The Black Man loves the display of power, but fails to realize its responsibility says Lugard 1926


By A.J. Adams

I have been thinking about the it all, by that I mean the plight of an African man. My quest for the foundation of the today’s African led me to this discovery. Pause for a moment after this introduction and afterwards carefully read through the Words of Lord Lugard the former British Governor General of Nigeria. His words on an African man.

Lord Lugard,the former governor-general of Nigeria, in 1926, wrote his unfiltered thought about Africa From his book, The Dual Mandates, come these excerpts:

“In character and temperament, the typical African of this race-type is a happy, thriftless, excitable person, lacking in self-control, discipline, and foresight. Naturally courageous, and naturally courteous and polite, full of personal vanity, with little sense of veracity, fond of music and loving weapons as an oriental loves jewellery.

His thoughts are concentrated on the events and feelings of the moment, and he suffers little from the apprehension for the future or grief for the past. His mind is far nearer to the animal world than that of the European or Asiatic, and exhibits something of the animals’ placidity and want of desire to rise beyond the state he has reached.

“Through the ages, the African appears to have evolved no organised religious creed, and though some tribes appear to believe in a deity, the religious sense seldom rises above pantheistic animalism and seems more often to take the form of a vague dread of the supernatural.

He lacks the power of organisation, and is conspicuously deficient in the management and control alike of men or business. He loves the display of power, but fails to realize its responsibility – he will work hard with a less incentive than most races. He has the courage of the fighting animal, an instinct rather than a moral virtue.

In brief, the virtues and defects of his race -type are those of attractive children, whose confidence when it is won is given ungrudgingly as to an older and wiser superior and without envy. Perhaps, the two traits which have impressed me as those most characteristic of the African native are his lack of apprehension and his lack of ability to visualize the future”

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