LITERARY NOTES

1903 African Affairs  
Affairs of West Africa, by Edmund D. Morel (" E. D. M.") Demy 8vo, cloth, with 32 plates and maps, 12s. (London : William Heinemann, 21, Bedford Street, W.C.) MR. MOREL claims to approach the subject of West Africa as an independent critic and he certainly deals with his subject with some originality. Much valuable information has been collected and embodied in this work and the book on the whole is interesting reading. The attempt to compile and tabulate statistics of the trade of Kano is a
more » ... ade of Kano is a novelty amongst recent works upon West Africa. The historical portion of the book is of great interest, and raises points which will be keenly discussed as to the origin and relationships of Sudan peoples. By a close study of the tales of travellers, and all available literature on West Africa, Mr. Morel has acquired considerable local colour, and his book shows throughout the deep interest with which he approaches African problems. The very number of these problems constitutes the difficulty of framing a complete or perfectly coherent book on West Africa. Mr. Morel tacitly admits the difficulty, and meets it by giving a number of more or less detached studies, which he does not attempt to link together in any very systematic way. He takes up as they come questions of trade, history, origins, administration, taxation, native life, and so on. On many of these most controverted subjects opinions must differ. For example, it may be questioned if he is correct in stating that the West African trader provides the revenues of the Colonies, although it might possibly be urged that the merchant in trading for his own profit incidentally acts as a collector of revenue.
doi:10.1093/oxfordjournals.afraf.a093197 fatcat:fgou3pt7ujc7tbagcmmsepavxm