3. most farmers suffered 4. businesses and governments = corrupt
What happened to businesses under Mobutu's government?
Congo, Basin, plateaus
Central Africa's major physical features include the C____ B____ and p_______ surrounding the basin.
Many ______ languages don't have written forms
40+ ethnic groups
How many ethnic groups are in Gabon?
weak economy, doesn't have railroads or ports needed to transport the resources for export, and most people are farmers
Describe the economic issues faced by the Central African Republic.
over 1 million
What's the population of Gabon?

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