Runoko Rashidi is a late-20th c. historian, researcher, writer, world traveler, and public lecturer based in Los Angeles. Runoko Rashidi focuses on the African presence globally and what he claims to be the African foundations of world civilizations. He is particularly drawn to the African presence in Asia, Australia, and the Pacific Islands, and has coordinated historic educational group tours to India, Aboriginal Australia, the Fiji Islands and Southeast Asia as well as Egypt and Brazil. His academic focus is in "the Black foundations of world civilizations". He has conducted research into the Black presence in Asia.
Rashidi has dedicated his entire adult life to the African people. Rashidi has three goals: to uplift the way Africoids view their race, to uplift the way the world views Africa and to reunite the separated Africoid race.
Rashidi rejects the claims by European anthropologists that the Negritos, Australoids, Negroids and Arabian Mediterraneans are separate races. He claims that they are all "Africoid" or "Black". He believes European anthropologists have used "unscientific
" and "invalid
" methods and that their work was "racially motivated
" to divide people who were clearly Africoid in race. He cites Cheikh Diop's statement on race.
A racial classification is given to a group of individuals who share a certain number of anthropological traits, which is necessary so that they not be confused with others...It is the physical appearance which counts...Now, every time these relationships are not favorable to the Western cultures, an effort is made to undermine the cultural consciousness of Africans by telling them, "We don't even know what a race is."...It is the phenotype which as given us so much difficulty throughout history, so it is this which must be considered in these relations.
Rashidi was a founding member of Amenta, in 1980
of the Southern Cradle Research Organization, in 1984
of the Egyptian Civilization Monitoring Committee and in 1985
the Africans/Ali Mazuri Monitoring Committee. In 1987
he inaugurated the First All-India Dalit Writers Conference in Hyderabad
, delivering an address on 'The Global Unity of African People'. From 1981
Rashidi worked on African
history at Compton Community College
, Compton, California
and from 1985
he worked for the National Black Computer Network as history editor. Rashidi has contributed regularly to the Journal of African Civilizations
Since 1986, he has worked actively with the Dalits
. In 1987, he was a keynote speaker at the first All-India Dalits Writer's Conference, held in Hyderabad, India, and spoke on the "Global Unity of African People
." In 1998, he returned to India to lecture, study and sojourn with the Dalits and Adivasis
(the indigenous people of India). In 1999, he led a group of seventeen African-Americans to India. He was the first non-Indian to be honored with the prestigious Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Memorial Award.
Blacks of the World
Rashidi identifies what he calls a "global African community
" of the Africoid race
. Rashidi considers the terms "black"
to be synonymous. Rashidi considers the Africoid race to be the first race in the world. If the first human migrations out of Africa have retained their Africoid appearance, then he considers them also to be Africoid. Rashidi cites Cheikh Anta Diop
in the identification of two major Africoid races: one with wooly hair, broad flat nose, thick everted lips and the other with straight hair, aquiline nose
, thin lips, and high cheekbones. Diop considers the latter type of black to include Dravidians
Rashidi claims that the first Asians
Africoid people with kinky hair, yellow to dark brown skin and short stature. In his words, they were "the supreme lords of the earth
" with "monumental civilizations
" of advanced technology. Next, Afro-Australoids
migrated into Asia 50,000 years ago. These Afro-Astraloids can still be found among the Gonds
of Sri Lanka and South India. These Australoids turned into the Mongoloid race by a process "only vaguely understood
Rashidi claims that archaeological evidence dating back 22,000 years ago in Japan shows architectural similarity with African bushmen
. He claims that Japanese samurai were recorded as having "black blood", interpreting it to mean racial admixture with Africoids, and claims that the shogun Sakanoue no Tamuramaro
was a Black man.
Blacks in China
Rashidi claims that the Chinese
were originally black Africoid in appearance when they first arrived in China. He speculates that the present non-Africoid appearance of the Chinese is due to the ancient mixing of black Africoids and whites. He claims that there were still pockets of unmixed Africoids from 6,000 BCE to 200 BCE.
Rashidi claims the Khmer
were an Africoid racial group in Southeast Asia who were renowned for their scholarly work. They lived in Myanmar, Kampuchea, Laos, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam only to be replaced by Mongoloids. Rashidi claims Southeast Asian culture owes its heritage to its first Africoid inhabitants.
Blacks in Egypt
Rashidi claims that Egyptians have the same craniofacial measurements as people in Central Africa. He considers designation of these peoples as "Mediterranean
" by previous anthropologists to be "ethnocentric
Blacks in the Arabian Peninsula
Rashidi claims that the Veddoids
were the original black inhabitants of the Arabian Peninsula. Rashidi considers the possibility that prophet Muhammed may have been partially black.
Blacks in Europe
Rashidi claims that the historical black presence includes "England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and Scandinavia". He claims that legends of "dark" people and dark/black attributes of individuals such as the Scotsman Kenneth
"the Niger" and the Viking Thorhall
are to be taken literally as evidence of ancient Black presence and/or admixture.
Blacks in India
Rashidi claims that the Dravidians
of India are part of the black race
He claims that until 500 years ago the Dravidians had a technologically advanced society that was well-known in the ancient world. These black Dravidians portrayed their gods as blacks and portrayed evil beings with white skin. He claims the Aryans were "barbarian" whites
who enslaved the indigenous black Dravidians in the caste system
after they stole the advanced technology of the Dravidians 500 years ago.
"History is a light that illuminates the past, and a key that unlocks the door to the future." --Runoko Rashidi
- van Sertima, Ivan (1989). Egypt Revisited. Transaction Publishers. ISBN 0-88738-799-3 (an Afrocentrist volume "on the race and origin of the ancient Egyptians' black dynasties and rulers, Egyptian science and philosophy, and great Egyptologists".