Part 7: All About The Empire -- But not a single Star Wars reference

Sundays With The Christianists: The Sun Never Sets On This ‘World History’ Textbook For Home-Schoolers

Colonial Jesus Says "Lie Back and Think Of England"Huzzah! We’ve reached the Victorian Era in our 10th-grade World History textbook, World History and Cultures In Christian Perspective. Funny how so much of the best world history in this book just happens to be British history, isn’t it? We’ll assume this is simple Anglophilia on the part of the editors, with no theological implications, but who knows! Last week we covered the happy-go-lucky job creators of the Industrial Revolution, and this week, it’s on to other notable achievements of Victorian England, such as Victoria herself, who was the Bestest Monarch Evar, and Imperialism, which brought the blessings of civilzation and the Gospel to undeserving savages around the world.

Imminent Victorians: Best. Era. Ever.

World History goes through some wild swings in tone, from sneering disgust at the “atheists” behind the French Revolution to peeved defenses of the decent, unfairly-demonized robber barons of the industrial age. The editors have a mad crush on Queen Victoria that seems beyond ideology; we suspect the following passage was written with a raging stiffy:

It is said that [Victoria] once declared, “I will be good.” When Victoria was 18 years old, William IV died and the responsibilities of the crown fell to her. Victoria would become the longest-ruling monarch in English history; throughout the 64 years of her reign she kept her childhood resolution to “be good,” changing the people’s view of the monarchy from one of disdain to one of respect and pride….Under the wise leadership of Queen Victoria (ruled 1837 – 1901), Great Britain reached the height of its glory and became the leading country of the world (p. 359).

Lurking behind this tumescent prose, of course, is a love of raw geopolitical power, Christianist self-congratulation, and a little something else, as we see in the following little just-so stories, presented as actual events:

Sponsored Video

Victoria spoke for the nation in her reply to a visiting African prince who asked her the secret of England’s success. Victoria did not take him to see the glittering crown jewels, or to observe the great industrial cities at work, or to hear the brilliant orators who debated in Parliament. Instead, she presented the prince with a Bible, and said, “Here is the secret of England’s greatness.” A prince from India also recognized this truth. “Where did the English-speaking people get all their intelligence, and energy, and cleverness, and power?” he asked. “It is their Bible that gives it to them. And now they bring it to us and say, ‘This is what raised us. Take it and raise yourselves’” (pp. 360-61).

The Secret of England’s Greatness by Thomas Jones BarkerO, how grateful these unnamed dusky-hued nobles are! They don’t mind being colonized one bit! Both stories have enough holes to fill the Albert Hall: the “African prince” yarn is wholly mythical, although it made for a nice 1865 propaganda painting. Similarly, the story of the “Indian prince” comes from an 1880 edition of The Missionary Herald, so you know that it’s perfectly accurate. (And now we know — for the sake of mythological accuracy, they really should start stocking Bibles at Victoria’s Secret).

Why, Yes, There Are Workhouses. And They’re AWESOME!

And despite the impression that you may have gotten from that malcontent Charles Dickens, Victorian Christians were just the kindest, warmest, most wonderful human beings you’ve ever known in your life:

The world has probably never seen such selfless charity as burst forth in the 19th century in the wake of England’s Wesleyan revival and the subsequent preaching of the gospel during the Victorian Age. Never before in history had so many people done so much for others. The Victorians’ acts of benevolence were freely performed, compelled by the inner sense of duty and the love for mankind that come from obedience to Scriptural truth.

We learn about founders of orphanages and crusading reformers who “eased the difficult conditions in the factories and lowered the number of working hours to 10 per day” and prohibitied children from working in coal mines. And yet for some reason, the textbook doesn’t ever quite explain just why such awful conditions came about in the first place. We bet it was Papists. In a passage on the founder of the Salvation Army, William Booth, we do get one possible explanation:

Believing that the main problem of London’s poor was not their destitute environment but rather their sinful hearts, Booth dedicated his life to winning the indigent to Christ and helping them with their physical needs (p. 365).

The sinful-hearted poor no doubt loved having to take a bucket of preaching with their cups of gruel. We also learn that the Victorians had a model for education that the authors strongly imply should be adopted right away in modrn-day America:

Many 19th-century Christians helped the cause of Britain’s poor by providing them with an education. In fact, until the 20th century, most of Britain’s schools were run by Christian organizations. Christians aided popular education through the founding of Sunday schools, “ragged schools” (schools for poor children), and monitorial schools, which compensated for the lack of qualified teachers by training older children to help teach the younger children. In 1870, the British government opened tax-supported public schools, but at the turn of the century approximately 3/4 of British schools were still privately administered, and all schools were required to teach religion p. 365).

We thought some of Newt Gingrich’s ideas for school reform sounded familiar. Why have we gotten away from this obviously golden age?

Into The Heart of Darkness…with Bibles!

