Half a century later Aimé Césaire’s Discourse on Colonialism has lost nothing of its dynamism and incantory power. Robin Kelley’s introduction is a valuable tool. Discourse on Colonialism [Aimé Césaire, Joan Pinkham] on * FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Césaire’s essay stands as an important. Discourse on colonialism. By: Philip Janzen. Today marks ten years since Aimé Césaire’s death. What would he have thought about the state of.

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Log In Sign Up. It had “overthrown, one after another, the ramparts behind which European civilization could have developed freely” p.

Aime Cesaire – Discourse on Colonialism | Baba Jallow –

The entire gamut of European elites, Cesaire argues – from journalists, to sociologists, theologians and academics – share responsibility for the crime of colonialism. In seeing and treating other people as animals, the colonizer transforms himself into an animal.

He only examines it. Yet the streets of Dakar bore other legacies too. This page was last edited on 14 Decemberat Colonialism, Cesaire argues, decivilizes, dehumanizes, brutalizes and degrades the colonizer.

Nevertheless, Cesaire was right in insisting that colonized peoples had great civilizations, reminiscent of Mazrui’s Romantic Gloriana – empires, kingdoms; large, elaborate, well organized bureaucracies. Two years ago, I was doing research in Martinique.

cezaire They are relations in which “there is room only for forced labor, intimidation, pressure, the police, taxation, theft, rape, compulsory crops, mistrust, arrogance, self-complacency, swinishness, brainless elites, degraded masses. The statements of people coloniialism M. Colonialism – French colonialism in particular – Cesaire argues, could only contemplate the idea of other cultures being integrated into the French family. The bourgeoisie, as a class, “is condemned to take responsibility for all the barbarism of history, the tortures of the Middle Ages and the Inquisition, war-mongering and the appeal to the raison d’Etat, racism and slavery, in short, everything against which it protested in unforgettable terms at a time when, as the dixcourse class, it was the incarnation of human progress” p.

The architecture of the rond-points and Le Plateau reflected decades of French occupation, as did the supermarkets Casino and telecom companies Orange. Cesaite with that warning against impending American imperialism, Cesaire ends his discourse on colonialism in a flourish of Communist optimism.

Point to the fact that the Madagascans had a history of revolt against French occupation, and Mannoni would tell you that was simply the expression of neurotic behavior. Similar statements have been made by people like the French philosopher Renan, Indochina governor-general Albert Sarraut, and many other French religious and political leaders of the day.


The idea of France being integrated into other families was too monstrous to imagine, because a superior civilization cannot possibly be integrated into an diacourse civilization. It is “a civilization which is morally diseased, which irresistibly, progressing from one consequence to another, one denial to another, calls for its Hitler.

Discourse on Colonialism

He rejects his critics’ accusation that he is calling for a return to some past civilization. A civilization that chooses to close its eyes to its most crucial problems is a stricken civilization. Robin Kelly notes in his introduction to the edition of Discourse, however, that for Cesaire, the colonial struggle was not a fight between capitalism and socialism in the orthodox Marxist sense, but a struggle for the total overthrow of a racist colonialist system which would open the way to a bright new world of freedom and equality.

Indeed, this was the intended? The space I need for my rage was taken from me long ago.

And to buttress his point, Cesaire quotes Frobenius: Click here to sign up. He puts it all plainly. Mannoni, “who has an answer for everything”, would come up with a fitting response and justification in favor of the superior civilization. Aime Cesaire – Discourse on Colonialism. While the term became one of the most incriminatory labels of the 20th century, the reassertion of far-right ideologies and previously fringe political groups across ….

Even if it did bring civilizations into contact, Cesaire argues, it certainly was not the best form of discouree. The very idea was an oxymoron.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. It is a matter of the Revolution – the one which, until such a time as there is a classless ceeaire, will substitute for the narrow tyranny of a dehumanized bourgeoisie the preponderance of the only class that still has a universal mission, because it suffers in its flesh from all the wrongs of history, from colonialis, the universal wrongs: Evil is nothing new to man, Cesaire admits.

White History Month Mar I had first read the Discours years earlier in an undergraduate seminar. He castigated the casual complicity of Western bourgeoisie in all forms of violence and oppression around the world. He defines the relationship as one limited to ” forced laborintimidation, pressure, the police, taxation, theft, rape, compulsory crops, contempt, mistrust, arrogance, self-complacency, swinishness, brainless elites, degraded masses”.


When Nazi Germany unleashed its war machine on the Jews and other nations of Europe, cesaore colonial powers reacted with horror and indignation.

It is “about societies drained of their essence, cultures trampled underfoot, institutions undermined, lands confiscated, religions smashed, magnificent artistic creations destroyed, extraordinary possibilities wiped out. While picking up groceries one Saturday, I started browsing through the Carrefour newsstand.

Colonialksm Reading Politics Jan What he is doing, he says, is helping create a news society, “a society rich with all the productive power of modern times, warm with all the fraternity of olden days” p. But bourgeois history is the history of evil and plunder. The colonized are not human beings worthy of human rights or human respect, but things merely to discoudse used, driven around, beaten and, when the need arises, killed in the name of a law and order rooted in injustice and barbarism.

He cites for special mention writers like Gourou, who claims that civilization is only found in the temperate zones, that the tropical zones never had civilizations; of men like the Belgian missionary Reverend Temple, whose book Bantu Philosophy purported to counteract the forces of “communistic materialism” and save the Negroes from being turned by that devilish ideology into “moral vagabonds. Until that time, Cesaire suggests, the peoples of Western Europe were accomplices to horrendous crimes comparable to the crimes of the German Nazis and Italian Fascists.

A civilization that uses its principles for trickery and deceit is a dying civilization. The relations inherent in colonization are relations of power and domination. The power of the colonized peoples in the face of colonial oppression and repression in the colonies, Cesaire suggests, lies in the fact that they know that Europe is lying and therefore weak. As I stood in front of the plaque, I overheard the puzzled comments of other tourists as they moved past: American domination, he warns, is “the only domination from which one never recovers.

Yet another colonialist, Saint-Arnaud, gallantly declares: He rejects Europe’s a posteriori claim that it brought material progress and Europeanization to Africa. Mannoni that colonialism was a divinely ordained mission of the West, and that all the Madagascan craved was to be able to depend on somebody else: