By Moses E. Ochonu
Historians of colonial Africa have mostly seemed the last decade of the nice melancholy as a interval of excessive exploitation and colonial inaction. In Colonial Meltdown, Moses E. Ochonu demanding situations this traditional interpretation by way of mapping the decided, from time to time violent, but instructive responses of Northern Nigeria's chiefs, farmers, workers, artisans, girls, investors, and embryonic elites to the British colonial mismanagement of the good melancholy. Colonial Meltdown explores the unraveling of British colonial strength at a second of world fiscal crisis.
Ochonu exhibits that the commercial downturn made colonial exploitation all yet most unlikely and that this dearth of gains and surpluses pissed off the colonial management which then licensed a brutal regime of grassroots exactions and invasive intrusions. the results have been as harsh for Northern Nigerians as these of colonial exploitation in growth years.
Northern Nigerians faced colonial fiscal restoration measures and their brokers with numerous strategies.ColonialMeltdownanalyzes how farmers, ladies, workers, laid-off tin miners, and northern Nigeria's emergent elite challenged and rebelled opposed to colonial monetary restoration schemes with evasive trickery, defiance, strategic acts of revenge, and felony self-help and, within the approach, uncovered the susceptible underbelly of the colonial system.
Combined with the commercial and political paralysis of colonial bureaucrats within the face of trouble, those African responses underlined the elemental weak spot of the colonial country, the brittleness of its financial challenge, and the boundaries of colonial coercion and violence. This surroundings of colonial cave in emboldened critics of colonial regulations who went directly to craft the rhetorical phrases on which the anticolonial fight of the post-World conflict II interval was once fought out.
In the present weather of worldwide financial anxieties, Ochonu's research will improve discussions at the transnational ramifications of financial downturns. it is going to additionally problem the pervasive narrative of imperial financial good fortune.
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Extra resources for Colonial Meltdown: Northern Nigeria in the Great Depression (New African Histories)
Caught between two unfavorable options, British produce buyers simply passed on the excessive charges to local producers. 12 Such was the plight of the Nigerian producer during the 1930s. 13 A group of Nigerian merchants published an article (a rejoinder to the UAC’s well-publicized indictment of Elder Dempster’s alleged exploitative practices) that accused the UAC of hypocrisy. 14 A contemporary Nigerian newspaper columnist succinctly captured the importance of the shipper-merchants’ conspiracy.
44 the agricultural adventure Despite local outcries, the government’s actions during the Depression reflected its own anxieties and not the appeals of locals. The government did not set out to exploit Nigerians more during the Depression. Exploitation had become all but impossible due to the contraction of the export economy. However, it From Empire to Colony w 39 intervened in the export economy in ways that were just as destabilizing for peasants as the removal of surpluses and profits before the Depression.
In 1928–29 to ⅜–¾d. 19 The same price collapse affected the American cotton variety cultivated in Nigeria. The average buying price per ton of groundnuts fell from £11 6s. in 1928–29 to £6 16s. 20 Increases in the output of these goods sometimes matched the downward slide in prices. Apart from areas where peasants had only recently begun to engage in export crop production on a major scale (like some areas in Benue Province), the trend during the Depression saw producers of major export crops initially increase their output.