Misconceptions about Africa I have noticed while living in the UK

Slavery and colonisation are the start of Africa’s history

Someone once told me, “Your history lessons were probably very depressing when you were in school”. Well yeah sometimes but not always. Of course, slavery is a big part of Africa’s history. The arrival of colonial explorers to sub-Saharan Africa in the 15th Century also opened Africa to the rest of the world (in a bad way), but Africa is so much more than that! Can we talk about Egypt’s ancient pyramids? The Mali Empire? King Muhammad I Askia? Namibia’s millennia-old rock? Swahili sultans? The world oldest library in Morocco? No? Ok.

Dangerous Animals Roam Africa’s Streets

The first time I personally saw a tiger and a giraffe was in a zoo in France. I don’t know who made people believe that there are tigers in Africa but wild tigers don’t live there. They are mainly found in Asia.  I am proud of Africa’s biodiversity when it comes to animals, don’t get me wrong, but wild animals are not just walking in the streets chilling with humans. They are found in the forests or at the zoo…just like in any other continent.

Africa is a country

I know people are not that ignorant in 2017. The majority knows that Africa is a continent hosting many different countries but still they refer to Africa as one single country. I hear some of my lecturers casually saying things like, “As you can see in Australia, China, France, Argentina and AFRICA…” Then other people ask me questions such as, “How is Africa? How hot is Africa? Can you speak African?” I mean, can you speak European?

There are so much more. What misconceptions do people have about Africa where you live? Share in the comment section and I may do a part 2 for this post.


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  1. Thank you Afri diary for throwing more light on it , we really need to expose and examine these misconceptions before they progress to myth
    Can’t wait to read the part 2


  2. Good article !!! but don’t be too rude on the people who think this way about africa. They have this picture based on what they see and heard from media. For someone who hasn’t been able to travel to our country he will definitely build is conception based on the information he has. In your article talking about people knowing just about slavery when it come to africa is a real fact and instead of talking about misconception I will definitely said that nowadays the majority just experiencing the “limited conception” of Africa due to the lack of data or lack of access to real information about our countries. Making them have a better image of our countries is a another big work that africans need to take responsibility of!


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