• Flexibiliser le travail et produire des vies illégales

    En France, l’#ubérisation trouve des ressources dans les migrations. Ce phénomène est ici analysé et décrit par un ressortissant de Guinée qui vit à Grenoble depuis 2016, co-auteur d’une recherche-création entre géographie, art et droit.

    Si les migrations vers l’Europe et la France occupent les discours politiques et médiatiques, leurs modalités d’exploitation par le travail y sont bien moins évoquées. Les vies rendues illégales constituent une réserve de #main-d’œuvre exploitable et hyperflexible, dans un contexte précisément de flexibilisation et d’ubérisation du travail, notamment par le développement des applis de VTC ou de #livraison. Dans leurs travaux portant sur les liens entre migrations et travail, Sandro Mezzadra et Brett Neilson précisent que « la flexibilité, qui fabrique de la #précarité, est devenue la norme », tandis que les migrations forment « un terrain crucial d’expérimentation pour de nouvelles formes de "capture" du travail ».

    Cette exploitation du travail en #France, de vies rendues illégales, s’inscrit dans des formes d’exploitations plus larges de la force de travail, notamment d’entreprises européennes et françaises en Guinée pour l’extraction de ressources minières, qui entraînent des destructions sociales et environnementales et des migrations. Autrement dit, les liens entre migrations et exploitation de la force de travail se comprennent depuis un continuum qui dépasse très largement les frontières nationales, et s’inscrit dans des rapports en grande partie hérités de la #colonisation.

    #Pathé_Diallo, ressortissant de Guinée qui réside à Grenoble depuis 2016, décrit cette relation entre migration, exploitation et ubérisation dans le cadre d’une œuvre de création et de recherche intitulée Bureau des dépositions (1), à laquelle participent plusieurs géographes.

    « C’est un cercle vicieux »

    « Les Etats font exprès de ne pas délivrer des papiers à tout le monde pour que d’autres puissent exploiter les #sans-papiers dans des conditions difficiles, sur certains #chantiers ou dans les sites touristiques de ski en montagne, ou dans les travaux de #ménage. Depuis quelques mois à Grenoble, des personnes exploitées et sans papiers font de la #livraison de nourriture sur des #vélos. Ils sont mal payés et la cible de #Uber et des Etats, qui autorisent que le #droit_du_travail soit réduit à rien. C’est comme si les personnes donnaient toute leur énergie pour ne rien avoir.

    « C’est comme dans le domaine de la #sécurité. Dans la sécurité, c’est 12 voire 15 euros de l’heure pour la nuit. Celui qui te sous-traite va te payer 7 ou 8 euros par heure. Toi tu es sur le terrain. C’est parfois mieux que rester toute la journée à ne rien faire. Dans l’attente des papiers, beaucoup deviennent fous. Etre exploité devient préférable pour ne pas rester assis, passer toute la journée sans rien faire pendant des années, sans savoir quand le papier viendra. Ce sont les Etats et les entreprises qui se servent de la #main-d’œuvre qui sont responsables, en n’autorisant pas à travailler. C’est un #cercle_vicieux : pour se régulariser, il faut du travail ; pour avoir du travail, il faut des papiers.

    « Créer un syndicat sans-papiers permettrait de réduire le taux de chômage. En France, la #clandestinisation des travailleurs permet de réduire le #coût_du_travail, aux bénéfices des patrons et de leurs sous-traitants qui ainsi échappent à l’impôt.

    « Il faut respecter l’homme. C’est l’homme qui fait le papier, pas le papier qui fait l’homme.

    « L’exploitation des sans-papiers en Europe entre en écho avec l’exploitation de la main-d’œuvre dans les #mines en #Guinée. Ce sont les mêmes personnes qui exploitent et ce sont les mêmes personnes qui sont exploitées. Un mineur d’or ou de bauxite, en Guinée, peut parvenir à rejoindre la France pour travailler dans des conditions plus précaires encore que la mine. Dans les mines, les patrons sont souvent étrangers. Tout ce qui est exploitable en Guinée est exporté en tant que matière première à l’extérieur : Canada, Etats-Unis, pays d’Europe, comme la France, l’Allemagne… Dans la mine, il y a beaucoup de pollution, qui entraîne des maladies : sinusite, cancer du foie… La poussière mélangée aux produits chimiques crée des colonnes de plusieurs kilomètres, ce qui pollue les cours d’eau. L’eau est puisée par les populations. Les employés des mines ne sont pas bien payés. »


    https://www.liberation.fr/debats/2019/10/02/flexibiliser-le-travail-et-produire-des-vies-illegales_1754677
    #travail #exploitation #illégalisation #asile #migrations #réfugiés #flexibilisation #tourisme #extractivisme #continuum_colonial #post-colonialisme #économie

    ping @albertocampiphoto @reka @karine4

  • Comment restituer le patrimoine toponymique vernaculaire en situation postcoloniale ? Expériences néocalédoniennes
    https://neotopo.hypotheses.org/2079

    F.G. Entretien avec Jean Chatelier, novembre 2018 La toponymie officielle de la Nouvelle Calédonie telle qu’enregistrée par le Service Topographique NC et partiellement reprise par les cartes de l’Institut Géographique National rend compte de...

    #Catégories #ExploreNeotopo #Notes_de_recherche

    • La toponymie officielle de la #Nouvelle_Calédonie telle qu’enregistrée par le Service Topographique NC et partiellement reprise par les cartes de l’Institut Géographique National rend compte de corpus hétérogènes d’origine coloniale d’une part, et autochtone (la grande majorité) d’autre part. Dans les deux cas, on note des inspirations successives avec influences externes. Pour les toponymes coloniaux, plusieurs sources d’inspiration successives et simultanées (religieuse et républicaine notamment), et pour les toponymes autochtones, une réinterprétation d’une partie des noms à partir de la colonisation avec des transcriptions sélectives et approximatives.

      La #cartographie officielle de la #toponymie_vernaculaire, particulièrement d’origine autochtone, n’est que partielle. Initialement, elle ne portait que sur les lieux les plus fonctionnels pour le système politique et économique moderne de l’île dans ses rapports avec l’extérieur et notamment la métropole. Autrement dit, une bonne part de la toponymie n’était pas enregistrée par les cartes de l’IGN (qui reprenait la base des services de topographie de Nouvelle Calédonie) et celle cartographiée faisait la part belle aux toponymes d’inspiration autochtone mais largement sélectionnés et influencés par l’extérieur, ne serait-ce que dans les transcriptions. Cette situation a considérablement évolué avec les éditions des années 1990 et le travail d’inventaire des noms autochtones réalisé à l’amont et dont il sera question dans l’entretien qui suit.

      L’opposition stricte exonyme/endonyme n’apparait cependant pas forcément pertinente dans un contexte où les nominations autochtones aussi bien que les nominations coloniales et administratives ont pu être conditionnées respectivement par les influences historiques, culturelles et religieuses externes et par le substrat toponymique vernaculaire. Ce fait explique d’ailleurs pourquoi aucune corrélation systématique n’est possible dans l’analyse du peuplement entre ses origines (autochtone ou européenne) et celle du nom de la commune : ce qui peut apparaitre comme un exonyme peut désigner des collectivités largement autochtones (Ile des Pins) ou d’origine européenne (Le Mont-Dore ; La Foa), alors que ce qui peut apparaitre comme endonyme peut désigner des collectivités de peuplement d’origine principalement européenne (Nouméa) ou autochtone (Ouvéa).

      La première cartographie générale de la Nouvelle Calédonie débuta suite à l’insurrection Kanak de 1878. Elle fut réalisée de 1879 à 1886 et eu une longue histoire qui se termina avec les travaux IGN de 1951 à 56, cartes publiées dans les années 1960. Cette première cartographie donnera à l’exposition universelle de 1900 à Paris, une carte en relief, qui sera reprise par les américains à partir de 1942 pour les besoins de la guerre du Pacifique. Cette carte de 8 m de long (Grande terre) est visible au Centre territorial des archives à Nouméa. La toponymie générale, n’évoluera guerre avant les années 1980. La toponymie fut cependant plus ou moins bien recueillie sur les “plans minutes”, équivalents des plans cadastraux, au fur et à mesure des besoins de l’installation foncière et minière européenne. Les quelques inventaires savants hétérogènes et localisés ultérieurs furent peu utilisables avant qu’une expérience volontariste originale et féconde de collecte et de visibilisation de la toponymie vernaculaire ne soit menée dans les années 1980 et 1990. Cette initiative, dont il est question ici, s’apparente à une révision toponymique. Elle a été pilotée par un Ingénieur Géomètre du Service Topographique de Nouvelle-Calédonie, Jean Chatelier, en relation avec Mme de la Fontinelle et le défunt Michel Auffrey ; qui ont participé à quelques enquêtes terrain ainsi qu’à la rédaction d’une convention d’écriture homogène des 28 langues de NC, dont 6 sont écrites. L’expérience a fait l’objet d’un article détaillé en 2007 qui rend compte de l’ambition et de la rigueur de l’opération, tout en restituant avec chaleur l’aventure humaine qu’elle a constitué. On note particulièrement l’établissement d’une méthodologie reproductible pour la collecte des noms issus de la tradition orale, méthodologie qui permet la compilation des données de localisation, d’objet géographique désigné, d’origine de l’information et de l’informateur, de contexte d’utilisation…

      S’agissant d’une toponymie vernaculaire dont la conservation et la transmission était orale, l’opération de sélection et de transcription nécessaire à sa cartographie s’apparente à la fois à une restitution/révélation toponymique vernaculaire et à l’établissement d’une néotoponymie écrite issue du patrimoine vernaculaire. Cette opération a permis de collecter 15 250 nouveaux toponymes, elle s’est traduite dans l’établissement d’une nouvelle carte IGN au 1/50 000 e révisée et enrichie en 1990, avec le passage à cette échelle de la cartographie de 4750 toponymes pour toute la Nouvelle Calédonie à plus de 12 000 (soit les deux tiers d’une base toponymique enrichie passant des 4750 initiaux de la carte IGN à 20 000 avec les 15 250 apportés par l’étude) . Mais le travail réalisé appelait d’autres développements dans le cadre notamment de l’accord de Nouméa . Qu’en est il ?

      #post-colonialisme #toponymie #patrimoine_toponymique #Jean_Chatelier #peuples_autochtones #colonialisme

      ping @reka

  • #Fatou_Diome : « La rengaine sur la #colonisation et l’#esclavage est devenue un fonds de commerce »

    L’écrivaine franco-sénégalaise s’exprime sans filtre sur son enfance, l’immigration, le féminisme, ou la pensée « décoloniale » qui a le don de l’irriter…

    Fatou Diome écrit comme elle parle, avec fougue et sensibilité. Que ce soit dans ses romans ou dans ses prises de paroles publiques, l’auteure franco-sénégalaise use avec habileté de cette langue piquante qui frôle parfois la satire. Dans son premier roman à succès, Le Ventre de l’Atlantique (éd. Anne Carrière, 2003), elle donnait la parole à cette jeunesse sénégalaise piégée dans le désir d’Europe et ses mirages tragiques. Les œuvres de Fatou Diome offrent aussi une voix aux femmes, héroïnes du quotidien quand les maris migrent (Celles qui attendent, éd. Flammarion, 2010) ou disparaissent tragiquement, comme dans son nouveau roman, Les Veilleurs de Sangomar (éd. Albin Michel), en librairie le 22 août.

    Installée à Strasbourg depuis vingt-cinq ans, Fatou Diome observe et critique sa société d’origine et son pays d’accueil. En vingt ans de carrière, elle a publié une dizaine de romans, de nouvelles et un essai remarqué en 2017, Marianne porte plainte ! (éd. Flammarion), véritable pamphlet contre les discours identitaires, racistes, sexistes et islamophobes. Dans cet entretien, Fatou Diome s’exprime sans filtre sur son enfance aux marges, l’immigration, le féminisme, ou la pensée « décoloniale » qui a le don de l’irriter…
    D’où vient votre nom, Diome ?

    Fatou Diome Au Saloum, région située sur la côte sud du Sénégal, les Diome sont des Sérères-Niominkas, des Guelwaar. Il est dit que ce peuple était viscéralement attaché à sa liberté.
    Pourtant, écrivez-vous dans Le Ventre de l’Atlantique, votre nom suscitait la gêne à Niodior, votre village natal…

    Oui, car je suis née hors mariage d’un amour d’adolescents. A cette époque, j’étais la seule de l’île à porter ce nom car mon père est d’un autre village. Enfant, je ne comprenais pas pourquoi la simple prononciation de mon nom suscitait le mépris. J’ai compris plus tard que ce sentiment de gêne diffuse que je ressentais autour de moi venait du fait que j’étais supposée être « l’enfant du péché ».

    Cette ostracisation était d’autant plus injuste que l’idée « d’enfant illégitime » n’existait pas chez les Sérères animistes jusqu’au milieu du XIXe siècle et la domination des religions monothéistes. Jusque-là, au contraire, avoir un enfant des fiancés avant le mariage était le meilleur moyen de s’assurer que le prétendant était fertile. C’était même une tradition dans l’aristocratie sérère notamment, où la lignée était matrilinéaire. « Domou Djitlé », qui signifie « enfant illégitime », est une expression wolof, qui n’existe pas en sérère.
    Comment enfant affrontiez-vous cette marginalisation ?

    En renonçant à ceux qui me calomniaient. Cette indépendance m’est venue des conseils de mon grand-père maternel, un marin qui, dans l’Atlantique, devait sans cesse trouver des solutions. Je l’accompagnais souvent en mer. Quand le vent soufflait trop fort et que je pleurais, il me lançait : « Tu crois que tes pleurs vont nous ramener plus vite au village ? Allez, rame ! » C’est une leçon que j’ai retenue : les jérémiades ne sauvent de rien.
    A quel moment vous êtes-vous réappropriée votre nom ?

    A l’école. L’instituteur, qui était lui-même marginalisé car étranger, m’a expliqué le sens du diome : la dignité. C’était énorme ! La « bâtarde du village » était donc la seule à s’appeler dignité ! (Rires)

    Et puis un jour, j’ai rencontré mon père. C’était un homme adorable, un sculptural champion de lutte ! Ma mère avait eu de la chance d’aimer cet athlète magnifique ! Porter son nom est une fierté. Je suis le fruit d’un amour absolu, un amour souverain qui n’a demandé nulle permission aux faux dévots.
    Etre une enfant illégitime, c’était aussi risquer de ne pas survivre à la naissance…

    Oui et je dois la vie sauve à ma grand-mère maternelle, qui m’a accueillie au monde, dans tous les sens du terme. C’est elle qui a fait la sage-femme. Elle aurait pu m’étouffer à la naissance comme le voulait la tradition, mais elle a décidé de me laisser vivre et de m’élever. Elle me disait souvent que je n’étais pas illégitime mais légitimement vivante, comme tout enfant.
    Cette jeune grand-mère vous a allaitée. Quelle fut votre relation avec elle ?

    Très forte. Elle était et restera ma mamie-maman. Jusqu’à sa mort, je l’appelais Maman. Enfant, je dormais avec elle. Plus tard, j’insistais pour faire la sieste avec elle lors de mes visites. Comme un bébé, je gardais une main sur sa poitrine. Ma grand-mère, j’en suis convaincue, était la meilleure mère possible pour moi. Pardon pour l’autre dame…
    Votre mère…

    Oui. Avec elle, j’avais étrangement une relation de grande sœur. Et plus tard, je l’ai prise sous mon aile car j’étais plus combative et plus indépendante qu’elle. J’ai choisi ma vie, elle non. Et c’est pour cette raison que j’ai dit dans Le Ventre de l’Atlantique que « j’écris, pour dire et faire tout ce que ma mère n’a pas osé dire et faire ». Elle a par exemple subi la polygamie, une maladie que je n’attraperai jamais.
    Qu’aviez-vous à dire quand vous avez commencé à écrire à 13 ans ?

    Ecrire était une nécessité. Il me fallait comprendre pourquoi, par exemple, telle tante me câline devant mes grands-parents puis me traite de « bâtarde » en leur absence. L’écriture s’est imposée à l’âge de 13 ans, lorsque j’ai quitté le village pour poursuivre mes études en ville. Pour combler ma solitude, je noircissais des cahiers. Une fois, j’ai même réécrit Une si longue lettre de Mariama Bâ. Dans ma version vitaminée, les femmes n’étaient plus victimes de leur sort, mais bien plus combatives. J’aime celles qui dansent avec leur destin, sans renoncer à lui imposer leur tempo.

    Vous épousez ensuite un Alsacien et vous vous installez à Strasbourg. En France, vous découvrez une autre forme de violence, le racisme. Comment y avez-vous survécu ?

    En m’appropriant ce que je suis. J’ai appris à aimer ma peau telle qu’elle est : la couleur de l’épiderme n’est ni une tare ni une compétence. Je sais qui je suis. Donc les attaques des idiots racistes ne me blessent plus.
    Etre une auteure reconnue, cela protège-t-il du racisme ?