You will be thoroughly surprised to learn that the expansion of British hegemony across the globe was pretty much the nicest thing that could have happened to those benighted places :

The empire was a great benefit to Britain, and Britain was in many ways a great benefit to the lands in her dominion. While the colonies gave Britain wealth and power, Britain shared with the colonies her traditions of Christianity, technology, representative government, and reform. British colonial rule also established law and order throughout the realm and suspended much of the war and bloodshed that had raged between the various tribes and religious factions in Africa and Asia. In the process, the British effected great improvements in the livelihood of the native populations, such as better agriculture, education, hospitals, and industry (p. 367).

Also, hardly any massacres, and any exploitation was made up for by all the good stuff. For instance, in India, the British

usually tried to respect the religious customs and traditions of India. Sometimes, however, a custom was so barbaric that it had to be stopped. Such horrific practices included the suttee (forcing widows to hurl themselves upon their husbands’ funeral pyres) and human sacrifice. Such cruelty shocked the British, and rightly so. The British ended such practices while preserving most traditions. The British also introduced the Indians to modern conveniences such as the railroad, the telegraph, and improved agricultural methods. Thus the culture of India became a blending of East and West, a mixing together of the time-hallowed old and the civilized new (p. 370).

So it sounds like things worked out pretty well! Of the bloody “Sepoy Rebellion” of 1857, we are told only that “The British government quelled the rebellinon and took measures to ensure that such a incident never happened again,” which sort of glosses over some of the fun stuff that happened involved in a good thorough quelling, like mass bayonetting of civilians and a playful method of execution the British borrowed from the locals:

the British had some [mutineers] “blown from cannon” (an old Mughal punishment adopted many years before in India). Sentenced rebels were tied over the mouths of cannons and blown to pieces when the gun was fired.

Leaving this out seems like a notable oversight, because it shows that firm discipline is just part of a Bible-inspired nation’s enlightened style of ruling its backwards subjects.

And then there’s Africa! You might be wondering whether they call it “The Dark Continent” again. Why, yes! They actually do, but that is not a racial thing!

People called it the “Dark Continent” because so little was known about the land and its people….The nations of Europe saw Africa as a vast treasure chest waiting to be opened. But some Europeans saw the continent as more than just a source of possible riches; many saw it as a mission field ripe for harvest…Throughout the 19th century Christian missionaries worked diligently to penetrate the dark interior of Africa with the light of the gospel. In addition to evangelizing the African people, they established churches, schools, and hospitals, and helped bring to an end the cruel and inhumane slave trade and many of the bloody tribal wars (p. 371).

See! Focus on the good stuff, OK? As a case study of European colonization, the textbook focuses on South Africa. (We will let you provide your own answers as to why this might be a slightly problematic example.) The Boer War is glossed over in a short paragraph, which at least mentions that the Boers lost “thousands of their women and children to disease in British detention camps.” Interesting phrasing, no? Good to know who those women and children belonged to! The textbook doesn’t use the British military’s own coinage for those camps — the Christian soldiers of Great Britain called them “concentration camps.”

All in all, Colonialism worked out pretty well for everybody:

Britain greatly profited from the empire, but the countries of the empire greatly profited from Britain as well, for she shared two most important gifts with them: her Christian faith and her representative form of government (p. 375).

Wasn’t that nice of Britain?

Next Week: After two weeks of previews saying he was on the way, we finally get to history’s greatest monster: Charles Darwin. Also, a bunch of socialists and atheists show up and ruin EVERYTHING.

Related

About the author

Doktor Zoom Is the pseudonym of Marty Kelley, who lives in Boise, Idaho. He acquired his nym from a fan of Silver-Age comics after being differently punctual to too many meetings. He is not a medical doctor, although he has a real PhD (in Rhetoric and Composition).

View all articles by Doktor Zoom

Hola wonkerados.

To improve site performance, we did a thing. It could be up to three minutes before your comment appears. DON'T KEEP RETRYING, OKAY?

Also, if you are a new commenter, your comment may never appear. This is probably because we hate you.

267 comments

  1. weejee

    Believing that the main problem of London’s poor was not their destitute environment but rather their sinful hearts

    I love my sinful heart, so I guess that's why I'm not destitute.

  2. Beowoof

    Well they did get all those brown people out to work, which seems to be what these folks are all about anyway. While they stayed home and thought up new ways to enforce compliance with their draconian rules.

  3. fartknocker

    That was heart warming. Wait, did we skip the section on child labor and children being entapped and losing limbs or lives in poorly designed machinery?

      1. Doktor Zoom

        Let's be fair–they mentioned it once in the chapter on the industrial revolution, and today, I have to retract my comment last week that the book never mentions it again, since they do note the legislation barring children from working "in such dangerous occupations as coal mining or chimney sweeping." Talk about your triumph of Christian kindness!

        So the book actually covers child labor TWICE AS MUCH as what I'd said it did. Don't trust the liberal media.

        1. sullivanst

          Although I can't help but notice, in neither mention of the children is there reference to entrapment or loss of limbs, or the poor design of the machinery that caused them.

        2. Chet Kincaid_

          Plunging a small child at the end a long stick into a vintage Victorian chimney is still the most effective cleaning method! Why do we turn from time-hallowed traditions such as these in our pride-full, Man-Centered Era?!

