President: José Eduardo dos Santos Political Regime: Presidential. Republic of Angola République d'Angola, Republica de Angola Republic of Angola République d'Angola, Republica de Angola
Angola is located on the West Coast of Africa, but particularly in the Southern Region, bounded on the north and northeast by the Democratic Republic of Congo and Congo Brazzaville, to the east by Zambia, Namibia and the South West bathed by the Atlantic Ocean.
With a coastline of 1,650 kms, extends into the interior, occupying an area of 1,246,700 km2. Is divided into 18 provinces, with its capital Luanda.
Found traces of human presence in some regions, mainly Luanda, Namibe and Mbanza Congo, show that the Angolan territory is inhabited since the days of prehistory.
Migration of peoples from the north, the Bantus, forced to the then dominant inhabitants. Dispersing into the vastness of the country, the Bantus were themselves formed in groups, giving rise to the current races. In the thirteenth century the social structure and politics of some of these groups gave rise to the Kingdom of Congo and other Kingdoms, which gave the territory a balanced social and political organization.
This is the situation that the Portuguese navigator Diogo Cão found in 1482, when the head of a fleet reached the mouth of the river Zaire. It was, from that time, cordial relations between the Portuguese and the sovereign of the Kingdom of Congo, with trade, broken relationship when Paulo Dias de Novais starts the occupation and direct administration of the sea through the placement of several captaincies. In parallel, there was the slave trade to the needs of labor in Brazil has remained until the nineteenth century, when Sá da Bandeira Portugal succeeded in approving legislation to abolish slavery.
The share of Africa in 1884-1885, forced the Portuguese to a prolonged fight for the occupation and administration of the whole territory, which was only completed at the end of the first World War.
Meanwhile, peace began to be pertubada in the early 50 with nationalist movements whose demands for autonomy led to a struggle of liberation between 1960 and 1974, the year in which case the fall of the dictatorial regime in force in Portugal and leading the country's independence proclaimed on 11 November 1975, by António Agostinho Neto, first President of Angola.
Last Updated (Thursday, 09 January 2009 12:36)
Culture & Arts
ARTS AND CULTURE
Angola has about 24.300 millions people distributed mainly by the coastal and central western plateau (region of Huambo). The population density is 11.2 inhabitants per km2.
The population is composed of various ethnic groups, most of them of Bantu origin, and the more numerous the ovimbundos, the kimbundos and bakongos, with a diversity that make the country a very rich cultural community. Besides these, there are still bosquímanos in the southwestern territory.
The official language is Portuguese and there are more than 42 dialects, and the most spoken, considered national languages: the Umbundo, Kimbundo and Kikongo.
The cultural wealth of Angola is manifested in several areas. The music is very well known and rhythms such as Kizomba, Semba, riveting and new styles kabetula, zouk and kuduro, animate the nights in the country. The traditional dances, with projection for the rivets, the region of Luanda, also have a place of prominence, and the cuisine is very diverse and rich (Muamba, ginguinga, calulú, mufete, smoked catfish, kizaka, draw sheet, muzongué , etc.)..
Regarding the craft there is a variety of materials used and statuettes (the thinker, considered the symbol of the Angolan culture) in wood, masks (Muan-powder) for ritual dances, musical instruments (marimba, kisange and ungo), objects of common use richly ornamented, paintings in oil and sand, are forms of artistic expression of exceptional quality, which can be found in museums, art galleries and fairs.
The traditional festivals linked to the local races are loaded with strong cultural value, passed through several generations. The carnival is the most popular, dance in all regions of the country. Reference also to the Kianda festivals in the city of Luanda, and the Nossa Senhora do Monte, in Lubango (Huila province of) and the sea, in Namibe.