Just to let you know…

… that, despite my ‘leaving‘, I do still write and if you are suffering withdrawal symptoms (imagine a wry smile with that), not only is there my other blogging site (something coming there soon) but this has just been published on Visual Verse: An Anthology of Art and Words, which publishes a visual prompt and invites submissions of between 50-500 words written within one hour.

https://visualverse.org/submissions/beneath/

I shall pop back with any further news, as and when there is any.

Bye for now!

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Leaving

There are so many ways of leaving, of ending things, aren’t there?

Paul Simon sang of fifty.

Which reminds me of ‘Still Crazy After All These Years.’

Which reminds me of a sad end to a strange relationship. But that’s by the by – and I won’t be writing about it. Ever.

Anyway.

When I say ways of leaving, I mean more than just the means, but the tone, the demeanour, the…

Oh, hell, let’s get on with it.

I began blogging in 2012. In 2013 I wrote a post about ageing, make-up, invisibility. The way women vanish into nana-hood, whether or not they’re nanas, as they pass through the middle years.

As I was packing for a trip to see family in Texas I received an email.

That post had been ‘Freshly Pressed’ by WordPress.

In a state of slight shock and suppressed excitement I endured the contorted, 20 hour voyage to Austin.

I’ve always loved this, taken in Rippy’s feed store in Dripping Springs, Texas, not too far from Austin, so mildly relevant

On arrival I checked my emails. Responses poured in. Ten, thirty, fifty – and counting.

The tally of my followers leapt from twelve into the hundreds.

It kept on rising slowly – and still ticks up. Though, unlike one of my favourite bloggers, Heide, I can’t number my followers in tens of thousands, just one thousand and seven hundred.

But 1700’s not bad, I tell myself, for a moody nonentity with a penchant for writing what she wants, when she wants, not playing by the blogging ‘rules’.

And so I had an audience.

I was part of a community.

Then the ‘leavings’ began. And I don’t mean what you might think.

It started with Australian blogger, ‘Tess,’ on her ‘Journey Called Life.’ We developed a real friendship, had much in common.

A week after a road trip ended there were, unusually, no new posts. No reply to my contacts. I rootled around, found a Facebook page. An announcement from her husband.

She’d died, after a one-week illness.

Another ‘friend’ who lived in the Philippines – we’d wave at each other across the globe –   vanished, though she’s still, in theory, a follower. I just don’t know what happened to her.

And then, there are those, still following, who’ve found better things to occupy their time. Or don’t enjoy my new directions.

Well, we all change. Our interests change.

Politics to nature. Ranting to creating. Memoir to miscellania. We may not enjoy those changes, stop reading.

And yet. I still felt part of a community.

Alone as I am, much of the time, I thought of the handful of you –  out of 1700 – who comment and like, whose blogs I read when I can, as my friends. My workmates.

And there was still the original motivation, to record some personal stuff so that, one day, family members who’d forgotten or never knew what I’d done –  or, like my sister*  got the stories wrong – could read my versions of events.

*(She argued – with me – that I’d been dumped by a long-term boyfriend in Swaziland. It was the other way round. You can find the real, bizarre story in instalments here.)

Swaziland. Me, taking a break and reading Brideshead Revisited

BUT.

As Christmas approached, this year, I’d begun to write my annual seasonal stories, when …

Slam!

That’s how it felt.

An email from one of my (comparatively rare) male followers. Telling me not to waste my time writing for ‘Husk’. Because you lot are, he reckoned, a ‘limited’ and ‘not really interested’ community.

I fumed, but only at his insensitivity. It didn’t bother me, otherwise, and I blithely carried on writing part 2 of my seasonal tale.

That evening, I read it aloud to the prof, at his request, when he came home from work.

I was floating on a fuzzy cloud of unusually high morale at the time, only enhanced by his ecstatic (by his standards) response.

Then he said, ‘You can’t post them online, now.’

‘Why?’

‘It’s too good, you really need to get these published properly.’

Now, if I was a child in one of those marshmallow experiments where you get rewarded for waiting, not eating your allotted sweets, I’d be the one who ate them almost straight away. (And I’d probably have cried when the other, more patient types got their bonus marshmallows.)

Not marshmallows. Flying saucers from our local newsagents. 3 pence each.

Not put them online? Wait? Be patient?

I plummeted to earth. Beyond, actually. Bit of a pit.

