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Empireworld by Sathnam Sanghera

review – the contradictions of colonialism

A nuanced account of the British empire’s impact on the world that is strikingly alive to the complexities of history
by Nandini Das

Traveller’s Tree / photo Aart G. Broek

In the early 1730s, a new subscription craze transformed Georgian Britain. Every year, for five guineas, “Bartram’s box” would delight plant collectors and gardeners with seeds from among a hundred different North American species. The supply chain had a Pennsylvanian Quaker, John Bartram, at one end and another Quaker, English merchant Peter Collinson, at the other.

The overpriced phlox and rudbeckia we now buy from garden centres in seasonal attempts to brighten up our outdoor spaces, the rhododendrons and magnolias that arrest our attention across the drabbest of streets, were all introduced to England thanks to their initiative. 

To continue reading, turn to the website of the Guardian, January 26, 2024.

Sathnam Sanghera, Empireworld; How Britisch Imperialism has Shaped the Globe. London: Penguin, 2024.

on 28.01.2024 at 9:55
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