The Colonisation of Time is a highly original and long overdue examination of the ways that western-European and specifically British concepts and rituals of time were imposed on other cultures as a fundamental component of colonization during the nineteenth century. Based on a wealth of primary sources, it explores the intimate relationship between the colonization of time and space in two British settler-colonies (Victoria, Australia and the Cape Colony, South Africa) and its instrumental role in the exportation of Christianity, capitalism, and modernity, thus adding new depth to our understanding of imperial power and of the ways in which it was exercised and limited. All those intrigued by the concept of time will find this book of interest, for it illustrates how western-European time's rise to a position of global dominance--from the clock to the seven-day week--is one of the most pervasive, enduring, and taken-for-granted legacies of colonization in today's world.
"In this thoughtful and illuminating book, Giordano Nanni mounts a persuasive argument for the role that time (whether measured in hours, weeks, months, or seasons) played in missionary endeavors to 'civilize' indigenous people . . . This is a welcome addition to a now well-established trend in imperial history writing that emphasizes the centrality of quotidian struggles in understanding political, economic, and social change." - Joanna Cruickshank, Deakin University, American Historical Review