Africans and Britons in the Age of Empires, 1660-1980 by Myles Osborne

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 colours.

The authors convey that the oft-told narrative of a monolithic imperial strength ruling inexorably over passive African sufferers not stands scrutiny; relatively, 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 alternate, the realm wars, or the interval of decolonization. The British presence provoked quite a lot of responses, reactions, and adjustments in a number of elements of African lifestyles; yet even as, 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 images, Africans and Britons within the Age of Empires, 1660-1980 provides a uniquely wealthy viewpoint for realizing either African and British history.

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Because the impact of the trans-Atlantic slave trade on Africa varied by region, time period, class, gender, and society, trying to correlate it to subsequent economic developments proves almost impossible. But perhaps considering the slave trade from a demographic perspective provides some clarity. Scholars estimate that the population of sub-Saharan Africa stood at 50 million in 1700 CE. Roughly half this number fell into the orbit of the trans-Atlantic slave trade and still more in the trans-Saharan and East African systems.

The slavers, eager to undermine the entire abolitionist purpose of the colony, conspired with a local subchief, King Jimmy, who ordered the remaining residents of Granville Town to leave. Then he burned down their houses. The initial effort to colonize Sierra Leone with free blacks had proved a disaster. 24 The slave trade, abolition, and beyond But abolitionists, driven by a variety of motives, refused to let this setback divert their efforts. They continued on a wildly effective propaganda campaign that offered up gruesome descriptions of the inhumane and brutal treatment of enslaved Africans as they huddled chained in shipholds or worked the plantations of the Caribbean and the American south.

Slaves constituted a highly diverse population at the Cape. From the mid-seventeenth century onward, VOC ships had sold slaves from Dutch possessions in the The slave trade, abolition, and beyond 35 East Indies (modern-day Indonesia) at Cape Town as they made their way west. More slaves had come from Mauritius and Madagascar on orders from Van Riebeeck. Others arrived on ships from Angola or Mozambique (sometimes flying the Portuguese flag), and still more from India, Sri Lanka, Guinea, Cape Verde, China, East Africa, and other ports of the Indian Ocean world.

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