Monday, November 11, 2019
12 p.m. – 1 p.m.
McKinney Conference Room, 111 Thayer Street
In the first half of the twentieth century, government policy and personal prejudices discouraged marriage for British officials working in the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan (1898-1956) and pushed domestic desires to the margins of imperial service. Moreover, a requisite annual three-month leave kept officials circulating between colony and metropole. The result was a community of “bachelor” administrators who struggled to maintain relationships with loved ones in Britain and construct the comforts of home in Sudan. These bachelor households, staffed by Sudanese male servants, were homosocial spaces of care-taking, affection, and misunderstanding. With an eye for small details and personal histories, Brown places intimacy at the center of the imperial experience and presents British men’s domestic desires as unexpected sites of vulnerability and negotiation.