Author: Laura Chrisman
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2000
Genre: Literary Criticism
This book examines literary romance as a vehicle for the ideological contradictions of British imperialism in South Africa. Chrisman draws upon postcolonial theory and cultural materialism to discuss the imperialist Rider Haggard's fictional accounts of mining in King Solomon's Mines, and Zulu history in Nada the Lily, examining these novels as fraught responses to the introduction of capitalist modernity. She goes on to analyse the counter-narratives of metropolitan and African resistance of feminist Olive Schreiner and black nationalist Sol Plaatje. Exploring Schreiner's much-neglected Trooper Peter Halket of Mashonaland, Chrisman situates this book in relation to the violent creation of 'Rhodesia', the 1896-7 Shona uprisings, and contemporary criticism of Cecil Rhodes. In doing so, she shows how Schreiner's is a much more challenging example of anti-imperialist fiction than Conrad's Heart of Darkness, published two years later. Chrisman's discussion of Plaatje's Mhudi-the first black African novel in English-considers the book as a direct response to Haggard's imperialism and Schreiner's feminist theory. Locating the book through the politics and epistemology of the early ANC, she reveals how Plaatje challenges Haggard's misogyny and fatalistic historiography. Mhudi, she argues, is a novel whose nationalist and sexual politics are considerably more complex than has been recognized. Plaatje uses his narrative form to articulate both radical and liberal alternatives to white South African rule. Chrisman's book demonstrates how South Africa played an important if now overlooked role in British imperial culture, and shows the impact of capitalism itself in the making of racial, gender and national identities. This book makes an original contribution to studies of Victorian literature of empire; South African literary history; African studies; black nationalism; and the literature of resistance.
Author: Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell Baden-Powell of Gilwell, Baron
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Release Date: 2004
Genre: Juvenile Nonfiction
'A trained scout will see little signs and tracks, he puts them together in his mind and quickly reads a meaning from them such as an untrained man would never arrive at.'A startling amalgam of Zulu war-cry and imperial and urban myth, of borrowed tips on health and hygiene, and object lessons in woodcraft, Robert Baden-Powell's Scouting for Boys (1908) is the original blueprint and 'self-instructor' of the Boy Scout Movement. An all-time bestseller in theEnglish-speaking world, second only to the Bible, this primer of 'yarns and pictures' constitutes probably the most influential manual for youth ever published. Yet the book is at the same time a roughly composed hodge-podge of jingoist lore and tracker legend, padded with lengthy quotations fromadventure fiction and B-P's own autobiography, and seamed through with the multiple anxieties of its time: fears of degeneration, concerns about masculinity and self-restraint, invasion paranoia. Elleke Boehmer's edition of Scouting for Boys is the first to reprint the original text and illustrations, and her fine introduction investigates a book that has been cited as an authority by militarists and pacifists, capitalists and environmentalists alike.