• #David_Van_Reybrouck : « Il existe une forme de #colonisation de l’avenir »

    Dix ans après l’épais « Congo, une histoire », l’historien flamand déploie une histoire de la #décolonisation de l’#Indonésie. Entretien sur la #mémoire_coloniale, la #révolution et l’#héritage du #non-alignement forgé lors de la #conférence_de_Bandung en 1955.

    « Ce qui rend la Revolusi indonésienne passionnante, c’est l’énorme impact qu’elle a eu sur le reste de l’humanité : non seulement sur la décolonisation d’autres pays, mais plus encore sur la coopération entre tous ces nouveaux États. »

    David Van Reybrouck, écrivain et essayiste, auteur notamment de Congo, une histoire (prix Médicis Essai 2012), de Contre les élections ou de Zinc est un touche-à-tout obsédé par la volonté d’élargir sans cesse le spectre et le registre des expériences, qu’il s’agisse de promouvoir des innovations démocratiques ou des manières d’écrire l’histoire.

    Pour rédiger Revolusi. L’Indonésie et la naissance du monde moderne, que viennent de publier les éditions Actes Sud dans une traduction d’Isabelle Rosselin et Philippe Noble, David Van Reybrouck a mené près de deux cents entretiens dans près d’une dizaine de langues, et fait un usage inédit de Tinder, s’en servant non comme d’une application de rencontres mais comme un moyen de contacter les grands-parents de celles et ceux qui voulaient bien « matcher » avec lui dans tel ou tel espace du gigantesque archipel indonésien.

    Le résultat de cinq années de travail fait plus de 600 pages et remonte une histoire mal connue, d’autant que les Pays-Bas ont longtemps mis un écran entre leur monde et la violence du passé colonial de leur pays, mis en œuvre non pas par la Couronne ou le gouvernement lui-même mais par la VOC, la Compagnie Unie des Indes orientales, parce que « l’aventure coloniale néerlandaise n’a pas commencé par la soif de terres nouvelles, mais par la recherche de saveurs ».

    Cela l’a mené à la rencontre d’un géant démographique méconnu, et à une mosaïque politique et linguistique inédite, puisqu’un terrien sur 27 est indonésien, et que 300 groupes ethniques différents y parlent 700 langues. Entretien sur la mémoire coloniale, la révolution et l’héritage du non-alignement forgé lors de la conférence de Bandung en 1955.

    Mediapart : Zinc racontait le destin des plus petites entités territoriales et démographiques du monde. À l’inverse, votre dernier ouvrage déroule une copieuse histoire de l’Indonésie, fondée sur de très nombreux entretiens oraux. Pourquoi l’Indonésie demeure-t-elle pour nous un « géant silencieux », pour reprendre vos termes ?

    David Van Reybrouck : L’Indonésie est devenue un pays invisible, alors qu’il y a encore une soixantaine d’années, elle dominait la scène internationale, surtout après la conférence de Bandung de 1955 [qui réunissait pour la première fois les représentants de 29 pays africains et asiatiques - ndlr], qu’on peut qualifier de « 14-Juillet » à l’échelle mondiale.

    Sukarno, son président, était alors reçu à Washington, au Vatican, en Chine. Comment un pays aussi central dans les années 1940-1950 a-t-il pu devenir aussi invisible, alors qu’il demeure la quatrième puissance au monde, par sa démographie, et qu’il est devenu un acteur économique essentiel en Asie du Sud-Est ?

    J’ai l’impression que plus son économie devient importante, plus sa diplomatie devient discrète. C’est une grande démocratie qui, pour sa taille, se porte bien si on la compare à l’Inde ou même aux États-Unis, même s’il y a des tensions, notamment entre l’État laïc et l’État musulman, comme en Turquie.

    L’importance de l’Indonésie au sortir de la guerre était aussi liée à la figure de Sukarno, atypique dans le paysage politique indonésien : flamboyant, charismatique, charmeur, vaniteux, insupportable, brillant. Il me fait penser à Mohamed Ali en raison de la vitesse à laquelle il débitait ses mots. Il pouvait enthousiasmer l’audience.

    Le président actuel, Joko Widodo, surnommé Jokowi, est compétent, mais il a la particularité d’être un petit commerçant n’appartenant ni à l’élite traditionnelle ni à celle qui s’est forgée pendant et après l’indépendance.

    Pourquoi avoir choisi de raconter l’émancipation de l’Indonésie, dix ans après votre somme sur le « Congo » ?

    Pour des raisons à la fois subjectives et objectives. C’est un pays immense dont on ne parle jamais, le premier pays à avoir proclamé son indépendance, deux jours après la fin de la Seconde Guerre mondiale, mais cela demeure peu connu, même les Indonésiens ne s’en vantent pas.

    J’étais encore au Congo en train de faire mes recherches dans une petite ville proche de l’océan lorsque j’ai rencontré un bibliothécaire de l’époque coloniale qui n’avait plus que 300 livres en flamand. Parmi eux se trouvait Max Haavelar, le grand roman anticolonial hollandais du XIXe siècle – l’équivalent de Moby Dick ou de La Case de l’Oncle Tom –, écrit par Eduard Douwes Dekker, dit Multatuli, un pseudonyme emprunté au latin qui signifie « J’ai beaucoup supporté ». Le roman est écrit à partir de son expérience de fonctionnaire envoyé aux Indes néerlandaises, où il découvre l’exploitation coloniale dans la culture du café.

    À partir de ce point de départ, j’avais gardé en tête l’idée de m’intéresser à l’Indonésie, d’autant que le roi belge Léopold II s’est beaucoup inspiré de la colonisation hollandaise, notamment du principe d’utiliser l’aristocratie indigène pour mener une politique de domination indirecte. Max Havelaar dépeint d’ailleurs très bien la corruption de l’élite indigène qui exploite son propre peuple.

    Pourquoi insister sur l’idée de révolution plutôt que celle de « guerre d’indépendance » pour désigner ce qui s’est déroulé en Indonésie en 1945 ?

    Ce fut à la fois une révolution et une guerre d’indépendance. La proclamation d’indépendance, le 17 août 1945, n’a pas été jugée crédible par les Occidentaux, et les Britanniques ont cru pouvoir reprendre le contrôle du territoire et le redonner aux Hollandais. Mais cela a provoqué une colère immense de la jeunesse indonésienne, dont j’ai retrouvé des témoins qui racontent une expérience particulièrement humiliante et répressive de la colonisation britannique dans les années 1930.

    Lorsque les Japonais arrivent en Indonésie en 1942, ils commencent par donner à cette jeunesse une leçon de fierté. Ils politisent les jeunes générations à travers des slogans, des entraînements de gymnastique, des films, des affiches… À partir de 1943, cette politisation se militarise, et les jeunes apprennent à manier les armes, à faire d’une tige de bambou verte une arme blanche.

    Mais les nonagénaires que j’ai interviewés, qui avaient pu au départ accueillir les Japonais avec reconnaissance, virent ensuite leurs pères emmenés de force comme travailleurs, des millions de personnes mourir de la famine en 1944, leurs sœurs et leurs mères enlevées pour les troupes japonaises pour devenir « des femmes de réconfort ».

    La sympathie initiale pour les Japonais s’est retournée contre eux, et la guerre d’indépendance contre les colons a ainsi pris l’air d’une révolution comparable à la Révolution française, mais menée par des personnes beaucoup plus jeunes. La volonté de renverser le régime était présente d’emblée. Alors que Sukarno était encore en train de négocier avec les Japonais, ce sont les plus jeunes qui l’ont poussé à proclamer l’indépendance sans attendre, avec une certaine improvisation et un drapeau indonésien cousu par sa femme la veille…

    Très vite, on a établi les ébauches de ce nouvel État. Début septembre, les Britanniques arrivent. Les Hollandais sont toujours dans les camps d’internement du Japon, ou alors partis en Australie ou au Sri Lanka. Les Britanniques assurent préparer le retour, désarmer les Japonais. Un premier bateau arrive, puis un deuxième, avec quelques officiers hollandais à bord et des parachutistes pour aller dans les camps d’internement des Japonais.

    Comme souvent dans les révolutions, celle-ci a eu sa part de violence, avec des atrocités commises envers les Indo-Européens, les Chinois et les Hollandais détenus dans les camps par les Japonais, et un bilan total qu’on a longtemps estimé à 20 000 morts, mais que certains estiment aujourd’hui plutôt autour de 6 000.

    Vous avez rencontré des survivants des massacres commis par les Hollandais. Beaucoup vous ont dit : « Vous êtes le premier Blanc à venir nous interroger. » Est-ce que cela vous a questionné ?

    J’ai interviewé presque 200 personnes, la plupart avaient au-delà de 90 ans. J’ai passé un an sur le terrain, même si ça n’était pas d’un bloc. Pour mon livre Congo, j’avais onze cahiers d’entretiens. Là, j’en avais 28. Je me suis retrouvé avec une documentation extrêmement riche. Il fallait organiser tout cela avec des résumés des entretiens, des schémas pour les axes chronologiques, les protagonistes, les figurants…

    Personne n’a refusé de témoigner et j’étais assez étonné de ce qui s’est dévoilé. La plupart des témoins parlent plus facilement des moments où ils étaient victimes que bourreaux, mais j’ai retrouvé des Hollandais et des Indonésiens qui n’hésitaient pas à décrire en détail les tortures qu’ils avaient eux-mêmes commises.

    J’avais la crainte qu’on juge que ce n’était pas à un Blanc de raconter cette histoire, mais j’avais la facilité de pouvoir dire que j’étais belge. Beaucoup de mes témoins ne connaissaient pas la Belgique. La différence aussi est que le souvenir du passé colonial est peut-être moins vif en Indonésie qu’au Congo, qui demeure dans une situation économique pénible. Même si l’Indonésie est un pays pauvre, il se trouve dans une dynamique positive.

    Comment la mémoire du passé colonial est-elle organisée en Indonésie et aux Pays-Bas ?

    Je suis frappé par le talent de l’oubli de la mémoire coloniale indonésienne. Nous, nous sommes obsédés par le passé. C’est important de le travailler, d’avoir une introspection morale, mais il faut aussi le laisser cicatriser pour avancer. Le livre se termine avec l’idée que le rétroviseur n’est pas le seul champ de vision à explorer.

    Souvent les traumatismes sont trop grands, la souffrance est encore trop forte, mais il existe aussi un conditionnement culturel différent. Pour la jeune génération indonésienne, l’époque coloniale est révolue. On trouve des cafés à Djakarta décorés dans un style colonial. Il y a en quelque sorte une appropriation culturelle du passé colonial, qui se voit lors de la fête de l’Indépendance, où il existe un folklore inspiré de la Hollande mais où personne ne parle de ce pays.

    Un sondage de YouGov, commandé par les Britanniques, a récemment cherché à savoir quelle était la nation la plus fière de son passé colonial. Les Britanniques, qui ont encore des colonies, pensaient que ce serait eux. Et, à leur grande surprise et soulagement, ce sont les Hollandais qui remportent haut la main ce triste concours de mémoire coloniale ! Plus de 50 % des sondés hollandais sont fiers du passé colonial, et seulement 6 % expriment de la honte…

    Ces dernières années, il y a cependant eu une accélération aux Pays-Bas de la mise en mémoire du passé colonial avec des excuses du roi, du premier ministre, une exposition au Rijksmuseum d’Amsterdam…

    Mais cette histoire demeure largement ignorée. Ma compagne est hollandaise, mais s’étonnait chaque soir de ce que je lui racontais et qui ne lui avait pas été enseigné, comme l’existence d’un véritable « goulag » où étaient envoyés, dans les années 1920-1930, les indépendantistes et les communistes, ou le fait que la Hollande exigeait des milliards de florins pour reconnaître l’indépendance et payer le coût de la guerre qu’elle avait perdue…

    Le non-alignement, qu’on a vu ressurgir au moment de l’invasion de l’Ukraine par la Russie, a-t-il le même sens qu’en 1955 ? On voit comment il peut tendre à se confondre avec un refus de prendre la mesure de l’impérialisme russe. Vous semble-t-il malgré cela une position d’avenir ?

    Je trouve que nous assistons là à une perversion du mouvement du non-alignement. L’esprit de Bandung consiste à refuser l’impérialisme et constitue un mouvement moral fondé sur les idéaux de liberté, d’égalité et de fraternité. Si n’être pas aligné aujourd’hui, c’est ne pas s’exprimer sur la Russie, un Nehru, un Nasser ou un Mandela ont de quoi se retourner dans leur tombe. Le non-alignement est un idéalisme géopolitique, pas la somme de calculs économiques.

    Vous écrivez : « Même si nous parvenons un jour à apurer complètement le passif du colonialisme d’antan, nous n’aurons encore rien fait pour enrayer la colonisation dramatique à laquelle nous nous livrons aujourd’hui, celle de l’avenir. L’humanité confisque le siècle à venir avec la même rigueur impitoyable dont elle fit preuve aux temps anciens pour s’approprier des continents entiers. Le colonialisme est un fait non plus territorial, mais temporel. » Solder les comptes du colonialisme est-il une priorité si on veut faire face collectivement à un défi qui se situe à l’échelle planétaire ?

    Le passé est une plaie qu’on a très mal guérie, pas seulement dans le Sud. Elle continue à ternir ou à influencer les rapports entre Nord et Sud. Il faut s’occuper de cette plaie, d’autant plus qu’elle est toujours grande ouverte, comme le montre une carte des pays les plus vulnérables au changement climatique qui est superposable à celle des anciens pays colonisés. Ce qui se joue avec le changement climatique, ce n’est pas un ours polaire sur une banquise qui fond, c’est d’abord ce qui arrive aux peuples du Sud. Quand on parle de colonialisme, on pense en premier lieu au passé, mais il existe une forme de colonisation de l’avenir qui est menée par les mêmes pays qui ont été les acteurs du colonialisme du passé. Il est faux de dire que c’est l’humanité en général qui est responsable du changement climatique, les responsabilités ne sont pas égales.

    Pourquoi écrivez-vous alors que « le quatrième pays du monde n’aurait jamais vu le jour sans le soutien d’adolescents et de jeunes adultes – encore que j’ose espérer que les jeunes activistes de la “génération climat” recourent à des tactiques moins violentes ». Ne faut-il pas une « revolusi » pour le climat ?

    J’ai travaillé sur ce livre au moment où le mouvement de Greta Thunberg faisait parler de lui. Il y avait un regard condescendant sur ces adolescents, les considérant comme une forme politique non sérieuse. Regardez pourtant ce que la jeunesse a fait en Indonésie. Si le pays en est là, c’est grâce aux jeunes, même si j’espère que Greta Thunberg ne va pas se saisir de lances en bambou !

    Je participe à différentes conventions sur le climat qui se déroulent mieux qu’en France, où la transmission vers le politique a été mal faite. Je pense qu’il faut plutôt penser à une désobéissance civile, qui relève d’abord pour moi d’une désobéissance fiscale. Au milieu du XIXe siècle, David Thoreau refuse de payer l’impôt dans l’État du Massachusetts à cause de l’esclavagisme et de la guerre contre le Mexique. Il a été arrêté au bout de six ans.

    Regardons le budget de nos États, et calculons quel pourcentage des dépenses de l’État belge ou hollandais va vers le secteur fossile. Si c’est 18 %, on enlève 18 % de nos impôts et on le met au pot commun. Quand les lois ne sont pas justes, il est juste de leur désobéir.

    Dans la longue liste de vos remerciements, vous remerciez un tableau, « Composition en noir » de Nicolas de Staël, c’est étrange, non ?

    Je remercie deux peintures, celle que vous évoquez et une d’Affandi, un peintre indonésien. J’étais en train d’écrire, je cherchais encore le bon registre pour décrire les atrocités, sans esquiver les détails, mais sans perdre de vue l’ensemble. J’ai une passion pour la peinture et les arts plastiques, qui me vient de ma mère, elle-même peintre. Je me trouvais donc à Zurich, en pleine écriture de mon livre, et je vois cette toile qui m’a montré le chemin, fait de noirceur, d’humanisme, de précision et de lueur aussi. Celle d’Affandi aussi, parce qu’elle était faite de violence et de joie. Il aurait été considéré comme un peintre majeur s’il avait été américain ou français.

    La forme originale, très personnelle de cet ouvrage, comme celui sur le Congo, interpelle. Vous humanisez une histoire abstraite en ayant recours à la non-fiction littéraire. Pourquoi ? Pour la rendre plus accessible ?

    Le discours sur le Congo est trop souvent un monologue eurocentrique. Je voulais rédiger un dialogue en donnant la parole aux Congolais, mais aussi en écoutant des Belges. Dans ce livre sur l’Indonésie, je ne vais pas seulement du monologue vers le dialogue, mais je tends vers la polyphonie. Je suis parti aussi au Japon ou au Népal. Il était important de montrer la dimension internationale de cette histoire et de ne pas la réduire aux rapports verticaux et en silo entre les anciennes métropoles et les anciennes colonies, d’où le sous-titre de l’ouvrage : « et la naissance du monde moderne ».

    https://www.mediapart.fr/journal/international/011022/david-van-reybrouck-il-existe-une-forme-de-colonisation-de-l-avenir
    #Pays-Bas #violence #passé_colonial #livre #Sukarno #guerre_d'indépendance #politisation #fierté #Japon #torture #oubli #appropriation_culturelle #plaie #colonisation_de_l'avenir #désobéissance_civile #désobéissance_fiscale

    ping @cede

    • #Revolusi. L’Indonésie et la naissance du monde moderne

      Quelque dix ans après "Congo", David Van Reybrouck publie sa deuxième grande étude historique, consacrée cette fois à la saga de la décolonisation de l’Indonésie - premier pays colonisé à avoir proclamé son indépendance, le 17 août 1945. Il s’agit pour lui de comprendre l’histoire de l’émancipation des peuples non européens tout au long du siècle écoulé, et son incidence sur le monde contemporain.
      Fidèle à la méthode suivie dès son premier ouvrage, l’auteur se met lui-même en scène au cours de son enquête, alternant sans cesse, et avec bonheur, exposé de type scientifique et “reportage” à la première personne – ce qui rend la lecture de l’ouvrage à la fois aisée et passionnante.

      https://www.actes-sud.fr/catalogue/litterature/revolusi

  • Mia Couto, le Mozambique au cœur des mots (28mn)

    https://www.radiofrance.fr/franceculture/podcasts/bienvenue-au-club/mia-couto-le-mozambique-au-coeur-des-mots-8966420

    L’écrivain mozambicain lusophone Mia Couto est notre invité aujourd’hui. A l’occasion de la parution de son dernier ouvrage, « Le Cartographe des absences », il revient sur le passé de son pays et sur ses propres souvenirs.

