These include the Jarawa, who still live in the forest, and the Onge, who have been settled there by the Indian government.Similar groups of Black people have been identified in Japan, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia, and it seems almost certain that at one time a belt of Black populations of this type covered much of Asia, including early China and especially southern China.Ivan Van Sertima always preached that “It is one thing to say that you were first and yet another to say what you did.” So what did Africans do in ancient China? The Shang Dynasty (1766-1027 BCE), China’s first dynasty, dating from the 18th to the 11th century BCE, apparently had a Black background, so much so that the conquering Zhou described them as having “Black and oily skin.” Bronze vessels, such as Le Tigresse are thus an extremely important component to our case and helps buttress our position.Le Tigresse is by far the most spectacular of such vessels. In addition to Le Tigresse, in the Cernuschi Museum in Paris, there is a similar and near identical artifact in the Sumitomo Collection in Kyoto, Japan.
Indeed, the African presence in China is perhaps the most challenging area of research within the broad realm of the African presence in Asia.
The painting depicts four Black men, one of which is of great prominence.
What is most striking about the Shang Dynasty Yu vessels, the Tang Dynasty statues and the Yuan Dynasty paintings — all clearly Africoid — is that race and ethnicity of the people depicted are never mentioned, and if one does not see these objects for themselves you would never guess, from reviewing the relevant literature, they were Black.
The second painting is a handscroll depicting “tribute bearers” toward the end of the Yuan Dynasty, about 1350 CE.
It is housed in the Asian Art Museum, Avery Brundage Collection, San Francisco.
How do we explain such a large population of Blacks in southern China, powerful enough to form a kingdom of their own?