Shalom, everyone! The following is part 5 of a series of video lectures called “Shem in the Land of Africa,” by renown educator Rabbi Akwetey Amaah. In this installment, Rabbi Akwetey discusses the “curse of servitude” that Noah decreed for his grandson, Kena’an, son of Ham. What happened to Noah as he lay drunk and naked in his own tent? Did Ham assault his father to the point where the former was no longer capable of having any more children? The text in the Torah does not say. Noah uses an ancient custom to take Ham‘s youngest son, Kena’an, as his own because he was not able to produce another child. Nevertheless, Noah pronounces a curse on Kena’an as a slave to his “brothers” Shem and Japheth, who were really his biological uncles. Ham was not cursed. Neither did Noah curse Ham‘s other sons, Mizraim, Cush or Put.
Ham is the progenitor of some Black Africans through his son Cush. Black Africans are NOT descended from Ham‘s fourth son Cana’an, whose descendants, the Canaanites, settled mostly in the Middle East and tiny parts of North Africa. None of them, however, went south of the Sahara Desert into sub-Saharan Africa. Unfortunately, both European and Arab slave traders twisted the Genesis narrative to link Black Africans to Cana’an as justification for the enslavement of Black Africans for almost 1,300 years. The truth is Black Africans, specifically, West Africans, are descendants of Shem, through Avraham (Abraham), Yitzchak (Isaac) and Ya’akov (Jacob):
Shem in the Land of Africa: Part 5 – “Noah And The Curse Of Servitude” – Akwetey Amaah
Video from Akwetey Amaah/YouTube