Had a bad night’s sleep, thinking uncomfortable thoughts.

Joining some dots.

For example: I’d been reading a draft of a novel written by a fellow blogger and follower, surprised at how good it was (forgive me if you’re reading this). Her blog posts had not led me to believe… well, let’s leave it there.

Which made me think. Had I been doing this all wrong? Expending my energies in the wrong place?

There was more. The dispiriting lack of response to certain posts, for example. But I won’t go on, it sounds too petty.

These dots began to form a picture as I applied the pencil of 3 am thinking.

I’ve been expending much of my creative energy on something that brings me some joy and a small but kind audience. That helps me reduce my buzz of thoughts to a manageable din.

But it’s also frustrating. I write what I think is a piece of great prose, a justified rant. Recount a lovely nature walk. Tell a great story.

Tens of people view it. Three people like it.

And everyone is so busy. So many demands on our time, attention, resources – of all kinds.

‘Real’ friends who don’t actually follow me tell me in Christmas cards, or by email, that they read my posts, but most of them never comment, or otherwise engage.

Yes, I’ve benefited hugely from honing my craft. From stepping out of the shadows. But it’s begun replacing other things I could – and should – be doing.

It’s become an obligation to an indefinable something.

And it’s time to let it go.

So…

Thank you, everyone who’s bothered to comment, converse, share, or even, on occasion, send me real things in the post.

I’m leaving the archive here. The URL will be converted to memoirsofahusk.wordpress.com in a few months’ time.

Meanwhile, I plan to do more posts on maidinbritain.com where I write about what is (or was) made and done in these wonderful islands – wonderful, despite the depressing, distressing state of our politics.

So, if you who enjoy my posts about history, printing, making, manufacturing, doing, conserving or excavating, please pop over there and follow me.  And if you see maidinbritain  following you, that’ll be me (it’s the nickname ‘Still Crazy’ man gave me) .

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart for six years of your company. For keeping me  somewhat sane.

I wish you all the best for 2019 – and always.

And plan to carry on being:

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Madonna of the Penultimate Train

Not the last train, the one before. Packed, but not rowdy. Not teetering, precariously, on the border between alcoholic hilarity and boozed belligerence, like the last train of the night.

The seats are arranged in fours. Rows of two-seats-facing-two-seats running either side of narrow aisles.

A group of four young men with perma-grins, knees twitching, phones clasped in hands, tolerates an enforced interval. An interval in what? Smoking, drinking, war-gaming? I’ll leave the possibilities there, though there are others, places I don’t want to go.

And they sound quite normal. Heads-back, mouth-open laughter mingling with cries of ‘boss’ and ‘sound’ – and not too many expletives deleted. Nice lads, perhaps.

An older couple sits, side by side, programmes held aloft. Whether they’re really re-reading the (classical) concert notes or warding off the world it’s hard to say. He wears a hat. She wears a proper coat. And leather gloves.

The carriage is full. But the noise is muted, for the time of night and the time of week, Thursday going on weekend.

Across the aisle, in the parallel foursome, three male individuals sit. One lolls, head against the window, adding another greasy smear to the picture formed by other heads and fingers.

One chews on a thumb.  Twitches now and then in his seat. Stares around the carriage, as if looking for a lost friend – or enemy.

The other reads a book. Yes, a book.

The picture fades to black and white. The volume is turned right down on laughter, shuffling, coughing, sneezing – and conversation.

The fourth seat, next to the aisle, diagonally opposite me, is all there is.

A picture in full colour.

A three dimensional image, standing out against the flat backdrop of monotone shades.

A young woman. But young only in physical form.

A Mona Lisa without the supercilious smile. A Black Madonna who’s not black, not an icon, not a painting, but three dimensional  flesh and blood.

A statue brought to life, warm, living, breathing. Though you can’t see the movement.

She sits, hands on lap, looking straight ahead. But seeing – what?

There’s something about this person, her eyes, her un-self-conscious poise, her stillness – her depth – that makes me wonder.

‘Don’t stare,’ he says, the man I married. But he stares too.

‘She doesn’t see,’ I say. And it’s true.

Her eyes are so compelling. Full of mystery. As if she has known the woes of the world. Pain – and lost joy.

It’s the second week of Advent. Christmas not too far away.

I think of that young woman, two thousand years ago, or so. Giving birth to a boy-baby. In a stable. Her joy at holding a healthy child. Secure in the love of a husband – tolerant, given the circumstances.

