Post post-colonialist studies

High Culture, Religion, Philosophy and Esoterica.
Jim the Moron
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Re: Post post-colonialist studies

Post by Jim the Moron » Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:24 pm

Yes, the British were adept at "trimming their sails," to the tune of transporting "3.1 million Africans (of whom 2.7 million arrived) to the British colonies in the Caribbean, North and South America and to other countries."

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/slav ... -trade.pdf

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cassowary
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Re: Singapore's unusual early colonial experience

Post by cassowary » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:38 pm

neverfail wrote:
Mon Mar 27, 2017 3:42 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:54 am
cassowary wrote:
Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:58 pm
But I suspect that a lot depends on the capability of the people the British and other European encountered. The British wanted to trade. If the people they met were capable of peaceful commerce and both grew wealthy in the exchange, the British were quite happy to leave you alone to make your own arrangements. There was no need for harsh treatment of their subjects.
Unless you didn't want to be subjugated, in which case they would kill you. Let's not pretend that colonialism was some sort of era of sweetness and light.
Cass is right Steve. As empire builders the British were quite flexible in "trimming their sails to suit the prevailing wind".

Unlike some of their Continental European peers they did not operate according to an inflexible master-plan template.
Hi Steve and Neverfail,

In the case of Singapore, they did not bother to try to subjugate the Chinese. There was no need to. That's what I was trying to say in my earlier posts. As late as 1875, a dispatch from the British colonial office to London remarked that the majority of Chinese did not even know that the British government was there. And here is a quote from Rudyard Kipling when he visited Singapore:

"England is by the uninformed supposed to own the island." Page 107 of the book, "A history of Modern Singapore."

There was no need to subjugate the Chinese in Singapore to make a profit. The Chinese were capable, through their merchant princes (or Kapitan China) of maintaining order and prosperity for their own community and trade peacefully with the British. More importantly, the Chinese had valuable goods and services to trade with. They were the early pioneers in the frontier lands of Singapore first and later Malaya as tin miners.

Only when the British encountered people who waged "jihad" on their merchant ships did they have the need to subjugate them. It is not for nothing that Singapore's founder, Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles called Islam a "robber religion." They were the ones who needed subjugating and not peaceful people capable of producing goods and services for trade.

A British-centric history book would see Singapore as a colony since its founding in 1819 by Raffles. But in reality, it was also a Chinese colony. Chinese immigrants flooded in after its founding. The British and Chinese were equal partners in the colonization of Singapore as well as Malaya in the 19th century.

It was the British and Chinese commercial interests in Singapore that pressed a reluctant London to expand imperial power into the Malayan hinterland. The Malay Sultans were incapable of having a legal system where property rights were ensured. Thus the tin mining areas were scenes of warfare between rival groups of Chinese miners. Had these Muslim sultans a better idea of property rights, there would be no need for British colonial control. Remember what Churchill said about insecurity of property in lands where Islam held sway?

While the British and Chinese were equal partners in the colonization project of Singapore and Malaya in the 19th century, the British gained the upper hand in the 20th century and Singapore became wholly a British colony. But Singapore got its independence from the British. So Chinese colonization won in the end.

This is my revisionist history, but it is best to let sleeping dogs lie. Better to stick with the British-centric version of Singapore's history. Otherwise, our Muslim-Malay minority will grow resentful if they come to the realization that the Chinese were also colonialists at the beginning. They might become like the Maoris who still bear a grudge against the Pakehas in New Zealand. Unlike Maoris, they have jihad in the mix.

Jim the Moron
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Re: Post post-colonialist studies

Post by Jim the Moron » Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:25 pm

Singapore's neighbors have "jihad in the mix."

"Government Schools in 'Moderate' Malaysia Teaching Jihad"

http://pamelageller.com/2017/02/schools ... ysia.html/

neverfail
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Re: Post post-colonialist studies

Post by neverfail » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:33 pm

Hi Cassowary,

I know that there had been a Chinese "presence" in the Malacca Strait region for centuries - even before European man first put in his appearance. But in Singapore?

To my understanding, when Stamford Raffles first laid eyes on Singapore, it was a mangrove fringed, marshy place that sustained but two small villages of Malay fishermen. There were no Chinese there until after the British occupation began - making it safe and relatively easy for Chinese immigrants to settle there.

Indeed, probably because it had been such an obscure, unappealing place until Raffles saw its potential to serve the interests of British maritime commerce and trade (most notably that of the East India company - his employer) history had bi-passed Singapore. For centuries the entrepots of maritime trade along that waterway had been Malacca and Penang further to the north.

Founded just over 3 decades after my home town, I find Singapore a bit of a curiosity this way: a New World type of society located in a part of the world that most would probably mistake for being part of "old world" Asia.

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SteveFoerster
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Re: Singapore's unusual early colonial experience

Post by SteveFoerster » Tue Mar 28, 2017 8:16 am

neverfail wrote:
Mon Mar 27, 2017 3:42 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:54 am
cassowary wrote:
Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:58 pm
But I suspect that a lot depends on the capability of the people the British and other European encountered. The British wanted to trade. If the people they met were capable of peaceful commerce and both grew wealthy in the exchange, the British were quite happy to leave you alone to make your own arrangements. There was no need for harsh treatment of their subjects.
Unless you didn't want to be subjugated, in which case they would kill you. Let's not pretend that colonialism was some sort of era of sweetness and light.
Cass is right Steve. As empire builders the British were quite flexible in "trimming their sails to suit the prevailing wind".

