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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:A Baixa de Cassanje: algodão e revolta
Author:Freudenthal, AidaISNI
Periodical:Revista internacional de estudos Africanos
Geographic terms:Angola
forced labour
Abstract:In the 1950s, forced cultivation of cotton in the Baixa of Cassanje, Angola, swept away African farms and villages. As the annual income of Africans fell, discontent grew and assumed the form of a religious movement which proclaimed the providential coming of Maria and Lumumba who would liberate them from cotton cultivation and the power of the whites. In 1961, before the nationalist uprisings of 4 February and 15 March, a revolt of rural populations in the Baixa of Cassanje took place which is almost completely unknown because it was deliberately hidden and harshly repressed by the colonial authorities. Unpublished sources from hitherto inaccessible Portuguese archives have made possible a chronological reconstruction of events in the Baixa of Cassanje between January and March 1961, besides enabling a deeper understanding of the internal factors which determined this rural movement. While documentary evidence casts light on the alleged links with the Congolese PSA (Parti solidaire africain), this peasant movement seems to have had hardly any relations with the Angolan nationalist movements which started the war of liberation in the same year. The research also calls attention to the use of syncretic symbols to express the anger peasants felt toward the harsh cotton regime that ruled their lives, as well as the importance of endogenous forces of the rebellion that made its leaders most vulnerable to colonial repression. Ann., ref., sum. in English, text in Portuguese. [Journal abstract]