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 infantrymen of all shades.
The authors exhibit that the oft-told narrative of a monolithic imperial strength 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 a variety of responses, reactions, and changes in quite a few points of African existence; yet while, the adventure of empire in Africa – and its final cave in – additionally pressured 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 knowing either African and British history.
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Extra info for Africans and Britons in the Age of Empires, 1660-1980
The anti-slavery act made it illegal for any British captain to trade in slaves from Africa and authorized British naval officers to capture and hold “pirates” who sought to do so. The act included in its remit ships whose papers were deemed to be false, enabling British captains to seize Portuguese, Spanish, and French vessels and their slave cargo. The British government charged a new West African Squadron with enforcing the law, and set up a court in Freetown where offenders would be tried. Given the size of the squadron, however – only three ships – and the scope of its jurisdiction – 3000 miles of African coast – suppression proved lamentably ineffective.
He believed that the entire region of British Kaffraria would be a better place without Xhosa living in it and that white settlers should inhabit the whole area. As the Xhosa collapsed he set about implementing his vision for the land. The other whites in the interior – the trekboers – had initially assumed that the British would side with them in their conflicts against the Xhosa, purely on racial grounds. But the British had little more regard or sympathy for them than for African peoples. When the British had arrived in 1795 an incipient rebellion was underway in Graaff-Reinet and Swellendam.
No European could be a slave – based on common practice – and legally no indigenous person from the Cape could either, though they often found themselves in the positions of serfs or servants. The large proportion of European men at the Cape, however, meant that many offspring were produced from interracial unions. Because slave status passed through the mother’s line, European men who fathered children with slave women had children who were legally slaves; free women who had children with slave men had free children.