“Empire, War & Cricket” – how the ultimate symbol of British Imperialism took root in SA

Amid the debate on statues and colonial symbols, academic, Dr Dean Allen, has published a book on Britain’s pride and one of the ultimate products of imperialism, cricket.

In Empire, War and Cricket in South Africa, Dean describes how a young work-class Scotsman, James Logan, rose to become a rich businessman in the late 1800s, establishing the historic town of Matjiesfontein in the Karoo, and bringing the game of cricket to the colonies, amid the second Boer War.

Logan was also good friends with the controversial colonialist, Cecil John Rhodes.

The book is an intricate and thorough look at a tumultuous time in South Africa’s history and how sport, politics, and money are inextricably intertwined. It also includes beautiful and unique photographs of Logan.

I spoke to Dean Allen about how world cricket is a direct product of British colonialism, and asked him about his thoughts on the #RhodesMustFall campaign.

Empire, War & Cricket in SA  is published by Zebra Press.
Interview first heard on PowerWeek with Jeremy Maggs on PowerFm 98.7.

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