Pokorný, Petr; a kol.,
Praha, Academia. ISBN 978-80-200-2627-9
Africa – a strange and mysterious continent; on the surface, quite dynamic and yet surprisingly unchanging deep within: the continent that gave rise to the human race as a biological species. Here large animals were able to survive the wave of global extinctions that the Earth experienced at the end of the last ice age. Not so long ago in geological terms – a mere seven thousand years ago – the Sahara region was not a desert but a densely populated savanna with numerous lakes. But then, as the whole area gradually dried out, the original hunter-gatherers of the Sahara became nomadic herdsman. At the most fertile sites the first farmers settled: such as the Nile valley that hosted one of the earliest civilizations on Earth. Overall, Africa has influenced the rest of the world more than the rest of the world has influenced Africa. To catch even a glimpse of Africa is to understand something essential about mankind and the world in general. This book is a look at Africa through the eyes of fourteen Czech scientists – biologists, geologists, anthropologists and archaeologists - who in African deserts and savannas have actively searched answers to yet unresolved questions of human development, human society, climate change, and nature, both animate and inanimate.