    Reconnue ? Non, car la réussite aussi peut déchaîner la haine. On tente parfois de m’humilier. C’est par exemple ce policier des frontières suspicieux qui me fait rater mon vol car il trouve douteux les nombreux tampons sur mon passeport, pourtant parfaitement en règle. Ou ce journaliste parisien qui me demande si j’écris seule mes livres vus leur structure qu’il trouve trop complexe pour une personne qui n’a pas le français comme langue maternelle. Ou encore cette femme qui, dans un hôtel, me demande de lui apporter une plus grande serviette et un Perrier… Le délit de faciès reste la croix des personnes non caucasiennes.
    La France que vous découvrez à votre arrivée est alors bien éloignée de celle de vos auteurs préférés, Yourcenar, Montesquieu, Voltaire…

    Cette France brillante, je l’ai bien trouvée mais on n’arrête pas de la trahir ! Il faut toujours s’y référer, la rappeler aux mémoires courtes. Cette France, elle est bien là. Seulement, les sectaires font plus de bruit. Il est temps que les beaux esprits reprennent la main !
    Qui la trahit, cette France ?

    Ceux qui lui font raconter le contraire de ce qu’elle a voulu défendre. Pour bien aimer la France, il faut se rappeler qu’elle a fait l’esclavage et la colonisation, mais qu’elle a aussi été capable de faire la révolution française, de mettre les droits de l’homme à l’honneur et de les disperser à travers le monde. Aimer la France, c’est lui rappeler son idéal humaniste. Quand elle n’agit pas pour les migrants et les exploite éhontément, je le dis. Quand des Africains se dédouanent sur elle et que des dirigeants pillent leur propre peuple, je le dis aussi. Mon cœur restera toujours attaché à la France, et ce même si cela m’est reproché par certains Africains revanchards.

    Vous vivez en France depuis 1994. Les statistiques officielles démontrent la persistance de discriminations en matière de logement ou de travail contre notamment des Français d’origine africaine dans les quartiers populaires. Que dites-vous à ces jeunes Noirs ?

    Qu’ils prennent leur place ! Vous savez, au Sénégal, un jeune né en province aura moins de chance de réussir que celui issu d’une famille aisée de la capitale. La différence, c’est qu’en France, cette inégalité se trouve aggravée par la couleur. Ici, être noir est une épreuve et cela vous condamne à l’excellence. Alors, courage et persévérance, même en réclamant plus de justice.
    Cette course à l’excellence peut être épuisante quand il faut en faire toujours plus…

    Si c’est la seule solution pour s’en sortir, il faut le faire. Partout, la dignité a son prix. On se reposera plus tard, des millénaires de sommeil nous attendent.

    Vous avez suivi une formation en lettres et philosophie à l’université de Strasbourg avec un intérêt particulier pour le XVIIIe siècle. Que pensez-vous des critiques portées par le courant de pensée « décoloniale » à l’égard de certains philosophes des Lumières ?

    Peut-on éradiquer l’apport des philosophes des Lumières dans l’histoire humaine ? Qui veut renoncer aujourd’hui à L’Esprit des lois de Montesquieu ? Personne. Les Lumières ont puisé dans la Renaissance, qui s’est elle-même nourrie des textes d’Averroès, un Arabe, un Africain. C’est donc un faux débat ! Au XVIIIe siècle, la norme était plutôt raciste. Or Kant, Montesquieu ou Voltaire étaient ouverts sur le monde. Ils poussaient déjà l’utopie des droits de l’homme. On me cite souvent Le Nègre du Surinam pour démontrer un supposé racisme de Voltaire. Quel contresens ! Ce texte est une ironie caustique. Voltaire dit à ses concitoyens : « C’est au prix de l’exploitation du nègre que vous mangez du sucre ! »

    Par ailleurs, chez tous les grands penseurs, il y a souvent des choses à jeter. Prenez l’exemple de Senghor. Sa plus grande erreur d’emphase et de poésie fut cette phrase : « L’émotion est nègre, la raison hellène. » Cheikh Anta Diop, bien qu’Africain, était un grand scientifique quand Einstein était doté d’une grande sensibilité. Cette citation est donc bête à mourir, mais devons-nous jeter Senghor aux orties ?

    On constate tout de même une domination des penseurs occidentaux dans le champ de la philosophie par exemple…

    Certaines choses sont universelles. Avec Le Vieil Homme et la mer, Hemingway m’a fait découvrir la condition humaine de mon grand-père pêcheur. Nous Africains, ne perdons pas de temps à définir quel savoir vient de chez nous ou non. Pendant ce temps, les autres n’hésitent pas à prendre chez nous ce qui les intéresse pour le transformer. Regardez les toiles de Picasso, vous y remarquerez l’influence des masques africains…
    Vous estimez donc que le mouvement de la décolonisation de la pensée et des savoirs, porté par un certain nombre d’intellectuels africains et de la diaspora, n’est pas une urgence ?

    C’est une urgence pour ceux qui ne savent pas encore qu’ils sont libres. Je ne me considère pas colonisée, donc ce baratin ne m’intéresse pas. La rengaine sur la colonisation et l’esclavage est devenue un fonds de commerce. Par ailleurs, la décolonisation de la pensée a déjà été faite par des penseurs tels que Cheikh Anta Diop, Aimé Césaire, Léopold Sédar Senghor ou encore Frantz Fanon. Avançons, en traitant les urgences problématiques de notre époque.
    A l’échelle de la longue histoire entre l’Afrique et l’Occident, ce travail de décolonisation de la pensée, débuté il y a quelques décennies, n’est peut-être pas achevé ?

    Je pense, comme Senghor, que nous sommes à l’ère de la troisième voie. Nous, Africains, ne marchons pas seulement vers les Européens ; eux ne marchent pas que vers nous. Nous convergeons vers la même voie, la possible conciliation de nos mondes. La peur de vaciller au contact des autres ne peut vous atteindre quand vous êtes sûr de votre identité. Me concernant, ce troisième millénaire favorise la rencontre. Je sais qui je suis, je ne peux pas me perdre en Europe car, non seulement je récite mon arbre généalogique, mais je séjourne régulièrement dans mon village.

    Après tous les efforts de Senghor, Césaire, Fanon, en sommes-nous encore à nous demander comment nous libérer de l’esclavage et de la colonisation ? Pendant ce temps, où nous stagnons, les Européens envoient Philae dans l’espace… L’esclavage et la colonisation sont indéniablement des crimes contre l’humanité. Aujourd’hui, il faut pacifier les mémoires, faire la paix avec nous-mêmes et les autres, en finir avec la littérature de la réactivité comme le dit si bien l’historienne Sophie Bessis.
    Cette histoire dramatique, loin d’être un chapitre clos, continue pourtant de marquer le présent des Africains et les relations avec d’anciennes puissances coloniales…

    Pour moi, il y a plus urgent. La priorité, c’est l’économie. Faisons en sorte que la libre circulation s’applique dans les deux sens. Aujourd’hui, depuis l’Europe, on peut aller dîner à Dakar, sans visa. Le contraire est impossible ou alors le visa vous coûtera le salaire local d’un ouvrier. Pourquoi attendre une forme de réparation de l’Europe, comme un câlin de sa mère ? Pourquoi se positionner toujours en fonction de l’Occident ? Il nous faut valoriser, consommer et, surtout, transformer nos produits sur place. C’est cela l’anticolonisation qui changera la vie des Africains et non pas la complainte rance autour de propos tenus par un de Gaulle ou un Sarkozy.
    On sent que ce mouvement vous irrite…

    Je trouve qu’il y a une forme d’arrogance dans cette injonction et cette façon de s’autoproclamer décolonisateur de la pensée des autres. C’est se proclamer gourou du « nègre » qui ne saurait pas où il va. Je choisis mes combats, l’époque de la thématique unique de la négritude est bien révolue.
    Votre roman Le Ventre de l’Atlantique (2003) a été l’un des premiers à aborder le thème de la migration vers l’Europe. Que dites-vous à cette jeunesse qui continue de risquer sa vie pour rejoindre d’autres continents ?

    Je leur dirai de rester et d’étudier car, en Europe aussi, des jeunes de leur âge vivotent avec des petits boulots. Quand je suis arrivée en France, j’ai fait des ménages pour m’en sortir, après mon divorce. J’ai persévéré malgré les humiliations quotidiennes et les moqueries au pays.

    Si je suis écrivain, c’est parce que j’ai usé mes yeux et mes fesses à la bibliothèque. J’ai toujours écrit avec la même rigueur que je nettoyais les vitres. Aux jeunes, je dirai que l’école a changé ma vie, elle m’a rendue libre.
    La tentation est grande de partir vu le manque d’infrastructures dans de nombreux pays africains. Comment rester quand le système éducatif est si défaillant ?

    La responsabilité revient aux dirigeants. Ils doivent miser sur l’éducation et la formation pour garder les jeunes, leur donner un avenir. Il faudrait que les chefs d’Etat respectent plus leur peuple. Il n’y a qu’à voir le silence de l’Union africaine face au drame des migrants. Quand les dirigeants baissent la tête, le peuple rampe.
    Quel regard portez-vous sur le durcissement de la politique migratoire européenne ? Dernier acte en date, le décret antimigrants adopté par l’Italie qui criminalise les sauvetages en mer…

    L’Europe renforce sa forteresse. Mais qui ne surveillerait pas sa maison ? Les pays africains doivent sortir de leur inaction. Pourquoi n’y a-t-il pas, par exemple, de ministères de l’immigration dans nos pays ? C’est pourtant un problème majeur qui touche à l’économie, la diplomatie, la santé, la culture. Si l’Afrique ne gère pas la situation, d’autres la géreront contre elle. Elle ne peut plus se contenter de déplorer ce que l’Europe fait à ses enfants migrants.

    Vous avez écrit sur la condition féminine, le rapport au corps de la femme au Sénégal et la fétichisation dont vous avez été victime en France en tant que femme noire. Vous sentez-vous concernée par le mouvement #metoo ?

    Je comprends ce combat, mais je considère qu’Internet n’est pas un tribunal. Les femmes doivent habiter leur corps et leur vie de manière plus souveraine dans l’espace social et public. Il faut apprendre aux jeunes filles à s’armer psychologiquement face aux violences, par exemple le harcèlement de rue. Il faut cesser de se penser fragiles et porter plainte immédiatement en cas d’agression.
    La lutte contre les violences faites aux femmes revient aussi aux hommes…

    En apprenant aux femmes à habiter leur corps, à mettre des limites, on leur apprend aussi à éduquer des fils et des hommes au respect. Le féminisme, c’est aussi apprendre aux garçons qu’ils peuvent être fragiles, l’agressivité n’étant pas une preuve de virilité, bien au contraire. Me concernant, malgré la marginalisation à laquelle j’ai été confrontée, je ne me suis jamais vécue comme une femme fragile, ni otage de mon sexe, mes grands-parents m’ayant toujours traitée à égalité avec les garçons.
    Vous sentez-vous plus proche du féminisme dit universaliste ou intersectionnel ?

    Je me bats pour un humanisme intégral dont fait partie le féminisme. Mon féminisme défend les femmes où qu’elles soient. Ce qui me révolte, c’est le relativisme culturel. Il est dangereux d’accepter l’intolérable quand cela se passe ailleurs. Le cas d’une Japonaise victime de violences conjugales n’est pas différent de celui d’une habitante de Niodior ou des beaux quartiers parisiens brutalisée. Lutter pour les droits humains est plus sensé que d’essayer de trouver la nuance qui dissocie. Mais gare à la tentation d’imposer sa propre vision à toutes les femmes. L’essentiel, c’est de défendre la liberté de chacune.

    https://www.lemonde.fr/afrique/article/2019/08/25/fatou-diome-la-rengaine-sur-la-colonisation-et-l-esclavage-est-devenue-un-fo

    #interview #féminisme #racisme #approche_décoloniale #post-colonialisme #décolonialisme #pensée_décoloniale #xénophobie #migrations #émigration #discrimination #décolonisation_de_la_pensée #Afrique #Senghor #Césaire #Fanon #libre_circulation #anticolonisation #féminisme #humanisme_#intégral #relativisme_culturel #droits_humains #liberté

    • Quelques perles quand même:

      L’Europe renforce sa forteresse. Mais qui ne surveillerait pas sa maison ?

      Il faut apprendre aux jeunes filles à s’armer psychologiquement face aux violences, par exemple le harcèlement de rue. Il faut cesser de se penser fragiles et porter plainte immédiatement en cas d’agression.

      déçu...

    • @sinehebdo, j’ajouterais :

      C’est une urgence pour ceux qui ne savent pas encore qu’ils sont libres. Je ne me considère pas colonisée, donc ce baratin ne m’intéresse pas. La rengaine sur la colonisation et l’esclavage est devenue un fonds de commerce. Par ailleurs, la décolonisation de la pensée a déjà été faite par des penseurs tels que Cheikh Anta Diop, Aimé Césaire, Léopold Sédar Senghor ou encore Frantz Fanon. Avançons, en traitant les urgences problématiques de notre époque.

      Mais celle-ci par contre est selon moi au coeur des politiques xénophobes que l’Europe et les pays qui la composent mettent en oeuvre :

      La #peur de vaciller au contact des autres ne peut vous atteindre quand vous êtes sûr de votre #identité.

  • How to Think About #Empire

    Boston Review speaks with #Arundhati_Roy on censorship, storytelling, and her problem with the term ‘postcolonialism.’

    In her second novel, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness (2017), Arundhati Roy asks, “What is the acceptable amount of blood for good literature?” This relationship between the imagination and the stuff of real life—violence, injustice, power—is central to Roy’s writing, dating back to her Booker Prize–winning debut novel The God of Small Things (1997). For the twenty years between the release of her first and second novels, the Indian writer has dismayed many—those who preferred that she stick to storytelling and those who were comfortable with the turn of global politics around 9/11—by voicing her political dissent loudly and publicly.

    Her critical essays, many published in major Indian newspapers, take on nuclear weapons, big dams, corporate globalization, India’s caste system, the rise of Hindu nationalism, the many faces of empire, and the U.S. war machine. They have garnered both acclaim and anger. In India Roy has often been vilified by the media, and accused of sedi- tion, for her views on the Indian state, the corruption of the country’s courts, and India’s brutal counterinsurgency in Kashmir. She has, on one occasion, even been sent to prison for committing “contempt of court.” In spite of this, Roy remains outspoken. In this interview, she reflects on the relationship between the aesthetic and the political in her work, how to think about power, and what it means to live and write in imperial times.

    Avni Sejpal: In your book, An Ordinary Person’s Guide to Empire (2004), you identify a few different pillars of empire: globalization and neoliberalism, militarism, and the corporate media. You write, “The project of corporate globalization has cracked the code of democracy. Free elections, a free press and an independent judiciary mean little when the free market has reduced them to commodities on sale to the highest bidder.” How would you update this today?

    Arundhati Roy: That was fourteen years ago! The updates now would include the ways in which big capital uses racism, caste-ism (the Hindu version of racism, more elaborate, and sanctioned by the holy books), and sexism and gender bigotry (sanctioned in almost every holy book) in intricate and extremely imaginative ways to reinforce itself, protect itself, to undermine democracy, and to splinter resistance. It doesn’t help that there has been a failure on the part of the left in general to properly address these issues. In India, caste—that most brutal system of social hierarchy—and capitalism have fused into a dangerous new alloy. It is the engine that runs modern India. Understanding one element of the alloy and not the other doesn’t help. Caste is not color-coded. If it were, if it were visible to the untrained eye, India would look very much like a country that practices apartheid.
    Another “update” that we ought to think about is that new technology could ensure that the world no longer needs a vast working class. What will then emerge is a restive population of people who play no part in economic activity—a surplus population if you like, one that will need to be managed and controlled. Our digital coordinates will ensure that controlling us is easy. Our movements, friendships, relationships, bank accounts, access to money, food, education, healthcare, information (fake, as well as real), even our desires and feelings—all of it is increasingly surveilled and policed by forces we are hardly aware of. How long will it be before the elite of the world feel that almost all the world’s problems could be solved if only they could get rid of that surplus population? If only they could delicately annihilate specific populations in specific ways—using humane and democratic methods, of course. Preferably in the name of justice and liberty. Nothing on an industrial scale, like gas chambers or Fat Men and Little Boys. What else are smart nukes and germ warfare for?

    AS: How does the rise of ethnonationalisms and populisms change your diagnosis?

    AR: Ethno-nationalism is only a particularly virulent strain of nationalism. Nationalism has long been part of the corporate global project. The freer global capital becomes, the harder national borders become. Colonialism needed to move large populations of people—slaves and indentured labor—to work in mines and on plantations. Now the new dispensation needs to keep people in place and move the money—so the new formula is free capital, caged labor. How else are you going to drive down wages and increase profit margins? Profit is the only constant. And it has worked to a point. But now capitalism’s wars for resources and strategic power (otherwise known as “just wars”) have destroyed whole countries and created huge populations of war refugees who are breaching borders. The specter of an endless flow of unwanted immigrants with the wrong skin color or the wrong religion is now being used to rally fascists and ethno-nationalists across the world. That candle is burning at both ends and down the middle, too. It cannot all be laid at the door of resource-plundering or strategic thinking. Eventually it develops a momentum and a logic of its own.