    Après La Véranda au frangipanier (2000), L’Accordeur de silences (2011) ou encore Les sables de l’empereur (2020), l’écrivain Mia Couto revient avec Le Cartographe des absences (traduit par Elisabeth Monteiro Rodrigues, Métailié, septembre 2022). Un ouvrage où le réel - celui de la guerre, de la colonisation -, côtoie la poésie.

    #Afrique#Mozambique#Littérature#Poesie#Lusophonie#Colonialisme#Décolonisation

  • We must turn the meaning of anti-colonial into an instinct.

    “Ten Theses on #Marxism and #Decolonisation”, the latest dossier from the #Tricontinental - adapted from a Vijay Prashad lecture with a foreword by Abel Prieto.
    https://thetricontinental.org/dossier-ten-theses-on-marxism-and-decolonisation

    With roots in a Cuban perspective (Fidel #Castro is heavily cited throughout), the dossier presents a series of charges against neoliberal #globalisation as well as those of its radical adversaries that Prashad judges ineffective: #postmarxism, #Afropessimism, #anarchism...

    The dossier thinks that #neoliberalism should be fought, instead, by a “national liberation Marxism”. The Marxist tradition involves a fight for "dignity", against class and other oppressions; national liberation is freedom from #imperialism: the gaining of "sovereignty". It is to these twin fights that we must return.

    Give it a read, or even just a scroll for the beautiful art used to illustrate the publication. Above a gorgeous watercolour by Osmond Watson, the text concludes:

    Certainly, socialism is not going to appear magically. It must be fought for and built, our struggles deepened, our social connections tightened, our cultures enriched. Now is the time for a united front, to bring together the working class and the peasantry as well as allied classes, to increase the confidence of workers, and to clarify our theory. To unite the working class and the peasantry as well as allied classes requires the unity of all left and progressive forces. Our divides in this time of great danger must not be central; our unity is essential. Humanity demands it.

  • 6 Ways to Start Decolonizing Data for Development Today - ICTworks
    https://www.ictworks.org/decolonizing-data-for-development

    Despite good intentions, data is sometimes collected, analyzed and used in ways that can replicate or even amplify existing injustices and inequalities. This happens because data and data-driven technologies are often treated as neutral tools. However, since these tools are developed by human beings within a social and cultural context, values and world views can be embedded within them. Decolonizing data for development approaches can help us to unpack this.

    #Décolonisation #Données #Aide_au_Développement

  • L’effervescence de l’indépendance algérienne
    https://laviedesidees.fr/Rahal-Algerie-1962-Une-histoire-populaire.html

    À propos de : Malika Rahal, #Algérie 1962. Une #Histoire populaire, La Découverte. Comment l’année 1962, où le pouvoir bascule des autorités coloniales aux représentants du peuple algérien, a-t-elle été vécue par la simple population ? Faute d’archives, Malika Rahal propose une histoire incarnée des émotions.

    #décolonisation #indépendance #émotion

  • Decolonising Settler Cities - Antipode Online
    https://antipodeonline.org/iwas-1617-porter

    ❝Decolonising Settler Cities, Post-Workshop Report, May 2018

    Professor Libby Porter (Centre for Urban Research, RMIT University)

    Dr Tod Jones and Dr Shaphan Cox (Department of Planning and Geography, Curtin University)

    Professor Cheryl Kickett-Tucker (Translational Research Centre for Aboriginal Knowledges and Wellbeing, Curtin University)

    Summary of achievements

    Decolonising Settler Cities was a series of events held throughout 2017 bringing together Indigenous and non-Indigenous activists, scholars, communities and practitioners to share their questions and critiques, experience and knowledge of cities as settler-colonial modes of power, and the possibilities and obstacles they present for Indigenous land justice.

    Every Australian city is built on the unceded country[1] of distinct, sovereign Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who continue to practice their laws, cultures, rights and interests under persistent regimes of settler-colonial power. Yet this fact has still not penetrated urban scholarship and practice in Australia. There has been remarkably little effort made to interrogate how this fact unsettles the categories, theories and knowledges used by urban geography and built environment disciplines to understand and practice the Australian city. Despite some key interventions in the field from a handful of scholars, there remains a profound silence in mainstream Australian urban geographical scholarship and practice on Indigenous rights and justice. The urban context is also a stubbornly difficult place for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to realise land justice. While nearly 80% of Indigenous people in Australia live in cities, less than 1% of the land base returned after decades of their struggle is in urban areas. The question of the urban context, then, for Indigenous land and cultural justice is both urgent and vital.

    Our purpose in this series of events was to bring these issues more sharply onto the agenda for radical urban geography in Australia and beyond. Building on recent efforts to bring critical analyses of urbanisation and settler colonial contexts together, the events contributed to efforts toward reconfiguring Australian urban scholarship and practice to properly attend to Indigenous land and cultural justice.

    We held a special panel session within the annual conference of the Institute of Australian Geographers (IAG) in July 2017 in Brisbane, Queensland. This lively discussion panel, “Practising paradox: Decolonising urban geographies from the settler-colonial University”, attracted around 20 participants and was led by Libby Porter and Tod Jones with special guest Yvonne Underhill-Sem.

    In September 2017, we held a two-day symposium in Perth, Western Australia. This attracted more than 60 delegates from around Australia and beyond, with around 50% Indigenous and 50% non-Indigenous participation and a mix of disciplinary backgrounds. The program included special guests Linda Kennedy and Oren Yiftachel. The event was co-designed between Indigenous and non-Indigenous organisers as a way to unsettle and challenge the conventions of knowing and sharing knowledge that tend to prevail in western scholarly contexts.

    Program and book of abstracts

    The symposium began with a yarning circle, facilitated by Carol Dowling, a Nyoongar scholar and cultural knowledge holder of yarning circle methods. For three hours on the first morning, Carol held open a specially designed space for the open sharing of ourselves as participants in terms of who we are in relation to Indigenous sovereignties and laws, and our individual experiences of settler-colonial power relations.

    Carol Dowling facilitating the yarning circle

    The program included papers on Aboriginal land rights, treaty negotiations, place-making and property, justice, urban design practices, education and pedagogy among other important themes. Many of the papers were joint presentations between Indigenous and non-Indigenous collaborators.

    One session involved around ten young people (aged 11-19) from the Kaat Koort n Hoops Peer Ambassador program in a panel session, facilitated by Cheryl Kickett-Tucker where they discussed what self-determination means to them in an urban context and some of the ways they are leading the future.

    Kaat Koort n Hoops honours the importance of education and the future aspirations upon wellbeing, academic outcomes and transitions. KKnH is an innovative community-led and sustainable program comprised of weekly wellbeing activities combined with weekly organized sport activities developed and delivered by Aboriginal young people (KKnH Peer Ambassadors). The purpose of this innovation is to provide real life, practical, leadership opportunities to Peer Ambassadors who will learn and teach young peers (KKnH participants) about holistic wellbeing (using organized sport as the vehicle). KKnH aims to provide Peer Ambassadors with a culturally empowering space to learn new skills, knowledge and confidence in a fun and relevant work environment so that they take a proactive approach to their life choices for the future and for today.

    fig4

    Kaat Koort n Hoops Peer Ambassadors

    As part of our outcomes, Peer Ambassadors partake in external, value add activities such as the Decolonising Settler Cities international symposium. Over three weeks leading up to the symposium, ten young Ambassadors (both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal aged 12-23 years) worked independently and collectively to workshop their ideas of decolonization from their perspectives. At the symposium they led a young persons’ panel to present their ideas and take questions from the audience. They worked alongside KKnH Project Director, symposium co-convenor and working party member Cheryl Kickett-Tucker.

    We were led by Nyoongar Elder Noel Nannup on a walking tour to meet and know the country on which we were meeting through Nyoongar law and culture. We were able to film most of the symposium and have been able to create an archive shared among all the participants at this stage, as we work together on other negotiated outcomes that might be enabled by this archive.

    fig5

    Noel Nannup leading us toward knowing Nyoongar country

    Organising these events has helped toward creating a movement within Australian urban geography and cognate built environment disciplines towards a decolonizing ethics and politics in the service of self-determining Indigenous justice. There is evidence that such a movement has emerged and is gaining some momentum. At the 2017 RGS-IBG conference, two of the organisers of these Antipode Foundation-funded events convened a special paper session based on the IAG panel discussion, focused on decolonising knowledges within universities. The session included papers from Indigenous and non-Indigenous scholars on the paradoxes and challenges of decolonial practice within Universities. The Urban Geography Study Group of the Institute of Australian Geographers commissioned Linda Kennedy to write a “Leading Insight” essay on decolonising urban practice. This achieves a widening of the voices heard in Australian urban geographical studies, in formats that refuse the forms of white knowledge-creation that we have sought to challenge. A number of postgraduate students are taking up these issues and organising their own events and discussions. We have also worked with Clare Land, author of Decolonising Solidarity, to develop a reading and action group based on her book to further develop decolonial practices of solidarity and scholarship.

    Challenges encountered

    We encountered thankfully few major challenges or problems, but some of our intentions and program had to change to accommodate shifting conditions. A first challenge was that we were unable to host the one-day online forum originally planned. A number of conditions conspired to undermine this plan, perhaps the most significant being that as an organising team we were a little removed from the main organising committee of that event. It is likely to happen in 2018, and we can support the event and create the synergies originally planned.

    A second unfortunate change of plans occurred when Tony Birch was unable to join the Perth symposium at the last minute due to a serious illness in his family. While we missed Tony’s voice and had already paid some amounts for his travel which were not refundable, his withdrawal did not have a major effect on the outcomes we were able to achieve.

    Finally, practising decolonising ethics and philosophies within the organising of these efforts is a challenging undertaking. One of the most instructive dimensions of the work was where our intentions and practices came into conflict with the norms and expectations particularly of Western universities and also expectations and conventions within the scholarly community. We continue to reflect on these challenges and they will form part of our published outputs in the coming months.

    Plans for the future

    The 2018 NZGS-IAG conference will feature a special “Leading Insight” session sponsored by the Urban Geography Study Group on furthering the theme of decolonising urban knowledges, including published output forthcoming in Australian Geographer.

    We’re also planning a series of published outputs, including a co-authored article from the Perth symposium and a co-authored article from the RGS-IBG special session.

    Note

    [1] A word used widely by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Australia to denote their special relationship with their lands and waters. Country is a living, sentient being in itself, an interconnected web of people, environment and non-human species.

    *

    Symposium, 26-27 September, Perth, Australia

    Decolonising Settler Cities is supported by an Antipode Foundation International Workshop Award. The award supports our pursuit in this symposium of knowing the city differently through conversation with Indigenous custodians, activists, scholars, elders and practitioners, and to use this as the basis for rethinking settler-colonial urbanism. Keynote speakers include Tony Birch, Linda Kennedy and Oren Yiftachel.

    There is still time to make a submission of interest to Decolonising Settler Cities. The call for participants closes on 1 June; please make a submission of 300 words to Tod Jones at Curtin University (T.Jones@curtin.edu.au) or Libby Porter at RMIT University (libby.porter@rmit.edu.au). More information is available on our website here.

    Please join us in seeking an agenda for establishing decolonising practices in Australian cities.

    We acknowledge and thank the Wadjuk Noongar people on whose territory Decolonising Settler Cities will be held. This symposium is hosted by Curtin University’s Translational Research Centre for Aboriginal Knowledges, the Centre for Aboriginal Studies, and the School of Built Environment in collaboration with the Centre for Urban Research, RMIT University. We acknowledge support and funds from the Institute of Australian Geographer"

    PDF of the workshop report: https://resources.curtin.edu.au/file/faculty/hum/Decolonising-Settler-Cities-Program.pdf

    #Decolonisation #Décolonial #ville #Australie #Indigenous

  • Decolonize this Place (DTP)- New York
    https://decolonizethisplace.org/faxxx-1

    Decolonize This Place is an action-oriented movement and decolonial formation in New York City and beyond.

    Decolonize this Place (DTP) is an action-oriented movement and decolonial formation in New York City. Facilitated by MTL+, DTP consists of over 30 collaborators, consisting of grassroots groups and art collectives that seek to resist, unsettle, and reclaim the city. The organizing and action bring together many strands of analysis and traditions of resistance: Indigenous insurgence, Black liberation, free Palestine, free Puerto Rico, the struggles of workers and debtors, de-gentrification, migrant justice, dismantling patriarchy, and more. In some cases, we have used cultural institutions as platforms and amplifiers for movement demands, but we do not understand the transformation of these institutions as an end in and of itself. We aim to cultivate a politics of autonomy, solidarity, and mutual aid within a long-term, multi-generational horizon of decolonial, anti-capitalist, and feminist liberation that is animated by Grace Lee Boggs’ question: “What time is it on the clock of the world?” For us, decolonization necessitates abolition. But what does abolition demand? Not only does it demand the abolition of prisons and police, bosses and borders, but as Fred Moten and Stefano Harney write, it’s “the abolition of a society that could have prisons, that could have slavery, that could have the wage, and therefore not abolition as the elimination of anything but abolition as the founding of a new society.”

    #abolition #New_York #decolonisation #Décoloniser #musée #contestedmonuments #monument

  • Decolonize your eyes, Padova.. Pratiche visuali di decolonizzazione della città

    Introduzione
    Il saggio a tre voci è composto da testi e due video.[1]
    Mackda Ghebremariam Tesfau’ (L’Europa è indifendibile) apre con un una riflessione sulle tracce coloniali che permangono all’interno degli spazi urbani. Lungi dall’essere neutre vestigia del passato, questi segni sono tracce di una storia contesa, che si situa contemporaneamente al cuore e ai margini invisibili della rappresentazione di sé dell’occidente. La dislocazione continua del fatto coloniale nella memoria storica informa il discorso che è oggi possibile sul tema delle migrazioni, del loro governo e dei rapporti tra Nord e Sud Globale. La stessa Europa di cui Césaire dichiarava “l’indifendibilità” è ora una “fortezza” che presidia i suoi confini dal movimento di ritorno postcoloniale.
    Annalisa Frisina (Pratiche visuali di decolonizzazione della città) prosegue con il racconto del percorso didattico e di ricerca Decolonizzare la città. Dialoghi visuali a Padova, realizzato nell’autunno del 2020. Questa esperienza mostra come sia possibile performare la decolonizzazzione negli spazi pubblici e attivare contro-politiche della memoria a livello urbano. Le pratiche visuali di decolonizzazione sono utili non solo per fare vacillare statue e nomi di vie, ma soprattutto per mettere in discussione le visioni del mondo e le gerarchie sociali che hanno reso possibile celebrare/dimenticare la violenza razzista e sessista del colonialismo. Le vie coloniali di Padova sono state riappropriate dai corpi, dalle voci e dagli sguardi di sei cittadine/i italiane/i afrodiscendenti, facendo uscire dall’insignificanza le tracce coloniali urbane e risignificandole in modo creativo.
    Infine, Salvatore Frisina (L’esperienza del A.S.D. Quadrato Meticcio) conclude il saggio soffermandosi sui due eventi urbani Decolonize your eyes (giugno e ottobre 2020), promossi dall’associazione Quadrato Meticcio, che ha saputo coinvolgere in un movimento decoloniale attori sociali molto eterogenei. Da quasi dieci anni questa associazione di sport popolare, radicata nel rione Palestro di Padova, favorisce la formazione di reti sociali auto-gestite e contribuisce alla lotta contro discriminazioni multiple (di classe, “razza” e genere). La sfida aperta dai movimenti antirazzisti decoloniali è infatti quella di mettere insieme processi simbolici e materiali.

