A transient presence: black visitors and sojourners in Imperial Germany, 1884-1914

AITKEN, Robbie (2016). A transient presence: black visitors and sojourners in Imperial Germany, 1884-1914. Immigrants and Minorties, 34 (3), 233-255.

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Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.1080/02619288.2016.1202769


The onset of German colonial rule in Africa brought increasing numbers of Black men and women to Germany. Pre-1914 the vast majority of these Africans can best be described as visitors or sojourners and the Black population as a whole was a transient one. This makes recovering their presence in the archival record exceptionally difficult and it is not surprising that the existing historiography almost exclusively focuses on individual biographies of well documented lives. Through utilising a number of newly digitised archival materials, particularly the Hamburg Passenger Lists, this article draws upon a database with information on 1092 individuals from sub-Saharan Africa who spent time in Germany over the period 1884-1914 in order to add considerable bread and depth to our understanding of the Black presence as a whole. It provides increasing empirical detail about the make-up and character of this fluid population - where visitors came from, why they came to Germany, their age on arrival - as well as more accurate detail on the temporal and, to a lesser extent, spatial distribution of visitors.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Humanities Research Centre
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1080/02619288.2016.1202769
Page Range: 233-255
Depositing User: Robbie Aitken
Date Deposited: 28 Apr 2016 15:15
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 07:45
URI: https://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/12125

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