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Accepted Paper:

Escape, death, and abandonment: People and animals in Lourenço Marques/Maputo between the final days of colonialism and the revolution  
Omar Thomaz (University of Campinas)

Paper short abstract:

In this essay, based on reports written between 1974 and 1977, memoirs, press articles and a novel, we will try to describe the final days of the Portuguese colonialism in Mozambique with regard to the relations between people and animals.

Paper long abstract:

Lourenço Marques was considered, in the Portuguese late-colonial context, a kind of jewel of the colonial empire. Wide, tree-lined avenues on a beautiful hill on the edge of the Indian Ocean guaranteed an excellent quality of life for most of the population of European origin. The presence of Indians, Chinese and Greeks blended with African forced labor in a cosmopolitan and violent scenario. In its first decades of being allowed, hunting of large animals took place in areas very close to the city, which had an imposing Zoo and the view of the Elephant Reserve on the other side of the bay.

In this essay, based on reports written between 1974 and 1977, memoirs, press articles and a novel, we will try to describe the final days of the Portuguese colonialism in Mozambique with regard to the relations between people and animals. We shall see that in the months following April 25, 1974, one of the aspects that the escape of a significant part of the white population of the city assumed was the abandonment of dogs and cats, eventually murdered in the moments of heightened conflict between whites and blacks, in the same way as would happen to farm animals in the suburbs of the city. The animals in Zoo of the city that would be renamed Maputo in 1976 would suffer a progressive and tragic abandonment with the end of the colonial world that saw it first emerge. Finally, the elephant herds in the south of Maputo province would be victims of the tremendous civil war that ravaged the region a few years after the independence of the country.

Panel Evid04c
Many are the pities of history: animals, plants and other forms of life in the historiography of the Global South
  Session 1 Wednesday 31 March, 2021, -