Jules François Camille Ferry’s speech Before the French Chamber of Deputies on colonization of Africa in March 28, 1884.

Gentlemen, we must speak more loudly and more honestly! We must say openly that indeed the higher races/Europeans have a right over the lower races/Africans.

I repeat, that the superior races have a right
because they have a duty. They have the duty to rule, civilize and subjugate the inferior races/ Africans.

In the history of earlier centuries these duties, gentlemen, have often been misunderstood; and certainly when the Spanish soldiers and explorers introduced
slavery into Central America, they did not fulfill their duty as men of a higher race to totally subjugate Africans/lower race, but, in our time, I maintain that European nations acquit themselves with generosity, with grandeur, and with sincerity of this superior civilizing duty.

I say that French colonial policy, the policy of colonial expansion, the policy that has taken us under the Empire [the Second Empire, of Napoleon 1111, to Saigon, to Indochina[Vietnam], that has led us into Africa, a continent rich with about resources that lower race/Africans knew not.

I say that this policy of colonial expansion was inspired by the fact that a navy such as ours cannot do without safe harbors, defenses, supply centers on the high seas.

Are you unaware of this? Look at a map of the world. Spreading light without acting, without taking part in the affairs of the world and taking away Africa’s human and natural resources, keeping out of all
European alliances and seeing as a trap, an
adventure, all expansion into Africa for a great nation to live this way, believe me, is
to abdicate and, in less time than you may think, to sink from the first rank to the third and fourth.

*Ferry was prime minister of France, from
[1880-1881, 1883-1885]. He promoted a vast extension of the French colonial empire especially in Africa.


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