This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Importance Of Human Rights And Moral Care Throught King Leopold's Ghost By Adam Hochschild

1358 words - 6 pages

When reading the book entitled King Leopold’s Ghost by author Adam Hochschild, there are many themes to which the book plays an interest to. King Leopold II of Belgium had an interest in the greed that colonialism brought the prospect for power and fame, and lastly the desire for slavery through the means of racism. In doing so, the book also explains the necessity for human rights and a type of moral care for not only Africa but the world as a whole.
Now what must be said is that King Leopold was not the first European ruler to carve out his own area in Africa, Congo in particular for King Leopold II, for either monetary reasons or power-hungry control. The British and French had been there long ago, doing just that. The distinction though, with King Leopold II, is that he was a ruthless leader who desired the profits that could be made off of slave labor in Africa. His intentions were true at first, maybe. He called for a way to help civilize the Africans and open up free-trade for the world and for Africa. In addition, he also called for a type of “paternal” care for the people of Africa, regardless of race. It was seen as a philanthropic endeavor to help the people of the Congo to civilize by the use of legitimate trade. So we first see that the aspirations of this King of Belgium, on paper, where just and true. The story would become quite different as the ruthless king would start to harvest the precious materials of palm oil and rubber from Africa’s earth.
King Leopold was not alone in this venture as well. He employed the services and help of Morgan Stanley to travel to Africa and sign treaties with various kings and rulers of Africa to gain their territory. The book does a good job of telling the lust that King Leopold II had for Africa through one of his letters. This, coupled with lobbyists in both Europe and America, gained him favorable consideration for his cause in Africa. For he was seen as a “civilizer” of the Congo valley and that he would be a benefactor to the people of the Congo was considered.
There is also this sense of racism that pervaded King Leopold in his dealings with the Africans. He also used it as a justification to use the Africans for slave labor. He felt they were lazy for the fact that they didn’t want to be under forced-labor for European interests. King Leopold thought it was ok though because he was doing the noble cause of protecting the native people of the Congo from the Arab slave traders who were still operating in Africa. This seems almost as if King Leopold was a mob boss who would hit up different businesses, in this instance a country, and tell them to pay for protection.
Although, they weren’t paying with money but their blood, sweat, and tears. King Leopold II made a substantial amount of wealth off of the use of ivory being sold in European markets. This was due to the use of ivory for furniture, billiards, piano keys, etc… The collection of ivory was important for the state for Belgium,...

Find Another Essay On The Importance of Human Rights and Moral Care throught King Leopold's Ghost by Adam Hochschild

King Leopold’s Ghost by Adam Hoschild

1546 words - 7 pages In King Leopold’s Ghost, Hoschild shares with his readers the unfamiliar story of King Leopold of Belgium’s exploitation of the Congo and the horrible crimes committed against humanity for economical and political gain. The author’s goal in this book was to bring awareness to what happened at this moment in history. Hoschild shows us that a lot of history as we know it is biased and Eurocentric. Many times history is authored or monitored by

The Importance of Human Rights Education

1759 words - 7 pages In developing countries, communication can be used as a vehicle for promoting justice and human rights. In today’s pluralistic society, development is very important for countries to be able to vie at an international level. To accurately comprehend and appreciate human rights, the importance between Human Rights Education (HRE) and the aim of achieving human development has to be recognized. “Education is the most effective tool for

Investigate the increasing importance of human rights after World War II in both international and Australian law

1153 words - 5 pages , human rights have gained mounting significance over years to protect the vulnerable such as POWs, women, children, refugees and Aborigines.The successive international documents after Declaration are testament to growing importance of human rights as member's ratify and non-members are circumscribed by international customary law which develops in accordance with accepted state practice e.g. non-discrimination and applies to all nations. The UN

Differences between: Legal, Moral and Customary Rights Details on various NGO's that protect and define human rights

1570 words - 6 pages 1. Distinguish betweena) Legal, Moral and Customary Rights.A legal right is one that is enforceable by law. Any citizen and can discover these rights. They can validly be argued in court and generally take preference to other rights.Moral rights are those that particular groups believe are right and just. They are generally derived from religion and reflect the values and attitudes of the group that holds them. Usually the moral rights held by

The True Nature of King Leopold's Congo

3894 words - 16 pages apotheosis of militia leaders such as Mobutu, and the continuation of slave-culture (Hochschild, 318). Works Cited Hochschild, Adam. King Leopold's ghost: a story of greed, terror, and heroism in Colonial Africa. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1998. Print.

