Colonial Cities: Essays on Urbanism in a Colonial Context

Overview

by ROBERT ROSS and GERARD J. TELKAMP I In a sense, cities were superfluous to the purposes of colonists. The Europeans who founded empires outside their own continent were primarily concerned with extracting those products which they could not acquire within Europe. These goods were largely agricultural, and grown most often in a climate not found within Europe. Even when, as in India before 1800, the major exports were manufactures, in general they were still made in the countryside rather than in the great ...

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Overview

by ROBERT ROSS and GERARD J. TELKAMP I In a sense, cities were superfluous to the purposes of colonists. The Europeans who founded empires outside their own continent were primarily concerned with extracting those products which they could not acquire within Europe. These goods were largely agricultural, and grown most often in a climate not found within Europe. Even when, as in India before 1800, the major exports were manufactures, in general they were still made in the countryside rather than in the great cities. It was only on rare occasion when great mineral wealth was discovered that giant metropolises grew up around the site of extraction. Since their location was deter­ mined by geology, not economics, they might be in the most inaccessible and in­ convenient areas, but they too would draw labour off from the agricultural pursuits of the colony as a whole. From the point of view of the colonists, the cities were therefore in some respects necessary evils, as they were parasites on the rural producers, competing with the colonists in the process of surplus extraction. Nevertheless, the colonists could not do without cities. The requirements of colonisation demanded many unequivocally urban functions. Pre-eminent among these was of course the need for a port, to allow the export of colonial wares and the import of goods from Europe, or from other parts of the non-European world, in the country-trade as it was known around India.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9789400961210
  • Publisher: Springer Netherlands
  • Publication date: 12/31/2013
  • Series: Comparative Studies in Overseas History Series, #5
  • Edition description: Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 1985
  • Pages: 250
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.56 (d)

Table of Contents

I: Introduction.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Colonial Cities: Global Pivots of Change.- II: Case Studies.- 3. Central America’s Autarkic Colonial Cities (1600–1800).- 4. Zeelandia, A Dutch Colonial City on Formosa (1624–1662).- 5. An Insane Administration and an Unsanitary Town: The Dutch East India Company and Batavia (1619–1799).- 6. Eighteenth-Century Calcutta.- 7. Cape Town (1750–1850): Synthesis in the Dialectic of Continents.- 8. Rio de Janeiro: From Colonial Town to Imperial Capital (1808–1850).- 9. A Caribbean Creole Capital: Kingston, Jamaica (1692–1938).- 10. Algiers: Colonial Metropolis (1830–1961).- 11. Saigon, or the Failure of an Ambition (1858–1945).- 12. Dakar, Ville impériale (1857–1960).- 13. Bombay: From Fishing Village to Colonial Port City (1662–1947).- III: Epilogue.- 14. The Colonial City and the Post-Colonial World.- Notes on the Contributors.

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