        3. HistoriCat

          I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that they don't bother with any of the photographs taken showing child laborers …

    1. WhatTheHeck

      Well, every time a child got caught in a machine, productivity went down. So this was a blemish on capitalism, which is something you wouldn’t want to highlight too much.

      1. Doktor Zoom

        Right, and bits of Child in the "Patented Child-Free Sausage With Named Meat" would be bad for sales, so the market really regulated itself without any government interference.

        1. WhatTheHeck

          This might be where the term ‘elbow grease’ originated; a child’s arm in a moving piece of machinery lubricated the gears of capitalism.

        2. Willardbot9000_V2.5

          Have we covered the American Civil War yet? Because I love it when Christianists skip over the whole "this was because of slavery" portion of it to babble about states rights….to own slaves. Especially when they gloss over South Carolina's declaration of secession which declared slavery a "god given institution" established by the natural laws of white people being superior to the darkies. Christianists just LOVE to pretend there was no such thing in the declaration.

          1. Doktor Zoom

            The US Civil War is mentioned briefly in the chapter on the Industrial Revolution, but is otherwise not even in the index. Of course, this is a World History book, and there's plenty of attention to the Civil War in the US History texts from the same publisher, which we will eventually slog through.

          2. Willardbot9000_V2.5

            Ah, very good to remind me…I just assumed since these assholes are universally Ameri-centric that every part of world history from 1492 on would answer two questions, 1) was fundamentalist Jesus paid homage and 2) what does it have to do with the US. Which thus far from what I've read seems pretty much what those textbooks accomplish.

  4. mbobier

    I do wonder what Dickens would say about all that "selfless charity." But I don't have to wonder very hard.

    As for "ragged schools," we already have those, in the form of public schools in low-income neighborhoods, and Romney/Ryan think that's just ginger peachy, thank you.

    1. LibertyLover

      Aren't these the schools that Romney wants to give vouchers to the parent so they can afford the more expensive private/parochial schools?

    2. Doktor Zoom

      In today's economy, we are all Mr. Micawber, holding to the hope that surely something will turn up.

  5. Incitefully_Joe

    "Victoria would become the longest-ruling monarch in English history"

    Loving that bit of empahsis there, as in a hereditary monarchy, the secret to becoming the longest-ruling monarch in history is "not dying too soon". Now if that's not a sign of Victoria's awesometude, I don't know what is.

    1. Doktor Zoom

      It's mostly italicized to indicate what's going to be on the test, but yeah, it's kind of stated as if it meant she kept getting re-elected.

      Like Queen Amidala. (And I said there were no Star Wars references…)

      1. Negropolis

        Sweet, sweet Natalie Portman.

        She was one bad-ass queen in the first movie, but by the end of the second movie, they'd all but turned her into a piece of background set-piece. It was one of the things I was most angry at Lucas for in the prequels. Her lines got cheesier, and they shrank her down into two dimensions, and it was SO obvious.

    2. mille derps

      Clearly Divine Right of Kings is still at play here. Your votes are as nothing compared to God's vote (the gift of longevity). And don't go bringing up counter-examples of long-lived rulers of countries where they don't speak English- they do not really matter to WASP God.

        1. mille derps

          Victoria ruled for more than 60 yrs. Putin turned 60 one week ago… (It just SEEMS like he's been in power forever…)

      1. Incitefully_Joe

        Clearly Divine Right of Kings is still at play here. Your votes are as nothing compared to God's vote (the gift of longevity).

        You know, I completely forgot about that part of the Bibble, it must be right next to the passage,

        For He so loved the world that he gave the greatest Kings and Queens haemophilia

    3. sullivanst

      There are two secrets to becoming the longest-ruling monarch. First is to live a long life. The other very important one is to have your parents die when you are young, and not have older brothers (no older sisters either if you are with vagina yourself, which you probably are if you're going to live a long time).

      Of course, in a couple of years' time, Old Vic may well have lost her title.

      1. sullivanst

        I'd just like to point out, you wouldn't find this nonsense in an English textbook. Although, they really like to try their best to just ignore that whole era of stealing dark-skinned people and shipping them overseas, or the whole era of stealing dark-skinned people's land, taking all their resources, and justifying it by forcing the Bible down their throats.

  6. eggsacklywright

    And all the gold and diamonds the locals gave to the Brits were just out of gratitude to their saviors.

  7. under_score

    "Britain as well, for she shared two most important gifts with them: her Christian faith and her representative form of government "

    IMO the game of cricket was arguably Britain's most important gift. It certainly has won more acolytes than Christianity has.

      1. sullivanst

        The whole world plays football, but cricket is pretty much only played by territories that were once part of the British Empire. So, cricket is the "special" gift.

        1. HistoriCat

          Yes but no one in America understands what the hell is going on during a cricket game so it doesn't count.

          1. sullivanst

            Yeah, well, that's what happens when you get all uppity and #war the Brits – you lose out on the sports they invent afterwards.

          2. Negropolis

            What a pity that we miss out on a game that can lasts for days at a time. lol And, many of us think baseball is boring and/or unnecessarily long.