    As the storm builds, the ethno-nationalists are out harnessing the wind, giving each other courage. Israel has just passed a new bill that officially declares itself to be the national homeland of Jewish people, making its Arab citizenry second class. Unsurprising, but still, even by its own standards, pretty brazen. In the rest of the Middle East, of course, Israel and the United States are working hard at sharpening the Sunni–Shia divide, the disastrous end of which could be an attack on Iran. There are plans for Europe, too. Steve Bannon, a former aide of President Donald Trump, has started an organization, The Movement, headquartered in Brussels. The Movement aims to be “a clearing house for populist, nationalist movements in Europe.” It says it wants to bring about a “tectonic shift” in European politics. The idea seems to be to paralyze the European Union. A disintegrated EU would be a less formidable economic bloc, easier for the U.S. government to bully and bargain with. Yet, at the same time, uniting white supremacists in Europe and the United States is an attempt to help them to retain the power they feel is slipping away from them.

    Enough has been said about Trump’s immigration policies—the cages, the separation of infants and young children from their families—all of it just a little worse than what Barack Obama did during his presidency, to the sound of deafening silence. In India, too, the pin on the immigration grenade has just been pulled. In the spirit of the globalization of fascism, U.S. alt-right organizations are good friends of Hindu nationalists. Look to India, if you want to understand the world in microcosm. On July 30, 2018, the state of Assam published a National Register of Citizens (NRC). The register comes in lieu of a virtually nonexistent immigration policy. The NRC’s cut-off date of eligibility for Indian citizenship is 1971—the year that saw a massive influx of refugees from Bangladesh after the war with Pakistan. Most of them settled in Assam, which put enormous pressure on the local population, particularly on the most vulnerable indigenous communities. It led to escalating tensions, which have in the past boiled over into mass murder. In 1983 at least 2,000 Muslims were killed, with unofficial estimates putting the figure at five times that number. Now, at a time when Muslims are being openly demonized, and with the Hindu nationalist BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) in power, the unforgiveable policy lapse of half a decade is going to be addressed. The selection process, sifting through a population of millions of people who don’t all have “legacy papers”—birth certificates, identity papers, land records, or marriage certificates—is going to create chaos on an unimaginable scale. Four million people who have lived and worked in Assam for years, have been declared stateless—like the Rohingya of Burma were in 1982. They stand to lose homes and property that they have acquired over generations. Families are likely to be split up in entirely arbitrary ways. At best, they face the prospect of becoming a floating population of people with no rights, who will serve as pools of cheap labor. At worst, they could try and deport them to Bangladesh, which is unlikely to accept them. In the growing climate of suspicion and intolerance against Muslims, they could well suffer the fate of the Rohingya.

    The BJP has announced its plans to carry out this exercise in West Bengal, too. If that were ever to happen, tens of millions of people would be uprooted. That could easily turn into yet another Partition. Or even, heaven forbid, another Rwanda. It doesn’t end there. In the Muslim-majority State of Jammu and Kashmir, on the other hand, the BJP has declared that it wants to abrogate Article 370 of the Indian Constitution, which gives the state autonomous status and was the only condition under which it would accede to India in 1947. That means beginning a process of overwhelming the local population with Israeli-type settlements in the Kashmir Valley. Over the past thirty years, almost 70,000 people have died in Kashmir’s struggle for self-determination. Any move to eliminate Article 370 would be simply cataclysmic.

    Meanwhile vulnerable communities that have been oppressed, exploited, and excluded because of their identities—their caste, race, gender, religion, or ethnicity—are organizing themselves, too, along those very lines, to resist oppression and exclusion.
    While it is easy to take lofty moral positions, in truth, there is nothing simple about this problem. Because it is not a problem. It is a symptom of a great churning and a deep malaise. The assertion of ethnicity, race, caste, nationalism, sub-nationalism, patriarchy, and all kinds of identity, by exploiters as well as the exploited, has a lot—but of course not everything—to do with laying collective claim to resources (water, land, jobs, money) that are fast disappearing. There is nothing new here, except the scale at which its happening, the formations that keep changing, and the widening gap between what is said and what is meant. Few countries in the world stand to lose more from this way of thinking than India—a nation of minorities. The fires, once they start, could burn for a thousand years. If we go down this warren and choose to stay there, if we allow our imaginations to be trapped within this matrix, and come to believe there is no other way of seeing things, if we lose sight of the sky and the bigger picture, then we are bound to find ourselves in conflicts that spiral and spread and multiply and could very easily turn apocalyptic.

    AS: You once wrote that George W. Bush “achieved what writers, scholars, and activists have striven to achieve for decades. He has exposed the ducts. He has placed on full public view the working parts, the nuts and bolts of the apocalyptic apparatus of the American empire.” What did you mean by this, and ten years and two presidents later, is the American empire’s apocalyptic nature still so transparent?

    AR: I was referring to Bush’s unnuanced and not very intelligent commentary after the events of 9/11 and in the run-up to the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq. It exposed the thinking of the deep state in the United States. That transparency disappeared in the Obama years, as it tends to when Democrats are in power. In the Obama years, you had to ferret out information and piece it together to figure out how many bombs were being dropped and how many people were being killed, even as the acceptance speech for the Nobel Peace Prize was being eloquently delivered. However differently their domestic politics plays out on home turf, it is a truism that the Democrats’ foreign policy has tended to be as aggressive as that of the Republicans. But since 9/11, between Bush and Obama, how many countries have been virtually laid to waste? And now we have the era of Trump, in which we learn that intelligence and nuance are relative terms. And that W, when compared to Trump, was a serious intellectual. Now U.S. foreign policy is tweeted to the world on an hourly basis. You can’t get more transparent than that. The Absurd Apocalypse. Who would have imagined that could be possible? But it is possible—more than possible—and it will be quicker in the coming if Trump makes the dreadful mistake of attacking Iran.

    AS: There is a marked stylistic difference between your two novels, The God of Small Things and The Ministry of Utmost Happiness, published two decades apart. While both speak of politics and violence, the former is written in a style often described as lyrical realism. Beauty is one of its preoccupations, and it ends on a hopeful note. The Ministry of Utmost Happiness, on the other hand, is a more urgent, fragmented, and bleak novel, where the losses are harder to sustain. Given the dominance of lyrical realism in the postcolonial and global novel, was your stylistic choice also a statement about the need to narrate global systems of domination differently? Is the novel an indirect call to rethink representation in Indian English fiction?

    AR: The God of Small Things and The Ministry of Utmost Happiness are different kinds of novels. They required different ways of telling a story. In both, the language evolved organically as I wrote them. I am not really aware of making “stylistic choices” in a conscious way. In The God of Small Things, I felt my way toward a language that would contain both English and Malayalam—it was the only way to tell that story of that place and those people. The Ministry of Utmost Happiness was a much riskier venture. To write it, I had to nudge the language of The God of Small Things off the roof of a very tall building, then rush down and gather up the shards. The Ministry of Utmost Happiness is written in English but imagined in many languages—Hindi, Urdu, English... I wanted to try and write a novel that was not just a story told through a few characters whose lives play out against a particular backdrop. I tried to imagine the narrative form of the novel as if it were one of the great metropoles in my part of the world—ancient, modern, planned and unplanned. A story with highways and narrow alleys, old courtyards, new freeways. A story in which you would get lost and have to find your way back. A story that a reader would have to live inside, not consume. A story in which I tried not to walk past people without stopping for a smoke and a quick hello. One in which even the minor characters tell you their names, their stories, where they came from, and where they wish to go.

    I agree, The Ministry of Utmost Happiness is fragmented, urgent—I love the idea of a novel written over almost ten years being urgent—but I wouldn’t call it bleak. Most of the characters, after all, are ordinary folks who refuse to surrender to the bleakness that is all around them, who insist on all kinds of fragile love and humor and vulgarity, which all thrive stubbornly in the most unexpected places. In the lives of the characters in both books, love, sorrow, despair, and hope are so tightly intertwined, and so transient, I am not sure I know which novel of the two is bleaker and which more hopeful.

    I don’t think in some of the categories in which your question is posed to me. For example, I don’t understand what a “global” novel is. I think of both my novels as so very, very local. I am surprised by how easily they have traveled across cultures and languages. Both have been translated into more than forty languages—but does that make them “global” or just universal? And then I wonder about the term postcolonial. I have often used it, too, but is colonialism really post-? Both novels, in different ways, reflect on this question. So many kinds of entrenched and unrecognized colonialisms still exist. Aren’t we letting them off the hook? Even “Indian English fiction” is, on the face of it, a pretty obvious category. But what does it really mean? The boundaries of the country we call India were arbitrarily drawn by the British. What is “Indian English”? Is it different from Pakistani English or Bangladeshi English? Kashmiri English? There are 780 languages in India, 22 of them formally “recognized.” Most of our Englishes are informed by our familiarity with one or more of those languages. Hindi, Telugu, and Malayalam speakers, for example, speak English differently. The characters in my books speak in various languages, and translate for and to each other. Translation, in my writing, is a primary act of creation. They, as well as the author, virtually live in the language of translation. Truly, I don’t think of myself as a writer of “Indian English fiction,” but as a writer whose work and whose characters live in several languages. The original is in itself part translation. I feel that my fiction comes from a place that is more ancient, as well as more modern and certainly less shallow, than the concept of nations.
    Is The Ministry of Utmost Happiness an indirect call to rethink representation in the Indian English novel? Not consciously, no. But an author’s conscious intentions are only a part of what a book ends up being. When I write fiction, my only purpose is to try and build a universe through which I invite readers to walk.

    AS: Toward the end of The Ministry of Utmost Happiness a character asks: “How to tell a shattered story?” The novel is teeming with characters whose lives have, in some way, been curtailed or marginalized by the limits of national imaginaries. And yet their stories are rich with humor, rage, agency, and vitality. How do you approach storytelling at a time when people are constantly being thwarted by the narratives of neo-imperial nation-states?

    AR: National imaginaries and nation-state narratives are only one part of what the characters in The Ministry of Utmost Happiness have to deal with. They also have to negotiate other stultified and limited kinds of imaginations—of caste, religious bigotry, gender stereotyping. Of myth masquerading as history, and of history masquerading as myth. It is a perilous business, and a perilous story to try to tell. In India today, storytelling is being policed not only by the state, but also by religious fanatics, caste groups, vigilantes, and mobs that enjoy political protection, who burn cinema halls, who force writers to withdraw their novels, who assassinate journalists. This violent form of censorship is becoming an accepted mode of political mobilization and constituency building. Literature, cinema, and art are being treated as though they are policy statements or bills waiting to be passed in Parliament that must live up to every self-appointed stakeholders’ idea of how they, their community, their history, or their country must be represented. Not surprisingly, bigotry of all kinds continues to thrive and be turned against those who do not have political backing or an organized constituency. I recently saw a Malayalam film in the progressive state of Kerala called Abrahaminde Santhathikal (The Sons of Abraham). The vicious, idiot-criminal villains were all black Africans. Given that there is no community of Africans in Kerala, they had to be imported into a piece of fiction in order for this racism to be played out! We can’t pin the blame for this kind of thing on the state. This is society. This is people. Artists, filmmakers, actors, writers—South Indians who are mocked by North Indians for their dark skins in turn humiliating Africans for the very same reason. Mind-bending.

    Trying to write, make films, or practice real journalism in a climate like this is unnerving. The hum of the approaching mob is like a permanent background score. But that story must also be told.
    How to tell a shattered story? is a question that one of the main characters in The Ministry of Utmost Happiness, Tilo—Tilotamma—who lives in an illegal Guest House in a Delhi graveyard, has scribbled in her notebook. She answers it herself: By slowly becoming everybody? No. By slowly becoming everything. Tilo is an architect, an archivist of peculiar things, a deathbed stenographer, a teacher, and the author of strange, unpublished tales. The scribble in her notebook is a contemplation about the people, animals, djinns, and spirits with whom she has ended up sharing her living quarters. Considering the debates swirling around us these days, Tilo would probably be severely rebuked for thinking in this way. She would be told that “slowly becoming everyone,” or, even worse, “everything,” was neither practical nor politically correct. Which is absolutely true. However, for a teller of stories, perhaps all that doesn’t matter. In times that are as crazy and as fractured as ours, trying “to slowly become everything” is probably a good place for a writer to start.

    AS: In addition to writing novels, you are also a prolific essayist and political activist. Do you see activism, fiction, and nonfiction as extensions of each other? Where does one begin and the other end for you?

    AR: I am not sure I have the stubborn, unwavering relentlessness it takes to make a good activist. I think that “writer” more or less covers what I do. I don’t actually see my fiction and nonfiction as extensions of each other. They are pretty separate. When I write fiction, I take my time. It is leisurely, unhurried, and it gives me immense pleasure. As I said, I try to create a universe for readers to walk through.

    The essays are always urgent interventions in a situation that is closing down on people. They are arguments, pleas, to look at something differently. My first political essay, “The End of Imagination,” was written after India’s 1998 nuclear tests. The second, “The Greater Common Good,” came after the Supreme Court lifted its stay on the building of the Sardar Sarovar Dam on the Narmada River. I didn’t know that they were just the beginning of what would turn out to be twenty years of essay writing. Those years of writing, traveling, arguing, being hauled up by courts, and even going to prison deepened my understanding of the land I lived in and the people I lived among, in ways I could not have imagined. That understanding built up inside me, layer upon layer.
    Had I not lived those twenty years the way I did, I would not have been able to write The Ministry of Utmost Happiness. But when I write fiction, unlike when I write political essays, I don’t write from a place of logic, reason, argument, fact. The fiction comes from years of contemplating that lived experience, turning it over and over until it appears on my skin like sweat. I write fiction with my skin. By the time I started to write The Ministry of Utmost Happiness, I felt like a sedimentary rock trying to turn itself into a novel.

    AS: In Power Politics (2001), you wrote: “It’s as though the people of India have been rounded up and loaded onto two convoys of trucks (a huge big one and a tiny little one) that have set off resolutely in opposite directions. The tiny convoy is on its way to a glittering destination somewhere near the top of the world. The other convoy just melts into the darkness and disappears. . . . For some of us, life in India is like being suspended between two of the trucks, one in each convoy, and being neatly dismembered as they move apart, not bodily, but emotionally and intellectually.” For nations around the world that have had abrupt and accelerated introductions to globalization and neoliberalism, would you say the convoy headed for the top of the world has crashed? And what has become of those who are being slowly dismembered?

    AR: It has not crashed yet. But its wheels are mired, and the engine is overheating.

    As for those who are being slowly pulled apart, they have been polarized and are preparing to dismember each other. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the personification of what you could call corporate Hindu nationalism. Like most members of the BJP, he is a member of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the Hindu nationalist cultural guild that is the most powerful organization in India today. The BJP is really just the political arm of the RSS. The aim of the RSS, which was founded in 1925, has long been to change the Indian constitution and to officially declare India a Hindu nation. Modi began his mainstream political career in October 2001, when his party installed him (unelected) as Chief Minister of the state of Gujarat. In February 2002 (at the height of post 9/11 international Islamophobia) came the Gujarat pogrom in which Muslims were massacred in broad daylight by mobs of Hindu vigilantes, and tens of thousands were driven from their homes. Within months of this, several heads of India’s major corporations publicly backed Modi, a man with no political track record, as their pick for prime minister. Perhaps this was because they saw in him a decisive and ruthless politician who could ram through new economic policies and snuff out the protests and the restlessness in the country that the Congress Party government seemed unable to deal with (meanwhile delaying the implementation of the hundreds of memorandums of understanding signed by the government with various corporate entities). It took twelve years; in May 2014, Modi became prime minister with a massive political majority in Parliament. He was welcomed onto the world’s stage by the international media and heads of state who believed he would make India a dream destination for international finance.

    Although his few years in power have seen his favorite corporations and the families of his close allies multiply their wealth several times over, Modi has not been the ruthless, efficient free marketeer that people had hoped for. The reasons for this have more to do with incompetence than with ideology. For example, late one night in November 2016, Modi appeared on TV and announced his policy of “demonetization.” From that moment, 80 percent of Indian currency notes were no longer legal tender. It was supposed to be a lightning strike on hoarders of “black money.” A country of more than a billion people ground to a halt. Nothing on this scale has ever been attempted by any government before. It was an act of hubris that belonged in a totalitarian dictatorship. For weeks together, daily wage workers, cab drivers, small shop keepers stood in long lines, hour upon hour, hoping to get their meager savings converted into new bank notes. All the currency, almost to the last rupee, “black” as well as “white,” was returned to the banks. Officially at least, there was no “black money.” It was a big-budget, razzle-dazzle flop.

    Demonetization and the chaotic new Goods and Services Tax have knocked the wind out of small businesses and ordinary people. For big investors, or for the most ordinary person, this sort of caprice on the part of a government that says it is “business-friendly” is lethal. It’s a bald declaration that its word cannot be trusted and is not legally binding.

