Commentary on the case of Mpundo Akwa (1906)

The case of Mpundu Akwa provoked considerable debate and concern among politicians in the Reichstag and administrators behind the scenes, but it also left its traces in the public sphere. A particularly evocative example appeared in the Leipziger Neueste Nachrichten in November 1906. In this commentary, the author tries to convince readers that Germans were empowering Akwa by paying attention to his case, with potentially devastating consequences for order in the colonies. The closing reference to Cameroonians dancing a cakewalk if they were ever to learn about Akwa’s success shows how the colonial imagination was not limited to the colonies themselves but was broad enough to take in transatlantic trends.

Jeff Bowersox

Source: Leipziger Neueste Nachrichten (Nov. 1906) (details to be found in Kusser in Langbehn, S. 87)

Commentary on the case of Mpundo Akwa (1906) by Jeff Bowersox is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
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