    L’Europa è indifendibile
    L’Europa è indifendibile, scrive Césaire nel celebre passo iniziale del suo Discorso sul colonialismo (1950). Questa indifendibilità non è riferita tanto al fatto che l’Europa abbia commesso atti atroci quanto al fatto che questi siano stati scoperti. La “scopertura” è “svelamento”. Ciò che viene svelata è la natura stessa dell’impresa “Europa” e lo svelamento porta all’impossibilità di nascondere alla “coscienza” e alla “ragione” tali fatti: si tratta di un’indifendibilità “morale” e “spirituale”. A portare avanti questo svelamento, sottraendosi alla narrazione civilizzatrice che legittima – ovvero che difende – l’impresa coloniale sono, secondo Césaire, le masse popolari europee e i colonizzati che “dalle cave della schiavitù si ergono giudici”. Era il 1950.
    A più di sessant’anni di distanza, oggi l’Europa è tornata ad essere ben difesa, i suoi confini materiali e simbolici più che mai presidiati. Come in passato, tuttavia, uno svelamento della sua autentica natura potrebbe minarne le fondamenta. È quindi importante capire quale sia la narrazione che oggi sostiene la fortezza Europa.
    La scuola decoloniale ha mostrato come la colonialità sia un attributo del potere, la scuola postcoloniale come leggerne i segni all’interno della cultura materiale. Questa stessa cultura è stata interrogata, al fine di portarne alla luce gli impliciti. È successo ripetutamente alla statua di Montanelli, prima oggetto dell’azione di Non Una di Meno Milano, poi del movimento Black Lives Matter Italia. È successo alla fermata metro di Roma Amba Aradam. È successo anche alle vie coloniali di Padova. La reazione a queste azioni – reazione comune a diversi contesti internazionali – è particolarmente esplicativa della necessità, del Nord globale, di continuare a difendersi.
    Il fronte che si è aperto in contrapposizione alla cosiddetta cancel culture[2] si è battuto per la tutela del “passato” e della “Storia”, così facendo ribadendo un potere non affatto scontato, che è quello di decidere cosa sia “passato” e quale debba essere la Storia raccontata – oltre che il come debba essere raccontata. Le masse che si sono radunate sotto le statue abbattute, deturpate e sfidate, l’hanno fatto per liberare “passato” e “Storia” dal dominio bianco, maschile e coloniale che ha eretto questi monumenti a sua immagine e somiglianza. La posta in gioco è, ancora, uno svelamento, la presa di coscienza del fatto che queste non sono innocue reliquie di un passato disattivato, ma piuttosto la testimonianza silente di una Storia che lega indissolubilmente passato a presente, Nord globale e Sud globale, colonialismo e migrazioni. Riattivare questo collegamento serve a far crollare l’impalcatura ideologica sulla quale oggi si fonda la pretesa di sicurezza invocata e agita dall’Europa.
    Igiaba Scego e Rino Bianchi, in Roma Negata (2014), sono stati tra i primi a dedicare attenzione a queste rumorose reliquie in Italia. L’urgenza che li ha spinti a lavorare sui resti coloniali nella loro città è l’oblio nel quale il colonialismo italiano è stato relegato. Come numerosi autrici e autori postcoloniali hanno dimostrato, tuttavia, questo oblio è tutt’altro che improduttivo. La funzione che svolge è infatti letteralmente salvifica, ovvero ha lo scopo di salvare la narrazione nazionale dalle possibili incrinature prodotte dallo svelamento alla “barra della coscienza” (Césaire 1950) delle responsabilità coloniali e dei modi in cui si è stati partecipi e protagonisti della costruzione di un mondo profondamente diseguale. Al contempo, la presenza di questi monumenti permette, a livello inconscio, di continuare a godere del senso di superiorità imperiale di cui sono intrisi, di continuare cioè a pensarsi come parte dell’Europa e del Nord Globale, con ciò che questo comporta. Che cosa significa dunque puntarvi il dito? Che cosa succede quando la memoria viene riattivata in funzione del presente?
    La colonialità ha delle caratteristiche intrinseche, ovvero dei meccanismi che ne presiedono il funzionamento. Una di queste caratteristiche è la produzione costante di confini. Questa necessità è evidente sin dai suoi albori ed è rintracciabile anche in pagine storiche che non sono abitualmente lette attraverso una lente coloniale. Un esempio è la riflessione marxiana dei Dibattiti sulla legge contro i furti di legna[3], in cui il pensatore indaga il fenomeno delle enclosure, le recinzioni che tra ‘700 e ‘800 comparvero in tutta Europa al fine di rendere privati i fondi demaniali, usati consuetudinariamente dalla classe contadina come supporto alla sussistenza del proprio nucleo attraverso la caccia e la raccolta. Distinzione, definizione e confinamento sono processi materiali e simbolici centrali della colonialità. Per contro, connettere, comporre e sconfinare sono atti di resistenza al potere coloniale.
    Da tempo Gurminder K. Bhambra (2017) ha posto l’accento sull’importanza di questo lavoro di ricucitura storica e sociologica. Secondo l’autrice la stessa distinzione tra cittadino e migrante è frutto di una concettualizzazione statuale che fonda le sue categorie nel momento storico degli imperi. In questo senso per Bhambra tale distinzione poggia su di una lettura inadeguata della storia condivisa. Tale lettura ha l’effetto di materializzare l’uno – il cittadino – come un soggetto avente diritti, come un soggetto “al giusto posto”, e l’altro – il migrante – come un soggetto “fuori posto”, qualcuno che non appartiene allo stato nazione.
    Questo cortocircuito storico è reso evidente nella mappa coloniale che abbiamo deciso di “sfidare” nel video partecipativo. La raffigurazione dell’Impero Italiano presente in piazza delle Erbe a Padova raffigura Eritrea, Etiopia, Somalia, Libia, Albania e Italia in bianco, affinché risaltino sullo sfondo scuro della cartina. Su questo spazio bianco è possibile tracciare la rotta che oggi le persone migranti intraprendono per raggiungere la Libia da numerosi paesi subsahariani, tra cui la Somalia, l’Eritrea e l’Etiopia, la stessa Libia che è stata definita un grande carcere a cielo aperto. Dal 2008 infatti Italia e Libia sono legate da accordi bilaterali. Secondo questi accordi l’Italia si è impegnata a risarcire la Libia per l’occupazione coloniale, e in cambio la Libia ha assunto il ruolo di “guardiano” dei confini italiani, ruolo che agisce attraverso il contenimento delle persone migranti che raggiungono il paese per tentare la traversata mediterranea verso l’Europa. Risulta evidente come all’interno di questi accordi vi è una riattivazione del passato – il risarcimento coloniale – che risulta paradossalmente neocoloniale piuttosto che de o anti-coloniale.
    L’Italia è indifendibile, eppure si difende. Si difende anche grazie all’ombra in cui mantiene parti della sua storia, e si difende moltiplicando i confini coloniali tra cittadini e stranieri, tra passato e presente. Questo passato non è però tale, al contrario plasma il presente traducendo vecchie disuguaglianze sotto nuove vesti. Oggi la dimensione coloniale si è spostata sui corpi migranti, che si trovano ad essere marchiati da una differenza che produce esclusione nel quotidiano.
    I confini coloniali – quelli materiali come quelli simbolici – si ergono dunque a difesa dell’Italia e dell’Europa. Come nel 1950 però, questa difendibilità è possibile solo a patto che le masse popolari e subalterne accettino e condividano la narrazione coloniale, che è stata ieri quella della “missione civilizzatrice” ed è oggi quella della “sicurezza”. Al fine di decolonizzare il presente è dunque necessario uscire da queste narrazioni e riconnettere il passato alla contemporaneità al fine di svelare la natura coloniale del potere oggi. Così facendo la difesa dell’Europa potrà essere nuovamente scalfibile.
    Il video partecipativo realizzato a Padova va esattamente in questa direzione: cerca di ricucire storie e relazioni interrotte e nel farlo pone al centro il fatto coloniale nella sua continuità e contemporaneità.

    Pratiche visuali di decolonizzazione della città
    Il video con Mackda Ghebremariam Tesfau è nato all’interno del laboratorio di Visual Research Methods dell’Università di Padova. Da diversi anni, questo laboratorio è diventato un’occasione preziosa per fare didattica e ricerca in modo riflessivo e collaborativo, affrontando il tema del razzismo nella società italiana attraverso l’analisi critica della visualità legata alla modernità europea e attraverso la sperimentazione di pratiche contro-visuali (Mirzoeff 2011). Come docente, ho provato a fare i conti con “l’innocenza bianca” (Wekker 2016) e spingere le mie studentesse e i miei studenti oltre la memoria auto-assolutoria del colonialismo italiano coi suoi miti (“italiani brava gente”, “eravamo lì come migranti straccioni” ecc.). Per non restare intrappolate/i nella colonialità del potere, le/li/ci ho invitate/i a prendere consapevolezza di quale sia il nostro sguardo su noi stessi nel racconto che facciamo degli “altri” e delle “altre”, mettendo in evidenza il peso delle divisioni e delle gerarchie sociali. Come mi hanno detto alcune mie studentesse, si tratta di un lavoro faticoso e dal punto di vista emotivo a volte difficilmente sostenibile. Eppure, penso sia importante (far) riconoscere il proprio “disagio” in quanto europei/e “bianchi/e” e farci qualcosa collettivamente, perché il sentimento di colpa individuale è sterile, mentre la responsabilità è capacità di agire, rispondere insieme e prendere posizione di fronte ai conflitti sociali e alle disuguaglianze del presente.
    Nel 2020 la scommessa è stata quella di fare insieme a italiani/e afrodiscendenti un percorso di video partecipativo (Decolonizzare la città. Dialoghi visuali a Padova[4]) e di utilizzare il “walk about” (Frisina 2013) per fare passeggiate urbane con studentesse e studenti lasciandosi interpellare dalle tracce coloniali disseminate nella città di Padova, in particolare nel rione Palestro dove abito. La congiuntura temporale è stata cruciale.
    Da una parte, ci siamo ritrovate nell’onda del movimento Black Lives Matter dopo l’omicidio di George Floyd a Minneapolis. Come discusso altrove (Frisina & Ghebremariam Tesfau’ 2020, pp. 399-401), l’antirazzismo è (anche) una contro-politica della memoria e, specialmente nell’ultimo anno, a livello globale, diversi movimenti hanno messo in discussione il passato a partire da monumenti e da vie che simbolizzano l’eredità dello schiavismo e del colonialismo. Inevitabilmente, in un’Europa post-coloniale in cui i cittadini hanno le origini più diverse da generazioni e in cui l’attivismo degli afrodiscendenti diventa sempre più rilevante, si sono diffuse pratiche di risignificazione culturale attraverso le quali è impossibile continuare a vedere statue, monumenti, musei, vie intrise di storia coloniale in modo acritico; e dunque è sempre più difficile continuare a vedersi in modo innocente.
    D’altra parte, il protrarsi della crisi sanitaria legata al covid-19, con le difficoltà crescenti a fare didattica in presenza all’interno delle aule universitarie, ha costituito sia una notevole spinta per uscire in strada e sperimentare forme di apprendimento più incarnate e multisensoriali, sia un forte limite alla socialità che solitamente accompagna la ricerca qualitativa, portandoci ad accelerare i tempi del laboratorio visuale in modo da non restare bloccati da nuovi e incalzanti dpcm. Nel giro di soli due mesi (ottobre-novembre 2020), dunque, abbiamo realizzato il video con l’obiettivo di far uscire dall’insignificanza alcune tracce coloniali urbane, risignificandole in modo creativo.
    Il video è stato costruito attraverso pratiche visuali di decolonizzazione che hanno avuto come denominatore comune l’attivazione di contro-politiche della memoria, a partire da sguardi personali e familiari, intimamente politici. Le sei voci narranti mettono in discussione le gerarchie sociali che hanno reso possibile celebrare/dimenticare la violenza razzista e sessista del colonialismo e offrono visioni alternative della società, perché capaci di aspirare e rivendicare maggiore giustizia sociale, la libertà culturale di scegliersi le proprie appartenenze e anche il potere trasformativo della bellezza artistica.
    Nel video, oltre a Mackda Ghebremariam Tesfau’, ci sono Wissal Houbabi, Cadigia Hassan, Ilaria Zorzan, Emmanuel M’bayo Mertens e Viviana Zorzato, che si riappropriano delle tracce coloniali con la presenza dei loro corpi in città e la profondità dei loro sguardi.
    Wissal, artista “figlia della diaspora e del mare di mezzo”, “reincarnazione del passato rimosso”, si muove accompagnata dalla canzone di Amir Issa Non respiro (2020). Lascia la sua poesia disseminata tra Via Catania, via Cirenaica, via Enna e Via Libia.

    «Cerchiamo uno spiraglio per poter respirare, soffocati ben prima che ci tappassero la bocca e ci igienizzassero le mani, cerchiamo una soluzione per poter sopravvivere […]
    Non siamo sulla stessa barca e ci vuole classe a non farvelo pesare. E la mia classe sociale non ha più forza di provare rabbia o rancore.
    Il passato è qui, insidioso tra le nostre menti e il futuro è forse passato.
    Il passato è qui anche se lo dimentichi, anche se lo ignori, anche se fai di tutto per negare lo squallore di quel che è stato, lo Stato e che preserva lo status di frontiere e ius sanguinis.
    Se il mio popolo un giorno volesse la libertà, anche il destino dovrebbe piegarsi».

    Cadigia, invece, condivide le fotografie della sua famiglia italo-somala e con una sua amica si reca in Via Somalia. Incontra una ragazza che abita lì e non ha mai capito la ragione del nome di quella via. Cadigia le offre un suo ricordo d’infanzia: passando da via Somalia con suo padre, da bambina, gli aveva chiesto perché si chiamasse così, senza ricevere risposta. E si era convinta che la Somalia dovesse essere importante. Crescendo, però, si era resa conto che la Somalia occupava solo un piccolo posto nella storia italiana. Per questo Cadigia è tornata in via Somalia: vuole lasciare traccia di sé, della sua storia familiare, degli intrecci storici e rendere visibili le importanti connessioni che esistono tra i due paesi. Via Somalia va fatta conoscere.
    Anche Ilaria si interroga sul passato coloniale attraverso l’archivio fotografico della sua famiglia italo-eritrea. Gli italiani in Eritrea si facevano spazio, costruendo strade, teleferiche, ferrovie, palazzi… E suo nonno lavorava come macchinista e trasportatore, mentre la nonna eritrea, prima di sposare il nonno, era stata la sua domestica. Ispirata dal lavoro dell’artista eritreo-canadese Dawit L. Petros, Ilaria fa scomparire il suo volto dietro fotografie in bianco e nero. In Via Asmara, però, lo scopre e si mostra, per vedersi finalmente allo specchio.
    Emmanuel è un attivista dell’associazione Arising Africans. Nel video lo vediamo condurre un tour nel centro storico di Padova, in Piazza Antenore, ex piazza 9 Maggio. Emmanuel cita la delibera con la quale il comune di Padova dedicò la piazza al giorno della “proclamazione dell’impero” da parte di Mussolini (1936). Secondo Emmanuel, il fascismo non è mai scomparso del tutto: ad esempio, l’idea dell’italianità “per sangue” è un retaggio razzista ancora presente nella legge sulla cittadinanza italiana. Ricorda che l’Italia è sempre stata multiculturale e che il mitico fondatore di Padova, Antenore, era un profugo, scappato da Troia in fiamme. Padova, così come l’Italia, è inestricabilmente legata alla storia delle migrazioni. Per questo Emmanuel decide di lasciare sull’edicola medioevale, che si dice contenga le spoglie di Antenore, una targa dedicata alle migrazioni, che ha i colori della bandiera italiana.
    Chiude il video Viviana, pittrice di origine eritrea. La sua casa, ricca di quadri ispirati all’iconografia etiope, si affaccia su Via Amba Aradam. Viviana racconta del “Ritratto di ne*ra”, che ha ridipinto numerose volte, per anni. Farlo ha significato prendersi cura di se stessa, donna italiana afrodiscendente. Riflettendo sulle vie coloniali che attraversa quotidianamente, sostiene che è importante conoscere la storia ma anche ricordare la bellezza. Amba Alagi o Amba Aradam non possono essere ridotte alla violenza coloniale, sono anche nomi di montagne e Viviana vuole uno sguardo libero, capace di bellezza. Come Giorgio Marincola, Viviana continuerà a “sentire la patria come una cultura” e non avrà bandiere dove piegare la testa. Secondo Viviana, viviamo in un periodo storico in cui è ormai necessario “decolonizzarsi”.

    Anche nel nostro percorso didattico e di ricerca la parola “decolonizzare” è stata interpretata in modi differenti. Secondo Bhambra, Gebrial e Nişancıoğlu (2018) per “decolonizzare” ci deve essere innanzitutto il riconoscimento che il colonialismo, l’imperialismo e il razzismo sono processi storici fondamentali per comprendere il mondo contemporaneo. Tuttavia, non c’è solo la volontà di costruire la conoscenza in modi alternativi e provincializzare l’Europa, ma anche l’impegno a intrecciare in modo nuovo movimenti anti-coloniali e anti-razzisti a livello globale, aprendo spazi inediti di dialogo e dando vita ad alleanze intersezionali.

    L’esperienza del A.S.D. Quadrato Meticcio
    Il video-partecipativo è solo uno degli strumenti messi in atto a Padova per intervenire sulla memoria coloniale. Con l’evento pubblico urbano chiamato Decolonize your Eyes (20 giugno 2020), seguito da un secondo evento omonimo (18 Ottobre 2020), attivisti/e afferenti a diversi gruppi e associazioni che lavorano nel sociale si incontrano a favore di uno scopo che, come poche volte precedentemente, consente loro di agire all’unisono. Il primo evento mette in scena il gesto simbolico di cambiare, senza danneggiare, i nomi di matrice coloniale di alcune vie del rione Palestro, popolare e meticcio. Il secondo agisce soprattutto all’interno di piazza Caduti della Resistenza (ex Toselli) per mezzo di eventi performativi, artistici e laboratoriali con l’intento di coinvolgere un pubblico ampio e riportare alla memoria le violenze coloniali italiane. Ai due eventi contribuiscono realtà come l’asd Quadrato Meticcio, la palestra popolare Chinatown, Non una di meno-Padova, il movimento ambientalista Fridays for future, il c.s.o. Pedro e l’Associazione Nazionale Partigiani Italiani (anpi).
    Si è trattato di un rapporto di collaborazione mutualistico. L’anpi «indispensabile sin dalle prime battute nell’organizzazione» – come racconta Camilla[5] del Quadrato Meticcio – ha contribuito anche ai dibattiti in piazza offrendo densi spunti storici sulla Resistenza. Fridays for future, impegnata nella lotta per l’ambiente, è intervenuta su via Lago Ascianghi, luogo in cui, durante la guerra d’Etiopia, l’utilizzo massiccio di armi chimiche da parte dell’esercito italiano ha causato danni irreversibili anche dal punto di vista della devastazione del territorio. Ha sottolineato poi come l’odierna attività imprenditoriale dell’eni riproduca lo stesso approccio prevaricatore colonialista. Non una di meno-Padova, concentrandosi sulle tematiche del trans-femminismo e della lotta di genere, ha proposto un dibattito intitolando l’attuale via Amba Aradam a Fatima, la bambina comprata da Montanelli secondo la pratica coloniale del madamato. Durante il secondo evento ha realizzato invece un laboratorio di cartografia con gli abitanti del quartiere di ogni età, proponendogli di tracciare su una mappa le rotte dal luogo d’origine a Padova: un gesto di sensibilizzazione sul rapporto tra memoria e territorio. Il c.s.o. Pedro ha invece offerto la strumentazione mobile e di amplificazione sonora che ha permesso a ogni intervento di diffondersi in tutto il quartiere.
    Rispetto alla presenza attiva nel quartiere, Il Quadrato Meticcio, il quale ha messo a disposizione gli spazi della propria sede come centrale operativa di entrambi gli eventi, merita un approfondimento specifico.
    Mattia, il fondatore dell’associazione, mi racconta che nel 2008 il “campetto” – così chiamato dagli abitanti del quartiere – situato proprio dietro la “piazzetta” (Piazza Caduti della Resistenza), sarebbe dovuto diventare un parcheggio, ma “l’intervento congiunto della comunità del quartiere lo ha preservato”. Quando gli chiedo come si inserisca l’esperienza dell’associazione in questo ricordo, risponde: “Ho navigato a vista dopo quell’occasione. Mi sono accorto che c’era l’esigenza di valorizzare il campo e che il gioco del calcio era un contesto di incontro importante per i ragazzi. La forma attuale si è consolidata nel tempo”. Adesso, la presenza costante di una vivace comunità “meticcia” – di età che varia dagli otto ai sedici anni – è una testimonianza visiva e frammentaria della cultura familiare che i ragazzi si portano dietro. Come si evince dalla testimonianza di Mattia: «Loro non smettono mai di giocare. Sono in strada tutto il giorno e passano la maggior parte del tempo con il pallone ai piedi. Il conflitto tra di loro riflette i conflitti che vivono in casa. Ognuno di loro appartiene a famiglie economicamente in difficoltà, che condividono scarsi accessi a opportunità finanziarie e sociali in generale. Una situazione che inevitabilmente si ripercuote sull’emotività dei ragazzi, giorno dopo giorno».

