King Leopold’s Ghost

African American explorer and priest who traveled to the Congo in the 1890s and became a key opponent of the Belgian administration there. Sheppard joined forces with Edmund Dene Morel and Roger Casement to criticize King Leopold II for his human rights abuses. Later, he was tried in the Congo for supporting Congolese resistance movements. His acquittal further the strengthened the Congo reform movement.

William Sheppard Quotes in King Leopold’s Ghost

The King Leopold’s Ghost quotes below are all either spoken by William Sheppard or refer to William Sheppard. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Imperialism Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Houghton Mifflin edition of King Leopold’s Ghost published in 2005.
Chapter 11 Quotes

Due to the missionaries, from the mid-1890s on Leopold had to deal with scattered protests, like Sheppard's articles, about severed hands and slaughtered Africans. But the critics at first captured little attention, for they were not as skilled at public relations as the king, who deployed his formidable charm to neutralize them.

Related Characters: King Leopold II, William Sheppard
Page Number: 173
Explanation and Analysis:
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William Sheppard Character Timeline in King Leopold’s Ghost

The timeline below shows where the character William Sheppard appears in King Leopold’s Ghost. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 10
Publicity and Mass Communication Theme Icon
Shortly after Stanley got married, an African American man named William Sheppard traveled to the Congo. Sheppard was an explorer and an intensely religious man; he believed... (full context)
Publicity and Mass Communication Theme Icon
Sheppard was born in 1865, and distinguished himself as a theological student and a minister. In... (full context)
Imperialism Theme Icon
Publicity and Mass Communication Theme Icon
Racism and Human Rights Theme Icon
Toward the end of 1892, the Kuba tribe took Sheppard to visit their king. While, at first, the king was furious that his subjects had... (full context)
Imperialism Theme Icon
Publicity and Mass Communication Theme Icon
Racism and Human Rights Theme Icon
In the eight years following Sheppard’s visit to the Kuba, rubber became a central part of the European economy. The invention... (full context)
Imperialism Theme Icon
Publicity and Mass Communication Theme Icon
Racism and Human Rights Theme Icon
William Sheppard returned to the Congo in 1899, and immediately set out for the Kuba kingdom. When... (full context)
Chapter 11
Imperialism Theme Icon
Publicity and Mass Communication Theme Icon
Racism and Human Rights Theme Icon
Historiography and Bias Theme Icon
...railroad. During this time, Leopold had to fend off the criticisms of missionaries like William Sheppard, who had seen first-hand the state of the Congo. However, Sheppard wasn’t a public relations... (full context)
Chapter 17
Publicity and Mass Communication Theme Icon
Racism and Human Rights Theme Icon
Indifference and Activism Theme Icon
...the end of 1908, the Congo formally became the property of the Belgian Parliament. William Sheppard, whose article ten years before had launched an international backlash against Leopold, argued that the... (full context)
Publicity and Mass Communication Theme Icon
Indifference and Activism Theme Icon
Historiography and Bias Theme Icon
...the ensuing fight, Belgian forces slaughtered tens of thousands of unarmed Kuba tribesmen, and William Sheppard penned a long article praising the Kuba for their heroism. The chaos in the Congo,... (full context)
Chapter 19
Imperialism Theme Icon
Publicity and Mass Communication Theme Icon
Racism and Human Rights Theme Icon
Indifference and Activism Theme Icon
Historiography and Bias Theme Icon
...was the legacy of the Congo reform movement? First, and most obviously, Morel, Williams, and Sheppard succeeded in preserving a huge amount of information that the Belgian authorities would otherwise have... (full context)