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August 28, 1897


JAMA. 1897;XXIX(9):447-449. doi:10.1001/jama.1897.02440350045008

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In Africa the negro, after being pulled some little way out of his savagery by the strenuous and ethical civilized master, shows a continual tendency to drop back into the primitive condition. The missionary labors for years to pound into the head of a black brother some notion of the Christian religion, thinks at last he has succeeded, when suddenly the man disappears and is found the chief actor in some barbaric and outrageous dance of superstition or of cannibalism. The white officer finds his trusted servant is not as usual on hand to perform his hitherto well done services. He too, for a longer or shorter time, has reverted to old habits that were temporarily held in abeyance by the will of the superior. In African lingo, these and all such lapses from a later and higher to an earlier and lower state are said to be "going fantee."

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