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Charney, Michael W. (2016) 'Before and After the Wheel: Precolonial and Colonial States and Transportation in Mainland Southeast Asia and West Africa.' HumaNetten, 37. pp. 9-38.

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Abstract

The present article seeks to demonstrate the important influence pre-colonial roads and overland transportation had on the emergence of modern transportation systems in modern Africa and Southeast Asia. To do so, it examines the pre-colonial and colonial transition and the relationship of the court and colonial administration respectively to changing transportation technologies and geographies of movement. It argues that certain pre-colonial attitudes regarding movement, transportation, and traffic had an important influence on emerging colonial transportation networks. The article examines central political attention to mobility, transport, and traffic (or not) and attention to the thinking about the act of governing them (or not) to reveal continuities attitudes that are invisible when looked at through the lens of technological and regime change alone. It is also suggested that these continuities provide one of a number of the inside stories of state formation and change from the pre-colonial to colonial eras in examples drawn from West Africa and Southeast Asia (including Sri Lanka) for the purpose of this paper. Ultimately, these continuities may help to partially explain other aspects of the directions these two examples took after independence.

Item Type: Journal Article
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of History, Religions & Philosophies > Department of History
Legacy Departments > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Department of History
ISSN: 14032279
DOI (Digital Object Identifier): https://doi.org/10.15626/hn.20163702
Date Deposited: 07 Sep 2016 16:02
URI: https://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/22906

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