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By Richard J. Reid

Up to date and revised to emphasize long term views on present matters dealing with the continent, the recent 2d version of A heritage of recent Africa recounts the complete breadth of Africa's political, fiscal, and social historical past over the last centuries.Adopts a long term method of present concerns, stressing the significance of nineteenth-century and deeper indigenous dynamics in explaining Africa's later twentieth-century challengesPlaces a better concentrate on African corporation, specially throughout the colonial encounterIncludes extra in-depth assurance of non-Anglophone AfricaOffers accelerated insurance of the post-colonial period to take account of modern advancements, together with the clash in Darfur and the political unrest of 2011 in Egypt, Tunisia, and Libya

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Lloyd, P. , The Political Development of the Yoruba Kingdoms (London, 1971). , Commerce and Economic Change in West Africa: The Palm Oil Trade in the Nineteenth Century (Cambridge, 1997). , The External Trade of the Loango Coast, 1576–1870 (Oxford, 1972). Miller, J. , Way of Death: Merchant Capitalism and the Angolan Slave Trade 1730–1830 (Wisconsin, 1988). , Trade Without Rulers: Pre-Colonial Economic Development in South-Eastern Nigeria (Oxford, 1978). Oldfield, J. , Popular Politics and British Anti-Slavery: The Mobilization of Public Opinion Against the Slave Trade, 1783–1807 (Manchester, 1995).

Plate 2 An aspect of Kumasi, capital of Asante, in the 1820s. Private Collection/The Bridgeman Art Library. The area of what would become the British Gold Coast colony thus provides a good example of “creeping imperialism,” the term used to describe the piecemeal process by which European governments sometimes found themselves inextricably caught up in local politics. The British fought a series of wars with Asante through the nineteenth century, conflicts which were usually sparked by an Asante invasion of the coastal districts.

For all these reasons did the East African slave trade enter a new, intense phase which lasted approximately a century, between the 1780s and the 1880s. Figures are more difficult to establish than in Atlantic Africa, owing to the largely unrecorded and “illicit” nature of the trade; but by 1800 slave exports may have reached around 6,000 a year, rising to between 20,000 and 30,000 a year by the 1820s. At the peak of the trade in the 1860s, some 70,000 slaves a year were being exported. All these slaves came from the interior, with the raiding-and-trading frontier advancing ever further toward the Great Lakes and the area of eastern Congo; and again, it is worth recalling that the East African trade continued to increase at the same time as that in Atlantic Africa was in slow decline.

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