Anandi Ramamurthy
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Cocoa advertising, the ideology of indirect rule and the promotion of the peasant producer
in Imperial persuaders
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For cocoa manufacturers the period of pacification and consolidation was marked by support for what became known as indirect rule in West Africa. Cocoa was originally grown in Central America and was first brought to Europe by Christopher Columbus. A dominant image of Africans on cocoa and other advertising during late nineteenth century was of labourers working tropical plantations, producing raw materials for European consumption. The cocoa advertisements from the first decade of the twentieth century appear to advocate support for the notion of 'partnership' as well as the value of promoting African peasant production. The cocoa companies, Cadbury's in particular, appear to have been at one with the ideas disseminated by the Third Party. The cocoa manufacturers, however, continued to maintain that the majority of holdings were 'very small', as W. A. Cadbury commented to the West African Lands Committee in February 1913.

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Imperial persuaders

Images of Africa and Asia in British advertising


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