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Description - Colonialism's Culture by Nicholas Thomas

Colonialism is not just a matter of military conquest and economic exploitation: it is also a process of imagining through which dominated populations are represented in ways that play upon and legitimize racial and cultural differences. In Colonialism's Culture, Nicholas Thomas explores the perceptions of colonized populations which have emerged in the course of European expansion and critically assesses different approaches to colonial representation. Thomas argues that, while negative ideologies of racial denigration have been important, there is also a range of romanticizing, sentimental and exoticist images of others that require fuller appreciation. These images continue to play a significant role today, both in contemporary liberal attitudes towards other cultures and in scholarly disciplines like anthropology.Colonialism's Culture offers a wide-ranging account of the development of ideas about human difference and otherness, and of the conflict-ridden expression of these ideas in colonial projects at particular times. Thomas draws examples from the texts of eighteenth-century anthropology, nineteenth-century missionaries and colonial administration, and novelists of colonialism such as John Buchan. He shows that colonial culture was not some homogenous ideology that dominated the colonized, but an array of discourses with their own internal tensions and contradictions.By reviewing debates about colonial culture and developing an innovative set of arguments, this book provides a stimulating introduction to a challenging field.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780745612157
ISBN-10: 0745612156
Format: Paperback
(227mm x 163mm x 13mm)
Pages: 256
Imprint: Polity Press
Publisher: Polity Press
Publish Date: 1-Apr-1994
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Nicholas Thomas

Nicholas Thomas is the author of several previous books including Out of Time: History and Evolution in Anthropological Discourse (Cambridge University Press, 1989) and Entangled Objects: Exchange, Material Culture and Colonialism in the Pacific (Harvard, 1991).

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