    L’esperienza dell’associazione si inserisce all’interno di una rete culturale profondamente complessa ed eterogenea. L’intento dell’associazione, come racconta Camilla, è quello di offrire una visione inclusiva e una maggiore consapevolezza dei processi coloniali e post-coloniali a cui tutti, direttamente o indirettamente, sono legati; un approccio simile a quello della palestra popolare Chinatown, che offre corsi di lotta frequentati spesso dagli stessi ragazzi che giocano nel Quadrato Meticcio. L’obiettivo della palestra è quello di educare al rispetto reciproco attraverso la simulazione controllata di situazioni conflittuali legate all’uso di stereotipi etno-razziali e di classe, gestendo creativamente le ambivalenze dell’intimità culturale (Herzfeld, 2003). Uber[6], fra i più attivi promotori di Decolonize your eyes e affiliato alla palestra, racconta che: «Fin tanto che sono ragazzini, può essere solo un gioco, e tra di loro possono darsi man forte ogni volta che si scontrano con il razzismo brutale che questa città offre senza sconti. Ma ho paura che presto per loro sarà uno shock scoprire quanto può far male il razzismo a livello politico, lavorativo, legale… su tutti i fronti. E ho paura soprattutto che non troveranno altro modo di gestire l’impatto se non abbandonandosi agli stereotipi che gli orbitano già attorno».

    La mobilitazione concertata del 2008 a favore della preservazione del “campetto”, ha molto in comune con il contesto dal quale è emerso Decolonize your eyes. È “quasi un miracolo” di partecipazione estesa, mi racconta Uber, considerando che storicamente le “realtà militanti” di Padova hanno sempre faticato ad allearsi e collaborare. Similmente, con una vena solenne ma scherzosa, Camilla definisce entrambi gli eventi “necessari”. Lei si è occupata di gestire anche la “chiamata” generale: “abbiamo fatto un appello aperto a tutti sui nostri social network e le risposte sono state immediate e numerose”. Uber mi fa presente che “già da alcune assemblee precedenti si poteva notare l’intenzione di mettere da parte le conflittualità”. Quando gli chiedo perché, risponde “perché non ne potevamo più [di andare l’uno contro l’altro]”. Camilla sottolinea come l’impegno da parte dell’anpi di colmare le distanze generazionali, nei concetti e nelle pratiche, sia stato particolarmente forte e significativo.

    Avere uno scopo comune sembra dunque essere una prima risorsa per incontrarsi. Ma è nel modo in cui le conflittualità vengono gestite quotidianamente che può emergere una spinta rivoluzionaria unitaria. In effetti, «[…] l’equilibrio di un gruppo non nasce per forza da uno stato di inerzia, ma spesso da una serie di conflitti interni controllati» (Mauss, 2002, p. 194).
    Nel frattempo il Quadrato Meticcio ha rinnovato il suo impegno nei confronti del quartiere dando vita a una nuova iniziativa, chiamata All you can care, basata sullo scambio mutualistico di beni di prima necessità. Contemporaneamente, i progetti per un nuovo Decolonize your eyes vanno avanti e, da ciò che racconta Camilla, qualcosa sembra muoversi:
    «Pochi giorni fa una signora ci ha fermati per chiederci di cambiare anche il nome della sua via – anch’essa di rimando coloniale. Stiamo avendo anche altre risposte positive, altre realtà vogliono partecipare ai prossimi eventi».
    L’esperienza di Decolonize your eyes è insomma una tappa di un lungo progetto di decolonizzazione dell’immaginario e dell’utilizzo dello spazio pubblico che coinvolge molte realtà locali le quali, finalmente, sembrano riconoscersi in una lotta comune.

    Note
    [1] Annalisa Frisina ha ideato la struttura del saggio e ha scritto il paragrafo “Pratiche visuali di decolonizzazione della città”; Mackda Ghebremariam Tesfau’ ha scritto il paragrafo “L’Europa è indifendibile” e Salvatore Frisina il paragrafo “L’esperienza del A.S.D. Quadrato Meticcio”.
    [2] Cancel culture è un termine, spesso utilizzato con un’accezione negativa, che è stato usato per indicare movimenti emersi negli ultimi anni che hanno fatto uso del digitale, come quello il #metoo femminista, e che è stato usato anche per indicare le azioni contro le vestigia coloniali e razziste che si sono date dal Sud Africa agli Stati Uniti all’Europa.
    [3] Archivio Marx-Engels
    [4] Ho ideato con Elisabetta Campagni il percorso di video partecipativo nella primavera del 2020, rispondendo alla call “Cinema Vivo” di ZaLab; il nostro progetto è rientrato tra i primi cinque votati e supportati dal crowfunding.
    [5] Da un’intervista realizzata dall’autore in data 10/12/2020 a Camilla Previati e Mattia Boscaro, il fondatore dell’associazione.
    [6] Da un’intervista realizzata con Uber Mancin dall’autore in data 9/12/2020.
    [7] Le parti introduttive e finali del video sono state realizzate con la gentile concessione dei materiali audiovisivi da parte di Uber Mancin (archivio privato).

    Bibliografia
    Bhambra, G., Nişancıoğlu, K. & Gebrial, D., Decolonising the University, Pluto Press, London, 2018.
    Bhambra, G. K., The current crisis of Europe: Refugees, colonialism, and the limits of cosmopolitanism, in: «European Law Journal», 23(5): 395-405. 2017.
    Césaire, A. (1950), Discorso sul colonialismo, Mellino, M. (a cura di), Ombre corte, Verona, 2010.
    Frisina, A., Ricerca visuale e trasformazioni socio-culturali, utet Università, Torino, 2013.
    Frisina, A. e Ghebremariam Tesfau’, M., Decolonizzare la città. L’antirazzismo come contro-politica della memoria. E poi?, «Studi Culturali», Anno XVII, n. 3, Dicembre, pp. 399-412. 2020.
    Herzfeld, M., & Nicolcencov, E., Intimità culturale: antropologia e nazionalismo, L’ancora del Mediterraneo, 2003.
    Mauss, M., Saggio sul dono: forma e motivo dello scambio nelle società arcaiche, G. Einaudi, Torino, 2002.
    Mirzoeff, N., The Right to Look: A Counterhistory of Visuality, Duke University Press, Durham e London, 2011.
    Scego, I., & Bianchi, R., Roma negata. Percorsi postcoloniali nella città, Ediesse, Roma, 2014.
    Wekker, G., White Innocence: Paradoxes of Colonialism and Race, Duke University Press, Durham and London, 2016.

    https://www.roots-routes.org/decolonize-your-eyes-padova-pratiche-visuali-di-decolonizzazione-della
    #décolonisation #décolonial #colonialisme #traces_coloniales #Italie #Italie_coloniale #colonialisme_italien #statues #Padova #Padoue

    ping @cede (même si c’est en italien...)

  • Rapid Response : Decolonizing Italian Cities

    Anti-racism is a battle for memory. Enzo Traverso well underlined how statues brought down in the last year show “the contrast between the status of blacks and postcolonial subjects as stigmatised and brutalised minorities and the symbolic place given in the public space to their oppressors”.

    Material traces of colonialism are in almost every city in Italy, but finally streets, squares, monuments are giving us the chance to start a public debate on a silenced colonial history.

    Igiaba Scego, Italian writer and journalist of Somali origins, is well aware of the racist and sexist violence of Italian colonialism and she points out the lack of knowledge on colonial history.

    “No one tells Italian girls and boys about the squad massacres in Addis Ababa, the concentration camps in Somalia, the gases used by Mussolini against defenseless populations. There is no mention of Italian apartheid (…), segregation was applied in the cities under Italian control. In Asmara the inhabitants of the village of Beit Mekae, who occupied the highest hill of the city, were chased away to create the fenced field, or the first nucleus of the colonial city, an area off-limits to Eritreans. An area only for whites. How many know about Italian apartheid?” (Scego 2014, p. 105).

    In her book, Roma negata. Percorsi postcoloniali nella città (2014), she invites us to visually represent the historical connections between Europe and Africa, in creative ways; for instance, she worked with photographer Rino Bianchi to portray Afro-descendants in places marked by fascism such as Cinema Impero, Palazzo della Civiltà Italiana and Dogali’s stele in Rome.

    Inspired by her book, we decided to go further, giving life to ‘Decolonizing the city. Visual Dialogues in Padova’. Our goal was to question ourselves statues and street names in order to challenge the worldviews and social hierarchies that have made it possible to celebrate/forget the racist and sexist violence of colonialism. The colonial streets of Padova have been re-appropriated by the bodies, voices and gazes of six Italian Afro-descendants who took part in a participatory video, taking urban traces of colonialism out of insignificance and re-signifying them in a creative way.

    Wissal Houbabi, artist “daughter of the diaspora and the sea in between“, moves with the soundtrack by Amir Issa Non respiro (2020), leaving her poetry scattered between Via Cirenaica and Via Libia.

    “The past is here, insidious in our minds, and the future may have passed.

    The past is here, even if you forget it, even if you ignore it, even if you do everything to deny the squalor of what it was, the State that preserves the status of frontiers and jus sanguinis.

    If my people wanted to be free one day, even destiny would have to bend”.

    Cadigia Hassan shares the photos of her Italian-Somali family with a friend of hers and then goes to via Somalia, where she meets a resident living there who has never understood the reason behind the name of that street. That’s why Cadigia has returned to via Somalia: she wants to leave traces of herself, of her family history, of historical intertwining and to make visible the important connections that exist between the two countries.

    Ilaria Zorzan questions the colonial past through her Italo-Eritrean family photographic archive. The Italians in Eritrea made space, building roads, cableways, railways, buildings… And her grandfather worked as a driver and transporter, while her Eritrean grandmother, before marrying her grandfather, had been his maid. Ilaria conceals her face behind old photographs to reveal herself in Via Asmara through a mirror.

    Emmanuel M’bayo Mertens is an activist of the Arising Africans association. In the video we see him conducting a tour in the historic center of Padova, in Piazza Antenore, formerly Piazza 9 Maggio. Emmanuel cites the resolution by which the municipality of Padova dedicated the square to the day of the “proclamation of the empire” by Mussolini (1936). According to Emmanuel, fascism has never completely disappeared, as the Italian citizenship law mainly based on jus sanguinis shows in the racist idea of ​​Italianness transmitted ‘by blood’. Instead, Italy is built upon migration processes, as the story of Antenor, Padova’s legendary founder and refugee, clearly shows.

    Mackda Ghebremariam Tesfau’ questions the colonial map in Piazza delle Erbe where Libya, Albania, Ethiopia and Eritrea are marked as part of a white empire. She says that if people ignore this map it is because Italy’s colonial history is ignored. Moreover, today these same countries, marked in white on the map, are part of the Sub-saharan and Mediterranean migrant routes. Referring then to the bilateral agreements between Italy and Libya to prevent “irregular migrants” from reaching Europe, she argues that neocolonialism is alive. Quoting Aimé Césaire, she declares that “Europe is indefensible”.

    The video ends with Viviana Zorzato, a painter of Eritrean origin. Her house, full of paintings inspired by Ethiopian iconography, overlooks Via Amba Aradam. Viviana tells us about the ‘Portrait of a N-word Woman’, which she has repainted numerous times over the years. Doing so meant taking care of herself, an Afro-descendant Italian woman. Reflecting on the colonial streets she crosses daily, she argues that it is important to know the history but also to remember the beauty. Amba Alagi or Amba Aradam cannot be reduced to colonial violence, they are also names of mountains, and Viviana possesses a free gaze that sees beauty. Like Giorgio Marincola, Viviana will continue to “feel her homeland as a culture” and she will have no flags to bow her head to.

    The way in which Italy lost the colonies – that is with the fall of fascism instead of going through a formal decolonization process – prevented Italy from being aware of the role it played during colonialism. Alessandra Ferrini, in her ‘Negotiating amnesia‘,refers to an ideological collective amnesia: the sentiment of an unjust defeat fostered a sense of self-victimisation for Italians, removing the responsibility from them as they portrayed themselves as “brava gente” (good people). This fact, as scholars such as Nicola Labanca have explained, has erased the colonial period from the collective memory and public sphere, leaving colonial and racist culture in school textbooks, as the historian Gianluca Gabrielli (2015) has shown.

    This difficulty in coming to terms with the colonial past was clearly visible in the way several white journalists and politicians reacted to antiracist and feminist movements’ request to remove the statue of journalist Indro Montanelli in Milan throughout the BLM wave. During the African campaign, Montanelli bought the young 12-year-old-girl “Destà” under colonial concubinage (the so‑called madamato), boasting about it even after being accused by feminist Elvira Banotti of being a rapist. The issue of Montanelli’s highlights Italy’s need to think critically over not only colonial but also race and gender violence which are embedded in it.

    Despite this repressed colonial past, in the last decade Italy has witnessed a renewed interest stemming from bottom-up local movements dealing with colonial legacy in the urban space. Two examples are worth mentioning: Resistenze in Cirenaica (Resistances in Cyrenaica) in Bologna and the project “W Menilicchi!” (Long live Menilicchi) in Palermo. These instances, along with other contributions were collected in the Roots§Routes 2020 spring issue, “Even statues die”.

    Resistenze in Cirenaica has been working in the Cyrenaica neighbourhood, named so in the past due to the high presence of colonial roads. In the aftermath of the second world war the city council decided unanimously to rename the roads carrying fascist and colonial street signs (except for via Libya, left as a memorial marker) with partisans’ names, honouring the city at the centre of the resistance movement during the fascist and Nazi occupation. Since 2015, the collective has made this place the centre of an ongoing laboratory including urban walks, readings and storytelling aiming to “deprovincialize resistances”, considering the battles in the ex-colonies as well as in Europe, against the nazi-fascist forces, as antiracist struggles. The publishing of Quaderni di Cirene (Cyrene’s notebooks) brought together local and overseas stories of people who resisted fascist and colonial occupation, with the fourth book addressing the lives of fighter and partisan women through a gender lens.

    In October 2018, thanks to the confluence of Wu Ming 2, writer and storyteller from Resistenze in Cirenaica, and the Sicilian Fare Ala collective, a public urban walk across several parts of the city was organized, with the name “Viva Menilicchi!”. The itinerary (19 kms long) reached several spots carrying names of Italian colonial figures and battles, explaining them through short readings and theatrical sketches, adding road signs including stories of those who have been marginalized and exploited. Significantly, W Menilicchi! refers to Palermitan socialists and communists’ battle cry supporting king Menelik II who defeated the Italian troops in Aduwa in 1896, thus establishing a transnational bond among people subjected to Italian invasion (as Jane Schneider explores in Italy’s ‘Southern Question’: Orientalism in One Country, South Italy underwent a socio-economic occupation driven by imperial/colonial logics by the north-based Kingdom of Italy) . Furthermore, the urban walk drew attention to the linkage of racist violence perpetrated by Italians during colonialism with the killings of African migrants in the streets of Palermo, denouncing the white superiority on which Italy thrived since its birth (which run parallel with the invasion of Africa).

    These experiences of “odonomastic guerrillas” (street-name activists) have found creative ways of decolonising Italian history inscribed in cities, being aware that a structural change requires not only time but also a wide bottom-up involvement of inhabitants willing to deal with the past. New alliances are developing as different groups network and coordinate in view of several upcoming dates, such as February 19th, which marks the anniversary of the massacre of Addis Ababa which occurred in 1937 at the hands of Italian viceroy Rodolfo Graziani.

    References:
    Gabrielli G. (2015), Il curriculo “razziale”: la costruzione dell’alterità di “razza” e coloniale nella scuola italiana (1860-1950), Macerata: Edizioni Università di Macerata.
    Labanca, N. (2002) Oltremare. Storia dell’espansione coloniale italiana, Bologna: Il Mulino.
    Scego, I. (2014) Roma negata. Percorsi postcoloniali nella città, Roma: Ediesse.
    Schneider J (ed.) (1998) Italy’s ‘Southern Question’: Orientalism in One Country, London: Routledge.

    https://archive.discoversociety.org/2021/02/06/rapid-response-decolonizing-italian-cities

    #décolonisation #décolonial #colonialisme #traces_coloniales #Italie #Italie_coloniale #colonialisme_italien #statues #Padova #Padoue #afro-descendants #Cadigia_Hassan #via_Somalia #Ilaria_Zorzan #Emmanuel_M’bayo_Mertens #Mackda_Ghebremariam_Tesfau #Piazza_delle_erbe #Viviana_Zorzato #Via_Amba_Aradam #Giorgio_Marincola #Alessandra_Ferrini

    ping @postcolonial @cede

    –—

    ajouté à la métaliste sur l’Italie coloniale :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/871953

    • #Negotiating_Amnesia

      Negotiating Amnesia is an essay film based on research conducted at the Alinari Archive and the National Library in Florence. It focuses on the Ethiopian War of 1935-36 and the legacy of the fascist, imperial drive in Italy. Through interviews, archival images and the analysis of high-school textbooks employed in Italy since 1946, the film shifts through different historical and personal anecdotes, modes and technologies of representation.

      https://vimeo.com/429591146?embedded=true&source=vimeo_logo&owner=3319920



      https://www.alessandraferrini.info/negotiating-amnesia

      En un coup d’oeil, l’expansion coloniale italienne :

      #amnésie #film #fascisme #impérialisme #Mussolini #Benito_Mussolini #déni #héritage #mémoire #guerre #guerre_d'Ethiopie #violence #Istrie #photographie #askaris #askari #campagna_d'Africa #Tito_Pittana #Mariano_Pittana #mémoire #prostitution #madamato #madamisme #monuments #Romano_Romanelli #commémoration #mémoriel #Siracusa #Syracuse #nostalgie #célébration #Axum #obélisque #Nuovo_Impero_Romano #Affile #Rodolfo_Graziani #Pietro_Badoglio #Uomo_Nuovo #manuels_scolaires #un_posto_al_sole #colonialismo_straccione #italiani_brava_gente #armes_chimiques #armes_bactériologiques #idéologie

    • My Heritage ?

      My Heritage? (2020) is a site-specific intervention within the vestibule of the former Casa d’Italia in Marseille, inaugurated in 1935 and now housing the Italian Cultural Institute. The installation focuses on the historical and ideological context that the building incarnates: the intensification of Fascist imperial aspirations that culminated in the fascistization of the Italian diaspora and the establishment of the Empire in 1936, as a result of the occupation of Ethiopia. As the League of Nations failed to intervene in a war involving two of its members, the so-called Abyssinian Crisis gave rise to a series of conflicts that eventually led to the WW2: a ‘cascade effect’. On the other hand, the attack on the ‘black man’s last citadel’ (Ras Makonnen), together with the brutality of Italian warfare, caused widespread protests and support to the Ethiopian resistance, especially from Pan-African movements.

      Placed by the entrance of the exhibition Rue d’Alger, it includes a prominent and inescapable sound piece featuring collaged extracts from texts by members of the London-based Pan-African association International African Friends of Ethiopia - CLR James, Ras Makonnen, Amy Ashwood Garvey - intertwined with those of British suffragette Sylvia Pankhurst and Italian anarchist Silvio Corio, founders of the newspaper New Times and Ethiopian News in London.