    Demonetization also emptied the coffers of almost all political parties, since their unaccounted-for wealth is usually held in cash. The BJP, on the other hand, has mysteriously emerged as one of the richest, if not the richest, political party in the world. Hindu nationalism has come to power on mass murder and the most dangerously bigoted rhetoric that could—and has—ripped through the fabric of a diverse population. A few months ago, four of the most senior judges of the Supreme Court held a press conference in which they warned that democracy in India was in grave danger. Nothing like it has ever happened before. As hatred is dripped into peoples’ souls, every day, with sickened hearts we wake up to Muslim-lynching videos put up on YouTube by gloating vigilantes, news of Dalits being publicly flogged, of women and infants being raped, of thousands marching in support of people who have been arrested for rape, of those convicted for mass murder in the Gujarat pogrom being let out of jail while human rights defenders and thousands of indigenous people are in jail on charges of sedition, of children’s history textbooks being written by complete fools, of glaciers melting and of water tables plummeting just as fast as our collective IQ.
    But it is all OK, because we are buying more weapons from Europe and the United States than almost anyone else. So, India, which has the largest population of malnutritioned children in the world, where hundreds of thousands of debt-ridden farmers and farm laborers have committed suicide, where it is safer to be a cow than it is to be a woman, is still being celebrated as one of the fastest growing economies in the world.

    AS: The word “empire” has often been invoked as a uniquely European and U.S. problem. Do you see India and other postcolonial nations as adapting older forms of empire in new geopolitical clothing? In The Ministry of Utmost Happiness, you show us how the Indian government has developed strategies of surveillance and counterterrorism that are, to put it mildly, totalitarian in their scope. How can we think of empire now in the Global South, especially at a time when postcolonial nations are emulating the moral calculus of their old colonial masters?

    AR: It is interesting that countries that call themselves democracies— India, Israel, and the United States—are busy running military occupations. Kashmir is one of the deadliest and densest military occupations in the world. India transformed from colony to imperial power virtually overnight. There has not been a day since the British left India in August 1947 that the Indian army and paramilitary have not been deployed within the country’s borders against its “own people”: Mizoram, Manipur, Nagaland, Assam, Kashmir, Jammu, Hyderabad, Goa, Punjab, Bengal, and now Chhattisgarh, Orissa, Jharkhand. The dead number in the tens or perhaps hundreds of thousands. Who are these dangerous citizens who need to be held down with military might? They are indigenous people, Christians, Muslims, Sikhs, communists. The pattern that emerges is telling. What it shows quite clearly is an “upper”-caste Hindu state that views everyone else as an enemy. There are many who see Hinduism itself as a form of colonialism—the rule of Aryans over Dravidians and other indigenous peoples whose histories have been erased and whose deposed rulers have been turned into the vanquished demons and asuras of Hindu mythology. The stories of these battles continue to live on in hundreds of folktales and local village festivals in which Hinduism’s “demons” are other peoples’ deities. That is why I am uncomfortable with the word postcolonialism.

    AS: Talk of dissent and social justice has become mainstream in the age of Trump—but social media hashtags often stand in for direct action, and corporations frequently use the language of uplift and social responsibility while doubling down on unethical business practices. Has protest been evacuated of its potential today? And in such an environment, what kind of dissent is capable of cracking the edifice of empire?

    AR: You are right. Corporations are hosting happiness fairs and dissent seminars and sponsoring literature festivals in which free speech is stoutly defended by great writers. Dissent Is the Cool (and Corporate) New Way To Be. What can we do about that? When you think about the grandeur of the civil rights movement in the United States, the anti–Vietnam War protests, it makes you wonder whether real protest is even possible any more. It is. It surely is. I was in Gothenburg, Sweden, recently, when the largest Nazi march since World War II took place. The Nazis were outnumbered by anti-Nazi demonstrators, including the ferocious Antifa, by more than ten to one. In Kashmir, unarmed villagers face down army bullets. In Bastar, in Central India, the armed struggle by the poorest people in the world has stopped some of the richest corporations in their tracks. It is important to salute people’s victories, even if they don’t always get reported on TV. At least the ones we know about. Making people feel helpless, powerless, and hopeless is part of the propaganda.

    But what is going on in the world right now is coming from every direction and has already gone too far. It has to stop. But how? I don’t have any cure-all advice, really. I think we all need to become seriously mutinous. I think, at some point, the situation will become unsustainable for the powers that be. The tipping point will come. An attack on Iran, for example, might be that moment. It would lead to unthinkable chaos, and out of it something unpredictable would arise. The great danger is that, time and time again, the storm of rage that builds up gets defused and coopted into yet another election campaign. We fool ourselves into believing that the change we want will come with fresh elections and a new president or prime minister at the helm of the same old system. Of course, it is important to bounce the old bastards out of office and bounce new ones in, but that can’t be the only bucket into which we pour our passion. Frankly, as long as we continue to view the planet as an endless “resource,” as long as we uphold the rights of individuals and corporations to amass infinite wealth while others go hungry, as long as we continue to believe that governments do not have the responsibility to feed, clothe, house, and educate everyone—all our talk is mere posturing. Why do these simple things scare people so much? It is just common decency. Let’s face it: the free market is not free, and it doesn’t give a shit about justice or equality.

    AS: The vexed question of violent struggle against domination has come up at different moments in history. It has been debated in the context of Frantz Fanon’s writing, Gandhi, Black Lives Matter, Palestine, and the Naxalite movement, to name a few. It is a question that also comes up in your fiction and nonfiction. What do you make of the injunction against the use of violence in resistance from below?

    AR: I am against unctuous injunctions and prescriptions from above to resistance from below. That’s ridiculous, isn’t it? Oppressors telling the oppressed how they would like to be resisted? Fighting people will choose their own weapons. For me, the question of armed struggle versus passive resistance is a tactical one, not an ideological one. For example, how do indigenous people who live deep inside the forest passively resist armed vigilantes and thousands of paramilitary forces who surround their villages at night and burn them to the ground? Passive resistance is political theater. It requires a sympathetic audience. There isn’t one inside the forest. And how do starving people go on a hunger strike?

    In certain situations, preaching nonviolence can be a kind of violence. Also, it is the kind of terminology that dovetails beautifully with the “human rights” discourse in which, from an exalted position of faux neutrality, politics, morality, and justice can be airbrushed out of the picture, all parties can be declared human rights offenders, and the status quo can be maintained.

    AS: While this volume is called Evil Empire, a term borrowed from Ronald Reagan’s description of the Soviet Union, there are many who think of empire as the only sustainable administrative and political mechanism to manage large populations. How might we challenge dominant voices, such as Niall Ferguson, who put so much faith in thinking with the grain of empire? On the flipside, how might we speak to liberals who put their faith in American empire’s militarism in a post–9/11 era? Do you see any way out of the current grip of imperial thinking?

    AR: The “managed populations” don’t necessarily think from Ferguson’s managerial perspective. What the managers see as stability, the managed see as violence upon themselves. It is not stability that underpins empire. It is violence. And I don’t just mean wars in which humans fight humans. I also mean the psychotic violence against our dying planet.

    I don’t believe that the current supporters of empire are supporters of empire in general. They support the American empire. In truth, captalism is the new empire. Capitalism run by white capitalists. Perhaps a Chinese empire or an Iranian empire or an African empire would not inspire the same warm feelings? “Imperial thinking,” as you call it, arises in the hearts of those who are happy to benefit from it. It is resisted by those who are not. And those who do not wish to be.

    Empire is not just an idea. It is a kind of momentum. An impetus to dominate that contains within its circuitry the inevitability of overreach and self-destruction. When the tide changes, and a new empire rises, the managers will change, too. As will the rhetoric of the old managers. And then we will have new managers, with new rhetoric. And there will be new populations who rise up and refuse to be managed.

    http://bostonreview.net/literature-culture-global-justice/arundhati-roy-avni-sejpal-challenging-%E2%80%9Cpost-%E2%80%9D-postcolo
    #post-colonialisme #terminologie #mots #vocabulaire

    • A propos du #Cachemire (et un peu d’#israel aussi) :

      The BJP has announced its plans to carry out this exercise in West Bengal, too. If that were ever to happen, tens of millions of people would be uprooted. That could easily turn into yet another Partition. Or even, heaven forbid, another Rwanda. It doesn’t end there. In the Muslim-majority State of Jammu and Kashmir, on the other hand, the BJP has declared that it wants to abrogate Article 370 of the Indian Constitution, which gives the state autonomous status and was the only condition under which it would accede to India in 1947. That means beginning a process of overwhelming the local population with Israeli-type settlements in the Kashmir Valley. Over the past thirty years, almost 70,000 people have died in Kashmir’s struggle for self-determination. Any move to eliminate Article 370 would be simply cataclysmic.

      It is interesting that countries that call themselves democracies— India, Israel, and the United States—are busy running military occupations. Kashmir is one of the deadliest and densest military occupations in the world. India transformed from colony to imperial power virtually overnight.

      Et 6 mois plus tard :
      https://seenthis.net/messages/796004

      #Arundhati_Roy #Inde

    • peau noires ...

      I recently saw a Malayalam film in the progressive state of Kerala called Abrahaminde Santhathikal (The Sons of Abraham). The vicious, idiot-criminal villains were all black Africans. Given that there is no community of Africans in Kerala, they had to be imported into a piece of fiction in order for this racism to be played out! We can’t pin the blame for this kind of thing on the state. This is society. This is people. Artists, filmmakers, actors, writers—South Indians who are mocked by North Indians for their dark skins in turn humiliating Africans for the very same reason. Mind-bending.

      #racisme #Inde #Kerala

  • Le #Programme_frontières de l’#Union_Africaine

    Plus de 26 frontières africaines ont été re-délimitées par le Programme frontières de l’Union Africaine depuis 2007. Pourquoi et comment sommes-nous en train d’assister à une #re-délimitation des frontières de l’Afrique ?

    Le partage de l’Afrique commencé à la fin du XIXe siècle n’est toujours pas terminé. L’histoire de ces frontières créées à la hâte dans des chancelleries européennes avec une connaissance quasi inexistante des États africains est pourtant relativement bien connue. Cette méconnaissance des réalités africaines par les Européens du XIXe siècle a conduit à une délimitation souvent grossière (mais pas toujours) des colonies africaines, tant sur le plan juridique que pratique, et a encore des conséquences aujourd’hui.

    Pourtant, les frontières entre les différents empires coloniaux ont été délimitées de manière relativement précise par des traités internationaux au début du XXe siècle. Le travail pratique des commissions des frontières était particulièrement important pour l’érection de points de repère physiques le long des frontières internationales. Cependant, beaucoup de ces points de repère ont disparu aujourd’hui. En outre, les #frontières_coloniales créées au sein des empires coloniaux ont rarement été délimitées avec précision et leur localisation peut s’avérer difficile. Par exemple, la frontière entre le #Niger et le #Nigeria était mieux définie que celle entre le #Niger et le #Mali. La première séparait une colonie française et britannique (voir ce que j’ai écrit sur le Borno) tandis que la seconde n’était qu’une limite entre deux colonies françaises.

    Lorsque les pays africains sont devenus indépendants entre les années 1950 et 1970, les dirigeants nouvellement élus ont difficilement remis en question cet héritage et des limites coloniales mal définies sont devenues des frontières internationales. Malgré l’importance des idées panafricanistes dans quelques pays et parmi la diaspora, les frontières coloniales sont restées intactes. Créée en 1963, l’Organisation de l’unité africaine (OUA), malgré son nom, a consacré leur existence. La résolution de 1964 de l’OUA au Caire « déclare ainsi solennellement que tous les Etats membres s’engagent à respecter les frontières existant au moment où ils ont accédé à l’indépendance ». Les frontières créées à la hâte en Europe à des fins coloniales deviennent ainsi en quelques années des frontières internationales.

    Afin de préserver ces frontières, l’OUA a toujours déclaré que ses États membres devaient affecter une partie de leur budget à leur démarcation des frontières. Cependant, cet engagement n’a pas réellement porté ses fruits. Les difficultés économiques et politiques ont rendu ce projet irréalisable jusqu’au début du XXIe siècle. C’est la raison pour laquelle l’organisation qui a succédé à l’OUA, l’Union africaine (UA), a créé le Programme frontières de l’Union africaine à Addis-Abeba (Éthiopie) en 2007.

    Comme les deux tiers des frontières africaines n’ont jamais été délimitées avec précision sur le terrain, sa tâche est colossale. Des progrès ont déjà été constatés et à la fin de 2018, plus de 26 frontières africaines avaient été délimitées par ce Programme frontières (4 700 km sur 83 500 km). De plus, le Programme frontières a créé une dynamique pour ses États membres qui ont signé un nombre considérable de traités, de protocoles d’entente et de protocoles depuis 2007.

    Tout comme pour l’#UA en général, la résolution des conflits et le maintien de la paix sont des objectifs évidents pour le Programme frontières et l’un de ses principaux objectifs est de prévenir les différends frontaliers. Le Programme frontières entend empêcher des #différents_frontaliers entre Etats membres de l’UA. Par exemple, l’existence présumée de ressources en gaz naturel et minérales à la frontière entre le Mali et le Burkina Faso aurait été à l’origine de deux guerres courtes en 1974 et en 1985. Le conflit a été réglé par la Cour internationale de Justice en 1986. Le Programme frontières aurait donc pour but d’empêcher les institutions internationales de s’immiscer dans les affaires africaines. Son rôle dépasse la simple technicité apparente de la démarcation des frontières.

    Les dimensions développementales et économiques du Programme frontières sont extrêmement claires. Le Programme frontières n’hésite pas à utiliser un langage inspiré par le consensus de Washington et cherche à promouvoir le libre-échange. Les frontières ne doivent pas être considérées comme un obstacle, mais doivent offrir des opportunités économiques aux communautés et aux États frontaliers. Ses activités sont principalement axées sur les populations vivant dans les zones commerciales des régions déchirées par des conflits. Par exemple, la région frontalière entre l’Ouganda et la République démocratique du Congo.

    L’UA et son Programme frontières sont officiellement responsables pour la diffusion de la conception dite westphalienne des frontières et de la #souveraineté. Cette conception qui tire son origine d’Europe et du #traité_de_Westphalie de 1648 revient à faire rentrer les pays africains dans un système international. Cette intégration politique et économique qui rappelle l’Union européenne n’est pas une coïncidence, le Programme frontières étant financé par la coopération allemande (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit ou GIZ). Avec plus de 47 millions d’euros investis dans le Programme frontières, les Allemands et donc les Européens continuent toujours à influencer la création des frontières en Afrique même si à la différence de la fin du XIXe siècle, les décisions sont prises maintenant par les dirigeants africains membres du Programme frontières.

    http://libeafrica4.blogs.liberation.fr/2019/07/22/le-programme-frontieres-de-lunion-africaine
    #Afrique #démarcation #frontières_linéaires #ligne #Allemagne #post-colonialisme #frontière-ligne #lignes_frontalières #géographie_politique

    ping @isskein @visionscarto

  • Des « #sciences_coloniales » au questionnement postcolonial : la #décolonisation invisible ?

    En 1962, se tient à Accra, au Ghana, le premier #congrès_international_des_africanistes. Il naît par scission, l’idée a été lancée au congrès des orientalistes de Moscou en 1960, et il se conclut sur la fondation d’une association internationale chargée de promouvoir les #études_africaines sur une base internationale, d’encourager les contributions africaines dans tous les domaines pour renforcer ainsi la conscience d’eux-mêmes des Africains , enfin d’organiser tous les trois ans un nouveau congrès. Accueilli par le premier État en Afrique subsaharienne à avoir obtenu son indépendance en 1957, le congrès incarne les ambitions et les ambiguïtés du moment des indépendances en #Afrique. Il veut internationaliser les études africaines tout en les mettant au service de la cause panafricaine. De même, les héritages scientifiques coloniaux suscitent des évaluations contradictoires. Lors de l’ouverture du congrès, Kwame N’Krumah (président du Ghana) oppose frontalement les sciences coupables de collusion avec le colonialisme (l’anthropologie) et celles qui sont appelées à devenir les sciences de l’indépendance (l’histoire). Chargé de présenter les études africaines dans leur ensemble, l’historien nigérian Kenneth Onwuka Dike, rend au contraire un hommage appuyé aux structures coloniales de recherche, en particulier au réseau des Instituts Français (puis Fondamentaux) d’Afrique Noire [2]. Ainsi, tout en admettant des formulations assez différentes, la question de la #décolonisation des sciences et de leurs pratiques est solennellement posée au moment des indépendances.

    https://www.cairn.info/revue-histoire-des-sciences-humaines-2011-1-page-3.htm
    #colonialisme #colonisation #post-colonialisme #in/visibilité #invisibilité #panafricanisme

  • Must we decolonise #Open_Access? Perspectives from Francophone Africa

    A long read featuring the recent work of Thomas Hervé Mboa Nkoudou and Florence Piron, on how a truly open and inclusive ‘Open Access’ movement must include those at the periphery

    I recently watched the recording of the fantastic Diversity, Equity and Inclusion session at OpenCon, and I was struck by the general theme of how ‘openness’ isn’t necessarily the force for equality that we perhaps think it is, and how issues of power, exploitation, and hierarchy means that it should be understood differently according to the context in which it is applied. In the session, Denisse Albornoz used the expression of ‘situated openness’ to describe how our Northern conception of openness should not be forced on anyone or any group – it needs to be understood first in individual contexts of historical injustices and post-colonial power structures.

