This book deals with the Asante federation in the nineteenth century, within the wider context of a general crisis of authority in African states in the later part of the century. African states were fighting against the external pressures of European imperial expansion while facing internal challenges to their structures of power. Asante was one of these states and this book examines why, because of a particular combination of internal and external challenges, Asante was unable to maintain its independence at the end of the nineteenth century. Asante historiography so far has been split into two dominant approaches: formalist and substantivist. This book combines both approaches, and explains how external factors led to internal repercussions, and vice versa. By combining both the formalist and the substantivist approach,it helps to close the gap between the historiographies of European imperialism and those rooted within African history.