      Through handwritten notes and the use of my own voice, the installation is a personal musing on heritage as historical responsibility, based on a self-reflective process. My voice is used to highlight such personal process, its arbitrary choice of sources (related to my position as Italian migrant in London), almost appropriated here as an act of thinking aloud and thinking with these militant voices. Heritage is therefore intended as a choice, questioning its nationalist uses and the everlasting and catastrophic effects of Fascist foreign politics. With its loudness and placement, it wishes to affect the visitors, confronting them with the systemic violence that this Fascist architecture outside Italy embodies and to inhibit the possibility of being seduced by its aesthetic.



      https://www.alessandraferrini.info/my-heritage

      #héritage

    • "Decolonizziamo le città": il progetto per una riflessione collettiva sulla storia coloniale italiana

      Un video dal basso in cui ogni partecipante produce una riflessione attraverso forme artistiche differenti, come l’arte figurativa, la slam poetry, interrogando questi luoghi e con essi “noi” e la storia italiana

      Via Eritrea, Viale Somalia, Via Amba Aradam, via Tembien, via Adua, via Agordat. Sono nomi di strade presenti in molte città italiane che rimandano al colonialismo italiano nel Corno d’Africa. Ci passiamo davanti molto spesso senza sapere il significato di quei nomi.

      A Padova è nato un progetto che vuole «decolonizzare la città». L’idea è quella di realizzare un video partecipativo in cui ogni partecipante produca una riflessione attraverso forme artistiche differenti, come l’arte figurativa, la slam poetry, interrogando questi luoghi e con essi “noi” e la storia italiana. Saranno coinvolti gli studenti del laboratorio “Visual Research Methods”, nel corso di laurea magistrale “Culture, formazione e società globale” dell’Università di Padova e artisti e attivisti afrodiscendenti, legati alla diaspora delle ex-colonie italiane e non.

      «Stavamo preparando questo laboratorio da marzo», racconta Elisabetta Campagni, che si è laureata in Sociologia a marzo 2020 e sta organizzando il progetto insieme alla sua ex relatrice del corso di Sociologia Visuale Annalisa Frisina, «già molto prima che il movimento Black Lives Matter riportasse l’attenzione su questi temi».

      Riscrivere la storia insieme

      «Il dibattito sul passato coloniale italiano è stato ampiamente ignorato nei dibattiti pubblici e troppo poco trattato nei luoghi di formazione ed educazione civica come le scuole», si legge nella presentazione del laboratorio, che sarà realizzato a partire dall’autunno 2020. «C’è una rimozione grandissima nella nostra storia di quello che ricordano questi nomi, battaglie, persone che hanno partecipato a massacri nelle ex colonie italiane. Pochi lo sanno. Ma per le persone che arrivano da questi paesi questi nomi sono offensivi».

      Da qui l’idea di riscrivere una storia negata, di «rinarrare delle vicende che nascondono deportazioni e uccisioni di massa, luoghi di dolore, per costruire narrazioni dove i protagonisti e le protagoniste sono coloro che tradizionalmente sono stati messi a tacere o sono rimasti inascoltati», affermano le organizzatrici.

      Le strade «rinarrate»

      I luoghi del video a Padova saranno soprattutto nella zona del quartiere Palestro, dove c’è una grande concentrazione di strade con nomi che rimandano al colonialismo. Si andrà in via Amba Aradam, il cui nome riporta all’altipiano etiope dove nel febbraio 1936 venne combattuta una battaglia coloniale dove gli etiopi vennero massacrati e in via Amba Alagi.

      Una tappa sarà nell’ex piazza Pietro Toselli, ora dedicata ai caduti della resistenza, che ci interroga sul legame tra le forme di resistenza al fascismo e al razzismo, che unisce le ex-colonie all’Italia. In Italia il dibattito si è concentrato sulla statua a Indro Montanelli, ma la toponomastica che ricorda il colonialismo è molta e varia. Oltre alle strade, sarà oggetto di discussione la mappa dell’impero coloniale italiano situata proprio nel cuore della città, in Piazza delle Erbe, ma che passa spesso inosservata.

      Da un’idea di Igiaba Scego

      Come ci spiega Elisabetta Campagni, l’idea nasce da un libro di Igiaba Scego che anni fa ha pubblicato alcune foto con afrodiscendenti che posano davanti ai luoghi che celebrano il colonialismo a Roma come la stele di Dogali, vicino alla stazione Termini, in viale Luigi Einaudi.

      Non è il primo progetto di questo tipo: il collettivo Wu Ming ha lanciato la guerriglia odonomastica, con azioni e performance per reintitolare dal basso vie e piazze delle città o aggiungere informazioni ai loro nomi per cambiare senso all’intitolazione. La guerriglia è iniziata a Bologna nel quartiere della Cirenaica e il progetto è stato poi realizzato anche a Palermo. Un esempio per il laboratorio «Decolonizzare la città» è stato anche «Berlin post colonial», l’iniziativa nata da anni per rititolare le strade e creare percorsi di turismo consapevole.

      Il progetto «Decolonizzare la città» sta raccogliendo i voti sulla piattaforma Zaalab (https://cinemavivo.zalab.org/progetti/decolonizzare-la-citta-dialoghi-visuali-a-padova), con l’obiettivo di raccogliere fondi per la realizzazione del laboratorio.

      https://it.mashable.com/cultura/3588/decolonizziamo-le-citta-il-progetto-per-una-riflessione-collettiva-sull

      #histoire_niée #storia_negata #récit #contre-récit

    • Decolonizzare la città. Dialoghi Visuali a Padova

      Descrizione

      Via Amba Alagi, via Tembien, via Adua, via Agordat. Via Eritrea, via Libia, via Bengasi, via Tripoli, Via Somalia, piazza Toselli… via Amba Aradam. Diversi sono i nomi di luoghi, eventi e personaggi storici del colonialismo italiano in città attraversate in modo distratto, senza prestare attenzione alle tracce di un passato che in realtà non è ancora del tutto passato. Che cosa significa la loro presenza oggi, nello spazio postcoloniale urbano? Se la loro origine affonda le radici in un misto di celebrazione coloniale e nazionalismo, per capire il significato della loro permanenza si deve guardare alla società contemporanea e alle metamorfosi del razzismo.

      Il dibattito sul passato coloniale italiano è stato ampiamente ignorato nei dibattiti pubblici e troppo poco trattato nei luoghi di formazione ed educazione civica come le scuole. L’esistenza di scritti, memorie biografiche e racconti, pur presente in Italia, non ha cambiato la narrazione dominante del colonialismo italiano nell’immaginario pubblico, dipinto come una breve parentesi storica che ha portato civiltà e miglioramenti nei territori occupati (“italiani brava gente”). Tale passato, però, è iscritto nella toponomastica delle città italiane e ciò ci spinge a confrontarci con il significato di tali vie e con la loro indiscussa presenza. Per questo vogliamo partire da questi luoghi, e in particolare da alcune strade, per costruire una narrazione dal basso che sia frutto di una ricerca partecipata e condivisa, per decolonizzare la città, per reclamare una lettura diversa e critica dello spazio urbano e resistere alle politiche che riproducono strutture (neo)coloniali di razzializzazione degli “altri”.

      Il progetto allora intende sviluppare una riflessione collettiva sulla storia coloniale italiana, il razzismo, l’antirazzismo, la resistenza di ieri e di oggi attraverso la realizzazione di un video partecipativo.

      Esso è organizzato in forma laboratoriale e vuole coinvolgere studenti/studentesse del laboratorio “Visual Research Methods” (corso di laurea magistrale “Culture, formazione e società globale”) dell’Università di Padova e gli/le artisti/e ed attivisti/e afrodiscendenti, legati alla diaspora delle ex-colonie italiane e non.

      Il progetto si propone di creare una narrazione visuale partecipata, in cui progettazione, riprese e contenuti siano discussi in maniera orizzontale e collaborativa tra i e le partecipanti. Gli/Le attivisti/e e artisti/e afrodiscendenti con i/le quali studenti e studentesse svolgeranno le riprese provengono in parte da diverse città italiane e in parte vivono a Padova, proprio nel quartiere in questione. Ognuno/a di loro produrrà insieme agli studenti e alle studentesse una riflessione attraverso forme artistiche differenti (come l’arte figurativa, la slam poetry…), interrogando tali luoghi e con essi “noi” e la storia italiana. I partecipanti intrecciano così le loro storie personali e familiari, la storia passata dell’Italia e il loro attivismo quotidiano, espresso con l’associazionismo o con diverse espressioni artistiche (Mackda Ghebremariam Tesfaù, Wissal Houbabi, Theophilus Marboah, Cadigia Hassan, Enrico e Viviana Zorzato, Ilaria Zorzan, Ada Ugo Abara ed Emanuel M’bayo Mertens di Arising Africans). I processi di discussione, scrittura, ripresa, selezione e montaggio verranno documentati attraverso l’utilizzo di foto e filmati volti a mostrare la meta-ricerca, il processo attraverso cui viene realizzato il video finale, e le scelte, di contenuto e stilistiche, negoziate tra i diversi attori. Questi materiali verranno condivisi attraverso i canali online, con il fine di portare a tutti coloro che sostengono il progetto una prima piccola restituzione che renda conto dello svolgimento del lavoro.

      Le strade sono un punto focale della narrazione: oggetto dei discorsi propagandistici di Benito Mussolini, fulcro ed emblema del presunto e mitologico progetto di civilizzazione italiana in Africa, sono proprio le strade dedicate a luoghi e alle battaglie dove si sono consumate le atrocità italiane che sono oggi presenze fisiche e allo stesso tempo continuano ad essere invisibilizzate; e i nomi che portano sono oggi largamente dei riferimenti sconosciuti. Ripercorrere questi luoghi fisici dando vita a dialoghi visuali significa riappropriarsi di una storia negata, rinarrare delle vicende che nascondono deportazioni e uccisioni di massa, luoghi di dolore, per costruire narrazioni dove i protagonisti e le protagoniste sono coloro che tradizionalmente sono stati messi a tacere o sono rimasti inascoltati.

      La narrazione visuale partirà da alcuni luoghi – come via Amba Aradam e via lago Ascianghi – della città di Padova intitolati alla storia coloniale italiana, in cui i protagonisti e le protagoniste del progetto daranno vita a racconti e performances artistiche finalizzate a decostruire la storia egemonica coloniale, troppo spesso edulcorata e minimizzata. L’obiettivo è quello di favorire il prodursi di narrazioni dal basso, provenienti dalle soggettività in passato rese marginali e che oggi mettono in scena nuove narrazioni resistenti. La riappropriazione di tali luoghi, fisica e simbolica, è volta ad aprire una riflessione dapprima all’interno del gruppo e successivamente ad un pubblico esterno, al fine di coinvolgere enti, come scuole, associazioni e altre realtà che si occupano di questi temi sul territorio nazionale. Oltre alle strade, saranno oggetto di discussione la mappa dell’impero coloniale italiano situata proprio nel cuore della città, in Piazza delle Erbe, e l’ex piazza Toselli, ora dedicata ai caduti della resistenza, che ci interroga sul legame tra le forme di resistenza al fascismo e al razzismo, che unisce le ex-colonie all’Italia.

      Rinarrare la storia passata è un impegno civile e politico verso la società contemporanea. Se anche oggi il razzismo ha assunto nuove forme, esso affonda le sue radici nella storia nazionale e coloniale italiana. Questa storia va rielaborata criticamente per costruire nuove alleanze antirazziste e anticolonialiste.

      Il video partecipativo, ispirato al progetto “Roma Negata” della scrittrice Igiaba Scego e di Rino Bianchi, ha l’obiettivo di mostrare questi luoghi attraverso narrazioni visuali contro-egemoniche, per mettere in discussione una storia ufficiale, modi di dire e falsi miti, per contribuire a dare vita ad una memoria critica del colonialismo italiano e costruire insieme percorsi riflessivi nuovi. Se, come sostiene Scego, occupare uno spazio è un grido di esistenza, con il nostro progetto vogliamo affermare che lo spazio può essere rinarrato, riletto e riattraversato.

      Il progetto vuole porsi in continuità con quanto avvenuto sabato 20 giugno, quando a Padova, nel quartiere Palestro, si è tenuta una manifestazione organizzata dall’associazione Quadrato Meticcio a cui hanno aderito diverse realtà locali, randunatesi per affermare la necessita’ di decolonizzare il nostro sguardo. Gli interventi che si sono susseguiti hanno voluto riflettere sulla toponomastica coloniale del quartiere Palestro, problematizzandone la presenza e invitando tutti e tutte a proporre alternative possibili.

      https://cinemavivo.zalab.org/progetti/decolonizzare-la-citta-dialoghi-visuali-a-padova

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=axEa6By9PIA&t=156s

  • Le vieux projet d’union du Sahara, source de méfiance entre le Mali et la France
    https://afriquexxi.info/article4952.html

    Depuis que le torchon brûle entre Paris et Bamako, le pouvoir militaro-civil malien accuse la France de jouer un double jeu dans le nord du pays. Une suspicion fantasmée, mais qui se nourrit (entre autres) d’un épisode bien réel : le projet français, à la fin des années 1950, de conserver le Sahara et d’en faire un territoire d’outre-mer à part entière. Retour sur l’éphémère existence de l’Organisation commune des régions sahariennes (OCRS).

    Simon Pierre, 23 mars 2022

    La crise de confiance entre les autorités françaises et le pouvoir militaro-civil au Mali a atteint son paroxysme en ce début d’année. Depuis le coup d’État d’août 2020, des politiciens et des activistes proches de la junte diffusent des interprétations particulières au sujet d’une éventuelle collusion des militaires de l’opération Barkhane avec l’ennemi djihadiste. Cette stratégie vise à transformer les échecs patents à écraser l’insurrection djihadiste en une accusation de complicité. Elle s’appuie sur les tentatives maladroites, à Paris, de ménager la chèvre et le chou entre les indépendantistes touaregs des régions de Kidal et de Ménaka et l’État malien, qui les considère comme des terroristes au même titre que les salafistes avec qui, il est vrai, ils ont collaboré en 2012. Dès lors, par une fausse transitivité, l’ancienne puissance coloniale ne serait pas seulement faible ou inefficace, elle collaborerait ouvertement avec les djihadistes dans le but, selon les versions, de détruire le Mali ou d’y justifier son occupation afin de s’accaparer les richesses naturelles du Nord.❞ (...)

    #Algérie #Décolonisation #Empire_colonial_français #Mali #Maroc #Mauritanie #Sahel #France #Sahara

  • https://www.lemonde.fr/international/article/2022/03/20/sahara-occidental-en-voulant-mettre-fin-a-la-crise-diplomatique-avec-le-maro

    Sahara occidental : en voulant mettre fin à la crise diplomatique avec le Maroc, l’Espagne fâche l’Algérie
    La décision du gouvernement de Pedro Sanchez de soutenir les plans marocains pour le territoire a provoqué le rappel de l’ambassadeur d’Algérie à Madrid.

    Par Sandrine Morel, 20 mars 2022

    En voulant clore dix mois de crise avec le Maroc, l’Espagne pourrait bien en avoir ouvert une autre, avec l’Algérie. Pris entre l’intérêt stratégique de rétablir les relations diplomatiques avec le Maroc – essentielles notamment dans la lutte contre l’immigration illégale –, et le maintien de sa neutralité sur l’avenir du territoire disputé du Sahara occidental, Madrid a pris une décision osée. Vendredi 18 mars, le président du gouvernement espagnol, le socialiste Pedro Sanchez, a envoyé un courrier à Mohammed VI dans lequel il s’aligne sur les thèses marocaines.

    Le plan marocain « d’autonomie » du Sahara occidental est « la base la plus sérieuse, réaliste et crédible pour la résolution du différend », écrit M. Sanchez, en saluant « les efforts sérieux et crédibles du Maroc dans le cadre des Nations unies pour trouver une solution mutuellement acceptable ». De quoi « envisager une feuille de route claire et ambitieuse afin d’inscrire, durablement, le partenariat bilatéral », a réagi le ministère marocain des affaires étrangères, dans un communiqué.

    Les propos de M. Sanchez constituent un revirement inattendu de la position de Madrid sur une question très sensible, qui empoisonne depuis des dizaines d’années les relations entre le Maroc, l’Algérie et l’Espagne. Favorable à une résolution du conflit « dans le cadre des Nations unies », Madrid avait jusque-là refusé de se positionner sur la question du Sahara occidental, ancienne colonie espagnole classée comme « non autonome » par l’ONU, et dont la majeure partie du territoire est sous contrôle du Maroc depuis la guerre menée en 1976 contre les indépendantistes sahraouis du Front Polisario, soutenus par Alger (...)

    #Algérie #Maroc #Sahara_occidental #ONU #décolonisations #Front_Polisario

  • Difficult Heritage

    The Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm and the University of Basel are collaborating in the organization of the international summer program Difficult Heritage. Coordinated by the Decolonizing Architecture Course from Sweden and the Critical Urbanism course from Switzerland, the program takes place at #Borgo_Rizza (Syracuse, Italy) from 30 August to 7 September 2021, in coordination with Carlentini Municipality, as well as the local university and associations.
    The program is constituted by a series of lectures, seminars, workshop, readings and site visits centered around the rural town of Borgo Rizza, build in 1940 by the ‘#Ente_della_colonizzazione’ established by the fascist regime to colonize the south of Italy perceived as backward and underdeveloped.
    The town seems a perfect place for participants to analyze, reflect and intervene in the debate regarding the architectural heritage associated to painful and violent memories and more broadly to problematize the colonial relation with the countryside, especially after the renew attention due the pandemic.
    The summer program takes place inside the former ‘entity of colonization’ and constitutes the first intensive study period for the Decolonizing Architecture Advanced Course 2020/21 participants.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x0jY9q1VR3E

    #mémoire #héritage #Italie #Sicile #colonialisme #Italie_du_Sud #fascisme #histoire #architecture #Libye #Borgo_Bonsignore #rénovation #monuments #esthétique #idéologie #tabula_rasa #modernisation #stazione_sperimentale_di_granicoltura #blé #agriculture #battaglia_del_grano #nationalisme #grains #productivité #propagande #auto-suffisance #alimentation #Borgo_Cascino #abandon #ghost-town #villaggio_fantasma #ghost_town #traces #conservation #spirale #décolonisation #défascistisation #Emilio_Distretti

    –-
    ajouté à la métaliste sur le colonialisme italien :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/871953

    via @cede qui l’a aussi signalé sur seenthis : https://seenthis.net/messages/953432

    • Architectural Demodernization as Critical Pedagogy: Pathways for Undoing Colonial Fascist Architectural Legacies in Sicily

      The Southern question

      In 1952, #Danilo_Dolci, a young architect living and working in industrial Milan, decided to leave the North – along with its dreams for Italy’s economic boom and rapid modernization – behind, and move to Sicily. When he arrived, as he describes in his book Banditi a Partinico (The Outlaws of Partinico, 1956), he found vast swathes of rural land brutally scarred by the war, trapped in a systematic spiral of poverty, malnutrition and anomie. After twenty years of authoritarian rule, Italy’s newly created democratic republic preserved the ‘civilising’ ethos established by the fascist regime, to develop and modernize Sicily. The effect of these plans was not to bridge the gap with the richer North, but rather, to usher in a slow and prolonged repression of the marginalised poor in the South. In his book, as well as in many other accounts, Dolci collected the testimonies of people in Partinico and Borgo di Trappeto near Trapani, western Sicily.1, Palermo: Sellerio Editore, 2009.] Living on the margins of society, they were rural labourers, unemployed fishermen, convicted criminals, prostitutes, widows and orphans – those who, in the aftermath of fascism, found themselves crushed by state violence and corruption, by the exploitation of local notables and landowners, and the growing power of the Mafia.

