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The Fictions of Empire The Imperial Adventure in Fiction and Film.

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Presentation on theme: "The Fictions of Empire The Imperial Adventure in Fiction and Film."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Fictions of Empire The Imperial Adventure in Fiction and Film

2 Corrigan, A short Guide to Writing about Film Conrad, Lord Jim Forester, Passage to India (Penguin ISBN-10: 014144116X) H Rider Haggard, “She” in Three Adventure Novels (Dover) Bram Stoker, Dracula (Penguin) Robert Louis Stevenson, “Ebb Tide” in South Sea Tales Films Gunga Din (1939) The Man Who Would Be King (1975) Lawrence of Arabia (1962) The Mummy (1932) or The Mask of Fu Manchu (1932) The Proposition (2005)

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8 Web Resources: www.victorianweb.orgwww.victorianweb.org, especially http://www.victorianweb.org/history/empire/ http://www.victorianweb.org/history/empire/ http://www.britishempire.co.uk/index.htm http://www.britishempire.co.uk/timeline/time line.htm The University of Florida Digital Collection, Juvenile Fiction

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11 How does a small Island of a few million control an Empire of 500 million?

12 I. What is Imperialism? What is Colonization (v. post-colonialization)? II. Expanse of British Empire: Africa, India, East, Australia III. Beginnings: the construction of otherness. (hottentot, savages, etc…) Africa: unlike the myth of backwardness, Africa was advanced and organized: empires of Ghana (11 th C), Mali (13 th ), Songhni (14 th ) 1441: First Portuguese Traders 1560: John Hawkins “brought” hundreds of people back from west Africa 1567: Queen Elizabeth invests in Hawkins (cousin of Francis Drake) 1558: Elizabeth comes to power in turbulent time. General Shift to a capitalist system with the decline of aristocracy and rise of the mercantile class (titles can be bought. This leads to the need to make fortune, a sense of adventure.) Patrilinear system 1600: East Indian Company given a grant for all trade w/the orient. Established trading ports over the century 1600s: unsuccessful use of American Natives and Poor English and Irish as laborers in America and Carribean (sugar, tobacco, etc) Rise of Triangular Trade 1663 the “Company of Royal Adventurers of England” established, pointing to both expansion and sanctioned slavery 1721: Walpole becomes prime minister, implements a policy of commercial expansion 1750: as the Mughal empire disintegrated, The EIC became more involved with Indian politics, establishing Indian rulers of independent states willing to trade w/the British. Robert Clive’s, commander of the “East India Co. Army” establishes British-friendly “puppet rule.” EIC’s rule became formal in 1765 when the Mughal emperor conceded to him (Bengal)… 1750-1800: East Indian Trading Company spreads throughout the east, Tea becomes a major trade Company run governments became increasingly involved in politics, wars, and expansion. Never condoned at home, this became the basis of a the new Britain ruled India, which, through war and skirmish, spread to Afghanistan. 1788: First convict ships arrive at Botany Bay; African Association formed to explore the interior of Africa 1857: Indian Mutinies result in the dissolution of the EIC and British rule of India. 1876: Victoria becomes Empress of India

13 Conclusion: Imperialism is an ideology, based upon national identity, economics, commerce, religion, science, industry, technology. Imperialist Ideology is Bought and Sold, both at home and abroad Examples:

14 Conclusion: Imperialism is an ideology, based upon national identity, economics, commerce, religion, science, industry, technology. Imperialist Ideology is Bought and Sold, both at home and abroad Examples: The Great Exhibition of 1851

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20 1)Imperialism as a Commodity  superabundance Control over chaos 2) Imperialism as visual … and organized. Enlightenment mindset  similar to genus / species Darwin’s Origin of Species 3) Race and Otherness as organized visually “Construction of the Other” 4) Britishness as a commodity of world improvement….

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30 The Birth of Civilization: a Message from the Sea The consumption of soap: a measure of the wealth, civilization, health and purity of the people

31 The first step towards lightening THE WHITE MAN’S BURDEN is through teaching the virtues of cleanliness. PEARS SOAP is a potent factor in brightening the dark corners of the earth as civilization advances, while amongst the cultured of all nations it holds the highest place – it is the idea toilet soap.

32 Imperialism as a commodity : Colonization as commercially driven The Opium War

33 Imperialism as a commodity : Colonization as commercially driven The Opium War

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36 How do you “Sell Imperialism?” Next Week, Read Kipling’s “Wee Willie Winkie” and the Boy’s Brigade Gift Book


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