Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria


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The landscape writing of these women can be seen as extremely complex, as influenced by 19th century concepts of nature, science and imperial discourse. The same is true about the accounts of "the other", race and African women: "The relationship between race and gender is… of critical importance in the context of the British imperial culture" p.

These travel writings have contributed to creating prejudice and racial imagines in British imperialism and added to the construction of the portrayal of Africa as the "dark continent". McEwan states that her study has illustrated that "the 'dark continent'" was not a monolithic concept; it was formed by a complex production of knowledge and, therefore, open to a variety of interpretations.

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Her study is an analysis situated between geography, history, anthropology and cultural postcolonial theories. She concludes "The question remains, is the engagement by western academics with postcolonial theory simply a form of re-colonization, or is it now a case that 'we' are more willing to recognize the limits of our knowledge and be receptive to different ideas and different voices"?

Let us hope that African researchers take up some of these points in the future to have a review of travel writing from completely different perspectives. With such a new approach "the old imperial discipline of geography can be said to have engaged fully with critiques of hegemonic knowledge production" p.

A geography webjournal which intends to generate an interaction between authors and readers. Cybergeo : European Journal of Geography.

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Contents - Previous document - Next document. She also explores the relationship between these women and the African people they have met, the colonized counterparts, in particular African women.

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She then reviews the impact of those women writers on the British imperialism and their "empowerment" through the writing experience. She also points out the difficulties in reviewing underlying histories with the documentation available and from imperial discourses, taking into account the position of the researcher from the "elite 'palaces' of knowledge production" in the Western world and thus highlighting the limits of her own research.

She therefore questions if it is at all possible to "retrieve the subaltern histories". In conclusion, McEwan provides a solid analysis of women travel accounts of West Africa in the nineteenth century, highlighting common themes such as the description of the landscapes and natural environment which contributed to geographical knowledge of the time. At the same time such descriptions were used as tools to encourage colonization, as they were seen as vast landscapes to be explored, conquered and settled, often these landscapes were also romanticised in a mythical way, as was the case in other travel records of the Victorian times in contrast to the industrial revolution.

The landscape writing of these women can be seen as extremely complex, as influenced by 19th century concepts of nature, science and imperial discourse. The same is true about the accounts of "the other", race and African women: "The relationship between race and gender is… of critical importance in the context of the British imperial culture" p. These travel writings have contributed to creating prejudice and racial imagines in British imperialism and added to the construction of the portrayal of Africa as the "dark continent". McEwan states that her study has illustrated that "the 'dark continent'" was not a monolithic concept; it was formed by a complex production of knowledge and, therefore, open to a variety of interpretations.

Her study is an analysis situated between geography, history, anthropology and cultural postcolonial theories.


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Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria
Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria
Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria
Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria
Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria
Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria
Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria
Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria
Gender, Culture and Empire: European Women in Colonial Nigeria

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