KLG Discussion

KLG Discussion - Study Questions for King Leopold's Ghost 1...

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Study Questions for King Leopold’s Ghost 1 1. According to Adam Hochschild, what was the history of the region known to us as the Congo prior to 1850? Hochschild describes the history of the Kongo region as being an area of surprising social and political sophistication. The government was organized into clans with local leaders; these leaders were, in turn, led by a king from the capital city, Mbanzo Kongo. An effective judicial system resplendent with courts and trials. There was a social division of labor and classes, and slavery existed even before European influence. After the Atlantic trade started, slave traders began to decimate the population of the Kongo even as the culture progressed. The Kongolese kings pushed the modernization of society utilizing Western products. Seemingly torn between the want for modern goods and the desire to stop the slave trade, the country was at conflict with it’s own desires. The people were rather superstitious, initially believing the white men to be their ancestral forefathers and cannibals. In the late 18 th and early 19 th century the Kongo became a source of interest for European powers, and nations began to explore it, hoping to find wealth. 2. What was King Leopold like? What did he want? King Leopold of Belgium was an intelligent, crafty man. With a keen eye for business, reading other people, and a great deal of power as king, Leopold was a master craftsman at manipulating others to meet his own goals. Even so close as to potentially ruin otherwise good relations. Leopold was a proud man who dreamed of having a colony under his own power, for a colony would put Belgium on the map for having a colony that provides a constant stream of goods. 3. Who was Henry Morgan Stanley, Who was Livingstone? What did they do? Do they represent the same thing or different ideas? Henry Morgan Stanley was born John Rowlands, a bastard son of a teenage girl in England. Ashamed and disappointed with his childhood, Rowlands moved to America where he took on his name H.M.S. from a wealthy plantation owner with whom he was worked and was close too. A fantastic spinner of tales, Stanley worked as an explorer in
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KLG Discussion - Study Questions for King Leopold's Ghost 1...

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