A Saro Community in the Niger Delta, 1912-1984: The by Mac Dixon-Fyle

By Mac Dixon-Fyle

Via interpreting the historical past of the Potts-Johnsons (an immigrant Saro (emigrant Krio humans) kinfolk from Sierra Leone) dwelling within the Port Harcourt zone of Nigeria from approximately 1912-1984, this learn studies the migration heritage of the Saro within the Niger River delta. The paintings additionally touches on many vital matters to contemplate while getting to know African background: intra-African migration, prestige of and dominance by means of elites (both indigenous and immigrant), women's roles in social relationships, and the renovation of family members and cultural values less than severe socio-economic pressure.

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Additional info for A Saro Community in the Niger Delta, 1912-1984: The Potts-Johnsons of Port Harcourt and Their Heirs (Rochester Studies in African History and the Diaspora)

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To what extent did a prolonged sojourn in the delta modify the Krio values and beliefs in the Saro? How did the Saro respond to acts of European racism in colonial Port Harcourt? How were the anti-colonial activities of the Saro received by a British presence that had come to regard these immigrants as vectors of European values and sub-imperial subalterns of the realm? The decision by the British to establish Port Harcourt in 1912 as a port for the export of coal from the neighboring Udi fields, and the handling of European manufactured goods, marks the beginnings of emigration into the fledgling township.

I also thank Andrew Roberts for his advice and support with accomodation and research arrangements in London in the spring of 1996. I owe a special debt of gratitude to President Robert Bottoms of DePauw University (whose vision of diversity resuscitated the position I now hold on this faculty) for his encouragement of this project, and for the financial support which made it possible for final archival review to be undertaken in London in 1996. Funds from DePauw's faculty development committee also supported this sabbatical stint in London, and I thank my colleagues for their trust and confidence.

What challenges would he face, and to what survival strategies would his community resort? Perhaps, even more significantly, we need to establish how his experience approximates that of such minority groups as the Dahomians of the Ivory Coast and Niger, the Ghanaians of Nigeria, the Lebanese of West Africa, and the Asians of Uganda. Minority communities under threat from indifferent host societies have been known to adopt a range of initiatives to improve their situation. These could range from inter-marriage with their hosts and peripheral political involvement, to substantial but discrete gift-giving to those in authority, as well as the varied pursuit of social goodwill within the ranks of the indigenous society, often the prime source of the immigrant's unease.

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