"The French colonial edifice, like so many others, was an empire of exceptions, achieved by slow aggregation. If we take up Frederick Cooper’s invitation, itself inspired by James Scott, to 'think like an Empire,' then we also have to grapple with the differentiation that empires presented, and its legacies."
The first part of the talk is located at the intersection of the histories of Africa, Europe and World War II: it focuses on an imperial schism that tore French colonies apart during the Second World War and led Central Africa to serve as the foundation for General de Gaulle’s Free French Movement. The presentation recovers multiple indigenous voices while also engaging with visual culture, the question
of decolonization, and the extraction of resources. The talk then provides a glimpse of some of Professor Jennings's future transnational research, focusing on intellectual synergies between Surrealism and Negritude, most notably.
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