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By M. Havinden

British colonial rule of the tropics is the severe history to modern improvement concerns. This examine of Britain's monetary and political courting with its tropical colonies presents specific analyses of exchange and coverage. The issues of prior successes and screw ups elucidate present possibilities and advancements. No different booklet covers this huge subject with such element and readability.

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Additional resources for Colonialism and Development: Britain and Its Tropical Colonies, 1850-1960

Sample text

Fourth, there were different views and perspectives about what type of colonial development was needed. As previously mentioned, British companies involved in colonial trade, or with mining or plantation concessions, had their own specific interests to promote, and these were not always consistent with the optimum development strategy, whether viewed from London or the colonies themselves. 18 This was 21 COLONIALISM AND DEVELOPMENT often reflected in a naive or confused attitude to the agricultural and trading systems in being at the commencement of colonial rule.

Here again injections of very small quantities 18 INTRODUCTION AND FRAMEWORK initially could produce results out of all proportion to the amounts supplied. A very good example of this was the introduction of cocoa seedlings into Ghana. The initial cost of the trees (cocoa not being found indigenously in Ghana) must have been trivial, yet within a few years this tiny investment (of the 1890s) had led to the growth of million of trees and the development of a massive world-wide trade in cocoa beans.

49 Singapore was also attractive to Chinese merchants, who settled on the island, and brought compatriots in to establish agricultural plantations for export crops. The most popular of these were black pepper and gambier, a plant from whose leaves and branches a dyeing and tanning agent was extracted. These two plants were grown on different parts of the same plantation, having complementary labour requirements. They were both exported, mainly to Britain. By 1851 there were 24,220 acres of gambier and 2,614 acres of black pepper growing on Singapore island, and since the crops were exhausting to the soil, the Chinese cultivators were 40 THE TROPICAL COLONIES IN THE MID-VICTORIAN AGE spreading into the neighbouring Malay state of Johore—a process which would in time help to draw it ever more closely into the British orbit.

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