          3. sullivanst

            There's two great things about the length of a test cricket match. One is that you don't have to watch every minute (I don't think anyone watches every minute, even the commentators work shifts). The other is that it allows for a battle of wills that's unlike anything else you'll see in sports.

  8. snowpointsecret

    "Under the wise leadership of Queen Victoria (ruled 1837 1901), Great Britain reached the height of its glory and became the leading country of the world (p. 359)."

    You know, except for losing its grip on some major pieces of its empire, but okay.

    1. sullivanst

      In the Victorian era? Define "losing its grip"… the vast majority of decolonization didn't happen until 45 years after Victoria's death. The Victorian era was totally the height of brutal savagery committed in the name of civilizing the savages.

      1. snowpointsecret

        I wouldn't call taking African areas and such bigger than losing some of their western areas like Canada due to the geography of it all. Canada would have been a really nice port area in North America which is far closer than the Caribbean for England. Maybe it's a matter of perspective, but I certainly wouldn't call that a gain.

        Edit: Apparently England still had control of foreign affairs in Canada itself but still lost a good bit of impact. Maybe I was off a bit about this but I'm still not sure "height of the empire" is accurate either…

        1. sullivanst

          More gold and diamonds in Africa. Well, more diamonds certainly, and the gold in the Yukon wasn't discovered until 1896.

          Plus, Victoria was still monarch of Canada, and one presumes that Britain retained use of the ports.

          1. snowpointsecret

            Okay, I admit the gold wasn't something I thought about… I see your point now, you're probably right on this. I always thought England's peak was well before this though…

          2. viennawoods13

            Damn right Britain still got to use the ports. Hell, Canada didn't even have its own navy until 1910. AND Canada got Confederated and quasi-independent in 1867 because England wanted it that way. Canada was just too darn expensive to run, without high enough returns. Besides, all those pesky white people living there weren't as expendable/biddable as those brown people in Africa and India.

  9. frostbitefalls

    "With one part of my mind I thought of the British Raj as an unbreakable tyranny, as something clamped down, in saecula saeculorum, upon the will of prostrate peoples; with another part I thought that the greatest joy in the world would be to drive a bayonet into a Buddhist priest's guts. Feelings like these are the normal by-products of imperialism; ask any Anglo-Indian official, if you can catch him off duty."

    George Orwell, being honest about the whole thing.

  10. no_gravity

    Sentenced rebels were tied over the mouths of cannons and blown to pieces when the gun was fired.

    That's what's going to happen to the 47% if Romney gets elected.

    1. PubOption

      I have heard claims that damage to the body was likely to cause certain Hindus to be reincarnated as something lower on the scale, and that major damage like this would push them way down. They could, of course, continue their anti-colonial activities as amoebae in the water supply.

          1. C_R_Eature

            That was Honduras, but it all looks like South America from the USA so the Judges will accept this!

        1. Biff

          Once I got over the shock, I sort of enjoyed it. I never knew fans of telenovelas were so passionate…

  11. snowpointsecret

    "Britain greatly profited from the empire, but the countries of the empire greatly profited from Britain as well, for she shared two most important gifts with them: her Christian faith and her representative form of government (p. 375)."

    See, apartheid was okay because at least they got Christianity!

    Seriously though Doktor Zoom, how do you manage to read this stuff every week without punching through several walls?

  12. gullywompr

    What? What's wrong with talking about US America in the Victorian Era? Massive immigration due to Old Country poverty, leading to ethnocentrism, combined with a dash of southern slavery and topped with a big ol' civil war… what more could a fundie want?

      1. sullivanst

        Oh they knew it was happening, that's why they took special precautions to make sure their horses were fed (even if that meant even fewer of the people were).

        As an Englishman, it still pains me to hear it described by my wife's Aunt as genocide, but I can't say I have any great defense against the claim. "Well, they didn't particularly intend for everyone to starve to death, they just knew it was happening and didn't give a shit" isn't exactly convincing.

  13. Pithaughn

    If there are any bright students in the classes where this text is used they may ask " If the empire was so favored by God, why is'nt the empire ruling the whole world now? "

  14. sullivanst

    Yes, yes, being in the Empire was so awesome for those inferior savages they simply loved every minute of it, and never rebelled in any way at any time. There were no wars of Independence, the British simply announced that they had been civilized enough and left, which obviously they were because all those countries flourished mightily from that moment on.

    Oh, wait…

  15. mille derps

    "We thought some of Newt Gingrich’s ideas for school reform sounded familiar. Why have we gotten away from this obviously golden age?"

    Satan. Duh.

  16. Mittens Howell, III

    The Second Coming actually occurred in Victorian England, but went astray.

    Christ reincarnated as Cuthbert Pifflethwaite,The Third Earl of Sloppfordshire, in 1876. Tragedy struck the young Earl while 'volunteering his charitable services' at a reform school for young ladies, during a laudanam/ hot governess bender.

    Cuthbert fell into a vat of porridge after a fit of self-pleasuring and, as God later said, "Botched the whole thing terribly."