      Dolci’s activism, which consisted of campaigns and struggles with local communities and popular committees aimed at returning dignity to their villages, often resulted in confrontations with the state apparatus. Modernization, in this context, relied on a carceral approach of criminalisation, policing and imprisonment, as a form of domestication of the underprivileged. On the one hand, the South was urged to become like the North, yet on the other, the region was thrown further into social decay, which only accelerated its isolation from the rest of the country.

      The radical economic and social divide between Italy’s North and South has deep roots in national history and in the colonial/modern paradigm. From 1922, Antonio Gramsci branded this divide as evidence of how fascism exploited the subaltern classes via the Italian northern elites and their capital. Identifying a connection with Italy’s colonisation abroad, Gramsci read the exploitation of poverty and migrant labour in the colonial enterprise as one of ‘the wealthy North extracting maximum economic advantage out of the impoverished South’.2 Since the beginning of the colonisation of Libya in 1911, Italian nationalist movements had been selling the dream of a settler colonial/modern project that would benefit the underprivileged masses of southern rural laborers.

      The South of Italy was already considered an internal colony in need of modernization. This set the premise of what Gramsci called Italy’s ‘Southern question’, with the southern subalterns being excluded from the wider class struggle and pushed to migrate towards the colonies and elsewhere.3 By deprovincialising ‘the Southern question’ and connecting it to the colonial question, Gramsci showed that the struggle against racialised and class-based segregation meant thinking beyond colonially imposed geographies and the divide between North and South, cities and countryside, urban labourers and peasants.

      Gramsci’s gaze from the South can help us to visualise and spatialise the global question of colonial conquest and exploitation, and its legacy of an archipelago of colonies scattered across the North/South divide. Written in the early 1920s but left incomplete, Gramsci’s The Southern Question anticipated the colonizzazione interna (internal colonization) of fascism, motivated by a capital-driven campaign for reclaiming arable land that mainly effected Italy’s rural South. Through a synthesis of monumentalism, technological development and industrial planning, the fascist regime planned designs for urban and non-urban reclamation, in order to inaugurate a new style of living and to celebrate the fascist settler. This programme was launched in continuation of Italy’s settler colonial ventures in Africa.

      Two paths meet under the roof of the same project – that of modernization.

      Architectural colonial modernism

      Architecture has always played a crucial role in representing the rationality of modernity, with all its hierarchies and fascist ramifications. In the Italian context, this meant a polymorphous and dispersed architecture of occupation – new settlements, redrawn agricultural plots and coerced migration – which was arranged and constructed according to modern zoning principles and a belief in the existence of a tabula rasa. As was the case with architectural modernism on a wider scale, this was implemented through segregation and erasure, under the principle that those deemed as non-modern should be modernized or upgraded to reach higher stages of civilisation. The separation in the African colonies of white settler enclaves from Indigenous inhabitants was mirrored in the separation between urban and rural laborers in the Italian South. These were yet another manifestation of the European colonial/modern project, which for centuries has divided the world into different races, classes and nations, constructing its identity in opposition to ‘other’ ways of life, considered ‘traditional’, or worse, ‘backwards’. This relation, as unpacked by decolonial theories and practices, is at the core of the European modernity complex – a construct of differentiations from other cultures, which depends upon colonial hegemony.

      Taking the decolonial question to the shores of Europe today means recognising all those segregations that also continue to be perpetuated across the Northern Hemisphere, and that are the product of the unfinished modern and modernist project. Foregrounding the impact of the decolonial question in Europe calls for us to read it within the wider question of the ‘de-modern’, beyond colonially imposed geographical divides between North and South. We define ‘demodernization’ as a condition that wants to undo the rationality of zoning and compartmentalisation enforced by colonial modern architecture, territorialisation and urbanism. Bearing in mind what we have learned from Dolci and Gramsci, we will explain demodernization through architectural heritage; specifically, from the context of Sicily – the internal ‘civilisational’ front of the Italian fascist project.

      Sicily’s fascist colonial settlements

      In 1940, the Italian fascist regime founded the Ente di Colonizzazione del Latifondo Siciliano (ECLS, Entity for the Colonization of the Sicilian Latifondo),4 following the model of the Ente di Colonizzazione della Libia and of colonial urban planning in Eritrea and Ethiopia. The entity was created to reform the latifondo, the predominant agricultural system in southern Italy for centuries. This consisted of large estates and agricultural plots owned by noble, mostly absentee, landlords. Living far from their holdings, these landowners used local middlemen and hired thugs to sublet to local peasants and farmers who needed plots of land for self-sustenance.5 Fascism sought to transform this unproductive, outdated and exploitative system, forcing a wave of modernization. From 1940 to 1943, the Ente built more than 2,000 homesteads and completed eight settlements in Sicily. These replicated the structures and planimetries that were built throughout the 1930s in the earlier bonifica integrale (land reclamation) of the Pontine Marshes near Rome, in Libya and in the Horn of Africa; the same mix of piazzas, schools, churches, villas, leisure centres, monuments, and a Casa del Fascio (fascist party headquarters). In the name of imperial geographical unity, from the ‘centre’ to the ‘periphery’, many of the villages built in Sicily were named after fascist ‘martyrs’, soldiers and settlers who had died in the overseas colonies. For example, Borgo Bonsignore was named after a carabinieri (military officer) who died in the Battle of Gunu Gadu in 1936, and Borgo Fazio and Borgo Giuliano after Italian settlers killed by freedom fighters in occupied Ethiopia.

      The reform of the latifondo also sought to implement a larger strategy of oppression of political dissent in Italy. The construction of homesteads in the Sicilian countryside and the development of the land was accompanied by the state-driven migration of northern labourers, which also served the fascist regime as a form of social surveillance. The fascists wanted to displace and transform thousands of rural laborers from the North – who could otherwise potentially form a stronghold of dissent against the regime – into compliant settlers.6 Simultaneously, and to complete the colonizing circle, many southern agricultural workers were sent to coastal Libya and the Horn of Africa to themselves become new settlers, at the expense of Indigenous populations.

      All the Sicilian settlements were designed following rationalist principles to express the same political and social imperatives. Closed communities like the Pontine settlements were ‘geometrically closed in the urban layout and administratively closed to farmers, workmen, and outside visitors as well’.7 With the vision of turning waged agrarian laborers into small landowners, these borghi were typologically designed as similar to medieval city enclaves, which excluded those from the lower orders.

      These patterns of spatial separation and social exclusion were, unsurprisingly, followed by the racialisation of the Italian southerners. Referring to a bestiary, the propaganda journal Civiltà Fascista (Fascist Civilisation) described the Pontine Marshes as similar to ‘certain zones of Africa and America’, ‘a totally wild region’ whose inhabitants were ‘desperate creatures living as wild animals’.8 Mussolini’s regime explicitly presented this model of modernization, cultivation and drainage to the Italian public as a form of warfare. The promise of arable land and reclaimed marshes shaped an epic narrative which depicted swamps and the ‘unutilised’ countryside as the battlefield where bare nature – and its ‘backward inhabitants’ – was the enemy to be tamed and transformed.

      However, despite the fanfare of the regime, both the projects of settler colonialism in Africa and the plans for social engineering and modernization in the South of Italy were short-lived. As the war ended, Italy ‘lost’ its colonies and the many Ente were gradually reformed or shut down.9 While most of the New Towns in the Pontine region developed into urban centres, most of the fascist villages built in rural Sicily were meanwhile abandoned to a slow decay.

      Although that populationist model of modernization failed, the Sicilian countryside stayed at the centre of the Italian demographic question for decades to come. Since the 1960s, these territories have experienced a completely different kind of migration to that envisaged by the fascist regime. Local youth have fled unemployment in huge numbers, migrating to the North of Italy and abroad. With the end of the Second World War and the colonies’ return to independence, it was an era of reversed postcolonial migration: no longer white European settlers moving southwards/eastwards, but rather a circulatory movement of people flowing in other directions, with those now freed from colonial oppression taking up the possibility to move globally. Since then, a large part of Sicily’s agrarian sector has relied heavily on seasonal migrant labour from the Southern Hemisphere and, more recently, from Eastern Europe. Too often trapped in the exploitative and racist system of the Italian labour market, most migrants working in areas of intensive agriculture – in various Sicilian provinces near the towns of Cassibile, Vittoria, Campobello di Mazara, Caltanissetta and Paternò – have been forced out of cities and public life. They live isolated from the local population, socially segregated in tent cities or rural slums, and without basic services such as access to water and sanitation.

      As such, rural Sicily – as well as vast swathes of southern Italy – remain stigmatised as ‘insalubrious’ spaces, conceived of in the public imagination as ‘other’, ‘dangerous’ and ‘backward’. From the time of the fascist new settlements to the informal rural slums populated by migrants in the present, much of the Sicilian countryside epitomises a very modern trope: that the South is considered to be in dire need of modernization. The rural world is seen to constitute an empty space as the urban centres are unable to deal with the social, economic, political and racial conflicts and inequalities that have been (and continue to be) produced through the North/South divides. This was the case at the time of fascist state-driven internal migration and overseas settler colonial projects. And it still holds true for the treatment of migrants from the ex-colonies, and their attempted resettlement on Italian land today.

      Since 2007, Sicily’s right-wing regional and municipal governments have tried repeatedly to attain public funding for the restoration of the fascist settlements. While this program has been promoted as a nostalgic celebration of the fascist past, in the last decade, some municipalities have also secured EU funding for architectural restoration under the guise of creating ‘hubs’ for unhoused and stranded migrants and refugees. None of these projects have ever materialised, although EU money has financed the restoration of what now look like clean, empty buildings. These plans for renovation and rehousing echo Italy’s deepest populationist anxieties, which are concerned with managing and resettling ‘other’ people considered ‘in excess’. While the ECLS was originally designed to implement agrarian reforms and enable a flow of migration from the north of the country, this time, the Sicilian villages were seen as instrumental to govern unwanted migrants, via forced settlement and (an illusion of) hospitality. This reinforces a typical modern hierarchical relationship between North and South, and with that, exploitative metropolitan presumptions over the rural world.

      The Entity of Decolonization

      To imagine a counter-narrative about Sicily’s, and Italy’s, fascist heritage, we presented an installation for the 2020 Quadriennale d’arte – FUORI, as a Decolonizing Architecture Art Research (DAAR) project. This was held at the Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Rome, the venue of the Prima mostra internazionale d’arte coloniale (First International Exhibition of Colonial Art, 1931), as well as other propaganda exhibitions curated by the fascist regime. The installation aims to critically rethink the rural towns built by the ECLS. It marks the beginning of a longer-term collaborative project, the Ente di Decolonizzazione or Entity of Decolonization, which is conceived as a transformative process in history-telling. The installation builds on a photographic dossier of documentation produced by Luca Capuano, which reactivates a network of built heritage that is at risk of decay, abandonment and being forgotten. With the will to find new perspectives from which to consider and deconstruct the legacies of colonialism and fascism, the installation thinks beyond the perimeters of the fascist-built settlements to the different forms of segregations and division they represent. It moves from these contested spaces towards a process of reconstitution of the social, cultural and intimate fabrics that have been broken by modern splits and bifurcations. The project is about letting certain stories and subjectivities be reborn and reaffirmed, in line with Walter D. Mignolo’s statement that ‘re-existing means using the imaginary of modernity rather than being used by it. Being used by modernity means that coloniality operates upon you, controls you, forms your emotions, your subjectivity, your desires. Delinking entails a shift towards using instead of being used.’10 The Entity of Decolonization is a fluid and permanent process, that seeks perpetual manifestations in architectural heritage, art practice and critical pedagogy. The Entity exists to actively question and contest the modernist structures under which we continue to live.

      In Borgo Rizza, one of the eight villages built by the Ente, we launched the Difficult Heritage Summer School – a space for critical pedagogy and discussions around practices of reappropriation and re-narrativisation of the spaces and symbols of colonialism and fascism.11 Given that the villages were built to symbolise fascist ideology, how far is it possible to subvert their founding principles? How to reuse these villages, built to celebrate fascist martyrs and settlers in the colonial wars in Africa? How to transform them into antidotes to fascism?

      Borgo Rizza was built in 1940 by the architect Pietro Gramignani on a piece of land previously expropriated by the ECLS from the Caficis, a local family of landowners. It exhibits a mixed architectural style of rationalism and neoclassical monumentalism. The settlement is formed out of a perimeter of buildings around a central protected and secured piazza that was also the main access to the village. The main edifices representing temporal power (the fascist party, the ECLS, the military and the school) and spiritual power (the church) surround the centre of the piazza. To display the undisputed authority of the regime, the Casa del Fascio took centre stage. The village is surrounded on all sides by eucalyptus trees planted by the ECLS and the settlers. The planting of eucalyptus, often to the detriment of indigenous trees, was a hallmark of settler colonialism in Libya and the Horn of Africa, dubiously justified because their extensive roots dry out swamps and so were said to reduce risks of malaria.

      With the end of the Second World War, Borgo Rizza, along with all the other Sicilian settlements, went through rapid decay and decline. It first became a military outpost, before being temporarily abandoned in the war’s aftermath. In 1975, the ownership and management of the cluster of buildings comprising the village was officially transferred to the municipality of Carlentini, which has since made several attempts to revive it. In 2006, the edifices of the Ente di Colonizzazione and the post office were rehabilitated with the intent of creating a garden centre amid the lush vegetation. However, the garden centre was never realised, while the buildings and the rest of the settlement remain empty.

      Yet despite the village’s depopulation, over the years the wider community of Carlentini have found an informal way to reuse the settlement’s spaces. The void of the piazza, left empty since the fall of fascism, became a natural spot for socialising. The piazza was originally designed by the ECLS for party gatherings and to convey order and hierarchy to the local population. But many locals remember a time, in the early 1980s, before the advent of air-conditioned malls that offered new leisure spaces to those living in peri-urban and rural areas, when people would gather in the piazza for fresh air amid summer heatwaves. The summer school builds on these memories, to return the piazza to its full public function and reinvent it as a place for both hospitality and critical pedagogy.

      Let’s not forget that the village was first used as a pedagogical tool in the hands of the regime. The school building was built by the ECLS and was the key institution to reflect the principles of neo-idealism promoted by the fascist and neo-Hegelian philosophers Giovanni Gentile and Giuseppe Lombardo Radice. Radice was a pedagogue and theoretician who contributed significantly to the fascist reforms of the Italian school system in the 1930s. Under the influence of Gentile, his pedagogy celebrated the modern principle of a transcendental knowledge that is never individual but rather embodied by society, its culture, the party, the state and the nation. In the fascist ideal, the classroom was designed to be the space where students would strive to transcend themselves through acquired knowledge. A fascist education was meant to make pupils merge with the ‘universal’ embodied by the teacher, de facto the carrier of fascist national values. In relation to the countryside context, the role of pedagogy was to glorify the value of rurality as opposed to the decadence wrought by liberal bourgeois cultures and urban lifestyles. The social order of fascism revolved around this opposition, grounded in the alienation of the subaltern from social and political life, via the splitting of the urban and rural working class, the celebration of masculinity and patriarchy, and the traditionalist nuclear family of settlers.

      Against this historical background, our summer school wants to inspire a spatial, architectural and political divorce from this past. We want to engage with decolonial pedagogies and encourage others to do the same, towards an epistemic reorganisation of the building’s architecture. In this, we share the assertion of Danilo Dolci, given in relation to the example of elementary schools built in the fascist era, of the necessity for a liberation from the physical and mental cages erected by fascism:

      These seemed designed (and to a large extent their principles and legacies are still felt today) to let young individuals get lost from an early age. So that they would lose the sense of their own existence, by feeling the heavy weight of the institution that dominates them. These buildings were specifically made to prevent children from looking out, to make them feel like grains of sand, dispersed in these grey, empty, boundless spaces.12

      This is the mode of demodernization we seek in this project: to come to terms with, confront, and deactivate the tools and symbols of modern fascist colonization and authoritarian ideologies, pedagogy and urbanism. It is an attempt to fix the social fabric that fascism broke, to heal the histories of spatial, social and political isolation in which the village originates. Further, it is an attempt to heal pedagogy itself, from within a space first created as the pedagogical hammer in the hands of the regime’s propagandists.

      This means that when we look at the forms of this rationalist architecture, we do not feel any aesthetic pleasure in or satisfaction with the original version. This suggests the need to imagine forms of public preservation outside of the idea of saving the village via restoration, which would limit the intervention to returning the buildings to their ‘authentic’ rationalist design. Instead, the school wants to introduce the public to alternative modes of heritage-making.

      Architectural demodernization

      In the epoch in which we write and speak from the southern shores of Europe, the entanglement of demodernization with decolonization is not a given, and certainly does not imply an equation. While decolonization originates in – and is only genealogically possible as the outcome of – anti-colonialist struggles and liberation movements from imperial theft and yoke, demodernization does not relate to anti-modernism, which was an expression of reactionary, anti-technological and nationalist sentiment, stirred at the verge of Europe’s liberal collapse in the interwar period. As Dolci explained for the Italian and Sicilian context, there is no shelter to be found in any anachronistic escape to the (unreal and fictional) splendours of the past. Or, following Gramsci’s refusal to believe that the Italian South would find the solutions to its problems through meridionalism, a form of southern identitarian and essentialist regionalism, which further detaches ‘the Southern question’ from possible alliances with the North.

