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153

Projecting Empire

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terms
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notes

Esther Leslie on John Phillip Short, Magic Lantern Empire. What role did popular visions play in fin-de-siècle German colonialism?

Leslie, E. (2013). Projecting Empire. In Left Review, N. New Left Review 82. New Left Review Ltd, pp. 153-None

156

This is popular colonialism and it developed, he states, independently of the ‘organized enthusiasm of the upper classes’. It had to: a central claim of the book is that the official agencies of colonial knowledge and the organized colonial movement had no interest in including the lower classes in their discussions and gatherings. The regional colonial societies did not invite members of the working classes to participate in their meetings. Officers, government officials and businessmen formed the majority of attendees, with tiny numbers of petty civil servants, innkeepers or other small traders. The lower classes were addressed only as the objects of propaganda—or not addressed at all, for Empire was none of their business. In this regard, the plaintive letters requesting overseas deployment indicate some sort of autonomous thinking through of the self in relation to Empire. The letter-writers will not be admitted, of course, for they have no capital and their labour is superfluous. The colonies have labourers enough, African ones, overseen by the occasional European, who possesses them as he possesses capital. [...]

never really considered this angle before but of course it makes sense

—p.156 by Esther Leslie 2 years, 9 months ago

This is popular colonialism and it developed, he states, independently of the ‘organized enthusiasm of the upper classes’. It had to: a central claim of the book is that the official agencies of colonial knowledge and the organized colonial movement had no interest in including the lower classes in their discussions and gatherings. The regional colonial societies did not invite members of the working classes to participate in their meetings. Officers, government officials and businessmen formed the majority of attendees, with tiny numbers of petty civil servants, innkeepers or other small traders. The lower classes were addressed only as the objects of propaganda—or not addressed at all, for Empire was none of their business. In this regard, the plaintive letters requesting overseas deployment indicate some sort of autonomous thinking through of the self in relation to Empire. The letter-writers will not be admitted, of course, for they have no capital and their labour is superfluous. The colonies have labourers enough, African ones, overseen by the occasional European, who possesses them as he possesses capital. [...]

never really considered this angle before but of course it makes sense

—p.156 by Esther Leslie 2 years, 9 months ago

referring to Frankfurt School sociologist and philosopher Jürgen Habermas, best known for his theories on communicative rationality and the public sphere

160

that sits better with the theoretical impulses worked through here from cultural studies and Habermasian ideas

—p.160 by Esther Leslie
notable
2 years, 9 months ago

that sits better with the theoretical impulses worked through here from cultural studies and Habermasian ideas

—p.160 by Esther Leslie
notable
2 years, 9 months ago

(adjective) marked by a tendency in favor of a particular point of view; biased

160

These are tendentious stabs at critique, designed to back up Short’s notion of a drip-drip-drip effect of colonial inculcation, and they are weak ones.

—p.160 by Esther Leslie
notable
2 years, 9 months ago

These are tendentious stabs at critique, designed to back up Short’s notion of a drip-drip-drip effect of colonial inculcation, and they are weak ones.

—p.160 by Esther Leslie
notable
2 years, 9 months ago