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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Colonialism now: contemporary anticolonialism and the 'facture coloniale'
Author:Mann, GregoryISNI
Year:2007
Periodical:Politique africaine
Issue:105
Pages:181-200
Language:English
Geographic terms:Ivory Coast - Côte d'Ivoire
Mali
France
Subjects:colonialism
historiography
black soldiers
veterans
Abstract:This article examines current political discourse on colonialism in Africa and the historiography that enables it. Two closely linked metaphors are central to the analysis: the debt, often characterized as a 'blood debt' and the bill (or 'facture'), which is contrasted with the diagnosis of a postcolonial social division (or 'fracture'). Beginning in an area of deceptive clarity - the controversy over the blood debt and pensions paid to African veterans of the French colonial military - the essay looks at the role accorded to colonial history in current political discourse in Côte d'Ivoire and France. It then returns to the practice of history writing, drawing on examples from contemporary Mali. The paper argues that evocations of the colonial past - ranging from reconciliation to 'recolonization', and from the 'fracture' to the 'facture' - have become increasingly effective in the postcolonial present because they resonate with profound anxieties around politics, community, and sovereignty. Notes, ref., sum. in English (p. 274) and in French. [Journal abstract]
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