Robert G. Gregory challenges the apparent assumption that non-Western peoples lack a significant indigenous philanthropic culture. Focusing on the large South Asian community in East Africa, he relates how, over a century, they built a philanthropic culture of great magnitude, and how it finally collapsed under the ascendency of increasing state regulation and policies directed against non-African communities.
Compelled by poverty to seek better oppurtunities overseas, most Asians arrived in East Africa as peasant farmers. Denied access to productive land and sensing economic opportunity, they turned to business. Despite severe forms of racial discrimination in the colonial society, they suffered few restrictions on their business enterprises and some became very wealthy. Gregory's historical analysis shows philanthropy as an important contribution, one that stemmed from deep roots in Hindu, Muslim, and Buddhist culture. The sense of nonracial social responsibility cultivated social, medical, and educational facilities designed for all.
This age of philanthropy terminated with the Asian exodus. The socialist and racial policies adopted by East African governments over the past few decades have virtually destroyed the foundation necessary for philanthropy as well as the distinct Asian cultural identity. Gregory's account of the East Asian's role in philanthropy deserves great attention and sober reflection.
|Publisher:||Taylor & Francis|
|Series:||Rise and Fall of Philanthropy in East Africa Series|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.59(d)|
About the Author
Robert G. Gregory is professor of history at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs of Syracuse University.
Table of Contents
1 The Settlement in East Africa 15
2 Asian Charitable Organizations and the Leading Benefactors 43
3 Deployment of Earnings and Savings 69
4 Creation of Religious, Social, Medical, and Library Facilities 91
5 Provision of Schools 109
6 Establishment of a Gandhi Memorial 127
7 From Royal Technical College to University of Nairobi 147
8 Literature and the Arts 161
9 Contributions to Non-Asian Peoples 185
10 Conclusion 203