In your discussion of Howard's "Queen of the Black Coast" I was surprised that you didn't mention geographical determinism, also know as environmental determinism. The belief that the climate and terrain determine the character of a people goes back to Classical times and persists to the present day in figures such as Jared Diamond. Geographical determinism was a significant justification for the racist attitudes of the colonial period and Howard would have been well aware of this.
top of page
bottom of page
There is definitely a feel of this environmental determinism in QotBC in the devolution of the angelic beings into the winged apes:
“They did not migrate to fresher lands. Reasons inexplicable to humanity held them to the ancient city and their doom. And as that once rich and mighty land sank deeper and deeper into the black mire of the sunless jungle, so into the chaos of squalling jungle life sank the people of the city.”
Pg 40 of 61 (from the Apple Books version I downloaded)
Queen Of The Black Coast
Robert E. Howard
Howard was certainly eager to remind us that the pirate crewmembers were black on every occasion.