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Word Count: 993
The part of Africa located south of the Sahara desert had a well-integrated and extensive web of trade relationships West Africa traders had to dispatch goods while riding camelback across the Sahara which linked cultivators and miners to merchants and rulers in the Mediterranean coast Spodek 397 Mali located in west Africa was one of the three kingdoms that kept these trade routes open and secure the other two being Ghana and Songhay These three particular empires amazed the rest of the world with gaining their power by controlling trade traders and trade routes Spodek 399 The epic of Sundiata is an oral epic that has been passed from storyteller to storyteller The epic is based during a fickle time where the trade network that connected villages and towns had attracted North African merchants who brought a Islamic influence with them Sundiata VII The historical context in that is written within this epic shows how different cultural influences in West Africa were still coming together at this time In time of Sundiata it was a common practice to blend religious and cultural beliefs The epic also gives some time of evidence of long trade routes in Africa in medieval times Spodek 399 Sundiata in the being of the epic is displayed as weak and vulnerable due to the treatment he receives from his fathers wife and the fact he was unable to walk until the age of seven Sundiata and his hideous mother are exiled after his fathers death as a result of his fathers wifes fear that the prediction of Sundiata taking the Mali thrown could come true Sundiata VIII A theme has been established by this happening that theme being destiny The epic shows a clear connection with the belief that a man cannot control his own fate and that events that are meant to happen will happenThe epic has a steady belief system the same as Islamic beliefs with a
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