Conference presentation on Liberian development projects

Sign in Firestone plantation in Liberia which reads, Working together with Liberia for Progress: Firestone. United States Trading Co.

Firestone in Liberia

Christine Whyte recently presented some new research into the ways in which the Liberian government used forced labour to assert control and defend their sovereignty in the inland regions of Liberia from the 1870s through to the 1960s. This paper, presented at a panel at the African Studies Association Conference in San Diego alongside Benedetta Rossi, Elisabeth McMahon, Martin Klein and Carolyn Brown, demonstrated how the discourse of ‘development’ was deployed by Monrovia and the American Firestone Corporation to implement these systems of forced labour and justify their hold on the territory.