    What stood out for me most in this session, however, (because it related most to my work) was Cameroonian Thomas Mboa’s presentation, which talked about the ‘neo-colonial face of open access’. The presentation employed some very striking critical terms such as ‘cognitive injustice’ and ‘epistemic alienation’ to Open Access.

    I’ve always known that the Open Access movement was far from perfect, but at least it’s moving global science publishing in the right direction, right? Can working towards free access and sharing of research really be ‘neo-colonial’ and lead to ‘alienation’ for users of research in the Global South? And if this really is the case, how can we ‘decolonise’ open access?

    Thomas didn’t get much time to expand on some of the themes he presented, so I got in contact to see if he had covered these ideas elsewhere, and fortunately he has, through his participation in ‘Projet SOHA’ . This is a research-action project that’s been working on open science, empowerment and cognitive justice in French-speaking Africa and Haiti from 2015-17. He provided me with links to four publications written in French by himself and his colleagues from the project – Florence Piron (Université Laval, Quebec, Canada), Antonin Benoît Diouf (Senegal), and Marie Sophie Dibounje Madiba (Cameroon), and many others.

    These articles are a goldmine of provocative ideas and perspectives on Open Access from the Global South, which should challenge all of us in the English-speaking academic publishing community. Therefore, I decided to share some excerpts and extended quotes from these articles below, in amongst some general comments from my (admittedly limited) experience of working with researchers in the Global South.

    The quotes are taken from the following book and articles, which I recommend reading in full (these are easily translatable using the free tool Google Translate Web, which correctly translated around 95% of the text).

    Chapter 2 – ‘Les injustices cognitives en Afrique subsaharienne : réflexions sur les causes et les moyens de lutte’ – Thomas Hervé Mboa Nkoudou (2016), in Piron, Dibounje Madiba et Regulus 2016 (below)
    Justice cognitive, libre accès et savoirs locaux – Collective book edited by Florence Piron, Marie Sophie Dibounje Madiba and Samuel Regulus (2016) (CC-BY) https://scienceetbiencommun.pressbooks.pub/justicecognitive1
    Qui sait ? Le libre accès en Afrique et en Haïti – Florence Piron (2017) (CC-BY) (Soon to be published in English in Forthcoming Open Divide. Critical Studies of Open Access (Herb & Schöpfel ed), Litwinbooks
    Le libre accès vu d’Afrique francophone subsaharienne – Florence Piron, Antonin Benoît Diouf, Marie Sophie Dibounje Madiba, Thomas Hervé Mboa Nkoudou, Zoé Aubierge Ouangré, Djossè Roméo Tessy, Hamissou Rhissa Achaffert, Anderson Pierre and Zakari Lire (2017) (CC-BY-NC-SA)
    Une autre science est possible. Récit d’une utopie concrète dans la Francophonie (le projet SOHA) – Revue Possibles, 2016 (CC-BY)

    Piron et al’s (2017) article starts with a stinging critique of those of us in our Northern scholarly publishing community cliques, and our never-ending open access debates over technicalities:

    “… there are many debates in this community, including on the place of open licenses in open access (is an article really in open access if it is not freely reusable in addition to being freely accessible?), on the legitimacy of the fees charged to authors by certain journals choosing open access, on the quality and evaluation of open access journals, on the very format of the journal as the main vehicle for the dissemination of scientific articles or on the type of documents to be included in institutional or thematic open archives (only peer-reviewed articles or any document related to scientific work?).

    Viewed from Sub-Saharan Francophone Africa, these debates may seem very strange, if not incomprehensible. Above all, they appear very localized: they are debates of rich countries, of countries of the North, where basic questions such as the regular payment of a reasonable salary to academics, the existence of public funding for research, access to the web, electricity, well-stocked libraries and comfortable and safe workplaces have long been settled.” Piron et al. (2017)

    … and their critique gets more and more scathing from here for the Open Access movement. OA advocates – tighten your seatbelts – you are not going to find this a comfortable ride.

    “… a conception of open access that is limited to the legal and technical questions of the accessibility of science without thinking about the relationship between center and periphery can become a source of epistemic alienation and neocolonialism in the South”. Piron et al. (2017)

    “Is open access the solution to the documented shortcomings of these African universities and, in doing so, a crucial means of getting scientific research off the ground? I would like to show that this is not the case, and to suggest that open access can instead become a neo-colonial tool by reinforcing the cognitive injustices that prevent African researchers from fully deploying their research capacities in the service of the community and sustainable local development of their country.” Piron (2017)

    Ouch. To understand these concepts of ‘cognitive injustice’ and ‘epistemic alienation’, it helps to understand this ‘world system’ and the power relationship between the centre and the periphery. This is based on Wallerstein’s (1996) model, which Thomas featured in his OpenCon slides:

    “… a world-system whose market unit is the scientific publication circulating between many instances of high economic value, including universities, research centers, science policies, journals and an oligopoly of for-profit scientific publishers (Larivière, Haustein, and Mongeon, 2015).” Piron et al. (2017)

    “… we believe that science, far from being universal, has been historically globalized. Inspiring us, like Keim (2010) and a few others (Polanco, 1990), from Wallerstein’s (1996) theory, we consider that it constitutes a world-system whose market unit is the scientific publication. Produced mainly in the North, this merchandise obeys standards and practices that are defined by the ‘center’ of the system, namely the main commercial scientific publishers (Larivière, Haustein, & Mongeon, 2015), and their university partners are the US and British universities dominating the so-called world rankings. The semi-periphery is constituted by all the other countries of the North or emerging from the South which revolve around this center, adopting the English language in science and conforming to the model LMD (license, master, doctorate) imposed since the Bologna process to all the universities of the world with the aim of “normalizing” and standardizing the functioning of this world-system. The periphery then refers to all the countries that are excluded from this system, which produce no or very few scientific publications or whose research work is invisible, but to whom the LMD model has also been imposed (Charlier, Croché, & Ndoye 2009, Hountondji 2001)”. Piron et al. (2017)

    So, the continuing bias and global focus towards the powerful ‘center’ of the world-system leads to the epistemic alienation of those on the periphery, manifesting in a ‘spiritual colonisation’:

    “… this attitude that drives us to want to think about local problems with Western perspective is a colonial legacy to which many African citizens hang like a ball.” Mboa (2016).

    So where does Open Access fit in with this world-system?

    “… if open access is to facilitate and accelerate the access of scientists from the South to Northern science without looking into the visibility of knowledge of the South, it helps to redouble their alienation epistemic without contributing to their emancipation. Indeed, by making the work of the center of the world-system of science even more accessible, open access maximizes their impact on the periphery and reinforces their use as a theoretical reference or as a normative model, to the detriment of local epistemologies.” Piron et al. (2017)

    Rethinking Northern perspectives

    This should be an eye-opening analysis for those of us who assumed that access to research knowledge in the North could only be a good thing for the South. Perhaps we need to examine the arrogance behind our narrow worldview, and consider more deeply the power at the heart of such a one-way knowledge exchange. Many of us might find this difficult, as:

    “The idea that open access may have the effects of neocolonialism is incomprehensible to people blind to epistemological diversity, who reduce the proclaimed universalism of Western science to the impoverished model of the standards imposed by the Web of Science model. For these people, the invisibility of a publication in their numerical reference space (located in the center of the world-system) is equivalent to its non-existence. The idea that valid and relevant knowledge can exist in another form and independently of the world-system that fascinates them is unthinkable.” Piron et al. (2017)

    Having spent a little time at scholarly publishing events in the Global North, I can attest that the mindset described above is common. There are kind thoughts (and a few breadcrumbs thrown in the form of grants and fellowships) towards those on the periphery, but it is very much in the mindset of helping those from the Global South ‘catch up’. Our mindset is very much as Piron describes here:

    “If one sticks to the positivist view that “science” is universal – even if its “essence” is symbolized by the American magazine Science – then indeed African science, that is to say in Africa, is late, and we need to help it develop so that it looks more and more like the North”. Piron (2017)

    And whilst in the North we may have a lot of respect for different cultural perspectives, genuine reciprocal exchanges of research knowledge are rare. We are supremely confident that our highly-developed scientific publishing model deserves to be at the centre of our system. This can lead to selective blindness about the rigorousness of our science and our indexed journals, in spite of the steady drip drip drip of reports of biased peer review, data fraud and other ethical violations in ‘high-impact’ Northern journals, exposed in places like retraction watch.

    North/South research collaborations are rarely equitable – southern partners often complain of being used as data-gatherers rather than intellectual equals and partners in research projects, even when the research is being carried out in their own country.

    “These [Northern] partners inevitably guide the problems and the methodological and epistemological choices of African researchers towards the only model they know and value, the one born at the center of the world-system of science – without questioning whether this model is relevant to Africa and its challenges”. Piron et al (2017).

    These issues of inequity in collaborative relationships and publication practices seem inextricably linked, which is not surprising when the ultimate end goal of research is publishing papers in Northern journals, rather than actually solving Southern development challenges.

    “In this context, open access may appear as a neocolonial tool, as it facilitates access by Southern researchers to Northern science without ensuring reciprocity. In doing so, it redoubles the epistemic alienation of these researchers instead of contributing to the emancipation of the knowledge created in the universities of the South by releasing them from their extraversion. Indeed, by making the work produced in the center of the world-system even more accessible, free access maximizes their impact on the periphery and reinforces their use as a theoretical reference or as a normative model, to the detriment of local epistemologies, which generates situations absurd as, for example, the use of a theoretical framework related to wage labor in the Paris region to analyze the work of women in northern Mali” Piron (2017)

    “The resulting consequences are, in particular, the teachers of the Southern countries who quote and read only writers from the North and impose them on their students and the libraries of our universities who do everything to subscribe to Western scholarly journals while they do not deal with our problems. (Mboa Nkoudou, 2016 )”

    This is also a striking example:

    “It is very sad to note that geographers in Ouagadougou are more familiar with European work on the Sahel than those at the Higher Institute of Sahel in Maroua, Cameroon.” Piron (2017)

    The lack of equity in research knowledge exchange and collaboration is also caused by another one-way North to South flow: funding. Research in the South is often dependent on foreign funding. Big Northern donors and funders therefore set the standards and agendas in research, and in how the entire research funding system works. Southern partners rarely get to set the agenda, and researchers rarely get to develop the research questions that guide the research. They have to learn to jump through administrative hoops to become credible in the eyes of the Northern donor (for more information see ‘Who drives research in developing countries?‘).

    Southern institutions are also compelled, via league tables such as the World Unviersity Rankings, to play the same game as institutions in the North. Institutions are ranked against each other according to criteria set in the North, one of which is citations (of course, only citations between journals in the Web of Science or Scopus, which is overwhelmingly Northern). And so to stay ‘competitive’, Southern institutions need their researchers to publish in Northern journals with Northern language and agendas.
    Northern agendas and local innovation

    Whilst it is tempting to think that the issues and criticism described above is mostly a problem for the social sciences and humanities, there are also real issues in the ‘hard’ sciences – perhaps not so much in their epistemological foundations – but in very practical issues of Northern research agendas. For example, Northern research, being based in Europe and the US, is overwhelmingly biased towards white people, in diversity of leadership, diversity of researchers, and most importantly in the whiteness of clinical trial subjects. This is problematic because different ethnic populations have different genetic makeups and differences due to geography, that mean they respond differently to treatments (see here, here and here). Are African and Asian researchers informed of this when they read research from so-called ‘international’ journals?

    Furthermore, these Northern agendas can also mean that research focuses on drugs, equipment and treatments that are simply not suitable for developing country contexts. I was reminded of a discussion comment recently made by a Pakistani surgeon on the Northern bias of systematic reviews:

    “There is a definite bias in this approach as almost all of the guidelines and systematic reviews are based on the research carried out in high income countries and the findings and the recommendations have little relevance to the patients, health care system and many a time serve no purpose to the millions of patients based in low resourced countries. e.g. I routinely used Phenol blocks for spasticity management for my patients which were abandoned two decades ago in the West. Results are great, and the patients can afford this Rs 200 phenol instead of Rs 15,000 Botox vial. But, unfortunately, I am unable to locate a single systematic review on the efficacy of phenol as all published research in the last decade was only on the use of Botox in the management of spasticity.” Farooq Rathore (HIFA mailing list, 2016).

    Similarly, I’ve read research papers from the South that report on innovative approaches to medical treatments and other problems that utilise lower-cost equipment and methodologies (in fact, as is argued here, research in low-resource environments can often be more efficient and innovative, containing many lessons we, in the North, could learn from). This point is also made by Piron et al:

    “… the production of technical and social innovations is rich in Sub-Saharan French-speaking Africa, as evidenced by the high number of articles on this subject in the Sci-Dev magazine, specializing in science for development, or in the ecofin site, an economic information agency turned towards Africa. But these are mostly local innovations that mobilize local resources and often recycled materials to, for example, introduce electricity into a village, better irrigate fields or offer lighting after sunset. The aim of these innovations is to contribute to local development and not to the development of international markets, unlike innovations designed in the North which, while targeting the countries of the South, remain highly marketable – just think of milk powder or GMO seeds. The issue of open access to scientific publications is a very secondary issue for local innovators in such a context”. (Piron et al. 2016)

    These examples of innovation aside, there are many cases where the ‘epistemic alienation’ described above leads to ‘the exclusion or contempt of local knowledge’ (Mboa, 2016), even amongst researchers in the global South.

    “In fact, Western culture abundantly relayed in the media and textbooks is shown to be superior to other cultures. This situation is pushing Africans to multiply their efforts to reach the ideal of life of the “white”. This situation seems to block their ability to think locally, or even to be reactive. Thus, faced with a given situation specific to the African context, many are those who first draw on the resources of Western thinking to propose elements of answers.” Mboa (2016)

    Free and open access as ‘showcasing products’

    The Research4Life (R4L) programme also comes in for criticism from Piron et al. which will come as a shock to Northern publishing people who often use the ‘… but they’ve got Research4Life’ line when faced with evidence of global research inequalities.

    “… while pretending to charitably provide university libraries in the Global South with free access to pre-defined packages of paid journals from the North, this program, set up by for-profit scientific publishers, maintains the dependence of these libraries, limits their understanding of the true network of open access publications and, above all, improves the market for the products sold by these publishers.” Piron et al (2017)

    “… this program encourages the continued reliance of these libraries on an external program, designed in the North and showcasing Northern products, while it may disappear as soon as this philanthropic desire is exhausted or as soon as trading partners will not find any more benefits.”

    Whilst I still think R4L is a great initiative (I know many researchers in the Global South who are very appreciative of the programme), it’s difficult to disagree with the conclusion that:

    ‘… this program mainly improves the opportunities of Northern publishers without contributing to the sustainable empowerment of university libraries in the South … this charity seems very hypocritical, let alone arbitrary, since it can stop at any time.” Piron (2017)

    Of course, the same could be said of Article Processing Charge (APC) waivers for developing country authors. Waivers are currently offered by the majority of journals from the big publishers (provided according to the same HINARI list of countries provided by Research4Life), although sometimes you have to dig deep into the terms and conditions pages to find them. Waivers are good for publishers to showcase their corporate social responsibility and provide diversity of authorship. However, they are unsustainable – this charity is unlikely to last forever, especially as they rely on the pool of Southern authors being relatively limited. It should also be noted that developing countries with the most active, growing researcher communities such as Nigeria, South Africa and India do not qualify for either R4L access or APC waivers.

    Speaking of APCs, something I observe regularly amongst Southern researchers is a confusion over the ‘Gold’ OA author-pays model, and this too is noted:

    “In northern countries, many researchers, especially in STEM (Björk and Solomon, 2012) [ 7 ], believe (wrongly) that open access now means “publication fees charged to authors” … this commercial innovation appears to be paying off, as these costs appear to be natural to researchers.” Piron (2017)

    This also appears to be paying off in the Global South – authors seem resigned to pay some kind of charge to publish, and it is common to have to point out to authors that over two-thirds of OA journals and 99% of subscription journals do not charge to publish (although, the rise of ‘predatory’ journals may have magnified this misunderstanding that pay-to-publish is the norm).

    It may be tempting to think of these inequalities as an unfortunate historical accident, and that our attempts to help the Global South ‘catch up’ are just a little clumsy and patronising. However, Piron argues that this is no mere accident, but the result of colonial exploitation that still resonates in existing power structures today:

    “Open access is then easily seen as a means of catching up, at least filling gaps in libraries and often outdated teaching […] Africa is considered as lagging behind the modern world, which would explain its underdevelopment, to summarize this sadly hegemonic conception of north-south relations. By charity, Northern countries then feel obliged to help, which feeds the entire industry surrounding development aid [….] this model of delay, violently imposed by the West on the rest of the world through colonization, has been used to justify the economic and cognitive exploitation (Connell, 2014) of colonized continents without which modernity could not have prospered.” Piron (2017)

    To build the path or take the path?