    1. Chet Kincaid_

      This is a scurrilous prevarication!! The Christ Family had been living in conspiratorial seclusion in France for nearly 2 millennia, enjoying the perennial income from their controlling interest in the Holy Roman Empire/Church! Superstition over the eventual return of the founding Christ was the key to maintaining their obscene profit margins.

  17. mavenmaven

    "the textbook doesn’t ever quite explain just why such awful conditions came about in the first place. "

    Because 47% of the people, will be like that, no matter what.

  18. professorhel

    These people can go read Henry Mayhew's _London Labour and the London Poor_ and then get back to me about how awesomely the British and Irish poor were treated in their own country. I require a book report and an apology for being such ignorant assholes.

  19. GeorgiaBurning

    I can't wait for their movie of "A Christmas Carol", where Tiny Tim dies and meets Jesus, Bob Cratchit and his family go to a workhouse, and Scrooge gets a trophy wife.

  20. mavenmaven

    I'm going to guess the book doesn't describe the Opium wars, where Britain killed thousands of civilians to keep the drug trade flowing.

  21. Lucidamente1

    Instead, she presented the prince with a Bible, and said, “Here is the secret of England’s greatness.”

    To which the African prince replied, "I say, Your Majesty, do you have Prince Albert in a Can?"

    1. kittensdontlie

      And where was Jesus when the British had over 200 crimes punishable by death, including "being in the company of Gypsies for one month", "strong evidence of malice in a child aged 7–14 years of age" and "blacking the face or using a disguise whilst committing a crime".—Wiki

      Jesus Christ!!!

    1. The_Lucky_Wife

      The Stones win by default. They may have acted like delinquents, but none of them ever claimed to be more popular than Jesus Christ. Nor was their manager a Jewish homosexual. The Beatles may have had nicer manners, but underneath, they were rotten to the core.

    1. Biff

      Things would have been entirely different if we'd have fought the Brazilians instead of the Argentinians over the Falklands. You know, kinda like when we invaded Iraq because of what some Saudis did.

      1. Doktor Zoom

        Or our heroic response to the bombing of the Marine barracks in Lebanon, in which we invaded Grenada.

          1. Doktor Zoom

            Yeah, well I remember being in one of the concentration camps he remembered filming the liberation of!

  22. SayItWithWookies

    The Victorian Era must've been when the Americans were just begging to be recolonized by Queen Victoria so we could bask in her Christian greatness so we could rise up ourselves and our statesmen were gnashing their teeth about how hastily we adopted a constitution based on the principles of humanism (although our statesmen pretty much do that on a regular basis anyway).

    Although for some reason — clearly evidence of disobedience — I still feel British colonialism's greatest contributions were EM Forster, George Orwell and the epic documentary Zulu Dawn.

  23. Doktor Zoom

    Also, too, speaking of the Boer War and the admirably Christian goodness of how Britain conducted its massacres, see Adam Hochschild's excellent To End All Wars, which is mostly about WW I, but starts with a look at the British generals and awesomely diligent peace activists who butted heads over the conduct of the Boer War.

    1. sullivanst

      From the publisher's comment:

      Today, hundreds of military cemeteries spread across the fields of northern France and Belgium contain the bodies of millions of men who died in the war to end all wars. Can we ever avoid repeating history?

      My school, in I suppose it would be the equivalent of 9th grade, organized a trip to the WW1 battlefields and cemeteries; I think it made pacifists out of most of us. It's the strongest memory I have from 7 years at that school. Being there, getting even just a tiny glimpse of the horror of "The Great War", certainly makes the reluctance to re-arm in response to Hitler's rise to power much more understandable.

      1. LibertyLover

        Interesting. Funny that didn't happen here in the States, where people actually re-enact the Civil War battles all of the time. Silly humans. For me, I was in junior high (middle school) when the Vietnam came waltzing into our living rooms on the nightly news and on the covers of Time and Newsweek…
        That's what made me a Pacifist.

        1. sullivanst

          There are WW1 reenactments too, although the mood of them is very different.

          One thing though: Civil War dead: 750,000 (to take the new, higher number); WW1 dead: 16 million.

    2. deanbooth

      I'm halfway through it. What strikes me most is how utterly stupid the "leaders" are. In fact, this is the lesson from most history books.

      * Calvary charge into a machine gun nest, anyone?

      1. sullivanst

        This is what happens when you make the prestige of the name of the school your Daddy bought you into the primary determinant of how high up the officer class you would enter the military.

        "I see you went to Eton, you'll start as a Colonel. No no no, hold the rifle at the other end."

      2. Doktor Zoom

        I was really impressed with the creativity of the suffragists, like the one who contrived to have herself delivered in a crate to the floor of Parliament, where she jumped out and delivered a speech on voting.

        And brave, tragic Kier Hardie. There's a name more people should know.

        And why hasn't there been a Merchant-Ivory style biopic about the Pankhurst family? What a fascinating bunch!

        1. Chet Kincaid_

          "…who contrived to have herself delivered in a crate to the floor of Parliament, where she jumped out and delivered a speech on voting."

          This is the role limeylizzie was born to play!!

        2. glasspusher

          Thanks for the link on Hardie. Loved the line "The 23-year old Keir Hardie moved seamlessly from the coal mines to union organisation work."

