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Philatelic Nationalism

  • Harcourt Fuller
Chapter
Part of the African Histories and Modernities book series (AHAM)

Abstract

African nationalists employed postal iconographies to legitimize their rule, something that they had learnt from the departing European imperial powers. British colonial stamps typically featured the head of the reigning monarch overlooking a scenery that represented the colonial territory and people. After the United Kingdom invented the world’s first modern postage stamp in 1840 (commonly referred to as the Penny Black), the Universal Postal Union had agreed that England and no other country could use the bust of the British monarch to represent the nation on postage stamps. It was the British who therefore pioneered the tradition of depicting the reigning monarch of a country on postage stamps. The Colonial Office extended this policy to include the colonies of the empire.1

Keywords

Prime Minister National Unity Gold Coast Postage Stamp Personality Cult 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.
    Agbenyega Adedze, “Commemorating the Chief: The Politics of Postage Stamps in West Africa.” African Arts 37, no. 2 (2004): 96Google Scholar
  2. David Scott, European Stamp Design: A Semiotic Approach to Designing Messages (London: Academy Editions, 1995), 17Google Scholar
  3. Keith Jeffery, “Crown, Communication and the Colonial Post: Stamps, the Monarchy and the British Empire,” Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History 34, no. 1 (March 2006): 45–70.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 2.
    Merrick Posnansky, “Propaganda for Millions: Images from Africa,” African Arts 37, no. 2 (2004): 53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Natalie Yowles, Modern Art and Artists in Ghana: A Cultural Development (PhD diss., University of Legon, Ghana, 1981), 44–45, quoted in Janet B. Hess, Art and Architecture in Postcolonial Africa (Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company, Inc., 2006), 28.Google Scholar
  6. 8.
    Kofi Antubam, Ghana’s Heritage of Culture (Leipzig: Koehler & Amelang, 1963), 11.Google Scholar
  7. 45.
    See Richard Rathbone, “Kwame Nkrumah and the Chiefs: The Fate of ‘Natural Rulers’ under Nationalist Governments,” Transactions of the Royal Historical Society, Sixth Series 10 (2000): 45–63CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Jean M. Allman, The Quills of the Porcupine: Ashanti Nationalism in an Emergent Ghana (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1993).Google Scholar

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© Harcourt Fuller 2014

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  • Harcourt Fuller

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