      Demodernization does not mean eschewing electricity and wiring, mortar and beams, or technology and infrastructure, nor the consequent welfare that they provide, channel and distribute. By opposing modernity’s aggressive universalism, demodernization is a means of opening up societal, collective and communal advancement, change and transformation. Precisely as Dolci explains, the question it is not about the negation of progress but about choosing which progress you want.13

      In the context in which we exist and work, imagining the possibility of an architectural demodernization is an attempt to redraw the contours of colonial architectural heritage, and specifically, to raise questions of access, ownership and critical reuse. We want to think of demodernization as a method of epistemic desegregation, which applies to both discourse and praxis: to reorient and liberate historical narratives on fascist architectural heritage from the inherited whiteness and ideas of civilisation instilled by colonial modernity, and to invent forms of architectural reappropriation and reuse. We hold one final aim in mind: that the remaking of (post)colonial geographies of knowledge and relations means turning such fascist designs against themselves.

      https://www.internationaleonline.org/research/decolonising_practices/208_architectural_demodernization_as_critical_pedagogy_pathway

      #Partinico #Borgo_di_Trappeto #Italie_du_Sud #Italie_meridionale #Southern_question #colonizzazione_interna #colonisation_interne #Ente_di_Colonizzazione_de_Latifondo_Siciliano (#ECLS) #Ente_di_Colonizzazione_della_Libia #modernisation #bonifica_integrale #Pontine_Marshes #Borgo_Bonsignore #Borgo_Fazio #Borgo_Giuliano #latifondo #Pietro_Gramignani #Caficis

  • La Décolonisation britannique, l’art de filer à l’anglaise

    Le 24 mars 1947, Lord Mountbatten est intronisé Vice-roi des Indes dans un faste éblouissant. Alors que l’émancipation de 410 millions d’indiens est programmée, la couronne britannique tente de sauver les apparences en brillant de tous ses feux. Cinq mois de discussions entre les forces en présence aboutissent à un découpage arbitraire du territoire entre le Pakistan et l’Inde avec des conséquences désastreuses. Des violences qui sont reléguées au second plan par l’adhésion des deux nouveaux États souverains à la grande communauté du Commonwealth. Un arrangement qui ne va pas sans arrière-pensées. Mais déjà la Malaisie et le Kenya s’enflamment à leur tour. Dans les deux cas, la violence extrême de la répression qui s’abat est occultée par une diabolisation « de l’ennemi » et par une machine de propagande redoutable qui permet aux autorités de maîtriser le récit des événements.
    En 1956, la Grande-Bretagne échoue à rétablir son aura impériale après avoir été obligée d’abandonner le canal de Suez par les deux nouveaux maîtres du monde : l’URSS et les États-Unis. Le nouveau Premier ministre, Harold Macmillan, demande un « audit d’empire », pour évaluer le poids économique du maintien des colonies, car il sait que le pays n’a plus les moyens de poursuivre sa politique impérialiste. Il est prêt à y renoncer, à condition de restaurer le prestige national.
    Une décision mal vue par l’armée. En 1967 au Yémen, des unités britanniques renégates défient le gouvernement et s’adonnent à une répression féroce, obligeant la Grande-Bretagne à prononcer son retrait. En Rhodésie du Sud, c’est au tour de la communauté blanche de faire sécession et d’instaurer un régime d’apartheid. Incapable de mettre au pas ses sujets, signe de son impuissance, la couronne est condamnée à accepter l’aide du Commonwealth pour aboutir à un accord qui donne lieu à la naissance du Zimbabwe.
    Après la perte de sa dernière colonie africaine, l’Empire britannique a vécu et le dernier sursaut impérialiste de Margaret Thatcher aux Malouines n’y change rien. Jusqu’à aujourd’hui, la décolonisation demeure un traumatisme dans ces pays déstabilisés par leur ancien maître colonial tandis qu’au Royaume-Uni, la nostalgie prend le pas sur un travail de mémoire pourtant nécessaire.

    http://www.film-documentaire.fr/4DACTION/w_fiche_film/61716_0
    #film #film_documentaire #documentaire
    #colonisation #décolonisation #Inde #Pakistan #violence #Lord_Mountbatten #frontières #déplacement_de_populations #partition_de_l'Inde #Malaisie #torture #Commonwealth #Kenya #Mau_Mau #camps_d'internement #Kimathi #serment_Mau_Mau #travaux_forcés #Aden #Rhodésie_du_Sud #réserves #îles_Malouines

    ping @postcolonial

  • Lakhdar Bentobbal, le combattant algérien qui rêvait d’une révolution agraire
    https://orientxxi.info/lu-vu-entendu/lakhdar-bentobbal-le-combattant-algerien-qui-revait-d-une-revolution-agr

    Lakdar Bentobbal est un nom ignoré des Algériens d’aujourd’hui. Il fut pourtant en 1956-1957 un chef tout-puissant des maquis du Nord constantinois avant de devenir le troisième personnage du stratégique Comité de guerre avec Krim Belkacem et Abdelhamid Boussouf, pour disparaitre de la vie politique du pays après l’indépendance. C’est le seul des grands acteurs de la révolution algérienne à s’être entretenu durant cinq ans, entre 1980 et 1985, avec Daho Djerbal, alors jeune historien en quête de témoignages des héros de l’époque, et d’un de ses proches, Mahfoud Bennoun, disparu en 2004. Le livre devait être publié en 1985, mais pendant près de quarante ans, sa publication a été bloquée.

    #révolution_agraire #Lakdar_Bentobbal #évian #décolonisation #socialisme_agraire #algérie

  • #Frantz_Fanon

    Le nom de Frantz Fanon (1925-1961), écrivain, psychiatre et penseur révolutionnaire martiniquais, est indissociable de la #guerre_d’indépendance algérienne et des #luttes_anticoloniales du XXe siècle. Mais qui était vraiment cet homme au destin fulgurant ?
    Nous le découvrons ici à Rome, en août 1961, lors de sa légendaire et mystérieuse rencontre avec Jean-Paul Sartre, qui a accepté de préfacer Les Damnés de la terre, son explosif essai à valeur de manifeste anticolonialiste. Ces trois jours sont d’une intensité dramatique toute particulière : alors que les pays africains accèdent souvent douloureusement à l’indépendance et que se joue le sort de l’Algérie, Fanon, gravement malade, raconte sa vie et ses combats, déplie ses idées, porte la contradiction au célèbre philosophe, accompagné de #Simone_de_Beauvoir et de #Claude_Lanzmann. Fanon et Sartre, c’est la rencontre de deux géants, de deux mondes, de deux couleurs de peau, de deux formes d’engagement. Mais la vérité de l’un est-elle exactement celle de l’autre, sur fond d’amitié et de trahison possible ?
    Ce roman graphique se donne à lire non seulement comme la biographie intellectuelle et politique de Frantz Fanon mais aussi comme une introduction originale à son œuvre, plus actuelle et décisive que jamais.

    https://www.editionsladecouverte.fr/frantz_fanon-9782707198907

    #BD #bande_dessinée #livre

    #indépendance #Algérie #Organisation_armée_secrète (#OAS) #décolonisation #biographie #colonisation #France #souffrance_psychique #syndrome_nord-africain #violence #bicots #violence_coloniale #lutte_armée #agressivité #domination #contre-violence #violence_politique #violence_pulsionnelle #Jean-Paul_Sartre #Sartre #socialthérapie #club_thérapeutique_de_Saint-Alban #François_Tosquelles #Saint-Alban #Septfonds #narcothérapie #négritude #école_d'Alger #Blida #primitivisme #psychiatrie_coloniale #insulinothérapie #cure_de_Sakel #sismothérapie #choc #autonomie #révolution #Consciences_Maghrébines #André_Mandouze #Amitiés_Algériennes #Wilaya #Association_de_la_jeunesse_algérienne_pour_l'action_sociale (#AJASS) #Alice_Cherki #maquis #montagne_de_Chréa #torture #attentats #ALN #FLN #El_Moudjahid #congrès_de_la_Soummam #pacification_coloniale #Septième_Wilaya #massacre_de_Melouze #opération_Bleuite #histoire

  • The miner and the neon fish: decolonizing Alpine ecologies
    https://denk-mal-denken.ch/wettbewerb-publikumspreis/denkmal/the-miner-and-the-neon-fish-decolonizing-alpine-ecologies

    This is the proposal that won the third price in the Competition (Wettbewerb) that was created in the aftermath of the contestation of monuments worldwide that had some link to colonialism, slavery and racism https://denk-mal-denken.ch.

    Rony Emmenegger und Stephan Hochleithner, who are both political geographers at the university of Basel won the third price in this competition for their proposals that calls attention to the non-human aspects of the guilding of the hydropower stations Oberhasli and its ecological costs. See: https://denk-mal-denken.ch/wettbewerb-publikumspreis/denkmal/the-miner-and-the-neon-fish-decolonizing-alpine-ecologies.

    #Suisse #hydro-power #décolonial #decolonial #monument

    • Next to a serpentine road, halfway up to Grimsel pass when approaching from the North, stands the miner (Der Mineur), silently splitting rock with his pneumatic hammer. The statue was erected to honor the construction workers of the hydropower stations Oberhasli, whose work has been shaping an Alpine landscape since the early twentieth century. At the top of Grimsel, catchment lakes, water dams, power stations, and power poles morph into a hydroelectric infrastructure, producing energy and carrying it down towards the lowland valleys. Honoring the work of those who brought that infrastructure into being appears indeed justified in light of their sacrifices on the altar of a capitalist mode of production. Throughout the last century, construction work at almost 2000 meters altitude has been particularly challenging for both humans and machines – a challenge «mastered» through a continuous advance of engineering and technology with success increasing over time.

      The sole focus on human achievements, however, obscures the ecological costs and consequences that the extraction of hydropower involves, especially for fish, aquatic organisms, rivers, but also Alpine ecologies more broadly. With our graphic installation – the miner and the neon fish – we aim at problematizing a human-centric historiography of progress that obscures the ecological consequences of hydropower production. We do so by evocatively placing a neon fish under the miner’s pneumatic hammer. It serves as a visual metaphor for the electro-optical connection between humans and the fish, and the latter’s electrostatic discharge in contact with the miner and his machine. And yet, the relation between humans and their environments is not that clear-cut when it comes to commemoration, as we will elaborate in the following.

      The use of hydropower, as a renewable energy source, has a long tradition in Switzerland. In the Grimsel region, the development of hydropower infrastructure intensified at large scale with a first mega dam project in 1925 – the Spitallamm dam. Construction work went on from 1925 to 1932 and resulted in the 114-meter-high dam – the world’s largest at the time. Since then, hydropower infrastructure has been gradually extended. Today, it connects 13 hydropower plants and eight storage lakes, producing between 2100 and 2300 gigawatt hours of electric energy annually.1 A further extension is currently in progress with the construction of a new dam replacing the existing Sptiallamm dam – because it cracked. The finalization of this new dam is scheduled for 2025 and it will then not only secure, but further increase the capacity of the hydroelectric infrastructure – in line with Switzerland’s Energy Strategy 2050 and the envisioned transition towards renewable energy sources after the nuclear phase-out.

      Currently, an exhibition at the UNESCO/KWO Visitors Center2 close to the dam provides visual and acoustic insights into the construction works back in the late 1920s and those ongoing at the new dam today.3 The exhibition includes an outline of the ongoing dam replacement project, compiles a series of engineering schemes, and posts statements of workers involved in the ongoing construction. These exhibition elements are placed in a broader historical context of construction work at the site: a number of selected historical photographs and a short 5-minutes video provide lively insights into the construction work back in the late 1920s. They show laborers at work and demonstrate the logistical network of technology and expertise that coordinated their doing. The exhibition can thus be read as an extension of the miner: it is constituted as a site for the glorification of a human history of progress that made the development of the hydroelectric infrastructure possible.

      However, the ongoing energy transition and the according «boom» (Zarfl et al. 2015) of hydropower raises questions about the potential ecological consequences of engineering, technology, and infrastructural extension (see also Ansar et al. 2014). The power plant operator in the Grimsel region highlights the «connectivity between humans, technology and nature»4, acknowledges the potential «tensions between electricity production and water protection»5 and calls for a responsible engagement with nature in its ongoing and planned projects. And yet, recent plans for the further extension of the hydroelectric infrastructure have still provoked controversies, with various associations still highlighting the negative ecological consequences of these plans.6

      So, who might best speak for fish and aquatic microorganisms in ongoing and planned construction projects? By placing the dying neon fish under the miner’s pneumatic hammer, we aim at problematizing the ecological costs, which infrastructural extension and energy production have been generating for almost a century. We do so by moving beyond a narrow focus on humans and by bringing into consideration an Alpine ecology as a «socialnature» (Braun & Castree 2001), which the extension of hydroelectric infrastructure has profoundly reassembled and turned into a «commodity frontier» (Moore 2000). Such a perspective reveals the extension of hydroelectric infrastructure as an integral part of capitalist expansion into an Alpine frontier, through which «nature» has been «tamed» and «commodified».

      The figure of the miner plays a key role in this colonializing process, as his stone-bare masculine appearance embodies the very believe of human, patriarchal control over nature, glorifying man/kind’s appropriation of water for energy production and legitimizing the future extension of the hydroelectric infrastructure. As such, it sets a metaphysical zero point for a human history of progress, through which the building and extension of hydroelectric infrastructure has been normalized.

      To disfigure the statue of the miner – by putting the neon fish under his hammer – appears justified and fruitful in light of the endeavor to decolonize Alpine ecologies from human domination. And yet, decolonizing ecologies along these lines must not distract from the laborers’ themselves, who had to invest whole parts of their lives into these construction works. In other words, calling for environmental justice must not come at costs of those who have themselves been instrumentalized within that very same narratives and processes of progress and capitalist production.

      However, the statue of the steeled male miner can hardly account for the workers’ bodies and lives: It rather does, in its humble working-class pose, facing down to focus on its work with the drill, embody the hierarchy of class relations. Despite or maybe because the miner embodies these ambiguities, it appears worthwhile to maintain its presence for having a debate. In our installation, we aim at doing so by keeping the fish unlit during the day and thus hardly visible to passers-by, to allow the statue of the miner to remind of the workers. Only by night will the fish then appear in neon light and turn into a dazzling reminder of the colonization of nature – and also of the multitude of meanings which the monument entangles.

      #écologie #écologie_politique #énergie #électricité #Oberhasli #barrages_hydro-électrique #Alpes #montagne #décolonisation #Grimsel #travailleurs #mémoire #poissons #Spitallamm #technologie #nature #eau #protection_de_l'eau #coût_écologique #justice_environnementale #progrès #mineur #statue

  • Faut-il faire don de la #dette ?
    https://laviedesidees.fr/Gregoire-Mallard-Gift-Exchange.html

    Marcel Mauss permet d’éclairer les dynamiques des relations internationales contemporaines. Contre les abolitionnistes, Grégoire Mallard soutient que la dette génère des obligations réciproques entre États et peut stimuler leur coopération sur un principe d’égalité.

    #International #anthropologie #décolonisation
    https://laviedesidees.fr/IMG/docx/20211118_don.docx
    https://laviedesidees.fr/IMG/pdf/20211118_don.pdf

  • #Souveraineté_alimentaire. Aux États-Unis, les Amérindiens veulent “décoloniser leur assiette”

    La pandémie de Covid-19 a accru la volonté d’#autonomie_alimentaire des Amérindiens, qui renouent aujourd’hui avec les semis, les cultures et les #pratiques_culinaires traditionnelles pour “rééduquer” leur palais.

    Au printemps 2020, alors que le Covid-19 se propageait aux États-Unis, #Daniel_Cornelius a fait ses #semis. Membre de la nation #Oneida du Wisconsin, il vit dans la campagne vallonnée du sud de Madison, où il a planté des carottes, des tomates ainsi que des plantes traditionnelles amérindiennes : fèves, citrouilles et maïs.

    Il a aidé d’autres Amérindiens à faire de même. En juin, il a pris son tracteur manuel, direction le Nord, jusqu’aux Chippewas du lac du Flambeau, pour les aider à retourner et à préparer la terre selon la tradition.

    Puis, il a amené des graines de courge à la réserve Menominee du #Wisconsin, où les habitants ont aménagé des parterres de culture surélevés comme le faisaient leurs ancêtres.

    Il a collecté du sirop sur des érables et a ramassé du riz sauvage puis, en septembre, il s’est rendu à une foire dans la réserve Oneida, près de Green Bay, où il les a échangés contre des poivrons, des œufs de caille et de la soupe de maïs. “Presque tout le monde voulait de ce sirop d’érable”, raconte-t-il.

    Renouer avec les pratiques traditionnelles

    Cornelius fait partie du mouvement dit de “souveraineté alimentaire”, de plus en plus populaire chez les Amérindiens, qui vise à augmenter la production locale et à renouer avec l’agriculture et les pratiques culinaires traditionnelles.

    C’est un phénomène à grande échelle qui va de la culture d’un potager par des familles dans leur jardin jusqu’au développement d’un réseau d’organisations régionales et nationales dédiées à la coopération entre tribus, au partage de techniques agricoles et à la préservation de variétés ancestrales.

    “Les gens sont demandeurs de ces produits, explique Cornelius, également conseiller technique pour le Conseil agricole intertribal de Billings, dans le Montana, et professeur à l’université du Wisconsin. Et ils ont aussi soif de connaissances.”

    Pour de nombreux Amérindiens, le retour à des produits et cultures traditionnels s’inscrit dans un effort plus large pour se “décoloniser”. Une façon de réparer les ravages économiques et culturels infligés par les descendants d’Européens qui les ont chassés de leurs terres, enfermés dans des réserves et envoyés dans des pensionnats et ont tout fait pour les couper de leurs racines.

    Cela ne passe pas seulement par un regain d’intérêt pour les #plantes_ancestrales mais aussi par un retour à une certaine vie économique et culturelle, et à des coutumes et des traditions liées à la #nourriture et à sa production.

    Des effets bénéfiques sur la santé

    Sur le plan pratique, la souveraineté alimentaire est une solution qui vise plus d’autonomie et qui ouvre également des perspectives économiques dans les communautés les plus pauvres.

    (#paywall)

    https://www.courrierinternational.com/article/souverainete-alimentaire-aux-etats-unis-les-amerindiens-veule
    #peuples_autochtones #USA #Etats-Unis #décolonisation #alimentation #agriculture

    ping @cede @odilon

    • Seeds and beyond: Native Americans embrace ‘food sovereignty’

      Last spring, as COVID-19 swept the nation, Daniel Cornelius planted. A member of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, he lives in the rolling farm country south of Madison, where he planted carrots and tomatoes, as well as traditional Native American crops – beans, pumpkins, and corn in hues ranging from cream to deep red and bearing names like Tuscarora white, Mohawk yellow, and Bear Island flint.

