Colonial style and colonial legacies: Trade patterns in British and French Africa

Academic Article


  • Despite the central role afforded colonialism as a cause of underdevelopment in Africa, there have been few efforts to systematically assess its legacy in a comparative fashion. This study seeks to examine a key facet of colonialism - trade relations - and assess the extent to which patterns of colonial trade domination remained intact after the fall of the colonial empires. Moreover, we will assess the extent that such neocolonialism varies across former British and French colonies. Though colonialism had the common goal of resource extraction, the means of overseeing this process varied. Britain and France had distinctive colonial "styles" that encompassed both political and economic facets of their administrations. It is our contention that these different administrative styles created different colonial legacies. By analyzing the trading patterns of British and French colonies from 1938 to 1985, we will examine two issues: whether or not neocolonialism exists with regards to trade dependency, and the extent that this colonial legacy varies across former British and French colonies.
  • Published In

    Author List

  • Athow B; Blanton RG
  • Start Page

  • 219
  • End Page

  • 241
  • Volume

  • 19
  • Issue

  • 2