Petals of Blood Historical Context

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Beginnings of Colonialism

In 1887 a private British company attempted to start a trading business near the Kenyan coast, modeling itself after the British East India Company which had for years monopolized highly profitable European trade in India. While the Imperial British East Africa Company, as it was known, soon went bankrupt, the British government itself took over the territory in 1895, and over the next decade gradually gained administrative control of most of modern Kenya. The British government encouraged English "settlers" to move to the fertile highland regions, where they created gigantic plantations while displacing hundreds of thousands of native Kenyans, mostly ethnic Gikuyus, from their traditional lands.

Revolution and Independence

By the early 1950s a growing segment within the KAU began to espouse violent revolt as the only means of freeing themselves from the tyranny of British colonialism. At the same time, the British government began to hear...

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Literature of Developing Nations for Students
Petals of Blood from Literature of Developing Nations for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.