From Publishers Weekly
This exhaustive history of forced labor practices on the Portuguese colonial islands of São Tomé and Principé from 1901-1913 and the failed efforts on the part of the British government and British chocolate companies to force change brings to life the journalists, community leaders, businessmen and politicians whose goal of abolishing slavery was the same, but whose efforts were too often derailed by ego, politics and interpersonal conflict. Satre focuses on Cadbury Bros.-specifically William Cadbury, contrasting his well-intentioned efforts with those of journalist Henry Nevinson, whose book, A Modern Slavery, was the first to paint a vivid picture of the islands' brutal conditions and to stir popular ire. Cadbury Bros. later sued the Standard newspaper for libel, claiming one of the paper's editorials had injured the company's credit and reputation. Satre's title would lead readers to believe that the ensuing trial is the main feature of the book, when, in fact, it takes up two chapters. However, it reinforces Satre's contention that no matter how well-intentioned and philanthropic William Cadbury and the British government seemed, they waited far too long to take action. Photos.
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This is a well-written, marvelously researched, and utterly fascinating study of an episode in the social, political, economic, and even religious history of imperial Britain.”
Thomas C. Kennedy, author of British Quakerism, 18601920: The Transformation of a Religious Community
Lowell Satre has written a fascinating book that addresses a question perennial to modern day commercial economies where complex chains of supply are at the root of production.... Satre's work is invaluable for identifying the context of today's problems, the significance of law, and strategies for mobilization.”
Law and History Review
Satre’s story-telling ability is maintained to the very last page.... The author handles the impressive breadth of government, business, journalistic and private primary sources and evidence in a controlled and balanced way.... Satre deftly exposes the firm in this nuanced social and political history.”
Journal of African History