Cheikh Anta Diop was born in 1923 in Diourbel, Senegal. After earning a Litt.D. degree in France, Diop worked as a historian in addition to heading the carbon-14 dating laboratory for the Institut Fondamentale d'Afrique Noire in Senegal. He founded two political parties in the 1960s, the Bloc des Masses Senegalaises and the Front Nationale Senegalaise, but he is best remembered for his historical works about Africa. Diop's works includes Civilization or Barbarism: An Authentic Anthropology, 1991 and Alerte sous les tropiques: Articles 1946-1960: Culture et developpement en Afrique noire, Presence Africaine, 1990. Through his books, Diop attempts to prove that blacks had a larger role in the beginnings of civilization than is generally acknowledged. He was honored by the World Festival of Negro Arts in 1966 as the black intellectual who had exercised the most fruitful influence in the 20th century. Diop died February 7, 1986, in Dakar, Senegal.