    Of course, the authors do admit that access to Northern research has a role to play in the Global South, provided the access is situated in local contexts:

    “… African science should be an African knowledge, rooted in African contexts, that uses African epistemologies to answer African questions, while also using other knowledge from all over the world, including Western ones, if they are relevant locally.” Piron (2017)

    However, the practical reality of Open Access for Southern researchers is often overstated. There is a crucial distinction between making content ‘open’ and providing the means to access that content. As Piron et al. 2017 say:

    “To put a publication in open access: is it, to build the path (technical or legal) that leads to it, or is it to make it possible for people to take this path? This distinction is crucial to understand the difference in meaning of open access between the center and the periphery of the world-system of science, although only an awareness of the conditions of scientific research in the Southern countries makes it possible to visualize it, to perceive it.”

    This crucial difference between availability and accessibility has also been explained by Anne Powell on Scholarly Kitchen. There are many complex barriers to ‘free’ and ‘open’ content actually being accessed and used. The most obvious of these barriers is internet connectivity, but librarian training, language and digital literacy also feature significantly:

    “Finding relevant open access articles on the web requires digital skills that, as we have seen, are rare among Haitian and African students for whom the web sometimes comes via Facebook … Remember that it is almost always when they arrive at university that these students first touch a computer. The catching up is fast, but many reflexes acquired since the primary school in the countries of the North must be developed before even being able to imagine that there are open access scientific texts on the web to make up for the lack of documents in the libraries. In the words of the Haitian student Anderson Pierre, “a large part of the students do not know the existence of these resources or do not have the digital skills to access and exploit them in order to advance their research project”. Piron (2017)

    Barriers to local knowledge exchange

    Unfortunately, this is made even more difficult by resistance and misunderstanding of the internet and digital tools from senior leadership in Africa:

    “Social representations of the web, science and copyright also come into play, especially among older academics, a phenomenon that undermines the appropriation of digital technologies at the basis of open access in universities.” Piron et al. (2017)

    “To this idea that knowledge resides only in printed books is added a representation of the web which also has an impact on the local resistance to open access: our fieldwork has allowed us to understand that, for many African senior academics, the web is incompatible with science because it contains only documents or sites that are of low quality, frivolous or entertaining. These people infer that science in open access on the web is of lower quality than printed science and are very surprised when they learn that most of the journals of the world-system of science exist only in dematerialized format. … Unfortunately, these resistances slow down the digitization and the web dissemination of African scientific works, perpetuating these absurd situations where the researchers of the same field in neighboring universities do not know what each other is doing”. Piron et al. (2017)

    This complaint about in-country communication from researchers in the South can be common, but there are signs that open access can make a difference – as an example, in Sri Lanka, I’ve spoken to researchers who say that communicating research findings within the country has always been a problem, but the online portal Sri Lanka Journals Online (currently 77 open access Sri Lankan journals) has started to improve this situation. This project was many years in the making, and has involved training journal editors and librarians in loading online content and improving editorial practices for open access. The same, of course, could be said for African Journals Online, which has potential to facilitate sharing on a larger scale.

    Arguably, some forms of institutional resistance to openness in the Global South have a neocolonial influence – universities have largely borrowed and even intensified the Northern ‘publish or perish’ mantra which focuses the academic rewards system almost entirely on journal publications, often in northern-indexed journals, rather than on impact on real world development.

    “The system of higher education and research in force in many African countries remains a remnant of colonization, perpetuated by the reproduction, year after year, of the same ideals and principles. This reproduction is assured not by the old colonizers but by our own political leaders who are perpetuating a system structured according to a classical partitioning that slows down any possible communication between researchers within the country or with the outside world, even worse between the university and the immediate environment. For the ruling class, the changes taking place in the world and the society’s needs seem to have no direct link to the university.” Mboa (2016)

    Mboa calls this partitioning between researchers and outsiders as “a tight border between society and science”:

    “African researchers are so attached to the ideal of neutrality of science and concern of its ‘purity’ that they consider contacts with ordinary citizens as ‘risks’ or threats and that they prefer to evolve in their ‘ivory tower’. On the other hand, ordinary citizens feel so diminished compared to researchers that to talk to them about their eventual involvement in research is a taboo subject …” Mboa (2016)

    Uncolonising openness

    So what is the answer to all these problems? Is it in building the skills of researchers and institutions or a complete change of philosophy?

    “The colonial origin of African science (Mvé-Ondo, 2005) is certainly no stranger to this present subjugation of African science to northern research projects, nor to its tendency to imitate Western science without effort. Contextualization, particularly in the quasi-colonial structuring of sub-Saharan African universities (Fredua-Kwarteng, 2015) and in maintaining the use of a colonial language in university education. Considering this institutionalized epistemic alienation as yet another cognitive injustice, Mvé-Ondo wonders “how to move from a westernization of science to a truly shared science” (p.49) and calls for “epistemological mutation”, “rebirth”, modernizing “African science at the crossroads of local knowledge and northern science – perhaps echoing the call of Fanon (1962/2002) for a “new thinking” in the Third World countries, detached from European model, decolonized.” Piron et al. (2017)

    For this to happen, open access must be about more than just access – but something much more holistic and equitable:

    “Can decentralized, decolonised open access then contribute to creating more cognitive justice in global scientific production? Our answer is clear: yes, provided that it is not limited to the question of access for scientific and non-scientific readers to scientific publications. It must include the concern for origin, creation, local publishing and the desire to ensure equity between the accessibility of the publications of the center of the world system and that of knowledge from the periphery. It thus proposes to replace the normative universalism of globalized science with an inclusive universalism, open to the ecology of knowledges and capable of building an authentic knowledge commons (Gruson-Daniel, 2015; Le Crosnier, 2015), hospitable for the knowledge of the North and the South”. Piron et al. (2017)

    Mboa sees the solution to this multifaceted problem in ‘open science’:

    “[Cognitive injustice comes via] … endogenous causes (citizens and African leaders) and by exogenous causes (capitalism, colonization, the West). The knowledge of these causes allowed me to propose ways to prevent our downfall. Among these means, I convened open science as a tool available to our leaders and citizens for advancing cognitive justice. For although the causes are endogenous and exogenous, I believe that a wound heals from the inside outwards.” Mboa (2016).

    Mboa explains how open science approaches can overcome some of these problems in this book chapter, but here he provides a short summary of the advantages of open science for African research:

    “It’s a science that rejects the ivory tower and the separation between scientists and the rest of the population of the country. In short, it’s a science released from control by a universal capitalist standard, by hierarchical authority and by pre-established scientific classes. From this perspective, open science offers the following advantages:

    it brings science closer to society;
    it promotes fair and sustainable development;
    it allows the expression of minority and / or marginalized groups, as well as their knowledge;
    it promotes original, local and useful research in the country;
    it facilitates access to a variety of scientific and technical information;
    it is abundant, recent and up to date;
    it develops digital skills;
    it facilitates collaborative work;
    it gives a better visibility to research work.

    By aiming to benefit from these advantages, researchers and African students fight cognitive injustice. For this, open access science relies on open access, free licenses, free computing, and citizen science.” Mboa (2016).

    But in order for open science to succeed, digital literacy must be rapidly improved to empower students and researchers in the South:

    “Promoting inclusive access therefore requires engaging at the same time in a decolonial critique of the relationship between the center and the periphery and urging universities in the South to develop the digital literacy of their student or teacher members.” Piron et al. (2017)

    It also requires improving production of scientific works (‘grey’ literature, as well as peer-reviewed papers) in the South for a two-way North/South conversation:

    “Then, we propose to rethink the usual definition of open access to add the mandate to enhance the visibility of scientific work produced in universities in the South and thus contribute to greater cognitive justice in global scientific production.” Piron (2017)

    And providing open access needs to be understood in context:

    “… if we integrate the concern for the enhancement of the knowledge produced in the periphery and the awareness of all that hinders the creation of this knowledge, then open access can become a tool of cognitive justice at the service of the construction of an inclusive universalism peculiar to a just open science.” Piron, Diouf, Madiba (2017)

    In summary then, we need to rethink the way that the global North seeks to support the South – a realignment of this relationship from mere access to empowerment through sustainable capacity building:

    “Africa’s scientific development aid, if it is needed, should therefore be oriented much less towards immediate access to Northern publications and more to local development of tools and the strengthening of the digital skills of academics and librarians. These tools and skills would enable them not only to take advantage of open access databases, but also to digitize and put open access local scientific works in open archives, journals or research centers.” Piron (2017)

    So what next?

    Even if you disagree with many the above ideas, I hope that this has provided many of you with some food for thought. Open Access must surely be about more than just knowledge flow from North to South (or, for that matter the academy to the public, or well-funded researchers to poorly funded researchers). Those on the periphery must also be given a significant voice and a place at the table. For this to happen, many researchers (and their equivalents outside academia) need training and support in digital skills; some institutional barriers also need to be removed or overcome; and of course a few cherished, long-held ideas must be seriously challenged.

    “These injustices denote anything that diminishes the capacity of academics in these countries to deploy the full potential of their intellectual talents, their knowledge and their capacity for scientific research to serve their country’s sustainable local development”. Piron et al., (2016).

    What do you think…?

    http://journalologik.uk/?p=149
    #édition_scientifique #OA #open_access #Afrique #Afrique_francophone #décolonisation #post-colonialisme

  • Décoloniser les esprits
    Claude Gauvreau, Actualités UQAM, le 28 février 2019
    https://www.actualites.uqam.ca/2019/decoloniser-esprits-nouveaux-cours-science-gestion

    Les cours de premier cycle abordent la pensée critique (études postcoloniales et féministes) appliquée au management et à l’analyse des organisations, les fondements théoriques du changement social et du changement organisationnel, les questions du pouvoir et du contrôle au sein des organisations ainsi que la financiarisation de l’économie et divers aspects légaux, politiques et sociaux de l’environnement dans lequel évoluent les entreprises. « Nous souhaitons que ces cours, présentement optionnels, deviennent obligatoires », souligne la professeure.

    Pour Lovasoa Ramboarisata et ses collègues, le fait d’avoir amené les étudiants à reconnaître les pratiques néocoloniales des entreprises, leurs ramifications politiques et la perte de légitimité qui en découle représente une victoire. « Ce sont de petits pas sur le long chemin conduisant à la décolonisation des esprits », conclut la professeure.

    Article original :

    Pourquoi faire voyager les étudiants de Montréal au Gondwana ?
    Lovasoa Ramboarisata, Découvrir, le 25 janvier 2019
    https://www.acfas.ca/publications/decouvrir/2019/01/pourquoi-faire-voyager-etudiants-montreal-au-gondwana

    #Université #Economie #entreprises #colonialisme #néo-colonialisme #post-colonialisme

  • When the Camera Was a Weapon of Imperialism. (And When It Still Is.)

    I first saw the photograph some years ago, online. Later, I tracked it down to its original source: “In Afric’s Forest and Jungle: Or Six Years Among the Yorubans,” a memoir published in 1899 by the Rev. R.H. Stone. It shows a crowd in what is now Nigeria, but what was then Yorubaland under British colonial influence. The caption below the photograph reads: “A king of Ejayboo. Governor of Lagos on right. For years the rulers of this fierce tribe made the profession of Christianity a capital crime.” This description is familiar in tone from anthropological literature of the period, though the photograph is hard to date precisely. “Ejayboo” is what we would nowadays spell as “Ijebu,” a subgroup of Yoruba. That catches my attention: I am Yoruba and also Ijebu. This picture is a time capsule from a world to which I am connected but had not seen before, a world by colonial encounter.

    By the middle of the 19th century, through treaties and threats of force, the British had wrested control of the coastal city Lagos from its king. They then turned their efforts to improving access to the goods and services in the Yoruba hinterland. The Yoruba were already by that time a populous and diverse ethnic group, full of rivalrous kingdoms large and small, some friendly to the British, others less so.

    Stone, a Virginian sent by the Southern Baptist Convention, lived among them — lived among us — for two spells, in 1859-63 and 1867-69, before, during and after the American Civil War. He had this to say about Yoruba people: “They are reasonable, brave and patriotic, and are capable of a very high degree of intellectual culture.” It is praise, but must be understood in the context of a statement he makes earlier in his book about living “among the barbarous people” of that part of the world. In any case, the Ijebu in the mid-19th century were largely wealthy traders and farmers who did not want to give the British right of way to the interior of the country; only through diplomacy, subterfuge and violence were they finally overcome.

    This photograph was made in the aftermath. The white governor of Lagos — based on the plausible dates, it is probably John Hawley Glover — sits under an enormous umbrella. On one side of him is another high-ranking colonial officer. On the other side is the Ijebu king, or oba, probably the Awujale of the Ijebu kingdom, Oba Ademuyewo Fidipote.

    The oba wears a beaded crown, but the beads have been parted and his face is visible. This is unusual, for the oba is like a god and must be concealed when in public. The beads over his face, with their interplay of light and shadow, are meant to give him a divine aspect. Why is his face visible in this photograph? Some contravention of customary practice has taken place. The dozens of men seated on the ground in front of him are visibly alarmed. Many have turned their bodies away from the oba, and several are positioned toward the camera, not in order to look at the camera but in order to avoid looking at the exposed radiance of their king.

    The invention of the daguerreotype was announced in 1839. By the 1840s, photography had spread like wildfire and become a vital aspect of European colonialism. It played a role in administrative, missionary, scientific and commercial activities. As the Zimbabwean novelist Yvonne Vera put it: “The camera has often been a dire instrument. In Africa, as in most parts of the dispossessed, the camera arrives as part of the colonial paraphernalia, together with the gun and the bible. ...”

    Photography in colonialized societies was not only a dire instrument. Subject peoples often adopted photography for their own uses. There were, for instance, a number of studios in Lagos by the 1880s, where elites could go to pose for portraits. But such positive side effects aside, photography during colonial rule imaged the world in order to study, profit from and own it. The colonial gaze might describe as barbarous both the oba’s beaded crown and his regal right to conceal himself. This was one of the repeated interactions between imperial powers and the populations that they sought to control: The dominant power decided that everything had to be seen and cataloged, a task for which photography was perfectly suited. Under the giant umbrella of colonialism, nothing would be allowed to remain hidden from the imperial authorities.

    Imperialism and colonial photographic practices both flourished in the 19th century, and both extended themselves, with cosmetic adaptations, into the 20th. In 1960, during the horrific French war on Algeria, the French military assigned a young soldier, Marc Garanger, to photograph people in an internment camp in the Kabylia region of Northern Algeria. Thousands of people had been confined in the region under armed guard, and the French military commander had decreed that ID cards were mandatory. A picture of each prisoner was required. Many of the women were forced to remove their veils. These were women who did not wish to be seen, made to sit for photographs that were not for them. (Photography played a different military role in the numerous aerial reconnaissance missions by the French, which resulted in thousands of negatives mapping the region.)

    Garanger’s photographs both record an injustice and occasion it. His alternative, not an easy one, would have been to refuse the order and go to prison. His pictures show us what we ought not to see: Young and old women, their hair free flowing or plaited, one face after the other, in the hundreds. They collectively emanate refusal. The women of Kabylia look through the photographer, certainly not considering him an ally. Their gazes rise from the surface of the photograph, palpably furious.

    When we speak of “shooting” with a camera, we are acknowledging the kinship of photography and violence. The anthropological photographs made in the 19th century under the aegis of colonial powers are related to the images created by contemporary photojournalists, including those who embed with military forces. Embedding is sometimes the only way to get a direct record, no matter how limited, of what is happening in an armed conflict. On occasion such an arrangement leads to images whose directness displeases the authorities, but a more common outcome has been that proximity to an army helps bolster the narrative preferred by the army.

    Still, photographic reportage has the power to quicken the conscience and motivate political commitments. Examples abound of photographs acting as catalysts in the public’s understanding of vital issues, from the images of Bergen-Belsen in 1945 to the photograph of the Syrian toddler Alan Kurdi in 2015. And yet, perhaps even more insistently, on a day-by-day, week-by-week basis, photography implicitly serves the powers that be. To insist that contemporary photographic practice — and I mean to include a majority of the international news coverage in newspapers like this one — is generally made (and published) for the greater good is to misconstrue history, because it leaves out the question of “Good for whom?” Such pictures aren’t for their subjects any more than the photograph in Stone’s book was for the Ijebus and their king.

    Certain images underscore an unbridgeable gap and a never-to-be-toppled hierarchy. When a group of people is judged to be “foreign,” it becomes far more likely that news organizations will run, for the consumption of their audiences, explicit, disturbing photographs of members of that group: starving children or bullet-riddled bodies. Meanwhile, the injury and degradation of those with whom readers perceive a kinship — a judgment often based on racial sympathy and class loyalties — is routinely treated in more circumspect fashion. This has hardly changed since Susan Sontag made the same observation in “Regarding the Pain of Others” (2003), and it has hardly changed because the underlying political relationships between dominant and subject societies have hardly changed.

