The Culture of Colonialism: The Cultural Subjection of Ukaguru

The Culture of Colonialism: The Cultural Subjection of Ukaguru

The Culture of Colonialism: The Cultural Subjection of Ukaguru

The Culture of Colonialism: The Cultural Subjection of Ukaguru

Synopsis

What did it mean to be an African subject living in remote areas of Tanganyika at the end of the colonial era? For the Kaguru of Tanganyika, it meant daily confrontation with the black and white governmental officials tasked with bringing this rural people into the mainstream of colonial African life. T. O. Beidelman's detailed narrative links this administrative world to the Kaguru's wider social, cultural, and geographical milieu, and to the political history, ideas of indirect rule, and the white institutions that loomed just beyond their world. Beidelman unveils the colonial system's problems as it extended its authority into rural areas and shows how these problems persisted even after African independence.

Excerpt

This work is the product of over fifty years pondering the nature of one East African society, the Kaguru. When I commenced fieldwork in 1957, Kaguru society was located in what was termed Tanganyika, a British United Nations mandated territory that was in most respects virtually a British colony. That was a social world now gone. Yet the impact of that lost world, the world of colonial life, remains an important influence on Kaguru and many other East Africans. When I later did more fieldwork from December 1961 until mid-1963, Kaguru society was located in a Tanganyika newly independent of colonial rule but still mainly run locally by the same British and African colonial officials who had managed things earlier. Still later, in 1965 and 1966, I briefly worked in Tanganyika, after it had become Tanzania. By then almost all formal vestiges of colonial rule were gone, and British officials had been entirely replaced by local Africans. While the impact of colonial rule remained, the way of life itself had profoundly altered from what I had originally encountered. This study is about my experiences during my first two field trips, when Kaguru society was still essentially ruled along a colonial model. in an epilogue I briefly mention some of the many changes that took place after that period. This is mainly to show how much has vanished but, ironically, also to show how modern Tanzania has still not entirely escaped the colonial imprint.

I considered writing this volume while I was first doing fieldwork in Ukaguru (1957–58). I attended court hearings, local moots, and political meetings. I spoke to numerous Kaguru leaders and to British colonial . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.