Safe, despite the occupation of their homelands.

Or were they safe?

The strange men who came from the East, with gifts meaning – what? Did they really follow a star?

What did they think of this babe in arms, who did they think he might be?

And that King the wise men spoke with, Herod. Their warnings about his intentions.

A fearful king. So afraid of an infant pretender he had all male babies murdered.

The young mother’s joy at that birth – how long did it last?

How soon did that first Madonna know that her son, who found an independent voice so young, who said he must be about his father’s business, who learned the carpenter’s trade but gave it up and left to wander and preach – would die a brutal death?

A carpenter’s son. Nailed to the very wood that had been his family’s living. In agony.

When I think about my Madonna of the Penultimate Train, when I remember her face, I see a tear escaping, rolling down one smooth, perfect, healthily plump cheek from one of her dark, limpid eyes.

I see her blink. And her hands fold back on her lap, like a dove settling on warm grass, after brushing one tear away.

But there were no tears. She did not cry.

And as the train pulled into her station she rose, walked to the doors and was gone.

More than five years have passed – and still I can see her. Still imagine her.

And still, I wonder.

A beautiful Black Madonna from Wroclaw, Poland




I brought this post forward a few days as I have decided not to finish this little series of pen portraits and have another, non-seasonal one, waiting in the wings.

The flight of Mary and Joseph put me in mind of those fleeing persecution with little or nothing to their names. So here are contact details for some more charitable organisations, this time helping refugees – there will only be more as our climate changes and conflicts continue  – and children in need worldwide.

This came up on my Facebook feed this week and for once their intrusion was welcome. A great idea, a shop where you can buy things for refugees, in real life or online:

https://choose.love/

I know some people don’t feel the UN gives value for money but good people in the UNHCR and UNICEF do a lot of valuable work both with refugees and for children:

https://www.unicef.org/

https://www.unhcr.org/

The flight into Egypt of Mary, Joseph & baby Jesus to escape the slaughter of innocents by King Herod. Paining on the wall of Helga Trefaldighets Kyrka (Holy Trinity Church) Uppsala, Sweden

And the slaughter.

 

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A winter’s Eve, on the train

Her hair is glossy-pale. Slicked across her head into a neat ponytail with a hint of a curl at the end. Part blonde, part blue, pale blue. Colours of a clear winter’s sky on the eastern horizon, seconds after the sun has set.

Her head is turned to look at the window. She can’t see out.

The night is dark, raindrops cling to the dirt-streaked glass, glisten in the swift-passing lights of the suburbs.

But perhaps she sees something, not nothing.

Her legs are pipe-cleaner thin. Threaded into pale jeans, improbably tight. Slashed, but clean.

One leg, the left, is crossed over the other, her left foot tucked behind her right calf. Contorted. Yet ballerina-graceful.

She hunches forward, one arm wrapped around her middle, her hand grasping her side as if to hold herself together. The other hand cups her mouth, hiding her expression.

But her eyes can’t be hidden.

Sad? Fearful? Both?

She is scrunched. As if she would like to screw herself up, like an old till receipt, a final demand, a rejection, and throw herself in the bin.




 This is the first of four pen portraits I plan to publish, one for each week of Advent, with some ideas for charities to which you might donate. The choices are personal and subjective.

This is a terrible time of the year to be lonely, to be suicidal. There is so much talk of joy and happiness, merriment and family that a person living a grey life can feel like the only one excluded from a brightly coloured world.

The British charity, Samaritans, is especially relevant to this observation on my local train service, Merseyrail. Here’s an extract from the Samaritans’ website:

“Since 2010, as part of their partnership with Network Rail and the wider rail industry Samaritans has trained almost 18,000 rail staff and British Transport Police officers with the skills to help someone at risk of suicide on the railway. Over 2500 have also been trained with skills to recognise the symptoms of trauma in colleagues and to help them seek support.”

The Samaritans organisation does much more than that and you can learn more (and donate) here:

https://www.samaritans.org

It is more difficult to track down an organisation that works on mental health internationally, but these professionals seem to be doing a worthwhile job, spreading more enlightened methods of treating mental illness around the world – and they can accept donations:

https://imhcn.org/about-2/

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A change of seasonal plan

Well.

What a difference a day makes.

The last twenty four little hours have seen me race to the top of Creative Peak. Happy and dancing, like Maria in the Sound of Music. Without the voice.