    Without confronting this inequality, this misconstrual of history, photography will continue to describe itself as one thing (a force for liberation) while obdurately remaining another (an obedient appendage of state power). It will continue to be like the organs of the state that “spread democracy” and change regimes. Even when it appears to go against the state, it will only do so selectively, quaintly, beautifully, piteously, in terms that do not question the right of the state to assert power.

    For how long will these radically unequal societal realities endure? Many affecting photographs have been made during the huge waves of international migration of the past few years. These pictures issue, as usual, from the presumed rights of photographers to depict the suffering of people “out there” for the viewing of those “back home.” But in looking at these images — images of war, of starvation, of capsized boats and exhausted caravans — we must go beyond the usual frames of pity and abjection. Every picture of suffering should elicit a question stronger than “Why is this happening?” The question should be “Why have I allowed this to happen?”

    This is what the scholar Ariella Azoulay calls the “citizenship” of photography, its ability, when practiced thoughtfully, to remind us of our mutual responsibilities. When I look at the bewildering photographs of refugee camps in Richard Mosse’s recent book, “The Castle,” I feel indicted. The imperial underpinnings of Mosse’s project are inescapable: Using military-grade thermal cameras, he makes extremely complex panoramic images (stitched together from hundreds of shots) of landscapes in the Middle East and Europe in which refugees have gathered or have been confined. His pictures echo the surveillance to which these bodies are already subjected. But the thermal imaging renders the images very dark, with the humans showing up as white shapes (almost like a negative). The picture conceals what it reveals. We see people, but they remain hidden.

    This technique makes for uncanny images in which distressed people move about like the figures you see in dreams, indistinct but full of ghostly presence. At the Moria camp in Greece, it is snowing. We see a long snaking line of people, waiting. What are they waiting for? For some material handout, probably, for food or blankets or documents. But their waiting represents the deeper waiting of all those who have been confined in the antechamber of humanity. They are waiting to be allowed to be human.

    Mosse’s images, formally striking as they are, are unquestionably part of the language of visual domination. With his political freedom of movement and his expensive technical equipment, he makes meticulous pictures of suffering that end up in exquisite books and in art galleries. He is not the first photographer to aestheticize suffering, nor will he be the last. And yet, by suppressing color, by overwhelming the viewer with detail, by evoking racial horror rather than prettily displaying it and by including in his work philosophical considerations of the scenes he shows — “The Castle” contains essays by Judith Butler, Paul K. Saint-Amour and Mosse himself and a poem by Behrouz Boochani — he does something quite different from most photojournalists. He unsettles the viewer.

    Photography’s future will be much like its past. It will largely continue to illustrate, without condemning, how the powerful dominate the less powerful. It will bring the “news” and continue to support the idea that doing so — collecting the lives of others for the consumption of “us” — is a natural right. But with a project like “The Castle,” I have a little bit of hope that an ethic of self-determination can be restored. I have hope that the refugees of Moria, Athens, Berlin and Belgrade will gain a measure of privacy. The women of Kabylia will cover their faces and return to themselves as they wish to be. The oba’s beaded crown will fall back into place, shadowing his face. Photography writes with light, but not everything wants to be seen. Among the human rights is the right to remain obscure, unseen and dark.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/06/magazine/when-the-camera-was-a-weapon-of-imperialism-and-when-it-still-is.html

    #photographie #colonialisme #post-colonialisme #impérialisme
    ping @albertocampiphoto @philippe_de_jonckheere

    Reçu via la mailing-list Migreurop avec le commentaire suivant de Emmanuel Blanchard:

    L’auteur fait notamment référence au travail récent de #Richard_Mosse (exposition et ouvrage « The Castle ») dont il fait un compte rendu à la critique et laudatif. Un point de vue qui peut lui-même être critiqué... dans un sens plus critique.
    Pour accéder à quelques images de Richard Mosse :

    https://vimeo.com/302281332


    https://wsimag.com/art/33291-richard-mosse-the-castle
    https://bit.ly/2NglY08

    #réfugiés #asile #migrations #images #image

    The Castle

    Richard Mosse has spent the past few years documenting the ongoing refugee and migration crisis, repurposing military-grade camera technology to confront how governments and societies perceive refugees. His latest book The Castle is a meticulous record of refugee camps located across mass migration routes from the Middle East and Central Asia into the European Union via Turkey. Using a thermal video camera intended for long-range border enforcement, Mosse films the camps from high elevations to draw attention to the ways in which each interrelates with, or is divorced from, adjacent citizen infrastructure. His source footage is then broken down into hundreds of individual frames, which are digitally overlapped in a grid formation to create composite heat maps.

    Truncating time and space, Mosse’s images speak to the lived experience of refugees indefinitely awaiting asylum and trapped in a Byzantine state of limbo. The book is divided into 28 sites, each presenting an annotated sequence of close-up images that fold out into a panoramic heat map. Within this format, Mosse underscores the provisional architecture of the camps and the ways in which each camp is variously marginalised, concealed, regulated, militarized, integrated, and/or dispersed. His images point to the glaring disconnect between the brisk free trade of globalized capitalism and the dehumanizing erosion of international refugee law in European nation-states. Named after Kafka’s 1926 novel, The Castle prompts questions about the ‘visibility’ of refugees and the erosion of their human rights.

    The book comes with a separate book of texts, including a poem by Behrouz Boochani, the journalist, novelist and Iranian refugee currently held by the Australian government in confinement on Manus island, an essay by Paul K. Saint-Amour, associate Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania, an essay by philosopher Judith Butler, and a text by Richard Mosse.


    #livre

  • Pour une #écologie_décoloniale

    À propos de : #Arturo_Escobar. Sentir-penser avec la Terre. L’écologie au-delà de l’Occident, Paris, Le Seuil, « Anthropocène ».

    L’écologie aussi connaît un #tournant_décolonial. Les travaux – inédits en français – de l’anthropologue Arturo Escobar montrent comment les luttes des indigènes et les mouvements de libération en #Amérique_latine apprennent à lutter de façon réaliste contre le #néolibéralisme, et à favoriser un usage responsable des #ressources.


    https://laviedesidees.fr/Pour-une-ecologie-decoloniale.html
    #écologie #colonialisme #post-colonialisme #décolonialité #Escobar #livre #résistance #peuples_autochtones

  • #Penan Community Mapping: Putting the Penan on the map
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KwGdEzh1e3w


    #cartographie #visualisation #peuples_autochtones

    #vidéo reçue via la mailing-list du Bruno Manser Fonds (26.12.2018):

    Chères amies, chers amis du Bruno Manser Fonds,

    Que diriez-vous d’une brève pause durant les fêtes ? Alors prenez-vous 12 minutes et apprenez comment les Penan sauvent la forêt pluviale avec des cartes topographiques.

    Avec la publication de 23 #cartes_topographiques de la forêt pluviale par le Bruno Manser Fonds, soudainement les Penan prennent vie sur la carte. Sur les documents du gouvernement, les rivières dans la zone penane n’ont pas de nom et les arbres utilisés par les Penan pour récolter le poison à flèches ou pour fabriquer des sarbacanes ne sont même pas signalés. Pour le gouvernement, les Penan ne disposent d’aucun droit sur leur forêt traditionnelle. C’est là qu’interviennent les cartes que nous avons publiées : elles démontrent les #droits_territoriaux des Penan et constituent un précieux instrument dans la lutte contre les sociétés forestières, qui défrichent illégalement la #forêt.

    Apprenez dans le bref #documentaire comment ces cartes servent la #forêt_pluviale et les autochtones ! Nous vous souhaitons beaucoup de plaisir à visionner la vidéo !

    Notre travail de cartographie a éveillé un grand enthousiasme en #Malaisie. D’autres villages de Penan, de même que d’autres groupes ethniques, se sont adressés à nous en nous demandant également de soutenir la cartographie de leur forêt pluviale. Ils souhaitent, au moyen des cartes, faire cesser les défrichages et la mise en place de plantations de #palmiers_à_huile sur leurs terres.

    #déforestation #cartographie_participative #huile_de_palme #cartographie_communautaire #résistance #Bornéo #visibilité #Sarawak #Baram #biodiversité #répression #community_mapping #empowerment

    –-------------

    Quelques citations tirées de la vidéo...

    Rainer Weisshaidinger, of the Bruno Manser Fonds:

    “When we came to the Penan area, the maps we had were from the British. They were quite good in telling us the topography, but there were no names. It was empty maps. The British cartographers did not have the chance to go to the communities, so very few rivers had names in these maps”

    #toponymie #géographie_du_vide #vide #cartographie_coloniale #colonialisme #post-colonialisme #exploitation

    “Joining the Federation of Malaysia on 16th of September 1963, Sarawak was granted self-government free from the British colonial administration. However, the government undertook no effort to map the interior areas. This lead to unfair and unsustainable #exploitation of the land and its people”
    #terre #terres

    Voici un exemple des cartes officielles:


    Comme on dit dans la vidéo: il n’y avait pas de mention des rivières ou des montagnes, ou des noms de villages...

    Simon Kaelin, of the Bruno Manser Founds:

    “The perspective from the government for this area... It was an empty area, for logging activity, for palm oil activity. Open for concessions and open for making big money”

    #extractivisme #concessions #déforestation

    Lukas Straumann, of the Bruno Manser Founds:

    “If you have a map with every river, having names (...) you see that it has been used for hundered years, it makes a really big difference”
    "The Penan started mapping their lands back in the 1990s, when they heard from indigenous people in #Canada that they have been very successful in claiming back their lands from the Canadian government, with maps

    Rainer Weisshaidinger, of the Bruno Manser Fonds:

    “To understand why these maps are important for the Penan community, it is because there is the Penan knowledge inside these maps”

    #savoir #connaissance

    Bateudah, community mapper:

    “Our work is to map the land. This is very important because it makes our community’s boundaries visibile”

    Rose Melai, community mapper:

    "All that is important in the forest is on the maps.

    The Penan worked about 15 years on their map...
    Au total, ils ont produit 23 cartes.
    Voici le coffret avec les cartes:

    Sophie Schwer, of the Bruno Manser Fonds:
    When they started, they relied in easy techniques, like skatch mapping and just the compass:

    But in the end they used the state-of-the art mapping #drones to present and show where their settlements are, so that they could no longer be neglected by the government.

    Le “mapping drone”:

    Peter Kallang, indigenous activist:

    “Community mapping can help to eliminate or reduce the #corruption, because you have everything there in black and white. It is so transparent. So when the government gives timber licences, when it overlaps with these, we can see from the map”

    #transparence

    Rainer Weisshaidinger, of the Bruno Manser Fonds:
    “The map of the government, they represent the government’s perspective, which means: nobody is in this area. The Penan map represents the Penan perspective on their own area. If you look at these maps, you will see that the Penan are living in this area. On each of these maps, it’s not only a topographic knowledge, there is a small history specific of this area. Below that, the drone images are very important, because it is very easy to mark one point. In order to give credibility to these maps, it was very important for the Penan to also be able to fly over their own villages to get the images of their villages.”


    L’histoire du village marquée sur la carte:

    L’image prise par les drones:

    Les cartes sont signées par les #empreintes_digitales des cartographes autochtones:

    Les empreintes digitales servent aussi à “valider” (c’est le mot utilisé dans le documentaire) les cartes.

    Un cartographe autochtone:

    “With these maps we document our history. Our myths and legends stay alive. The next generation will remember our way of life long after our elders have passed on”.

    #mythes #légendes #histoire #mémoire

    #ressources_pédagogiques (mais malheureusement la vidéo est disponible uniquement avec des sous-titres en anglais)
    #géographie_politique

    ping @reka @odilon

    Et je suis sure que ça intéresse aussi @_kg_

  • Des singes en hiver, partie 2
    http://www.radiopanik.org/emissions/emissions-speciales/des-singes-en-hiver

    Vers le XIXème siècle le colonialisme s’approprie massivement les terres du monde entier. Une étrange image accompagne cette démarche : l’idée que ces terres sont un #désert, et que seules les techniques et l’économie occidentale peuvent faire fleurir le désert. En Argentine le massacre des indiens et le vol de leur terres s’appelle officiellement la conquête du désert. Mais on retrouve cette image aux Etats-Unis, en Algérie, en Palestine…

    Ce n’est pas un manque d’information, les colons savent très bien qu’il y a des gens, des animaux, des plantes, des minéraux précieux, de l’eau… dans ces déserts. Mais « désert » est une manière d’envisager le rapport à la terre.

    Parallèlement, lors de ces conquêtes, et c’est aussi une nouveauté de l’humanisme du XIXème siècle (les Espagnols ou les Portugais ne s’étaient pas (...)

    #racisme #décolonisation #racisme,décolonisation,désert
    http://www.radiopanik.org/media/sounds/emissions-speciales/des-singes-en-hiver_05714__1.mp3

  • #Sexe, #race & #colonies. La #domination des #corps du XVe siècle à nos jours

    Reposant sur plus de mille peintures, illustrations, photographies et objets répartis sur six siècles d’histoire au creuset de tous les #empires_coloniaux, depuis les conquistadors, en passant par les systèmes esclavagistes, notamment aux États-Unis, et jusqu’aux #décolonisations, ce livre s’attache à une #histoire complexe et #taboue. Une histoire dont les traces sont toujours visibles de nos jours, dans les enjeux postcoloniaux, les questions migratoires ou le métissage des identités.
    C’est le récit d’une #fascination et d’une #violence multiforme. C’est aussi la révélation de l’incroyable production d’#images qui ont fabriqué le regard exotique et les fantasmes de l’Occident. Projet inédit tant par son ambition éditoriale, que par sa volonté de rassembler les meilleurs spécialistes internationaux, l’objectif de Sexe, race & colonies est de dresser un panorama complet de ce passé oublié et ignoré, en suivant pas à pas ce long récit de la #domination_des_corps.


    https://www.editionsladecouverte.fr/catalogue/index-Sexe__race___colonies-9782348036002.html
    #colonialisme #colonisation
    #esclavage #image #post-colonialisme #identité #exotisme

    • "Sexe, race & colonies", un ouvrage d’historiens qui fait débat

      L’ouvrage « Sexe, race & colonies » d’un collectif d’historiens sur l’imagerie du corps sous domination coloniale, fait à la fois référence et débat en France. L’historien Pascal Blanchard est l’invité de France 24.

      Le livre en impose par son ambition historiographique, par le nombre de photographies réunies, par l’ampleur du sujet – des siècles et des continents parcourus. « Sexe, race & colonies, la domination des corps du XVe siècle à nos jours » (éditions La Découverte) jette un regard historique et transnational sur l’accaparement des individus jusque dans leur intimité, au nom de la domination occidentale.

      Plus d’un millier de peintures et de photographies permettent de prendre la mesure du corps-à-corps entre colons et colonisés, perçus comme étant à disposition, sexualisables à l’envi. Le travail d’un collectif de 97 historiens sous la direction de Pascal Blanchard, spécialiste du fait colonial et de son imaginaire au Laboratoire communication et politique du CNRS, scrute tout le panel de cette imagerie, tour à tour fantasmagorique et tristement réelle, de la représentation érotisée des « sauvages » dès le XVe siècle jusqu’à des cartes postales dégradantes envoyés en Europe par les colons établis dans les pays du Sud aux XIXe et XXe siècles. Le phénomène ne se résume pas aux colonies françaises en Afrique, l’Empire japonais et l’Amérique ségrégationniste ont connu les mêmes logiques d’assujettissement sexuel des corps.

      Cet ouvrage donne à voir combien « l’Occident s’est arrogé un droit sur l’autre. La domination des terres s’est accompagnée d’une domination des corps. C’était un safari incroyable. L’homme blanc se sentait intouchable », explique Pascal Blanchard sur France 24. « Dès le XVe siècle, la peinture raconte l’histoire d’un paradis perdu. Ces corps nouveaux fascinent, alors même que les Occidentaux cachent le leur. Mépris et attirance se sont entrecroisés. Ce qui était un paradis pour les uns était l’enfer des autres », juge l’historien.

      Durant quatre années, le collectif a fouillé quelque 450 fonds privés et publics dans le monde, en Europe, aux États-Unis, en Asie, et s’est heurté à des obstacles. « Les musées ont refusé de nous céder les droits pour les œuvres de Gauguin qui posent énormément problème. Les héritiers de Hergé ont également mis leur veto pour utiliser des dessins de ’Tintin au Congo’. Sans compter les marques qui ont refusé que leurs publicités interraciales soient dans le livre », relate Pascal Blanchard, convaincu que le sujet dérange encore.

