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BEFORE YOU WATCH: Experiencing Colonialism - Through a Ghanaian Lens

Use the “Three Close Reads” approach as you watch the video below.
Use the “Three Close Reads” approach as you watch the video below (next in the lineup!). If you want to learn more about this strategy, click here.

First read: preview and skimming for gist

Before you watch, you should skim the transcript first. The skim should be very quick and give you the gist (general idea) of what the video is about. You should be looking at the title, thumbnails, pictures, and first few seconds of the video for the gist.

Second read: key ideas and understanding content

Now that you’ve skimmed the video transcript and taken a quick peek at the video, you should preview the questions you will be answering. These questions will help you get a better understanding of the concepts and arguments that are presented in the video. Keep in mind that when you watch the video, it is a good idea to write down any vocab you read or hear that is unfamiliar to you.
By the end of the second close read, you should be able to answer the following questions:
  1. When was the region that is today Ghana conquered by the British?
  2. According to Ato Quayson, what was the purpose of the Customs House, and how did it help the British to make money?
  3. How did some Ghanaians employed at the Customs House fight back?
  4. According to Jennifer Hart, what type of transportation did the British want to put in Ghana to control the export of cocoa, and how did Ghanaian farmers seek to control trade themselves?
  5. According to Jennifer Hart, how did the informal system of trotros (mini-bus taxes carrying people around Accra) come into being? What did the British call these trotros, and why?
  6. What do the plaques on the walls of Holy Trinity Church tell us, according to Ato Quayson?

Third read: evaluating and corroborating

Finally, here are some questions that will help you focus on why this video matters and how it connects to other content you’ve studied.
At the end of the third read, you should be able to respond to these questions:
  1. In this unit, you are encountering all kinds of evidence about how imperialism was powerful, controlling, and invasive. Does this video support or challenge that narrative?
  2. How do the ways that Ghanaians resisted colonialism compare to the resistance you read about in the article about the 1857 revolt in India?
Now that you know what to look for, it’s time to watch! Remember to return to these questions once you’ve finished watching.

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