King Leopold 's Ghost : The Magnificent African Cake Essay

King Leopold 's Ghost : The Magnificent African Cake Essay

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Racism and slavery have always been a part of the world’s history, but sometimes people become ignorant to the severity of such mistreatment. This is proven in Adam Hochschild’s book King Leopold’s Ghost. People in Congo, Africa suffered many years of mistreatment brought on by King Leopold the second. King Leopold took what was theirs and made it his own by force and abuse. Eventually these people rightfully revolted in attempt to reclaim what is theirs and demand better treatment.
The beginning of this brutality started in 1897 when King Leopold of Belgium strived for more land and prosperity. He considered Congo to be “The magnificent African Cake.” He referencing Congo like this is understandable because Congo was three times bigger than the state of Texas, had a beautiful river that would assist in trade and had an abundance of natural resources, such as the valued ivory. Leopold wanted all of it, he desired a prosperous outcome for Belgium no matter what the people of Congo would have to sacrifice. From the beginning Leopold mislead the people of Congo. He sent and explorer named Stanley to take over this country. Stanley and his people went into this poor country unable to speak the native language and asked many indigenous chiefs to sign a treaty. Being as he was unable to speak or write the language the treaty was written in his language, so the indigenous chiefs were unable to translate the text. He made it out to seem like it was nothing bad, what these chiefs didn’t know was that they were signing over the land and resources of their colonies. Eventually, Leopold owned a land 76 times larger than Belgium. Hundreds of overthrown colonies later, Leopold owned everything in Congo. Leopold covered up his wrong doings f...

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.... He wrote articles and documentaries on the torture in Congo. These Articles became widely popular in in Europe and the United States.
Unfortunately, Leopold remained in control of Congo until his death. He died in luxury with his wife. Sheppard created one last article and was eventually sued. He remains viewed as a hero in the United States. When Leopold died all of the evidence of mistreatment became known and the case was considered closed.
Racism is still around today. Not nearly as brutal, but it is still around. Not just with blacks, but with any race. Leopold is an example of an extremist. Thankfully none, if any, people have to live like this anymore. People were ignorant to the mistreatment back then, and they are ignorant to the mistreatment today. King Leopold was the most ignorant. He spent years torturing innocent people for his own prosperity.

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