Unlike some of their Continental European peers they did not operate according to an inflexible master-plan template.
Tell that to the Zulus.
Writer, technologist, educator, gadfly.
President of New World University: http://newworld.ac

neverfail
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Re: Singapore's unusual early colonial experience

Post by neverfail » Tue Mar 28, 2017 4:37 pm

SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Mar 28, 2017 8:16 am


Cass is right Steve. As empire builders the British were quite flexible in "trimming their sails to suit the prevailing wind".

Unlike some of their Continental European peers they did not operate according to an inflexible master-plan template.
Tell that to the Zulus.
[/quote]

I would not dream of doing so Steve! Would you? :lol:

Jim the Moron
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Re: Post post-colonialist studies

Post by Jim the Moron » Mon May 01, 2017 5:37 am

It gets tiresome to read various opinions of how much better off people in former European colonies were during colonial days, as opposed to conditions today. It's typical of the attitudes of many who believe European culture is the Alpha and Omega of the civilized world.

But those attitudes may be changing. The Dutch were no less savage than other European powers during the colonial years, but on a smaller scale. For example, they transported only about a fifth of the approx. 3,000,000 African slaves that the English dispatched to the New World, but did so no less brutally. The Dutch, however, seem to be rejecting their attitudes of the past:

"Digging up the Dutch colonial past"
http://www.newmandala.org/digging-dutch-colonial-past/

Regarding Indonesia, the Dutch government is apologising for its behavior there after WWII. Would that other European nations desist in their justifications for past behavior in their colonies.

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cassowary
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Re: Post post-colonialist studies

Post by cassowary » Fri May 19, 2017 8:57 pm

neverfail wrote:
Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:33 pm
Hi Cassowary,

I know that there had been a Chinese "presence" in the Malacca Strait region for centuries - even before European man first put in his appearance. But in Singapore?

To my understanding, when Stamford Raffles first laid eyes on Singapore, it was a mangrove fringed, marshy place that sustained but two small villages of Malay fishermen. There were no Chinese there until after the British occupation began - making it safe and relatively easy for Chinese immigrants to settle there.

Indeed, probably because it had been such an obscure, unappealing place until Raffles saw its potential to serve the interests of British maritime commerce and trade (most notably that of the East India company - his employer) history had bi-passed Singapore. For centuries the entrepots of maritime trade along that waterway had been Malacca and Penang further to the north.

Founded just over 3 decades after my home town, I find Singapore a bit of a curiosity this way: a New World type of society located in a part of the world that most would probably mistake for being part of "old world" Asia.
There were already Chinese living there and had been for centuries before Raffles set foot there. They came as traders whose stay was usually temporary but a few stayed. Archaeological diggings at Ft Canning revealed Ming coins and pottery dating from the 14th century.

Singapore's history is one of booms and bust. Each bust was caused by invasions from larger neighbors. Prosperity has been and still is on a knife edge.

It is true that Raffles establishment of a trading post led to massive Chinese immigration. The British were not picky. They were color blind. Arabs, Indians and Malays also came. But the Chinese formed the largest group.

In my revisionist history, I contend that there were parallel colonializations taking place - the British and the Chinese. In fact, the first Chinese migrants did not know that the British were supposed to be in charge. They were not aware of the British presence, so few were their numbers and so untouched were their lives by the British.

The British used the "kapitan" system, which was already in place in SE Asia for centuries. I know the Thais used it.

Excerpt:
Kapitan Cina or Kapitan China (English: Captain of the Chinese; Chinese: 華人甲必丹; Dutch: Kapitein der Chinezen) was a high-ranking government position in the civil administration of colonial Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. Office holders exercised varying degrees of power and influence: from near-sovereign political and legal jurisdiction over local Chinese communities, to ceremonial precedence for community leaders.
I prefer to call them "merchant princes," for the Chinese leaders were also merchants. Raffles was an employee of the East India Company and so can be considered as a merchant price too, except that he was not as wealthy as his Chinese counterpart. In fact, he died poor.

The Chinese were initially ruled by fellow Chinese. They were equal partners of the British in the colonialization of a nearly unihabited island. Later, Chinese pioneers from Singapore ventured into the Malaya, then ruled by the Sultans. These pioneers formed different groups that fought for control of the tin mines in Malaya.

Yap Ah Loy was a merchant prince who came up on top. He even had an army. He established Kuala Lumpur, as Malaya's most important city and today it is the capital of Malaysia. The British "appointed" him as Captain China - formally giving him power over the Chinese in Malaya, which he already had by right of conquest.

But by the end of the 19th century, the British gained the upper hand and the merchant princes declined in power.
This bit of history must be forgotten or it will inflame Malay grievance against the Chinese. So shh.

neverfail
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Re: all may be not what it seems in New Zealand.

Post by neverfail » Sun May 21, 2017 4:42 am

cassowary wrote:
Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:38 pm
They might become like the Maoris who still bear a grudge against the Pakehas in New Zealand. .
Do they still bear a grudge cassowary? Please tell me more.

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