1818 Caricature of Africans

This 1818 print purports to show a European explorer declining the offer of a daughter's hand in marriage from an African tribal leader. The increasing number of European explorer's accounts of their travels throughout the interior of West Africa delighted and enthralled many back in Europe but also led to increased stereotyping and caricaturing of what was regarded as primitive and non-Christian societies. The early 1800s saw the height of caricaturing in all political discourse in England at least and so this harsh looking image would have been regarded as par for the course in its era.



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by Stephen Luscombe