Read e-book online A Mission to Civilize: The Republican Idea of Empire in PDF

By Alice Conklin

ISBN-10: 0804729999

ISBN-13: 9780804729994

ISBN-10: 0804740127

ISBN-13: 9780804740128

This booklet addresses a crucial yet frequently neglected query within the background of contemporary France and smooth colonialism: How did the 3rd Republic, very hot for its professed democratic values, permit itself to be seduced by means of the insidious and chronic attraction of a “civilizing” ideology with specified racist overtones? via concentrating on a specific workforce of colonial officers in a particular setting―the governors normal of French West Africa from 1895 to 1930―the writer argues that the appropriate of a distinct civilizing project had a decisive effect on colonial policymaking and at the evolution of recent French republicanism generally.
French rules of civilization―simultaneously republican, racist, and modern―encouraged the governors common within the 1890’s to assault such “feudal” African associations as aristocratic rule and slavery in ways in which referred again to France’s personal event of progressive switch. mockingly, neighborhood directors within the 1920’s additionally invoked those similar rules to justify such reactionary regulations because the reintroduction of compelled exertions, arguing that coercion, which inculcated a piece ethic within the “lazy” African, legitimized his lack of freedom. via continually invoking the tips of “civilization,” colonial coverage makers in Dakar and Paris controlled to imprecise the basic contradictions among “the rights of guy” assured in a republican democracy and the forcible acquisition of an empire that violates these rights.
In probing the “republican” size of French colonization in West Africa, this publication additionally sheds new gentle at the evolution of the 3rd Republic among 1895 and 1930. one of many author’s imperative arguments is that the assumption of a civilized undertaking underwent dramatic alterations, as a result of ideological, political, and monetary changes taking place concurrently in France and its colonies. for instance, revolts in West Africa in addition to a extra conservative weather within the metropole after international struggle I produced within the governors common a brand new admire for “feudal” chiefs, whom the French as soon as despised yet now reinstated as a method of regulate. This discovery of an African “tradition” in flip strengthened a reassertion of conventional values in France because the 3rd Republic struggled to recapture the realm it had “lost” at Verdun.

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A Mission to Civilize: The Republican Idea of Empire in France and West Africa, 1895-1930 by Alice Conklin

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