          Heh.

          1. Doktor Zoom

            Hah! Well-played, anonymous Wikipedian! (If that edit was made by a user named Tom Swift, I'll be particularly impressed)

      3. viennawoods13

        Well, hell, the cavalry charge worked for a couple of millennia. You don't actually expect these guys to use their brains, do you?

    1. VaWyo

      And on to her granddaughter getting executed for being married to another god-fearing imperialist in Russia.

  24. Lucidamente1

    If I want fucked up British history, I'll watch the opening ceremonies of the London Olympics, thank you very much.

  25. ManchuCandidate

    They called Vicky, the War Queen thanks to all the little wars against uppity brown and yellow people fought in her name because for some reason they were resentful of "good" Xtian toffee nosed gin drinkers telling them what to do.

  26. GunToting[Redacted]

    My great-grandfather was a beneficiary of one of those new goodhearted orphanariums…. Dr Barnardo took my GG in and sent him to Canada, as was his wont. Of course, the fine folks at the organization were not always concerned with whether or not the orphans in question might actually have parents around, but hey! A kid wandering the cold streets of Edinburgh MUST be in need of assistance, and likely, forced expatriation. The family never really was clear on the details.

    1. Doktor Zoom

      Look, they were CHARITIES! Run by CHRISTIANS!!! If you're going to nitpick about details, you'll just make Baby Jebus cry.

    2. tessiee

      "Dr Barnardo took my GG in and sent him to Canada"

      But on the plus side, young great-grandpa had all the soap he needed. All-One Cleanliness! Golden Rule! Dilute! Dilute! OK!!

    3. viennawoods13

      And those Barnardo kids often were treated very harshly in their new "homes". Not a shining moment in the history of Canada or Great Britain.

  27. Chet Kincaid_

    Dok, does this "textbook" tackle Freud as well? I read an interesting screed of a book back in the '90s that accused Freud of being an Old Testament Prophet who blamed everything in human psychology on Original Sexual Sin (can't find the exact book online, and I'm not about to go spelunking through basement boxes looking for it), so that cartoon of Freud would fit right in with their world view. Unless they just don't think Sex should be talked about, ever. (Before Mavenmaven gets mad at me, I also read and interesting screed of a book in the '90s about Jung being a Nazi Mystic Cult Leader, like some kind of Hellboy villain.)

    1. Doktor Zoom

      We'll get to Freud in a couple weeks, I think, in "The Roots of Modern Liberalism."

      Spoiler: They think he was a very bad man.

      Edit, and Irony Alert: They also label sociology and psychology as "pseudoscience." And then they say evolution is a myth, too.

    1. Chet Kincaid_

      The Holy Spirit has moved its beneficence on to the successor of Victorian British Righteousness, the Yew Ess of Ay, because England eventually succumbed to Godless Secular Humanism, or some shit.

  28. KeepFnThatChicken

    So the State Representative from Arkansas is right? These darkies should just endure their hellish torture, because they end up better off than the were before it happened.

  29. AlterNewt

    "….The nations of Europe saw Africa as a vast treasure chest waiting to be opened."
    [Bad.]

    "But some Europeans saw the continent as more than just a source of possible riches; many saw it as a mission field ripe for harvest."
    [Good.]

      1. glasspusher

        My niece's hubby is a fundamentalist missionary who travels to Africa to bring the gospel to the locals there. One of my best friends goes there to set up AIDS clinics, treatment, prevention and education.

    1. unclejeems

      Say, something about the Spanish, the Church and American natives might be appropriate there. You know, just as a reference of how earlier Christian colonists were a model for the 19th Century Brits. Give us all your land and gold, then work and convert or die, muthafukahs.

  30. C_R_Eature

    “They were conquerors, and for that you want only brute force–nothing to boast of, when you have it, since your strength is just an accident arising from the weakness of others.”
    ― Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness

    I'm re-reading this, for free,courtesy Google. A few things in this novel seem strangely appropriate, today.

      1. C_R_Eature

        That is now Officially On My List. Thanks! I am of the opinion that King Leopold II is the real reason why the word "Belgium" is the Rudest Word in the Universe.

        I'm claiming Lifetime Education Credits for these Sunday posts.

      2. viennawoods13

        What was done under that rule in the Congo is stunning, and not in a good way. And we western nations wonder why they are so fucked up there today.

  31. BaldarTFlagass

    Well, I ain't never been given a bible by no queen, but I did get a free Watchtower magazine from a Jehovah's Witness once.

  32. BaldarTFlagass

    British Empire gave us Kenya, Kenya gave us Obama. Hooray British Empire!
    Or did the writers of this book not see that?

    1. Doktor Zoom

      Well, it was published in 1997, so maybe the newer edition shakes a finger at the post-colonial Kenyans for that tragic error.

  33. Blueb4sinrise

    Anyway, the comment earlier that was deleted [doan know why] was a quote and wiki link to this anecdote…..

