20 Common Misconceptions About Africa You Need To Get Right


Most people who have never visited Africa are susceptible to fall prey to the widespread misconceptions about Africa. Before believing anything you read or heard about Africa, you need to familiarise yourself with Africa facts. These Africa facts will help you refute some erroneous descriptions of Africa and its people. The commonly held misconceptions can be widely categorised into geographical, cultural, social and economical misconceptions.

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1. The greatest geographical misconception held about Africa is that it is one large country.

However, this is not the case, Africa is the second largest continent made up of fifty-four independent countries. Each of the fifty-four countries is very different from each other in terms of the political, social and economical organisation. See map below:


2. The different African countries are made up of rural and urban regions.

It is a true statement of fact that the rural areas mainly consist of mud huts while the urban regions consists of modern forms of architecture and infrastructure contrary to this misconceived Africa fact that all Africans live in mud huts. Of course, Africa does have sky scrapers and other magnificent architectural masterpiece! Checkout these well-developed cities of Africa:


3. Africa is not a vast stretch of desert land. It is a fact that Africa is the home to Sahara desert.

However Sahara desert covers only a third of the whole continent. The rest of the region is made up of alternating fertile lands and water bodies which support farming. This is another Africa fact that is misconceived

4. It is also a great geographical misconception to assume that Africa is a wide stretch of rain forest.

In fact, only parts of the guinea coast and Zaire River basin are covered by the rain forest. The rest of the forest areas have been cleared for settlement and farming.

5. The greatest cultural misconception held about Africa is that the whole continent share a homogenous culture.

This may come as a surprise but not even a single African country is governed by the same culture. As much as African nations consist of different ethnic groups balkanized together, each of these groups has its own unique set of cultural beliefs.

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