      He helped others plant, too. In June he took his small walk-behind tractor north to help members of the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa start gardens, heaping the soil in long mounded rows in imitation of traditional planting hills. He brought squash seeds to the reservation of the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin, where members have been building raised beds after ancient Menominee practice. He tapped box-elder trees for syrup and gathered wild rice, and in September he brought them to a bartering event on the Oneida reservation, near Green Bay, where he traded them for peppers, quail eggs, and corn soup.

      “Almost everyone wanted that box-elder syrup,” he says.

      Mr. Cornelius is part of a growing “food sovereignty” movement among Native Americans, an effort aimed at increasing local food production and reviving Indigenous agricultural and culinary practices. It’s a broad-ranging movement that includes families growing vegetables in backyard gardens and an ever-expanding network of regional and national organizations devoted to fostering intertribal cooperation, sharing agricultural know-how, and promoting the use and preservation of traditional crop varieties.

      “People are hungry – literally hungry to eat these foods,” says Mr. Cornelius, who is also a technical adviser for the Intertribal Agriculture Council, based in Billings, Montana, and an instructor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. “But also, in a more figurative sense, they’re just hungry for knowledge.”

      For many Native Americans, the return to traditional foods is part of a wider effort to “decolonize” their people, a way to repair the economic and cultural damage inflicted by European Americans who drove them from their lands, confined them to reservations, sent them to boarding schools, and tried to sever them from their old ways. It means not just planting old seeds but reviving the economic and cultural life, the ceremonies, the customs and beliefs, around food and food production.

      In a practical sense, food sovereignty offers a path toward greater self-sufficiency and economic opportunity in poor communities. Perhaps more critical are its potential benefits for public health. Native Americans face high rates of diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and other conditions that food sovereignty advocates say result from a dependence on processed foods.

      “We’ve got to get back to a diet and food system that our bodies and our babies can handle,” says Gary Besaw, head of the Department of Agriculture and Food Systems on the Menominee reservation.

      Since it emerged a year ago, COVID-19 has given new urgency to these efforts. The coronavirus hit Native American communities hard: In December, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that Native Americans and Alaskan Natives were 3 1/2 times more likely than white Americans to become infected with the virus. Yet, while COVID-19 has revealed the vulnerability of Native peoples, it has also inspired more of them to plant, fish, gather, and hunt.

      “People are seeing the weakness within our current food system,” says Rebecca Webster, who with her husband, Stephen, grows corn and other traditional crops on the Oneida reservation. “They want to know where their food is coming from. They want to take control back.”

      Much of the food sovereignty movement focuses on seeds: growing and preserving them, as well as finding and distributing old and not-yet-forgotten varieties. Some of this work requires research, like figuring out where a seed company acquired its varieties long ago. It also involves hunting down a variety that someone has been growing – and then producing enough seed to share. Organizations like Seed Savers Exchange, based in Decorah, Iowa, and long devoted to promoting heirloom seeds, have in recent years been growing Native varieties and sending out seeds to a small number of established growers. In addition, an expanding universe of workshops and YouTube videos is available to teach aspiring growers how to use Native agricultural techniques.
      The “Three Sisters”

      The most popular seeds are the “Three Sisters” of Indigenous agriculture: corn, beans, and squash. They are traditionally grown together in mounds, as the Websters do on the Oneida reservation. The cornstalks serve as a trellis for the bean vines, while the beans, which are legumes, enrich the soil for the corn. The squash sprawls out all around. A modification of this strategy is to grow the corn and beans in mounded rows, with squash on the ends. Many Native growers also plant tobacco and sunflowers.

      When the pandemic struck, the demand for seeds soared. People had more time at home; they also were rattled by local food shortages. On the Meskwaki Settlement in Tama, Iowa, Shelley Buffalo, local foods coordinator for the Meskwaki Food Sovereignty Initiative, grappled with a “huge increase” in requests for seeds. “There were many people who were gardening for the first time,” she says. Appeals to the Traditional Native American Farmers Association “nearly depleted what we had,” says Clayton Brascoupé, a farmer in Tesuque Pueblo, New Mexico, and the group’s program director.

      “There were people contacting us from a lot of new places,” he says. “They said, ‘Can you send seed?’”

      But it’s not all about seeds. Native Americans are also raising bison, spearing fish, picking chokecherries, harvesting wild rice – and much more.

      It’s a movement that touches every tribe in the United States and reflects both the geographical and historical diversity of Native American communities. The Quapaw Nation of Oklahoma raises bison on lands recovered from lead and zinc mining and operates its own meat processing plant. The Muckleshoot of Washington state have hosted workshops on how to fillet a salmon and slice up an elk. Ndée Bikíyaa, or People’s Farm, is trying to revive agriculture among Arizona’s White Mountain Apache. Minnesota’s Red Lake Ojibwe sell mail-order wild rice and chokeberry jam. And in Hugo, Minnesota, just outside the Twin Cities, the organization Dream of Wild Health teaches Native children how to garden; a program for teenagers is called Garden Warriors.

      “This year was a big wake-up call for our tribe,” says Greg Johnson, a member of the Lac du Flambeau Band and an expert in cooking muskellunge, a predatory fish found in northern lakes, which he does by wrapping it in birch bark and baking it in the ground, under a fire. Mr. Johnson says that worries over the food supply sent twice the number of his band than usual out to spear walleyed pike in northern Wisconsin lakes early last spring, a tradition among his people. More people hunted deer later in the year; he taught some of them how to can the venison.

      “In many respects, for me it was really good to see that,” he says. “There were people you never thought would get wild rice. There were people who you never thought would get wild medicines. It was really incredible.”
      Chef participation, too

      Getting the food is only part of the movement. A growing number of chefs are promoting Native cuisine, among them Sean Sherman, an Oglala Lakota and recipient of a James Beard Award. The founder and CEO of The Sioux Chef business in Minneapolis, Mr. Sherman directs a food lab devoted to teaching Native culinary approaches. COVID-19 delayed his plan to open a restaurant, but it inspired a new form of outreach: ready-to-eat meals prepared in the Twin Cities and distributed to Native communities around the region. By December, a crew of 24 workers was sending 6,000 meals a week. It distributed 500 meal kits before the holidays, including the fixings for what Mr. Sherman describes as a Native grain bowl – Potawatomi corn, bison meat, dried blueberries, and puffed wild rice. “That was a fun one,” he says.

      Efforts to revive Native foods are not new. Mr. Brascoupé recalls an intertribal meeting in Gallup, New Mexico, in 1992 at which older farmers voiced concerns about their dwindling numbers. “They also saw a decline in people’s health,” he says. “They tied those two together.”

      In the years since, Mr. Brascoupé has seen a steady increase in the ranks of Native farmers. And what started as a rural movement, he says, has moved to cities, where many Native Americans live – to community gardening and programs teaching Native gardening and culture to children. Mr. Brascoupé attributes much of the resurgence not to tribal initiatives, which have become widespread, but to younger individuals carrying on the work of their elders. Once a young farmer himself, he now has grandchildren who farm.

      “A lot of what we see now started with young people,” Mr. Brascoupé says. “It was more from the bottom up than the top down, from tribal governments.”

      Indeed, the food sovereignty movement builds upon the perseverance and determination of individuals and families who have worked over many years to keep Native food traditions alive. One of these people is Luke Kapayou, who grew up on the Meskwaki Settlement. “When I was growing up, all of us, we had to help with the gardens,” he recalls. “Most of the families had their own gardens.”

      As Mr. Kapayou got older, however, he noticed that fewer people were gardening. And those still doing it were planting fewer old varieties – mainly just corn, the most prized of Native foods. He resolved to keep growing traditional beans and squash, and he began to seek out other varieties both on and off the settlement. He consulted old ethnographies. He even tried – unsuccessfully – to track down seeds at a New York museum.

      “Most of the seeds that me and my family are growing in our garden are what my parents and great-grandparents were growing,” he says. “They’ve been growing for a thousand years. I don’t know, I think I believe these seeds are sacred. They’re very special. It makes me want to keep growing them, and I want to make sure our kids keep growing them.”
      Plenty of challenges

      Despite its successes, the food sovereignty movement still faces plenty of challenges. Growing old crop varieties can be labor-intensive: If done in the traditional way, they are planted and harvested by hand, with the three main crops – corn, beans, and squash – planted together. Also, growers need to take care that nearby field crops, especially corn, don’t cross-pollinate with traditional varieties. And it takes time to preserve the foods – usually by drying – and to cook them up in traditional dishes, such as corn soup, which Mr. Kapayou prepares outside in an old kettle over a wood fire. In addition, efforts to take advantage of Native treaty rights for hunting and fishing continue to meet resistance – as when a group of non-Native people harassed Mr. Johnson while he speared walleyes at a Wisconsin lake last April.

      Nor is it easy to get people to renounce modern processed foods. Nicky Buck knows this well. A member of the Prairie Island Indian Community in Minnesota, she grew up behind a McDonald’s and ate sugar sandwiches as a child – and developed kidney disease as an adult. Today she eats – and promotes – Native foods in her community.

      “You just have to retrain your palate,” she says. “You have to decolonize your palate.”

      Decolonizing the palates of the young poses a special challenge. Parents make sloppy Joes out of bison meat and substitute flint corn for wheat pasta. Ms. Webster, the mother of two teenage daughters, says, “We’re trying to show that corn is cool enough even though there’s a frozen pizza looking at them.”

      The gardening itself may occasion a complaint from younger ones, but it’s good family time. Indeed, the food sovereignty movement is often about bringing people together – growing, harvesting, trading seeds and food, and, of course, eating. A Native foods cooperative on the Oneida reservation has 15 member families and saw more applications to join last year than ever before. “There are a lot of folks showing interest,” says Lea Zeise, who manages the co-op.
      A year-round effort

      Food sovereignty is a year-round effort. Over the winter, gardeners have been cooking up what they harvested and preserved in the fall – the dried beans, the canned venison, the corn boiled and dried and stored in glass jars. In northern Wisconsin, members of the Lac du Flambeau Band were busy with winter spearing, chopping holes through 28 inches of ice to get to the fish.

      “We’re going to get as many muskies as we can,” says Mr. Johnson. “We have a lot of younger people who want to do this.”

      Others are looking forward to spring – planning their gardens, shelling dried corn for seed, and in some cases looking beyond the pandemic to a resumption of the workshops and conferences that have helped spread the food sovereignty movement. “People can’t wait to get together,” says Mr. Cornelius.

      In the meantime, Mr. Cornelius, like other food sovereignty advocates, is heavily booked on Zoom. He’s also full of plans for his own farming. In midwinter he was thinking he should plant his greenhouse soon. He was also trying to figure out how to tap more trees in early spring, including a stand of silver maples on land he just bought last year – 51 acres, mostly woods, plus the derelict buildings of an old dairy farm. He hopes to bring in cattle. His friends say he should raise bison. Maybe someday, he tells them.

      “One step at a time,” he says.

      https://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Society/2021/0222/Seeds-and-beyond-Native-Americans-embrace-food-sovereignty

      #semences #graines

  • Le travail de recherche de #Emilio_Distretti sur l’#Italie_coloniale

    Je découvre grâce à @cede le travail de recherche de #Emilio_Distretti, post-doc à l’Université de Bâle, sur le #colonialisme_italien et les #traces dans l’#architecture et l’espace.

    Sa page web :
    https://criticalurbanisms.philhist.unibas.ch/people/emilio-distretti

    Je mets dans ci-dessous des références à des travaux auxquels il a participé, et j’ajoute ce fil de discussion à la métaliste sur le colonialisme italien :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/871953

    #colonisation #colonialisme #Italie #histoire #géographie_urbaine #urban_matter

  • Une statue de Christophe Colomb au Mexique sera remplacée par celle d’une femme indigène
    https://www.lemonde.fr/international/article/2021/09/07/au-mexique-une-statue-de-christophe-colomb-remplacee-par-celle-d-une-femme-i

    Selon la maire de Mexico, cette décision représente un acte de « justice sociale », ainsi que la reconnaissance de cinq cents ans de « résistance indigène » depuis la conquête espagnole.

    Comment peut-on oser décider de supprimer de la sorte la statue d’un génocidaire aussi glorieux ?!

    L’exemple nous vient d’Amérique :-)

    J’ai envie de taguer dièse woke... mais nan... #justice_sociale

  • Quand s’organisait la société musulmane
    https://laviedesidees.fr/Charlotte-Courreye-Algerie-oulemas.html

    À propos de : Charlotte Courreye, L’Algérie des oulémas : une #Histoire de l’Algérie contemporaine (1931-1991), Éditions de la Sorbonne. L’Association des Oulémas algériens a joué un rôle important pendant la #décolonisation. Son objectif : faire de l’Algérie une société musulmane.

    #islam #religion #Algérie
    https://laviedesidees.fr/IMG/docx/20210827_asseraf-2.docx
    https://laviedesidees.fr/IMG/pdf/20210827_asseraf-2.pdf

  • Decolonising Asylum ?

    From the outset, I have to warn you, dear reader, that I am not trying to dispute the subject matter of ‘decolonising asylum’ in this short blog but rather raise a fundamental question, thus: How can we ‘decolonise’ our relation with the ‘Other’? Indeed, this represents an invitation for everyone interested to imagine a way of life beyond the mere conventional framing of ‘coloniality’.

    As Professor Nelson Maldonado-Torres has written (caribbeanstudiesassociation.org/docs/Maldonado-Torres_Outline_Ten_Theses-10.23.16.pdf), coloniality is:
    ’the catastrophic transformation of whatever we can consider as human space, time, structure, culture, subjectivity, objectivity, and methodology, into dehumanizing coordinates or foundations that serve to perpetuate the inferiority of some and the superiority of others.’

    Decoloniality is a mode of critique that seeks to understand and challenge these exclusive practices of othering and the hierarchical understanding of the human. As typical subjects of coloniality, refugees and people seeking asylum are often exposed to regimes of othering, bordering and ordering. Thus, countering the persistence of these exclusive practices would necessitate decolonising asylum.

    In a bid to better formulate my question, let me now turn to what I would call ‘the refugee’s triple loss’, or rather, the loss of ‘home’, loss of ‘humanity’, or arguably the worst, loss of ‘hope’. Home is neither a place nor does it necessarily constitute specified persons; it is a relation of sociality – “the self and its relation to the other in time and space”. Involuntarily displaced, the refugee has lost his/her human-to-human connectivity, along with spatial and temporal relations. What this loss of home means in actuality is that refugees are stripped of their capacity for socio-political existence and situatedness in time and place. Once rendered unintelligible, they succumb with total submission to biopolitical and necropolitical b/ordering. This total surrender is epitomised by accompanying apocalyptic imagery of refugees dying at borders, in deserts, in camps, or lost at sea. Indeed, unfortunately they often die in the process of seeking the asylum that they are so often denied systematically.

    In the global order in which we live, the state has assumed the role of policing one’s access to being classified as a human entity. And in this system of b/ordering, the homeless refugee is thrown into the realm of the sub-human. We all know that refugees lose their lives merely to be human. Refugee life is a life lived amid the daily admission of vulnerability and violability. Once they have lost state protection, humanity for the refugees is a condition of impossibility within the frame of coloniality. They are taken hostage in a state of an “incomplete death” as Frantz Fanon famously said. Or, according to Maldonado-Torres, they “live with death and are not even “people””.

    The last point I wish to raise concerns the issue of ‘hope’. Hope remains the most potent force refugees have at their disposal. It is the only means available to them to sustain their survival and aim at effecting change. In that sense, hope is the struggle of the oppressed – one that is propelled into the future. To put it more succinctly, it is a tacit resistance against the ‘coloniality’ of the future and conditions of impossibility for its decolonisation. Losing hope, therefore, is an involuntary admission of coloniality to be the norm of the present and the future. The state reifies this involuntary admission of hopelessness by negating refugees’ humanity, rendering them rightless corporealities.
    I have now briefly introduced what I mean by the refugee’s triple loss. I have also suggested that refugees are rendered homeless, sub-human and hopeless by the very same world order in which we all reside. Here now comes a more fundamental question, thus: If the ‘world-order’ we live in is rendering our fellow human beings politically untilligible and reduces them to sub-humanity, and if it is keeping them hopeless in an impoverished and precarious state of being, then what kind of b/ordering is this? And, most importantly, what can we do about it? Is the right to asylum the only answer?

    Well, asylum might represent a potential response but for success we must inherently decolonise the asylum system itself. We have to imagine beyond the conventional thresholds and parameters set by the state in conjunction with its mutant twins: charity and humanitarianism.

    It is time to accept that neither the granting of declaratory ‘right to remain’ nor the provision of ‘daily bread’ can shake the omnipresence of coloniality.

    We have to think of repairing the losses of home, humanity and hope. These losses cannot be permanent, however institutionalised they might appear to be. Thus, the impermanence of these seemingly permanent losses must be examined and subjected to a permanent disclosure from which possibilities for radical change can be inferred. Furthermore, decolonial work – the work of destroying the conditions of impossibility while also opening multiple possibilities for co-existence – is the ultimate activation of the decolonisation of the notion of asylum.

    I cannot offer a shred of thought, at least for the purposes of this blog, on how decolonising asylum can be achieved at empirical, conceptual, or, indeed, policy levels. I therefore leave the question open for the more inquisitive among us through the most tremendous tool in our possession: imagination. I wish to orient the question as an invitation for a ‘decolonial turn’, which according to Maldonado-Torres, is “the definitive entry of enslaved and colonized subjectivities into a realm of thought at before unknown institutional levels”.

    https://righttoremain.org.uk/decolonising-asylum

    #colonialité #décolonial #décolonisation #asile #réfugiés #migrations #colonialité #alterité #home #b/ordering #espoir

    #Hyab_Yohannes

    ping @isskein @karine4

  • Perspectives sur la #décolonisation des #savoirs de l’#eau dans un contexte français

    Cet article décrit les fondements et les résultats d’un projet consistant à valoriser un #pluralisme_épistémologique en rapport avec les savoirs de l’eau sur un territoire d’étude en #France. Inspirée par des auteurs hétérodoxes (Escobar, Haraway, Ingold), l’approche que nous appelons « la #science_territoriale » est une tentative à la fois pour mieux intégrer la #diversité_des_savoirs et réfléchir à la meilleure manière de promouvoir une « #justice_cognitive ».

    https://www.revues.scienceafrique.org/naaj/texte/perrin_et_linton2021

    #décolonial #ressources_naturelles

    –----

    Article paru dans :
    Volume 2, numéro 1 – 2021 : T ransitions environnementales et écologie politique des savoirs en Afrique : de la commotion coloniale et néo-libérale à la « co-motion » sociale et écologique
    https://www.revues.scienceafrique.org/naaj/numero/2-2021

    ping @karine4 @cede