This essay focuses on the political and economic history of Sudan – ancient Nubia and Kush, Christian Makuria, colonial Anglo-Egyptian Sudan, and independent Sudan. It is written for the participants in Stanford Travel/Study’s program, Sudan, January 8-23, 2019.

                The essay has four sections. I first explain how Nile agriculture provided wealth in ancient Egypt and Nubia (during the 2nd millennium BCE), discuss the supplemental sources of ancient Egyptian and Nubian wealth, and show how Nubia contributed to the wealth of dynastic Egypt. Next I look at why dynastic Egypt declined and fell (1st millennium BCE-6th century CE), what roles Nubia (then Kush) played in that process, and how the new rulers of independent Kush created and enjoyed wealth. I go on to explain how Christian Nubia became Arabized Sudan (6th century-1956), how medieval Sudan created wealth, and how Anglo-Egyptian rule (1898-1956) impacted the country. Finally, I discuss independent Sudan (1956-present) – what approaches Sudan’s three military dictators shared, how the economy has fared under their rule, and why Sudan has been afflicted by civil wars. A time line, a bibliography, and a description of sites visited are appended.

Ramesses II, Pharohs, New Kingdom, Kushitic Kingdom of Kerma (2500-1550 BCE) and Egyptian Kush(1550-1070 BCE), Kerma, Soleb, Kushitic Kingdom of Napata (1070-315 BCE), 

Napata., Jebel Barkal, Meroitic Kingdom, El-Kurru, Nuri, Meroe, Naga, Rome, Musawwarat es-Sufra, Christian Kingdom of Makuria (6th-14th centuries), Old Dongola, Khartoum and Omdurman, pyramids