Then a gust from a passing gale blew me right down the chasm of Thoughtless Comment. So it’s been a restless night.

But today I’m climbing the gentle slope of Well, What If?

I had planned to start publishing the first of my seasonal tales this week, having written parts one and two so far to huge critical acclaim (translated: the prof liked them).

But several disruptors joined forces to make me rethink.

So….

Instead of a quartet of magical imaginings, I’m going to feature some pen portraits. Observations of people seen in these wintry, northern hemisphere days, on our local commuter train.

Obviously not our local commuter train. But I love this picture of innocence and happiness – what could be more cheering than childish joy in this fog of world wide gloom?

And I will add some links to charities that could benefit from our generosity at this over-commercialised, over-expectant, over-hyped time of year. Though – but no, dammit, I’ll be optimistic.

After all, I’ve just reached that point in my climb up Well What If? that’s called, You Never Know.

Irrelevant photo. But I like it

 

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Stories…

Page number from booklet

It’s the time of year for dark nights, warm hearts and magical tales – well, in the northern hemisphere and its cooler climes it is!

I am busy working on my annual offering of seasonal tales, my head buzzing with old magic and new ideas. But in the meantime hope you will forgive me for reminding you of a tale from a few years ago.

A Little Match Girl is  a short, hand printed, hot-metal set booklet which has been a labour of love for all involved. I re-wrote the original Hans Andersen tale – giving it a slightly happier ending – and setting it in smoky Victorian London where ‘match girls’ were both match sellers and women who worked in factories with dangerous white phosphorus.  There’s one of each in my tale.

If you are interested in its genesis you can read about the process it went through and see a few videos (you can skip the words, go to the image and captions) on my other blogging site in the post linked to here. (Oh – it was not, as it says in the post, printed on a  mechanical press, it was hand-printed on a Vandercook proofing press.)

The polymer block that printed one of the page numbers

Several of you have bought them already – for which many, many thanks. I hope the recipients, if they are gifts, enjoy them, they carry a good message for this hyper-commercial time of year (she says as she tries to sell them!)

It is now getting late for posting to far flung places for Christmas/the solstice/whatever, but there is still – just – time.

I should warn you that postage and packaging costs will be added to the cost of the booklet (£5) itself.  One Australian (not a blog follower) cancelled an order when it turned out  £3.95 was required to send the tale in its cardboard envelope.

But a lovely American woman called Stephanie made my heart sing with her joyful reaction to her copy, which was duly paid for and posted and arrived on a special birthday.

Here it is then, the website link.

http://www.cosiandveyn.co.uk

And don’t worry, soon the next tales will start appearing so you can forget all about this post!

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The other end of the First World War. ‘Tipperary mbali sana, sana’

Imagine a human chain of sixteen and a half thousand people, mostly barefoot and carrying heavy burdens – sixty pounds, twenty seven kilos – on their heads. Some pulling carts.

Walking up to fifteen miles a day under the searing glare of the tropical sun, or in the sweltering heat of the rainy seasons. Feet grabbed by black, grasping cotton mud or floundering in soft, hindering sand.

Clambering rocky escarpments, pushing through jungles, wading rivers. Transporting essential supplies to a thousand other people, hundreds of miles away.

Those 16,500 humans were what it took to transport just one day’s supply of food to the British front line in ‘East Africa’ in 1916.

Fourteen thousand of those men and women – carriers, porters or ‘tenga tenga’ – carried food for the column itself. Only two and half thousand bore supplies for the troops.

Many of these people died, serving a cause which was not theirs. Sometimes willingly, for decent pay, sometime the reverse. Falling as much to disease as injury, like the troops they supplied.

They were not the only ones. This was just one chain in a very long series of chains on the British side. The Germans depended on 350,000 human carriers.*

And yet these people are largely un-commemorated. As, indeed, is the whole ‘East African’ action of World War I.

I put ‘East Africa’ in inverted commas because my first brush with its legacy came in South Central Africa – Zambia to be precise. There I saw a small – and not very visible – memorial on a roundabout in a small – and not very visited – town.

But this week, on 25 November 2018, that town will be busy. Possibly busier than it has ever been since the end of World War I.

Because many dignitaries, including British High Commissioner, Fergus Cochrane Dyet and General Lord David Richards, of Sierra Leone fame, will converge on that small town, Mbala.

