© 2018

Whitehall and the Black Republic

A Study of Colonial Britain's Attitude Towards Liberia, 1914–1939


Part of the African Histories and Modernities book series (AHAM)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxv
  2. Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri
    Pages 1-32
  3. Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri
    Pages 73-101
  4. Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri
    Pages 103-128
  5. Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri
    Pages 129-169
  6. Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri
    Pages 171-198
  7. Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri
    Pages 199-231
  8. Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri
    Pages 233-251
  9. Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri
    Pages C1-C1
  10. Back Matter
    Pages 253-279

About this book


This book examines the history of the relationship between Liberia and Britain—the world’s first black republic, founded by former slaves, and the world’s strongest colonial power. Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri excavates a wealth of archival sources to reconstruct a turbulent narrative spanning key points in twentieth-century Liberian history. Pal Chaudhuri argues that the Black Republic was never a serious item on the British agenda for constructive action in West Africa, as seen in the repeated failure of their concessionaires, their interference with the Firestone rubber project, and their efforts to have Liberia expelled from the League of Nations. Untangling the conflicts and contradictions between Britain’s colonial interests and humanitarian ideals, Whitehall and the Black Republic is a long overdue contribution to the history of Liberia and the British Empire.


Liberian history British policy in Liberia British colonial imperialism Anglophone Africa West African history Anglo-German Rivalry in West Africa First World War Firestone Company the rubber industry in Liberia Liberian Government Anglo-Liberian relations the League of Nations C.D.B. King E.J. Barclay

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.KolkataIndia

About the authors

Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri is the author of numerous articles on African history and Liberian history. He is a former professor and history department chair at the University of Liberia and Cuttington University, Liberia, as well as the John Cadbury Fellow at the Centre of West African Studies, University of Birmingham, England. 

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Whitehall and the Black Republic
  • Book Subtitle A Study of Colonial Britain's Attitude Towards Liberia, 1914–1939
  • Authors Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri
  • Series Title African Histories and Modernities
  • Series Abbreviated Title African Histories and Modernities
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2018
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, Cham
  • eBook Packages History History (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-319-70475-3
  • Softcover ISBN 978-3-030-09961-9
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-319-70476-0
  • Series ISSN 2634-5773
  • Series E-ISSN 2634-5781
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XXV, 279
  • Number of Illustrations 2 b/w illustrations, 1 illustrations in colour
  • Topics African History
    Imperialism and Colonialism
    History of Britain and Ireland
  • Buy this book on publisher's site


“Few scholars have published such meticulous research on Liberian history in book form. Jyotirmoy Pal Chaudhuri has crafted a serious account of a turbulent period when internal demands for incorporation were enmeshed in the politics and diplomacy of colonial imperialism, bringing to the fore a critical mass of modern-educated indigenous Liberians who were conscious of their marginalization and prepared to assert their rights within the ambit of the fledgling Liberian state. A singular contribution to the history of Liberia.” (Elwood Dunn, Alfred Walter Negley Professor Emeritus of Political Science, The University of the South, USA)