Robert Woodberry on the Social Impact of Protestant Missionaries

Robert Woodberry on the Social Impact of Protestant Missionaries
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to demonstrate the impact that missionaries had in terms of fighting forced labor I I look at French and British I mean French and Belgian Congo which are in Central Africa at the beginning part of the 20th century you get a massive increase in the price of rubber they learn how to vulcanize rubber and then they're using rubber for bicycles and hoses and cars other things like that as they come online so the price of rubber because up very very steeply it takes a long time to plant rubber trees and have to be able to harvest them so they begin to try and harvest wild rubber from the jungle in the Congo Basin both the Belgians and the French set up monopolies trade companies who used forced labour not only to make people move goods but also to collect rubber so various villages were imposed quotas of rubber that they had to produce each year if they didn't produce the required rubber they would send in proxy armies that would burn down the village and burn down the crops and try and kill as many people as they could this was done at a distance and it sort of over to sort of monitor the the armies to make sure that they were doing what they doing sometimes they would have them collect either the hands or the penises of people that they killed to demonstrate that they had killed them sometimes the soldiers in order to save bullets which were valuable for other things would just dismember people who were alive and so you have both through killing but mostly through disease and starvation by people fleeing into the into the jungle you have close to 50 percent population decline in 20 years in Belgian and French Congo so a terrible atrocious situation in the Belgian Congo where you had Protestant missionaries who were there they photographed these incidents and smuggled them out and also smuggled out letters and they would go around Europe and North America showing magic lantern shows of these atrocities and mobilizing support against it you get the largest movement since abolitionism international movement which force the Belgian Congo to take over the Belgian Congo from King Leopold and opposed some at least basic reforms although they continued to use forced labor until World War two in French Congo you get absolutely nothing you get no protest whatsoever I except for one article in a you know in a in a Marxist newspaper in France but no social movement this is exactly the same things are happening exactly at the same time and I basically show you are out you had Protestant missionaries in the Belgian Congo you didn't have Protestant missionaries in the French Congo and that's the difference in terms of what it gets exposed or not so some of the pictures are really awful I mean if you see them they they still make me mad because they're really there I mean you cannot look at them and not be horrified at some of the things that human beings did to other people but they had the same effect then as they did they have no missionaries were also crucial to the spread of civil society they organized new crew develop new types of organizations in order to spread missions but those were also used then for abolitionism and temperance and you can see the crucial link in terms of these nonconformist religious organizations in terms of where you get the spread of voluntary organizations earliest in places like England the US and Calcutta India roughly the same times earlier than other places in Eastern East Asia or in continental Europe which had quite high levels of development just for time I won't go into all the details of that but you can ask me if you'd like and then then they were crucial to spreading them around the world so wherever Provident missionaries went they fought what they considered abuses in local society so foot-binding child marriage supp TV various things like that so sati was when a male hindu died the wife was supposed to burn herself alive on his funeral pyre which missionaries thought was bad so they organized a petition a campaign to try and ban it which was popular by some people in very unpopular by others but they used they introduced these camp techniques of like petitions and like newspapers and traveling speakers and weekly and other things like that where they're trying to organize opposition to saathi some people copy them to fight for against sati and some of people copy them to fight against sati so Ram Mohan Roy who was someone who helped them translate the Bible into Bengali form Brahmo Samaj to fight sati but he'll so at that point doesn't want people to convert to Protestantism other people like form Cal got Osama Sabha to keep sup T but they're using the same organizational tactics which then and you can show this all around the world in terms of how you get the spread of these various forms of organization around the world which scholars like an higher and Salman's say there was no presidents for precedent for internationally and the cell James says a similar institutional form may not exist in economies that do not have a colonial missionary background so they were crucial in terms of spreading this organizational form

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