Senegalese-born Cheikh Anta Diop (1923 – 1986) received his doctorate degree from the University of Paris and was a brilliant historian, anthropologist, physicist and politician and one of the most prominent and proficient black scholars in the history of African civilization.
Contrary to the long-standing European myth of a Caucasian Egypt, Diop’s studies into origins of the human race and precolonial African culture established that ancient Egypt was founded, populated, and ruled by black Africans; the Egyptian language and culture still exists in modern African languages (including his own Wolof language) ; and that black Egypt was responsible for the rise of civilization throughout Africa and the Mediterranean, including Greece and Rome.
Diop also pioneered techniques of scientific research – such as carbon dating as a means of dating artifacts and remains, and the melanin dosage test which he used to verify the melanin content of Egyptian mummies. Forensic investigators later adopted this technique to determine the “racial identity” of badly burned accident victims. Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar, Senegal, is named after him.