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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Looking through a Glass of Beer: Alcohol in the Cultural Spaces of Colonial Douala, 1910-1945
Author:Schler, LynnISNI
Periodical:International Journal of African Historical Studies
Geographic term:Cameroon
alcoholic beverages
History and Exploration
Health and Nutrition
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/3097616
Abstract:The pivotal role played by alcohol in the European colonization of Africa has been addressed by many scholars. In colonial Cameroon, efforts to control the distribution and consumption of alcohol were linked to larger efforts of the German and French regimes to shape social, economic and political processes in the colony. During the interwar years, particularly in Douala, the colonial struggle to limit the production, sale and consumption of alcohol among Africans underscored the struggle carried out by the administration to secure and maintain power. But the history of alcohol distribution and consumption in Douala did not follow the same trajectory in all areas of the city. In the quarters of Joss and Akwa, where spaces were shared by Europeans and the local elite, the colonial administration made its most stringent efforts to control access to alcohol. By contrast, the immigrant quarter of New Bell was handled as an 'African space', and the consumption of alcohol was treated far differently in this quarter. The history of drinking in New Bell reveals that residents capitalized on its colonial designation as an African space and established pockets of autonomy from colonial rule. Notes, ref. [ASC Leiden abstract]