The Info List - Sudan (region)

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The Sudan
is the geographic region to the south of the Sahara, stretching from Western to eastern Central Africa. The name derives from the Arabic bilād as-sūdān (بلاد السودان), or "the lands of the blacks", referring to West Africa
West Africa
and northern Central Africa.[1] The Arabic name was translated as Negroland
on older English maps. Historically, the name was understood to denote the western part of the Sahel
region. It thus roughly encompassed the geographical belt between the Sahara
and the coastal West Africa. In modern usage, the phrase "The Sudan" is also used in a separate context to refer specifically to the present-day country of Sudan, the western part of which forms part of the larger region, and from which South Sudan gained its independence in 2011.


1 Geography 2 Habitation 3 See also 4 Notes 5 References


West Sudanian Savanna
Sudanian Savanna
(green) in West Africa

East Sudanian Savanna
Sudanian Savanna
(green) in Central and East Africa

The Sudan
region extends in some 5,000 km in a band several hundred kilometers wide across Africa. It stretches from the border of Senegal, through southern Mali
(formerly known as French Sudan
when it was a French colony), Burkina Faso, southern Niger, northern Nigeria, northern Ghana, southern Chad, the western Darfur
region of present-day Sudan, and South Sudan. To the north of the region lies the Sahel, a more arid Acacia
savanna region that in turn borders the Sahara
Desert further north, and to the east the Ethiopian Highlands
Ethiopian Highlands
(called al-Ḥabašah in Arabic). In the southwest lies the West Sudanian Savanna, a wetter, tropical savanna region bordering the tropical forests of West Africa. In the center is Lake Chad, and the more fertile region around the lake, while to the south of there are the highlands of Cameroon. To the southeast is the East Sudanian Savanna, another tropical savanna region, bordering the forest of Central Africa. This gives way further east to the Sudd, an area of tropical wetland fed by the water of the White Nile. Habitation[edit] The people of the Sudan
region share similar lifestyles, dictated by the geography of the region. The economy is largely pastoral, while sorghum and rice are cultivated in the southern parts of the region. The region was governed in colonial times by European powers, including the French and the British, as part of their African colonial empires, but the countries of the region achieved independence in the latter half of the 20th century. See also[edit]

Sub-Saharan Africa Sudanian Savanna

East Sudanian Savanna West Sudanian Savanna


^ International Association for the History of Religions (1959), Numen, Leiden: EJ Brill, p. 131, West Africa
West Africa
may be taken as the country stretching from Senegal
in the west, to the Cameroons in the east; sometimes it has been called the central and western Sudan, the Bilad as-Sūdan, ‘Land of the Blacks’, of the Arabs .


Readers Digest: Atlas of the World, (1991) Rand-McNally ISBN 0-276-42001-2

v t e

Regions of Africa

Central Africa

Guinea region

Gulf of Guinea

Cape Lopez Mayombe Igboland


Maputaland Pool Malebo Congo Basin Chad
Basin Congolese rainforests Ouaddaï highlands Ennedi Plateau

East Africa

African Great Lakes

Albertine Rift East African Rift Great Rift Valley Gregory Rift Rift Valley lakes Swahili coast Virunga Mountains Zanj

Horn of Africa

Afar Triangle Al-Habash Barbara Danakil Alps Danakil Desert Ethiopian Highlands Gulf of Aden Gulf of Tadjoura

Indian Ocean islands

Comoros Islands

North Africa


Barbary Coast Bashmur Ancient Libya Atlas Mountains

Nile Valley

Cataracts of the Nile Darfur Gulf of Aqaba Lower Egypt Lower Nubia Middle Egypt Nile Delta Nuba Mountains Nubia The Sudans Upper Egypt

Western Sahara

West Africa

Pepper Coast Gold Coast Slave Coast Ivory Coast Cape Palmas Cape Mesurado Guinea region

Gulf of Guinea

Basin Guinean Forests of West Africa Niger
Delta Inner Niger

Southern Africa


Central Highlands (Madagascar) Northern Highlands


North South

Thembuland Succulent Karoo Nama Karoo Bushveld Highveld Fynbos Cape Floristic Region Kalahari Desert Okavango Delta False Bay Hydra Bay


Aethiopia Arab world Commonwealth realm East African montane forests Eastern Desert Equatorial Africa Françafrique Gibraltar Arc Greater Middle East Islands of Africa List of countries where Arabic is an official language Mediterranean Basin MENA MENASA Middle East Mittelafrika Negroland Northeast Africa Portuguese-speaking African countries Sahara Sahel Sub-Saharan Africa Sudan
(region) Sudanian Savanna Tibesti Mountai