The Great North Road, Zambia’s main route north to Tanzania, runs through Mbala and yet the tarmac peters out as it approaches the border (or did when I was last there, en route to Kalambo Falls).

It is a long, long way from any city, never mind Ireland, and to this day the logistics of visiting are far from easy (especially if you travel from South Luangwa up the escarpment as we did in 2006).

In 1914 Tanzania was German East Africa and Zambia was Northern Rhodesia – and there lies the crux of it. German one side of the border, British the other.

It was Mbala, then called Abercorn, that saw the final surrender, the other end and other ending – of the First World War.

Taken from a website devoted to 1950s & 1960s Northern Rhodesia/Zambia, posted by Amanda Parkyn this view of Abercorn shows the main road stretching up from the left crossing the watercourse fringed by mbala palms – which provided the new name-  & the Tanzanian hills in the distance.

It had widely been assumed that the colonies in East and Southern Africa would not join hostilities, but Colonel Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck (a friend, by-the-by, of Karen Blixen) had other ideas.

German attacks on Abercorn and Fife in Northern Rhodesia and Karonga in Nyasaland (Malawi) made sitting out the war impossible.

Germany at war had visions of extending its colonial rule over Portuguese- and Belgian-claimed territories, to make a vast ‘Mittelafrika.

Map of colonial southern Africa in 1905, from Encyclopedia Britannica online

In German East Africa, von Lettow-Vorbeck, Commander of the Schutztruppe (the Germany colonial army, Kaiserliche Schutztruppe für Deutsch-Ostafrika) already had a force of trained, disciplined troops, askaris, at his disposal.

He also had a network of telegraph and heliograph (signalling with mirrors using sunlight) stations, which enabled him to coordinate his forces and move them around swiftly and effectively.

Northern Rhodesia had no such infrastructure.

It began badly for Britain.  But she had an Empire to draw on – and allies.

The British South Africa Company, BSAC, which administered Northern Rhodesia, was not allowed to raise an army, though it had a police force trained on military lines – with its headquarters in Livingstone, over 700 miles (more than 1000 kilometres) away.

Abercorn was the northernmost town of BSAC-administered territory, a massive expanse of land stretching from South Africa to Tanzania, bordered by Portuguese, German and Belgian colonial territories.

One of the reasons such a vast expanse of territory was handed over to a company to run was to delegate responsibility (and avoid the cost) for developing a transport infrastructure.

For commerce to prosper, for ‘government’ to be imposed and order maintained, railways and roads were a prerequisite.

But commercial priorities proved a weakness in time of war. The railways had gone no further than commerce necessitated. No commercial justification, no railway.

Abercorn was more than 600 miles (1000 kilometres) from the nearest usable railway line (at Broken Hill, now Kabwe, famous for the discovery of ‘Broken Hill’ man).

There were no roads suitable for an army’s mechanical vehicles, whether steam or petrol powered – and no supplies of fuel.

In August 1914, the War Office in London delegated this ‘other end’ of the war, in East Africa, to the India Office, who sent in Indian Expeditionary Force B.

They were joined by the King’s African Rifles, comprising soldiers from across British territories in East Africa, including modern-day Kenya, Uganda and Sudan. Other British colonial forces came from the nations that are now South Africa, Malawi, Nigeria, Ghana, Gambia and Zimbabwe. Troops even came from the West Indies. And of course, Britain itself.

Belgian and Portuguese allies then joined the fray, from the Congo and Mozambique.

The Germans, though a much smaller force, had their highly skilled, disciplined army of askaris, well trained in bush warfare and skilled at guerrilla tactics. Their aim was to keep the enemy on the run and constantly draw in more troops in to hinder the British war effort on the Western Front.

It was a gruelling war.

The territory covered was huge, 750,000 square miles, an area three times the size of the German Reich.  There were some pitched battles, but most of the action was by isolated columns of men, moving at times through elephant grass so tall that, while they could not be seen, they themselves could not see.

It was very different from the trench warfare of the Western Front.

Conditions were atrocious.

Lorry driver W.W. Campbell wrote of conditions in German East Africa:

‘Distressed and depressed beyond measure, we felt that death and ugliness lurked everywhere. It was in the air we breathed, the water we drank, the sun that warmed our bodies; it crawled on the ground, dropped heavily from rain-sodden trees, hung suspended in the humid, reeking atmosphere. Every living thing went in fear of its life, or turned upon another in self-preservation. Human life itself was an embodiment of ignorance and suspicion. It permeated our very souls, turned bright thoughts into dark, and made one long for the fate that he feared.’