      « Prendre les images au sérieux »

      Peut-on décoloniser les images sans montrer les images ? L’ouvrage s’est attiré des critiques. Le collectif Cases rebelles ironise sur l’intention de ces « bonnes âmes » qui, « sous prétexte de dénoncer ou d’analyser », ne fait que « reconduire la violence en diffusant massivement des images de femmes non-blanches humiliées, agressées, dont certaines sont encore des enfants sur les clichés en question. Comme si la reproduction de ces images avait cessé d’être profondément attentatoire à leur dignité, comme si elles n’affectaient plus leurs descendant.e.s et tout.e.s les héritier.e.s – côté victimes – de cette violence coloniale. »

      Parmi les historiens qui ont participé à l’ouvrage, Christelle Taraud, spécialiste de l’histoire des femmes, du genre et des sexualités en contexte colonial, particulièrement dans les pays du Maghreb, s’explique : « Il y a assez peu d’ouvrages qui prennent au sérieux les images », affirme-t-elle lors des Rendez-vous de l’histoire organisés à Blois, le 13 octobre 2018. « Pour parler de domination coloniale, il fallait donc nous emparer de ce matériel image qui a toujours posé beaucoup de problèmes aux historiens, ou a été traité de façon illustrative, poursuit l’historienne. On voulait replacer ces images au cœur de notre propos. A partir du XIXe siècle et l’invention de la photographie, l’essentiel de la domination symbolique est passé par la domination visuelle. Et nous sommes persuadés que les stéréotypes d’hier affectent très lourdement nos sociétés contemporaines. »

      Le succès du tourisme sexuel dans les pays anciennement colonisés, le fantasme de la « beurette » supposément sensuelle, sont autant d’héritages non assumés de cette imagerie dominatrice, estime le collectif d’historiens, qui se défend d’avoir versé dans le sensationnalisme. « Les images ont une puissance, elles sont perturbantes, bouleversantes, admet Nicolas Bancel, invité de la table ronde consacrée à l’ouvrage aux Rendez-vous de l’histoire. Elles font résonner en nous des zones obscures de l’inconscient. Nous avons travaillé à ce que ce livre fasse réfléchir, qu’il permette la distance. On a particulièrement réfléchi à l’intertextualité, le rapport entre le texte et l’image. »

      Vertige et violence de la reproduction

      Précisément, cette intertextualité est l’objet de critiques. L’habillage de l’ouvrage, la typographie du mot « sexe » qui s’étale en couverture, la reproduction en grand format et sur papier glacé des photographies de personnes nues et maltraitées, la prégnance des images au détriment du texte, participent au rejet du livre.

      Ce format de publication ne se soucie pas « de la matérialité de l’objet d’histoire que l’on fabrique » et vient « contredire le projet des auteurs », écrit Philippe Artières dans Libération. Les photographies sont « crues, pornographiques et violentes », atteste la militante féministe Mélusine, qui plaide pour le « respect » envers « toutes leurs lectrices d’aujourd’hui, en particulier pour celles qui reconnaissent ces corps au leur si semblables et qui continuent de souffrir des conséquences sociales, morales et physiques de cet imaginaire sexuel raciste, qui n’a pas cessé d’exciter l’œil des spectateurs ». « On vomit parce qu’on a cru ouvrir un livre d’histoire, et qu’on se retrouve en train de feuilleter un gros beau livre porno, écrit Daniel Schneidermann. Vous savez, les beaux livres, sur les tracteurs, les peintres du Quattrocento ou les pipes en écume ? Cette fois, c’est un beau livre de viols coloniaux. » Florent Georgesco dans Le Monde admet également que « l’ensemble souffre au bout du compte de définir le sexe colonial de manière si large, sans les nuances qu’une pensée critique plus solide aurait permises, qu’il devient une réalité vague, propre à accueillir tous les sentiments. Même la fascination. »

      « On ne les appelle pas des photos érotiques », se défend Pascal Blanchard sur France 24. « On les appelle des images de la domination coloniale. Vous avez vu un homme qui presse le sein d’une femme ? C’est un safari sexuel. Et on n’a pas tout montré, les images de pédophilie n’ont pas été publiées. Si on veut comprendre comment à l’époque, à travers ces photographies, on a légitimé le droit de posséder le corps de l’autre, il faut montrer ces images. »

      Nicolas Bancel dresse un parallèle avec la réception de l’ouvrage américain « Without Sanctuary » (éditions Twin Palms Publishers, 2000), qui rend compte d’une abondante iconographie du lynchage aux États-Unis. Sur les cartes postales et sur les photographies amateur, la présence des enfants blancs dans le public, tout comme l’esthétisme des clichés, dérangent fortement. « Les premières réactions à ce livre et à ces images ont été extrêmement violentes parmi les Noirs américains, jusqu’à ce qu’ils s’en emparent », relate l’historien. De la même façon, le temps permettra aux images coloniales d’être « digérées, comprises, dépassées », estime Christelle Taraud.

      Quid du droit à l’image

      Faut-il se désoler de l’impréparation d’une société à affronter la force dérangeante de ces images, ou alors faire une place à l’émotion que suscite cet ouvrage ? La distanciation voulue par les auteurs du livre a-t-elle pris en compte, dans son champ de vision, la présence des descendants des colonisés qui vivent cette publication comme une nouvelle violence ?

      « Ces victimes sur les photographies publiées sont nôtres, elles sont de chez nous, de nos terres, de nos familles, affirme le collectif Cases rebelles. Nous ne sommes pas éloigné.e.s, pas détaché.e.s de ces corps. Aujourd’hui encore, nous portons au quotidien le poids de ces hypersexualisations violentes, de ces hyperaccessibilités au corps colonisé », rappelle le collectif qui pose la question du droit à l’image : « À la question de savoir si ces photos doivent être montrées dans l’absolu, nous répondons clairement : ne serait-ce pas d’abord aux personnes figurant sur les photos de répondre ? Les femmes, les enfants humilié.e.s, exhibé.e.s sur ces photos, ou leurs ayants droit, ont-ils donné leur autorisation ? Est-ce que quelqu’un connaît même leurs noms ? »

      Sans répondre à ces critiques – Pascal Blanchard n’a pas affronté de contradiction en public lors des Rendez-vous de l’histoire à Blois, ni honoré l’invitation de l’émission « Arrêt sur images » de débattre à plusieurs –, l’historien conclut sur France 24 : « Nous sommes en train de découvrir l’histoire de la domination masculine. C’est une longue histoire, qui n’est pas née avec #MeToo, et ne s’arrêtera pas dans les quelques mois qui viennent. C’est très complexe d’aborder l’histoire de la domination masculine parce que par définition ça nous fait peur, parce que ça bouleverse tous nos repères. »

      Le malaise face aux images serait donc le miroir d’un désarroi. Ou peut-être le signe que la distance et le respect n’ont pas encore trouvé leur place dans cette longue histoire du rapport au corps.

      https://www.france24.com/fr/20181021-sexe-race-colonies-livre-histoire-images-domination-corps-pascal-

  • The protest organized this week by #WOinActie has brought urgent issues to the fore. Discussions in the media have taken up multiple aspects of the current situation.
    This morning our students have occupied an #UvA building, the P.C. Hoofthuis, now renamed as the Post-Colonial House of the Autonomous University of Amsterdam. They thereby underline the urgency of the ongoing protests and increase the pressure on government, parties, and the decision-makers at the UvA. Past experience has shown that political gains are only achieved if different forms of protest combine.

    Additionally, the students have formulated a list of demands which goes beyond the ones which were at the heart of this week’s WOinActie protest. They demand very specific, and reasonable, measures which could alleviate the unbearable workload and demoralization at Dutch
    universities, and which would simultaneously contribute to a more democratic and more inclusive academic culture. So the students also remind everybody of some of the key concerns of the 2015 Maagdenhuis protests, which are still not appropriately taken up
    or even taken seriously by management, despite their promises and rhetoric.
    One might disagree with some of the students’ demands or with the form or timing of their action. We think, however, that there is sufficient reason to support their action, in order to broaden the discussion about a better university, and to increase the pressure
    on all those who are responsible for cutting our budgets, multiplying our bureaucratic tasks, and heightening competition and hierarchies. The Hague is only one, however important, target for these pleas. Therefore we strongly hope that, this time, the UvA
    CvB, which says they are in solidarity with the demands of students and staff, will refrain from using brutal police action against legitimate protest. For our part, we pledge to closely monitor and, where possible, prevent any such unwarranted repression.
    In solidarity,

    –-> signé par des personnes dont je ne sais pas si ils/elles veulent que leurs noms soit affichés.
    –-> reçu par email d’une collègue aux Pays-Bas

    #université #résistance #Amsterdam #Pays-Bas #enseignement_supérieur

    Et il y a aussi de la #toponymie dans la revendication des étudiant·es :

    “This morning our students have occupied an UvA building, the P.C. Hoofthuis, now renamed as the Post-Colonial House of the Autonomous University of Amsterdam.”

    #autonomie #université_autonome #post-colonialisme

  • Vandalism forces New Zealand council to remove Captain Cook statue

    A year ahead of 250th anniversary of explorer’s arrival, monument will be replaced by ‘cultural designs’

    A statue of Captain Cook in New Zealand that has been repeatedly defaced and daubed with graffiti is to be removed by the council a year out from the 250-year anniversary of his arrival in the country.

    The statue of Cook in Gisborne has been repeatedly targeted by vandals amid a heated debate about the portrayal of the town’s complex colonial history.

    The Cook statue has had red paint smeared on its face and coat, and a bikini and a pair of thongs have also been painted on.

    With the 250th anniversary of Cook’s landing in New Zealand only a year away, tensions are high in the city which lies 350km south-east of Auckland.

    Many residents have posted on social media describing Cook as a “murderer” and “crooked Cook”.

    Cook and the crew of the Endeavour landed in Gisborne’s Poverty Bay in 1769 and the first significant meetings of Europeans and Māori took place nearby.

    Nick Tupara, spokesman for the #Ngati_Oneone tribe, said according to historical records, Cook’s crew shot nine #Maori men of his tribe, including Tupara’s ancestors. Six of the men are believed to have died.

    Ngati Oneone has long opposed having the controversial statue of Cook placed on the sacred mountain of #Titirangi, and on Monday the #Gisborne district council said it would be moved to the Tairawhiti Museum instead.

    The council said the mountain would now be adorned with “iwi [tribal] stories and cultural design elements can be shared from this significant location”.

    The council would also consult with the local community regarding the renaming of the Cook Plaza on top of Titirangi, as well as various walking tracks and sites on the mountain.

    Meredith Akuhata-Brown, a local councillor, told Maori Television the removal of the statue would allow a more nuanced and “honest” story about New Zealand’s history to emerge.

    Discussions are under way in the Gisborne region for Poverty Bay – so named by Cook in 1769 – to be replaced by its Māori name, or given a dual name.
    Advertisement

    Akuhata described the name of Poverty Bay as “horrendous” and said it was particularly painful as the region had numerous social and economical challenges it was working to overcome.

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/oct/02/vandalism-forces-new-zealand-council-to-remove-captain-cook-statue?CMP=
    #mémoire #Cook #Nouvelle_Zélande #post-colonialisme #vandalisme #histoire #colonialisme #James_Cook #musée #espace_public #toponymie (même si je ne sais pas si la place s’appelle Cook, mais c’est pour retrouver l’article) #peuples_autochtones
    ping @reka

    • Il faudrait que je retrouve le nom d’un film superbe (australien je crois) qui mets en scène aborigènes et communautés allochtones, et dans lequel une actrice aborigène lance l’insulte suprême « Tu n’es qu’un fils batard du capitaine Cook ! »

  • Déjouer le silence. Contre-discours sur les femmes haïtiennes

    Le #mouvement_féministe haïtien vient de célébrer ses 100 ans : occasion idéale pour réfléchir à la réalité des Haïtiennes, tout en y intégrant des courants de pensée européens, américains et panafricains. Ce livre est construit sur le constat qu’Haïti et la #Caraïbe ne peuvent faire l’économie de nouvelles pistes de réflexion dans un contexte où la situation des femmes ne cesse de se dégrader et où les #acquis_féministes sont constamment remis en question ou disqualifiés.

    Les recherches sur le genre et la pensée féministe produiront ainsi de meilleures analyses sur la situation de celles qui, dans l’#imaginaire_collectif, sont encore perçues à la fois comme garantes du bien-être des autres et citoyennes de seconde zone. Il en résulte un récit articulé sur une variété de sujets qui élabore un discours endogène remplaçant, nous l’espérons, les récits étrangers trop souvent stéréotypés.


    http://www.editions-rm.ca/livres/dejouer-le-silence

    #Haïti #femmes #Etat_faible #décolonialité #post-colonialisme #féminisme #droits_des_femmes #avortement #genre #humanitaire #misérabilisme #victimisation #livre #militantisme #anti-féminisme #stéréotypes

    J’ai eu la chance d’écouter une des éditrices du livre, et leur démarche est passionnante... elles ont fait un super bon travail !

  • Germany to return human remains from Namibian genocide

    Berlin will on Wednesday hand back human remains seized from Namibia a century ago after the slaughter of indigenous people under German colonial rule, but descendants are still waiting for an apology.


    https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2018-08-29-germany-to-return-human-remains-from-namibian-genocide

    #Allemagne #post-colonialisme #colonialisme #colonisation #génocide #Namibie

    Avec ce commentaire sur twitter de Myriam Houssay-Holzschuch :

    Returns, but no apology nor reparations.

    https://twitter.com/MHoussayH/status/1034709722224648192

    #excuses

  • A Paris, l’association Survie débaptise une station de métro dans le cadre de la campagne « #Faidherbe_doit_tomber »

    Alors que se termine la campagne « Faidherbe doit tomber » menée parallèlement en #France et au #Sénégal à l’occasion du bicentenaire de la naissance de cette figure du colonialisme, l’association Survie a symboliquement rebaptisé ce matin la #station_de_métro #Faidherbe-Chaligny en « Faidherbe Ça suffit ! », en demandant « Qui veut (encore) célébrer le #colonialisme ? ». Cette action symbolique s’inscrit dans le cadre de la campagne collective « Faidherbe doit tomber », qui fait le lien entre l’hommage public à ce serviteur zélé du colonialisme et la façon dont ses idéaux polluent encore notre présent.


    https://survie.org/l-association/mob/article/a-paris-l-association-survie-debaptise-une-station-de-metro-dans-le-cadre-de
    #toponymie #Faidherbe #décoloniser_la_ville #urban_matter #villes #colonisation #post-colonialisme #décolonialisme
    cc @isskein

    • Taxi operators don’t need to join Uber or to abandon labor rights in order get the efficiency and safety advantages of the technology. In some countries, local companies have developed technology adapted to local conditions. In Kigali in 2015, SafeMotos launched an application described as a mix of Uber and a traffic safety application. In Kenya, Maramoja believes their application provides better security than Uber. Through linking to social media like Facebook, Twitter and Google+, you can see who of your contacts have used and recommend drivers. In Ethiopia, which doesn’t allow Uber, companies have developed technology for slow or no internet, and for people without smartphones.

      Still, even though the transport sector in Ethiopia has been “walled off” from foreign competition, and Uber has been kept out of the local market, it is done so in the name of national economic sovereignty rather than protection of workers’ rights. By contrast, the South African Scoop-A-Cab is developed to ensure “that traditional metered taxi owners are not left out in the cold and basically get with the times.” Essentially, customers get the technological benefits, taxis companies continues to be registered, drivers pay taxes and can be protected by labor rights.

      @taxi

    • L’introduction de l’article décrit clairement la stratégie d’Uber. Elle est vieille comme le capitalisme.

      Uber’s usual tricks — to provoke price wars in an attempt to increase their share of markets, evade taxes, and undermine workers’ rights — are alive and well in Africa.

      #Uber s’en prend au plus faibles car ils savent qu’ils leur opposeront la moindre résistance. En #Chine le géant US a perdu contre un plus puissant, n’ayant rien à apporter aux utilisateurs ils n’ont pas trouve de partenaire comme Apple, Microsoft, Daimler, Volkswagen et d’autres grandes marques. Uber a fini en mettant les clés sous la porte en venadant son affaire pour une somme modeste à un concurrent chinois. En Europe on comprend que l’influences des géants US crée des problèmes, alors on essaye de prendre au sérieux le mythe de la cocurrence qui encourage les affaires en limitant l’influence de la plateforme. Ailleurs les choses ne se passent pas mieux pour eux sauf dans des sociétés sans structures protégeant les marchés et les citoyens. Voilà la véritable raison de l#engagement d’Uber en Afrique : Ils sont aussi corrompu que les pires compradors de l’époque coloniale.

      #post-colonialisme

  • #Dheepan, un film postcolonial

    Dheepan interroge un trope contemporain, celui du migrant issu d’un État déchiré par une guerre intestine – celle opposant de juillet 1983 à mai 2009 l’armée sri-lankaise aux militants séparatistes tamouls des Tigres de libération de l’Eelam Tamoul (#LTTE) – en le plaçant dans la perspective de la #banlieue parisienne, univers urbain où se déploie une autre problématique. Ainsi se trouvent décrits les trois moments de la migration du diasporique : le déplacement pour survivre, l’emplacement dans une #marge urbaine et enfin le replacement dans un territoire idyllique.

    http://journals.openedition.org/echogeo/14456
    #film #post-colonialisme #cinéma #Sri_lanka #Tamouls #migrations #diaspora #marginalité #France #réfugiés #asile #Paris

    Trailer :
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dFzLscT8_Dw