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Caplan, Gerald Lewis (1968) A Political History of Barotseland 1878-1965. PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

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This thesis attempts to demonstrate the consequences for a relatively powerful African kingdom whose ruler attempted to accommodate rather than to resist European power in the hopes of harnessing it to his own ends. In 1890, King Lewanika, deceived into believing the British South Africa Company was a branch of the British government, signed the Lochner Concession against the wishes of an important faction of the Lozi ruling class. The entire ruling class was united in opposing the encroachments on Lozi sovereignty which were initiated by the Company's administrators and maintained by the successor Crown government of Northern Rhodesia, Nevertheless, throughout the reigns of the four Lozi kings between 1885 and about 1959, tension existed within the ruling class, since the interests of its inner elite suffered relatively less under colonial overrule than did those of its outer circle. Partly because opposition was seen to be largely futile, in part because those belonging to the inner core were allowed to retain the facade, if not the substance, of power, they rarely attempted actively to resist government interference in Lozi affairs. Only when Paramount Chief Mwanawina refused to come to terms with African nationalism did the traditional ruling class substantially unite to defend the petty privileges which it continued to hold in the stagnant rump of a labour reserve which the kingdom of Barotseland had become. But the very existence of such a tribal elite was a contradiction of nationalist principles, and its intransigence in dealing with the new black government of Northern Rhodesia/Zambia assured that the final destruction of the Lozi ruling class, begun by the Company, came swiftly and decisively under African rule.

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 12 Oct 2020 17:37

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