    ….her{Queen V} reputation suffered in an 1839 court intrigue when one of her mother's ladies-in-waiting, Lady Flora Hastings, developed an abdominal growth that was widely rumoured to be an out-of-wedlock pregnancy by Sir John Conroy. [Victoria believed the rumours.] She hated Conroy, and despised "that odious Lady Flora", because she had conspired with Conroy and the Duchess of Kent in the Kensington System. At first, Lady Flora refused to submit to a naked medical examination, until in mid-February she eventually agreed, and was found to be a virgin. Conroy, the Hastings family and the opposition Tories organised a press campaign implicating the Queen in the spreading of false rumours about Lady Flora. When Lady Flora died in July, the post-mortem revealed a large tumour on her liver that had distended her abdomen.

    1. commiegirl99

      Hey gal, went back in and approved it. IntenseDebate is a clusterfuck. But if we switch comment systems, all old ones will disappear I think? :(

      1. Blueb4sinrise

        No problem. Thanks. Just wondered if I got on the list as Brazilian.

        [also, for the record, am not vag-endowed, NTTAWWT]

  34. LibertyLover

    The empire was a great benefit to Britain, and Britain was in many ways a great benefit to the lands in her dominion. While the colonies gave Britain wealth and power, Britain shared with the colonies her traditions of Christianity, technology, representative government, and reform. British colonial rule also established law and order throughout the realm and suspended much of the war and bloodshed that had raged between the various tribes and religious factions in Africa and Asia. In the process, the British effected great improvements in the livelihood of the native populations, such as better agriculture, education, hospitals, and industry

    If one substitutes "Rome" for "Britain"…..

    I wonder if they used this passage earlier when discussing the expansion of the Roman Empire? Especially their religious beliefs of many gods instead of monotheistic Christianity?

    Hmmm.. Rome's empire declined after the introduction of Christianity. I wonder if Britain's empire declines as well? ;-)

    1. viennawoods13

      Jesus. Britain kicked like a mule at giving the Canadian colonies responsible government in the 1830's.

  35. LibertyLover

    Of the bloody “Sepoy Rebellion” of 1857…

    That darn East India Trading Company just caused problems all over the world, didn't it?

    1. WhatTheHeck

      A privately run company establishing laws and administering the Crown’s affairs. Why, that sounds like certain corporations today.

  36. shelwood46

    "Dark Continent" cannot possibly be racist because it was the name of the Busch Gardens theme park in Tampa until at least the '80s, when they stopped calling it that for absolutely no reason at all (copyright?).

    PS Arlen Specter has died.

      1. C_R_Eature

        Oh those emotionally stunted Child-People can go and fuck themselves. Seriously.

        We even had a tiny moment of Snarklessness for Breitbart here, fer chrissakes.

          1. C_R_Eature

            Well, I do have to admit that I was adding the day and a half that we were sorry for his family's loss to the picosecond of sadness we all spent on him.

    1. Doktor Zoom

      Let's not fight over beer; as long as it's not mass-produced American swill, it's all good for what ales you. I'd hate for us to end up at lager-heads over this, so could we please just steer the conversation bock to politics?

      (Obligatory old joke: How is mass-market beer like sex in a canoe? It's fucking close to water)

  37. LibertyLover

    People called it the “Dark Continent” because so little was known about the land and its people….

    "Someone had to pick the cotton,
    Someone had to pick the corn,
    Someone had to slave and be able to sing,
    That's why darkies were born."

    [That's Why Darkies Were Born was a popular song written by Ray Henderson and Lew Brown from 1931. (The song was written as a satirical view of racism.)}

    1. Doktor Zoom

      And as both Rogers and Hammerstein AND the editors of this book know, You've Got To Be Carefully Taught.

  38. SexySmurf

    OT Atlas Shrugged: Part II opened this weekend landing at 12th place and grossing $1.7 million on more than 1000 screens. I'm looking forward to Jack Welch explaining how Nobama's BLS thugs were able to cook the box office.

  39. glamourdammerung

    In fairness, I can see why they would admire Victorian era Britain's behavior in Africa since they did come up with the concept of concentration camps.

    But there was also all that socialisms since the gap between the rich and poor got bad enough that the government finally got involved in actually trying to help the poor because malnutrition severely impacted how many of the poors that could go off to fight (the Great Depression also being the reason why we started the free lunches in schools and other food programs here as well).

  40. vulpes82

    I think Disraeli, Gladstone, and all of Victoria's other Prime Ministers might raise a cool eyebrow at the idea that it was her awesome leadership that Made Britain Great. Though hardly uninvolved in politics, Victoria still was a figurehead for most British policy. They make it sound like she was that damn, dirty Papist Louis XIV!

    They also seem to neglect that whole middle period of her reign where she was actually very unpopular, because she went into a decades-long depression after her husband died and she stopped being young and pretty and become middle-aged and dour. It wasn't until her Jubilees, and the sheer fact that she lived so damn long no one remembered another monarch, when the Warm Fuzzies set in.

    And then of course there's the fact that it was her squabbling grandkids who pushed the continent into WWI, particularly the Kaiser who was always jealous of his British cousins because Grandma Vicky had always liked them best. Or her poor younger daughters who had to practically fling themselves off the battlements just to be able to marry instead of being their mother's unpaid secretaries/companions.

