By Myles Osborne
Africans and Britons within the Age of Empires, 1660-1980 tells the tales of the intertwined lives of African and British peoples over greater than 3 centuries. In seven chapters and an epilogue, Myles Osborne and Susan Kingsley Kent discover the characters that comprised the British presence in Africa: the slave investors and slaves, missionaries and explorers, imperialists and miners, farmers, settlers, legal professionals, chiefs, prophets, intellectuals, politicians, and squaddies of all shades.
The authors exhibit that the oft-told narrative of a monolithic imperial energy ruling inexorably over passive African sufferers not stands scrutiny; fairly, at each flip, Africans and Britons interacted with each other in a posh set of relationships that concerned as a lot cooperation and negotiation as resistance and strength, no matter if through the period of the slave exchange, the realm wars, or the interval of decolonization. The British presence provoked quite a lot of responses, reactions, and ameliorations in a number of features of African existence; yet while, the event of empire in Africa – and its final cave in – additionally forced the British to view themselves and their empire in new methods.
Written by means of an Africanist and a historian of imperial Britain and illustrated with maps and pictures, Africans and Britons within the Age of Empires, 1660-1980 provides a uniquely wealthy standpoint for figuring out either African and British history.
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Extra resources for Africans and Britons in the Age of Empires, 1660-1980
The British presence – first informally and then under colonialism – provided African peoples with extraordinary opportunities. They sought to negotiate the best possible circumstances with the pale-skinned foreigners in a wonderfully complex and diverse set of interactions that constantly shifted along fault lines of gender, race, geography, religion, culture, and more. Notes 1 We have avoided the loaded term “human sacrifice” here. In many parts of West Africa, it is difficult to separate whether killings were for “customary” purposes and involved people already convicted of capital crimes, served to bolster state control, were “judicial executions,” or some combination of the above.
8 Ralph Austen, Trans-Saharan Africa in World History (London: Oxford University Press, 2010), 31. 9 Hannah More, Slavery, A Poem (London: T. Cadell, 1788), 8. 10 Quoted in Howard Temperley, White Dreams, Black Africa: The Antislavery Expedition to the Niger, 1841–1842 (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1991), 15. 11 Quoted in Temperley, White Dreams, Black Africa, 157, 162. 12 Quoted in Patrick Brantlinger, Rule of Darkness: British Literature and Imperialism, 1830–1914 (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1988), 178.
To change the customs even of civilized . . men . . is . . 12 For the time being, the British government abandoned efforts to intervene in the African hinterland to suppress the slave trade. Stymied by recalcitrant and sometimes hostile African kings and merchant princes, overwhelmed by disease, and discouraged by behaviors regarded as antithetical to free trade and progress, British officials saw little reason to continue their involvement in African affairs. The Church Missionary Society, on the other hand, two of whose members had accompanied the expedition up the Niger, took more positive lessons from the journey, and determined to follow it up with further missionary trips.
Africans and Britons in the Age of Empires, 1660-1980 by Myles Osborne