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New PDF release: A Workman Is Worthy of His Meat: Food and Colonialism in the

By Jeremy Rich Ph.D. MA BA

In Libreville, the capital of the African country of Gabon, the colonial previous has developed right into a current indelibly marked through colonial rule and ongoing French impression. this is often specially obtrusive in parts as necessary to existence as meals. during this advanced, hybrid culinary tradition of Libreville, croissants are as available as plantains. but this comparable culinary range is observed by means of excessive costs and a lack of in the community made foodstuff that's bewildering to citizens and viewers alike. A astonishing two-thirds of the country’s meals is imported from outdoor Gabon, making Libreville’s fee of residing akin to that of Tokyo and Paris. during this compelling examine of foodstuff tradition and colonialism, Jeremy wealthy explores how colonial rule in detail formed African existence and the way African townspeople built artistic methods of dealing with colonialism as eu growth threatened African self-sufficiency.
From colonization within the 1840s via independence, Libreville struggled with difficulties of foodstuff shortage as a result of the legacy of Atlantic slavery, the violence of colonial conquest, and the increase of the bushes export undefined. Marriage disputes, racial tensions, and employee unrest usually founded on nutrition, and townspeople hired assorted strategies to strive against its shortage. eventually, imports emerged because the answer and feature had a long-lasting impression on Gabon’s culinary tradition and economy.
Fascinating and informative, A Workman Is priceless of His Meat engages a brand new road of old inquiry in reading the tradition of nutrients as a part of the colonial event and resonates with the questions of globalization dominating culinary economics today.

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Additional info for A Workman Is Worthy of His Meat: Food and Colonialism in the Gabon Estuary

Sample text

2 Male sociability crossed the lines of race and language. The decorum surrounding this meal may have been unexpected for Wilson, but it was part and parcel of eating and commerce for a Mpongwe trader in Atlantic commerce. Centuries of passing traders had left behind forks, plates, and etiquette. Orange trees around Mpongwe villages testified to the coming of Portuguese visitors centuries before Wilson met Rapontchombo. The unfree hands that served food to Wilson visibly displayed Rapontchombo’s power of to command bodies as well as tastes.

119 Electricity and refrigeration were within the grasp of well-off Libreville residents. The town contained the highest number of schools in the entire colony. Drivers sped on paved roads, and airplanes flew to Europe, African cities, and to other parts of Gabon. 120 Though Libreville enjoyed the benefits of urbanization common to other African capitals, it remained a difficult place to reach from the countryside. The government’s plans to integrate the capital with the rest of the colony sputtered until the 1960s.

Townspeople thought of eating as a vital necessity, even though scholars of Gabon and of urban Africa generally have not spent much time addressing sustenance. Rather, the fact that food is so rarely mentioned in urban histories of Africa means that scholars have missed out on a central concern of townspeople as consumers, farmers, traders, employers, and fishermen. Against the backdrop of the preceding sketch of major events, the present study examines how urban people ate, from whom they obtained their nourishment, and how a separate Libreville set of lifestyles emerged.

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