Anja Nikolić

PhD candidate

University of Belgrade

Similarities and Differences in Imperial Administration Great Britain in Egypt and Austria-Hungary in Bosnia-Herzegovina 1878–1903

Abstract: This article discusses the similarities and differences of the position of Great Britain in Egypt and Austria-Hungary in Bosnia-Herzegovina in the age of New Imperialism. Comparative approach will allow us to put both situations in their historical context. Austria-Hungary’s absorption of Bosnia-Herzegovina was part of colonial involvement throughout the world. Egypt and Bosnia-Herzegovina were formally parts of the Ottoman Empire, although occupied and administrated by European Powers. Two administrators, Evelyn Baring as consul-general in Egypt and Benjamin von Kállay as civil administrator of Bosnia-Herzegovina, believed that it was their duty to bring “civilization”, prosperity and western culture to these lands – a classic argumentation found in the New Imperialism discourse. One of the most important tasks for both administrators was fighting the national movements, which led to the suppression of political freedoms and the introduction of a large administrative apparatus to govern the newly-occupied lands. Complete control over political life and the educational system was also one of the major features of both administrations. Both Great Britain in Egypt and Austria-Hungary in Bosnia-Herzegovina never tackled the agrarian question for their own political reasons. British rule in Egypt and Austro-Hungarian in Bosnia-Herzegovina bore striking resemblances.

Keywords: colonialism, New Imperialism, civilizing mission, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Egypt, bureaucracy, administration, Benjamin von Kállay, Evelyn Baring

DOI: 10.2298/BALC1647177N