Prayer to the Masks Historical Context

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French Colonialism in Africa

French colonial settlement in Africa dates back to the seventeenth century, when the French were involved in the slave trade both on the African side and in the Caribbean. The trade reached its heights in the middle decades of the eighteenth century and then fell off rapidly with the French Revolution, the wars that rocked Europe in the late eighteenth century, the successful slave revolts in Haiti and elsewhere, and the efforts of humanitarians and enlightenment intellectuals to abolish this ugly denial of human freedom.

A second wave of colonization occurred in the latter half of the nineteenth century, with the scramble of the European powers to conquer the territories of Africa, Asia, and Latin America for European colonial empires seen as sources of cheap raw materials, cut-rate labor, and new markets for expanding industrial societies. At the same time, new ideologies began to...

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This section contains 971 words
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Prayer to the Masks from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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