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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Ideologies of Royal Power: The Reconstruction of Political Authority on the Slave Coast, 1680-1750
Author:Law, Robin R.ISNI
Year:1987
Periodical:Africa: Journal of the International African Institute
Volume:57
Issue:3
Pages:321-344
Language:English
Geographic terms:West Africa
Benin
Subjects:history
Dahomey polity
1600-1699
1700-1799
History and Exploration
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
External links:https://www.jstor.org/stable/1160717
http://gateway.proquest.com/openurl?url_ver=Z39.88-2004&res_dat=xri:pao:&rft_dat=xri:pao:article:4011-1987-057-00-000017
Abstract:In the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries the 'Slave Coast' of West Africa suffered increasingly severe problems of disorder, which seem to have been in large part a consequence of the impact of the Atlantic slave trade. This process of political disruption culminated in the 1720s in the conquest of most of the area by the kingdom of Fon, or Dahomey. The present article explores the ideological dimension of the process, seeking to throw light on both the collapse of political authority in the earlier kingdoms and the success of Dahomey in reconstructing political order by an examination of contemporary ideas relating to the legitimacy of political authority. It argues that, for all the innovative features of its political organization, the kingdom of Dahomey derived its legitimacy from the appropriation and manipulation of existing ideological traditions rather than from the formulation of explicitly revolutionary principles. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. in French.
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