Imperial Networks investigates the discourses and practices of British Colonialism. Focusing on the colonization of the Xhosa to the east of the nineteenth century Cape Colony in South Africa, the book places this episode in the context of a much broader Imperial network. The book reveals how British colonialism in the region was informed by, and itself informed, imperial ideas and activities elsewhere, both in Britain and in other colonies. Drawing on materialist South African historiography, postcolonial theory and geographical conceptions, Imperial Networks examines: * the origins and early nineteenth century development of the three interacting discourses of colonialism - official, humanitarian and settler * the contests, compromises and interplay between these discourses and their proponents * the analysis of these discourses in the light of a global humanitarian movement in the aftermath of the antislavery campaign * the eventual colonisation of the Xhosa and the construction of colonial settler identities.
Imperial Networks introduces students to key debates in the historiography of nineteenth century South Africa, as well as in materialist and postcolonial constructions of the past.