[from ‘Forged in the Great War‘ by J-B Gewald, originally cited in Byron Farwell, The Great War in Africa: 1914-1918 p 274]

As well as the human enemy, there was the natural world to contend with, the lions, snakes, elephants, hippos, tsetse flies, mosquitoes.

Disease was rife: not just the debilitating and often fatal malaria, but sleeping sickness, meningitis, smallpox, dysentery, pneumonia – and as the war drew to an end, that devastating Western import, Spanish influenza.

The tsetse flies meant death to pack animals, hence the need for so many humans to take their place.

And their absence took its toll on the civilian population. They were not at home, raising crops tending to animals. The disruption to life across the vast territories affected was immense.

It was as if a vast plague of locusts and disease moved around, ravaging the whole region for the four years of the war. And when the fighting stopped, the angel of death flew in, spreading deadly influenza.

The abandoned fields, the ruined crops, the starving men, women and children. It hardly bears thinking about.

So far from Sarajevo.

So far from Tipperary.

Yes, Tipperary mbali sana, sana – Tipperary, very, very far – was apparently a marching song of the King’s African Rifles. Fighting for a cause they probably could not comprehend (did anyone?) in a war which was not of their making.

And I somehow doubt that any of the native soldiers’ hearts lay in Ireland.

A Zambian woman once exclaimed, when I said I’d been to Mbala, ‘Ah! How can that be? I am Zambian, it is very far away.’

Indeed.

There is so much more to say about this smaller ‘great’ war, about its human costs, about its political implications, about its significance, about its causes, but I’ve already well overrun my usual allotted space.

And so, to that other ending, of that other end of that terrible, ‘Great’ War.

As the last battle ended at Chambeshi Bridge, on 14 November 1918, General von Lettow-Vorbeck received the news that the Armistice had been signed in Europe. And the news he could hardly believe – Germany had been defeated.

Memorial at the site of Chambeshi Bridge. It reads: “On this spot at 7.30 am on Thursday 14th November 1918, General von Lettow-Vorbeck, commanding the German forces in East Africa, heard from Mr Hector Croad, then District Commissioner Kasama, of the signing of the Armistice by the German government, which provided for the unconditional evacuation of all German forces from East Africa”. A second plaque in Bemba ends with the words: “Twapela umuchinshi kuli bonse abashipa abalwile mu nkondo iyi” – we honour all brave soldiers in this war.
Image By Carrol Fleming – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

On 25 November General von Lettow-Vorbeck surrendered to Britain’s General W.F.S. Edwards, at Mbala.

The surrender to the British by General Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck at Abercorn, now Mbala, Northern Rhodesia, now Zambia, as seen by an anonymous African artist. Picture held by the National Museum of Tanzania

My thoughts on 25 November will be with the vast numbers of porters who lie buried, forgotten, their graves unmarked.

At least, in 2018, a few more people, thanks to a few tenacious historians, will remember them – and hope that they might rest in peace.

Zambia Tourism Facebook page’s image of the memorial on a roundabout in present day Mbala

The plaque on Mbala’s memorial



*Statistics taken from Edward Paice’s very readable online article,  ‘How the Great War Razed Africa,’ published by the Africa Research Institute, which contains maps, illustrations, a very good bibliography and more detail than I could include here.

It is impossible to condense such a vast undertaking in such a short post and I am sure I have made mistakes. I can only apologise. Here are some better informed sources which I consulted, along with the above:

An excellent, readable, thought-provoking analysis of how the war was managed and what the war meant for government of the future British Protectorate of Northern Rhodesia:

Forged in the Great War: People, Transport, and Labour, the establishment of Colonial Rule in Zambia 1890-1920 by Jan-Bart Gewald

A good, personal, short introduction:

A Bloody Tale Best Ignored, by Richard Sneyd, for The Centre for Hidden Histories:

A very detailed but concise account of the early stages of the war in East Africa with pictures and sources:

The Soldier’s Burden

This book cropped up again and again (and was well reviewed by novelist William Boyd whose book The Ice Cream Wars was set in the context of this conflict):

Tip and Run: the Untold Tragedy of the Great War in Africa, by Edward Paice

 

Posted in Thinking, or ranting, or both, Zambia | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments