History of the Anti-Alcohol Campaigns


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Project Description:

In this project, my goal is to demonstrate how the transnational campaigns against the colonial liquor trade in Africa between the 1880s and 1930s represented an important contributing moment to shaping the character of modern western activist movements in the global south. Many European countries participated in the manufacturing, sale and distribution of liquor to the colonies. Western missionaries, philanthropists and humanitarians were horrified by the extension of this trade. Building on the tactics developed by the anti-slavery campaigners in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, a new generation of activists organized a campaign against colonial government policies, the lucrative European liquor industry, and consumers of high-alcohol content spirits in West and Central Africa. Their focus may have been on alcohol, but their work ultimately highlighted some of the larger systemic problems of colonialism. Yet the solutions they proposed unfairly targeted the consumers of alcohol rather than taking on problems in the industry itself.

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Funded

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SSHRC Small Grants Program
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Canadian Centre for German and European Studies (CCGES)
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York Internal Grant - Minor Research Grant
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York Conference Travel Fund
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