“This ability to communicate information swiftly over considerable distances must have been a great boon to West Africans who, between the thirteenth and fifteenth centuries, had to administer empires as large as all the states of Western Europe put together. It did not make them any different, however, from Europeans or Asians or Americans in terms of the relatively slow spread of new techniques or technologies from the centers to the edges or peripheries of their civilizations. Thus, a skilled African surgeon could be performing delicate eye-cataract surgery int he city of Jenne in medieval Mali while a villager would be going bling with cataracts a few hundred miles away on the edges of the same empire, for lack of his fine medical instrumentation and expertise.”

Source: Dr. Ivan Van Sertima. Blacks In Science: Ancient and Modern. pg. 7-8. 1983.

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