    Also, too, her husband had a goddamn cock piercing! Don't tell me they didn't do kinky stuff with that!

  41. valdemar

    Pity the poor Irish, who failed to benefit from Christianity or representative government, probably by being TOO CLOSE to Britain, in a sort of moth-flamey way.

  42. GemlikeFlame

    Ah, the Victorian era, famous for institutionalized hypocrisy and female orgasm by doctor's prescription only (unless you were Victoria herself and then you had the help of a Scotsman (aptly played by Billy Connolly) and your man-servant. Come to think of it, the fundies of today have a lot to like about the Golden Age, uppity black folk and women knew their place, and well, as long as you don't actually recognise hypocrisy then it doesn't exist.

    The male role models of the era, Lords Raglan, Lucan, and Cardigan, who were primarily known for their snappy dress, were so incompetent that they actually tried to outdo each for immense flaming military disasters.

    The parallels to the Bush era are palpable. Brownie, you're doing a heckuva job.

    1. tessiee

      "female orgasm by doctor's prescription only"

      On the plus side, this did lead to the invention of the vibrator.
      Dr: Jeez, there must be eight of nine of them in the waiting room, and I've got a golf game at 2:00! What to do, what to do?

    2. Negropolis

      The parallels to the Bush era are palpable. Brownie, you're doing a heckuva job.

      That was excellent, most excellent.

    3. VaWyo

      I think I now understand the problem with republican women. They have hysteria from a lack or orgasms.

    4. schvitzatura

      Crimea, Isandlwana, and Mafeking LIBELSSSS!11!!!

      Relief of Mafeking gave us the hero Bob Baden-Powell, Scouting, and more British-inspire buggery…

  43. decentcitizen

    With all these selfless charitable works, it's a wonder the robber barons made any money at all.

  44. VinnyThePooh

    Never before in history had so many people done so much for others. The Victorians’ acts of benevolence were freely performed, compelled by the inner sense of duty and the love for mankind that come from obedience to Scriptural truth.

    Like they had a choice. It's called survival. Socialism in modern America.

  45. tessiee

    "Victoria spoke for the nation in her reply to a visiting African prince who asked her the secret of England’s success. Victoria did not take him to see the glittering crown jewels, or to observe the great industrial cities at work, or to hear the brilliant orators who debated in Parliament. Instead, she presented the prince with a Bible, and said, “Here is the secret of England’s greatness.”

    Unfortunately, after the African prince returned to his home country, he sent Victoria a letter saying that he needed her help in a business matter, and requesting the locations of the Royal Treasury.

  46. Jukesgrrl

    Ahh, a last we know where Arkansas Republican state representative Jon Micheal Hubbard, who claims that slavery was “a blessing in disguise” for African-Americans, learned his history. Thanks, Dok.

  47. Identity_Crisis

    Queen Victoria: carried a gun, used cannabis and had a bunch of kids with some German fetishist.

    1. Rotundo_

      I think if Lizzie Deuce had smoked a few and married better than the loathsome toad she did (perhaps a German fetishist would have been better) things might have come out better. Having her packing heat would probably be a definite no-no since she would have capped Diana in a heartbeat.

      1. vulpes82

        I actually admire Lizzy II, Immortal God-Empress of Albion and Undying Sovereign of the Lizard People, but that pick of husband sure wasn't her best. And that definitely was her choice; the Court didn't much care for the marriage. But, then, she was very young, and he really was incredibly hot, and divorce was never the option for her it was for her kids.

  48. FeloniousMonk

    Really fine work, Doktor, sourcing the African prince. And bonus points for finding Brits debunking Brits. (Bows low.)

    While the authors were singing the praises of the Empire, why didn't they mention the main benefit to the heathens? We gave them games at which they could consistently kick our arses later on.

    1. Doktor Zoom

      Actually, I found it pretty much within a few minutes on the Googles, just searching the alleged quote(s). But thanks!

  49. viennawoods13

    Saw a pin on pinterest that made my toes curls… "Use the Bible as your main text for home schooling!" Ye gods. Those poor children.

  50. LotsOfRats

    Is there any mention of the benefits of the opium brought by England to Asia? 'Cause you know what's the real opiate of the masses? Opium.

  51. Negropolis

    Both stories have enough holes to fill the Albert Hall

    Nice. Nice.

    BTW, this belief…

    Believing that the main problem of London’s poor was not their destitute environment but rather their sinful hearts…

    …is still very much alive and well here in America. If anyone ever ask you why such a large contingent of those in poverty will never vote Republican, just point them to the belief that it seems to be the underlying belief of the party that poverty is the result of sin, and that wealth – by itself – is the mark of moral superiority. To couch such things in purely moral terms is as disgusting as it it false. It's why I could never vote for this iteration of the GOP. Until they change this deeply-held and absolutely flawed belief they are as good as dead to me.

  52. ttommyunger

    Odd, in my Bible the Chosen People were commanded to slay their conquered peoples, not enslave or exploit them. Of course, they didn't, being lazy assholes; so they are paying the afore-promised price to this day.

Comments are closed.