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The Oxford History of the British Empire: Volume III: The Nineteenth Century$
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Andrew Porter

Print publication date: 1999

Print ISBN-13: 9780198205654

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198205654.001.0001

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Trusteeship, Anti-Slavery, and Humanitarianism

Trusteeship, Anti-Slavery, and Humanitarianism

(p.198) 10 Trusteeship, Anti-Slavery, and Humanitarianism
The Oxford History of the British Empire: Volume III: The Nineteenth Century

Andrew Porter

Oxford University Press

Throughout the nineteenth century, territorial conquest, white settlement, commercial growth, economic development, and above all issues of slavery and the slave trade, raised questions about the ethics of economic exchange, the politics of equal rights or racial differences, and the purpose of Imperial power. The two conceptions of ‘trusteeship’ differed substantially. There are implications for the relationship of humanitarian activity and Britain's Imperial experience. Humanitarians' dependence on the Imperial government took many forms. In mid-century, the humanitarian movement became temporarily but essentially the creature of habit. There were signs of changing emphases and new directions in the development of Britain's humanitarian tradition before 1914. Moreover, the ‘trusteeship’ which Morel's campaign supported and the British government finally endorsed was essentially hybrid.

Keywords:   trusteeship, slavery, humanitarianism, Imperial power, economic exchange, ethics, Imperial government, racial differences

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