The Ghost of King Hamlet

883 words - 4 pages In the play Hamlet, the deceased King Hamlet comes back as a ghost to tell his son the truth about the events surrounding his death. He then proceeds to ask Hamlet to get revenge for his death. In Hamlet, the king is a character who appears briefly throughout the play; however, his character serves to further the action and theme of the play and the development of his son's character. The King serves to further the plays actions by asking

The Importance of the Ghost in Hamlet

1568 words - 6 pages . Semper's rebuttal warned that the tradition of critical commentary supported a Purgatorial spirit as best articulated by Wilson's beliefs.(7) Robert West argued in "King Hamlet's Ambiguous Ghost," published four years later, that the ghost "...leaves us where all living men must stand in relation to that country: weighted with its awe and terror and its uncertainties buffeted by conflicting theories..."(8) Harry Levine likewise endorsed the play as

Shakespeare's Hamlet - The Importance of the Ghost

2858 words - 11 pages in the afterlife (West 110), reveals to the protagonist the extent of the evil within Elsinore, “the human truth” (Abrams 467). The Ghost says that King Hamlet I was murdered by Claudius, who had a relationship with Gertrude prior to the murder; the ghost requests a “restorative” revenge (Gooch 1) by Hamlet: “Revenge his foul and most unnatural murder.”   Ay, that incestuous, that adulterate beast,      With witchcraft of his wit

Importance of the Ghost in Shakespeare's Hamlet

1202 words - 5 pages The Importance of the Ghost in Hamlet            The stage presence of a ghost would have been familiar to an Elizabethan audience and so the appearance of the Ghost in 'Hamlet' carries some messages which are general - almost as though the ghost was a familiar symbol which evoked certain thoughts merely by being present. The Ghost in 'Hamlet' has a more specific role than that given to ghosts in general, however; it has a crucial part to

The Importance of Moral Values

1165 words - 5 pages Marissa is twenty-four years old, engaged, and a preschool teacher at a learning center. She always had thought of being a teacher but considered other jobs as well. Marissa believes in the moral value that every individual should be treated with respect and love. She also believes in the moral value of a team or group effort. Jenny is fifty-three years old, single and never married, and a telemarketer by day and a deli worker at night. Jenny’s

The Importance Of Moral Values

619 words - 3 pages What is the importance of moral values or life long lessons to a young adolescent? The majority of our youth in America know very little about this question. The behavior of children in this society proves that my question is hardly even a subject of importance. Today, the violence and crimes in this nation mostly occur when a troubled teen or a fragile child cannot handle the pressure and stress of reality. The influential factor of violence

Similar Essays

Analysis And Commentary Of Adam Hochschild´S King Leopold's Ghost

904 words - 4 pages African history, the Rubber Terror, and the Scramble for Africa was shaky at best. Upon its conclusion, my vision of world history, specifically the effects of imperialism has been greatly broadened. I have found this expose one of the most compelling works of the century and would gladly recommend it for any person interested in the truth of the world’s forgotten past. Works Cited Notes 1 Hochschild, Adam. King Leopold's Ghost: a

King Leopold's Ghost Essay

1831 words - 7 pages that he was. He joined this society in order to keep people thinking that he was against the idea of slavery. Leopold created such an illusion of anti-slavery that he was elected honorary president of the society. King Leopold's men went over to the Congo with weapons, steamboats and medical knowledge, which was important in a disease ridden land. They were outnumbered by the African people, but they were more powerful. Leopold's men were

The Absence Of Morality In King Leopold's Ghost And In The Congo Today

1301 words - 5 pages the name Andre Kasongo Ilunga for trade minister. The problem, government officials later acknowledged, was that there was no such man." Here we see a government leader pulled a dirty trick to remain in power over the Congo, much like the dirty tricks pulled by the Belgians to maintain power over the tribes in the Congo when they were colonizing the land.We see through Adam Hoschild's book, King Leopold's Ghost, and Joseph Gettelman's article

King Leopold's Ghost: Greed, Terror, And Heroism In Colonial Africa

1084 words - 4 pages The historical book King Leopold's Ghost written by Adam Hochschild is well-known for depicting the horrific atrocities conducted by King Leopold II. He enslaved the Congolese in order to import rubber, ivory, and other valuable goods. The slaves were abused or killed, while others died of foreign diseases. While the Congolese population plummeted, King Leopold's fortune increased incredibly. During his reign, millions of Congolese