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A Different Shade of Colonialism

A Different Shade of Colonialism: Egypt, Great Britain, and the Mastery of the Sudan

Series: Colonialisms
Copyright Date: 2003
Edition: 1
Pages: 271
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  • Book Info
    A Different Shade of Colonialism
    Book Description:

    This incisive study adds a new dimension to discussions of Egypt's nationalist response to the phenomenon of colonialism as well as to discussions of colonialism and nationalism in general. Eve M. Troutt Powell challenges many accepted tenets of the binary relationship between European empires and non-European colonies by examining the triangle of colonialism marked by Great Britain, Egypt, and the Sudan. She demonstrates how central the issue of the Sudan was to Egyptian nationalism and highlights the deep ambivalence in Egyptian attitudes toward empire and the resulting ambiguities and paradoxes that were an essential component of the nationalist movement.A Different Shade of Colonialismenriches our understanding of nineteenth- and twentieth-century Egyptian attitudes toward slavery and race and expands our perspective of the "colonized colonizer."

    eISBN: 978-0-520-92846-6
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-vii)
  3. List of Illustrations
    (pp. viii-viii)
  4. Acknowledgments
    (pp. ix-xii)
  5. Introduction
    (pp. 1-25)

    In August 1894, a Bedouin slave dealer named Muḥammad Shaghlῡb led a small caravan to a stop in the village of Kerdessa, within sight of the Great Pyramids of Giza. The caravan consisted of six Sudanese women, purchased hundreds of miles to the south, who had walked slowly and barefoot with Shaghlῡb and three other traders along the Forty Days’ Road, the old and well-traveled trade route that ended in lower Egypt. All were exhausted upon reaching Kerdessa, but Shaghlῡb persevered, acting quickly to find an accommodating friend who agreed to hide the women on the top floor of his...

  6. 1 Journeys from the Fantastic to the Colonial
    (pp. 26-63)

    Medieval Arabic geographers of Africa defined the continent with a paradoxical mixture of fact, legend, and mystery. Some, like Ibn Baṭuṭa and al-Mas‘ῡdī, visited different parts of Africa; others, like al-Kazwinī and al-Idrisī, synthesized the information of other voyages into their geographical work. Most were indebted to the works of the Greek geographers, sometimes including Greek views of African cannibalism and savagery unquestioningly in their own accounts; others were deeply struck by the differences between African societies and their own Islamic cultures.¹ By the end of the fourteenth century, the map of Black Africa reflected a combination of mythical and...

  7. 2 Black Servants and Saviors: The Domestic Empire of Egypt
    (pp. 64-104)

    An ordered world for the powerful, a disordered one for the powerless—this was the geographic binary model (with its implied political threat) whose resolution was entrusted to ‘Alī Mubārak during the twenty-five years that passed between his writing ‘Alam al-Dīnand its publication in 1882. He was remarkably busy. During those years, he immersed himself in careers as Minister of Schools and Minister of Public Works, jobs that made him the architect of both a secular educational system and the reorganization of the streets and landmarks of Cairo. With the full support of the state behind him, ‘Alī Mubārak...

  8. 3 The Lived Experience of Contradiction: Ibrahīm Fawzī’s Narrative of the Sudan
    (pp. 105-134)

    Khedive Isma‘īl’s ambitious and optimistic project to reorder Egyptian society also extended to the Sudan, with consequences as profound as those that so alarmed Ya‘qūb Sanū‘a and ‘Abdallah al-Nadīm. In the words of P.M. Holt, the Egyptian administration of the Sudan made it “the first region in the interior of Africa to experience (although at one remove) the tensions characteristic of Western colonialism.”¹ These tensions, which Holt characterizes as a “general incompatibility between Sudanese traditional society and the new model derived ultimately from Europe” caused a social and political upheaval that was eventually “resolved” in the Mahdīya.² But this so-called...

  9. 4 The Tools of the Master: Slavery, Family, and the Unity of the Nile Valley
    (pp. 135-167)

    We have seen in the writings of Ya‘qūb Ṣanū‘a and ‘Abdallah al-Nadīm how the representation of the Sudanese as slaves came to be part of a public discussion of cultural reform and early nationalism in Egypt during the 1870s and 1880s. We have also witnessed the impact of slavery on Ibrahīm Fawzī’s life, how suspicions of his slave-trading past troubled his relationship with General Gordon, how he maintained a sense of personal status by owning at least one slave while a prisoner of the Mahdīya in Omdurman, and finally, how similar accusations led British officials of the occupying government to...

  10. 5 Egyptians in Blackface: Revolution and Popular Culture, World War I to 1925
    (pp. 168-216)

    In 1910 Aḥmad Luṭfī al-Sayyid had argued with great force that the unity of the Nile Valley was sacred, but this projected unity often missed, or dismissed, some of the core issues that more painfully united the cultures along the Nile. It was neither the experience of British occupation nor World War I that integrated Egypt with the Sudan. In fact, the two experienced the political and economic circumstances of 1910 through 1919 very differently. Whereas Egypt had by then a well-established tradition of nationalism, the Sudan had only recently been conquered by Great Britain, and any national voice there...

  11. Conclusion
    (pp. 217-220)

    A cartoon titled “British Delusions of Grandeur” appeared on the front page of the newspaperal-Kashkūl(The Scrapbook) in January 1926 (see fig. 12). It depicts two female figures representing Egypt and the Sudan as being rather intimately connected to a boastful Lord Lloyd. According to the caption, the Egyptian figure wonders who will tell him he is deluding himself, while the Sudanese figure wonders who will tell him that he is wasting his time in the Sudan. And yet, the poses of the female characters belie their vocal defiance. Egypt turns demurely toward Lord Lloyd and, though protected from...

  12. Notes
    (pp. 221-240)
  13. Works Cited
    (pp. 241-250)
  14. Index
    (pp. 251-260)