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A unique species is born – Mankind. Now on the grasslands of east Africa we begin our struggle to survive. Mankind: The Story of All of Us I, History Channel 2012
Almost a fifth of the population of the Americas can trace their roots back to Africa. Mankind: The Story of All of Us VIII: Treasure
It’s almost certain now that man first evolved in Africa near the Equator. Jacob Bronowski, The Ascent of Man 1/13: Lower Than the Angels, BBC 1973
Grant’s gazelle: yet that lovely leap never took it out of the savannah. ibid.
The search has concentrated in East Africa. Known as the Cradle of Mankind. Here in the 1970s they found the link between apes and man. It offered conclusive proof that we started walking upright 3.2 million years ago. A human ancestor, a female, Lucy. Then in 1984 the remains of a body was found. David Attenborough, Uncovering Our Earliest Ancestor, BBC 2009
The vast open plains of east Africa: once a year three million animals gather in a small corner of the Serengeti. This is the greatest concentration of grazing animals on the planet. David Attenborough, Nature’s Great Events III: The Great Migration, BBC 2009
Whenever you find grazers you find predators. ibid.
Lions are territorial ... When the great herds move on, the lions can’t go with them. ibid.
Where there are kills there are scavengers. ibid.
Once a year life-giving water turns an area of unforgiving desert into a vast watery paradise – known as the Okavango. David Attenborough, Nature’s Great Events V: The Great Flood
On the plains that appeared so lifeless some of the beautiful and colourful changes occur. ibid.
The flooded plains are now a vast fish nursery teeming with life. ibid.
The very centre of Africa. And the centre of two million square miles of dense tropical rain forest. David Attenborough, Africa: Congo BBC 2013
There is a greater concentration of animals here than anywhere else in Africa. ibid.
The forests of the Congo are the lungs of Africa. ibid.
Sanga Bai – the legendary village of elephants. ibid.
Everyone from gorillas to forest hogs ventures out to relax on the beach. ibid.
The Cape of Good Hope on Africa’s southerly tip – here two great seas meet: one, the warm Indian Ocean; the other, the chilly Atlantic. David Attenborough, Africa: Cape
Hundreds of baby green turtles emerge like a torrent from the safety of their nests … Only one hatchling in a thousand will survive to adulthood. ibid.
Giant King Fish – as big as a man and weight for weight one of the most powerful fish in the sea. ibid.
African penguins … for the next ten days she must protect her eggs from the African sun. ibid.
North Africa: high in Morocco’s Atlas Mountains, Barbary Macaques shiver in the icy cedars. David Attenborough, Africa: Sahara
The Sahara transformed north Africa; today it covers an area the size of the United States. ibid.
A sandstorm can be a thousand miles across. ibid.
Meet the naked mole rats – these sabre-toothed savages wouldn’t last a day in the desert. ibid.
This is a resurrection plant ... dead limbs absorb water and unfurl in a matter of minutes. ibid.
The temperature of the sands can exceed 70 degrees Celsius. ibid.
The silver ant is the hardiest of all desert inhabitants. ibid.
If the silver ants were our size, they’d be doing 280 mph. ibid.
The wildlife of this continent has seen more changes in the last fifty years than it has in the last two million. David Attenborough, Africa: The Future
Africa: no continent on Earth today has such spectacular wildlife. At its heart lies a vast tropical rainforest. Over a million square miles of wilderness, much of it still unexplored, even now. There are more animals and plants in these jungles than anywhere else on the continent. But even in this land of plenty, wildlife facing major challenges. David Attenborough, Seven Worlds, One Planet VII: Africa, BBC 2019
Chimpanzees: the elders in this group know where to find the most nutritious food and how to extract it. But if they are to survive to adulthood the youngsters must learn these skills from their parents. ibid.
These lakes are now one of the richest freewater habitats to be found anywhere ibid.
Hyenas from all over the Namib head to where the sand dunes meet hte sea: somewhere along this seemingly barren stretch of land there is food in great quantity: Cape fur seals: there are around 10,000 of them here. ibid.
Aardvark: it’s the world’s largest burrowing animal. Its sense of smell is extremely acute. Shovel-like claws and powerful legs enable it to dig down to depths of five or six metres. A full-grown aardvark needs to eat about fifty thousands termites every day. Termites are highly nutritious and full of moisture, and they can be collected here year-round. Aardvark are usually nocturnal … Aardvark here are close to starvation. Changes in the world’s climate are affecting many of Africa’s animals. ibid.
Kenya ... A possible human ancestor. Was it the same species as Lucy? ... The difference between the new skull and Lucy was fundamental. They had to be different species ... The new skull was 3.5 billion years old, almost exactly the same age as Lucy. It meant they had found a possible different ancestor ... Lucy was not unique. Here was clear evidence of adaptive radiation in humans. And so in February this year they announced that they had discovered flat-faced man. Horizon: The Ape that Took Over the World, BBC 2001
And it was from Africa that our species spread out to colonise the world. Dr Alice Roberts, Origins of Us 3/3: Brains, BBC 2011
When the missionaries came to Africa they had the Bible and we had the land. They said, ‘Let us pray.’ We closed our eyes. When we opened them we had the Bible and they had the land. Desmond Tutu
In a reversal of roles it’s now Africa and not Europe that is the powerhouse of world Christianity. Kwame Kwei-Armah, Christianity s1e6: A History: Dark Continents, Channel 4 2009
I say it in the presence of His Grace and I say it to his face: the preachings of his Church are responsible for the death and suffering and misery of millions of his brother and sister Africans. Christopher Hitchens, & Stephen Fry v The Catholic Church 2009
The powers of Europe conducted a brutal race for colonies, a race that would become known as the Scramble for Africa. Empires: Queen Victoria’s Empire IV: The Scramble For Africa, PBS 2001
The Wild West was tame compared to Kimberley. Here there was a bar for every sixteen men. And shootings were an everyday occurrence. But Rhodes thrived as a diamond digger. ibid.
Rhodes: ‘Does this House think that it is right that men in a state of pure barbarism should have the vote? Treat the natives as a subject people. Be the lords over them. The native is to be treated as a child and denied the franchise.’ ibid.
Gold was discovered in the Transvaal. ibid.
The biggest land grab of all was still to come: Africa. Jeremy Paxman, Empire II: Making Ourselves at Home, BBC 2012
Livingstone was still in the grip of a passion to explore. For almost two years he drove himself on ... He died in Africa. Jeremy Paxman, Empire V: Doing Good
John Chilembwe’s upbringing had given him radical, even subversive, ideas. The notion for example that all humanity was equal before God. His mission church next to Livingstone’s estate became the centre of a movement that took for its motto – Africa for the Africans. ibid.