• De la #violence_coloniale dans l’#espace_public. Visite du triangle de la #Porte_Dorée à #Paris.

    Ce #guide décolonial nous emmène du côté de la Porte Dorée, à Paris, visiter un « #triangle_colonial » composé de trois #monuments qui offrent un condensé de l’#histoire_coloniale, culturelle, économique, raciale et politique de la France.

    Ce triangle comprend le bâtiment du #Musée_national_de_l’histoire_de_l’immigration, ex-Musée des Colonies inauguré à l’occasion de l’Exposition coloniale de 1931, dont l’immense bas-relief met en scène, « l’air de rien », l’économie extractiviste basée sur l’esclavage et le travail forcé dans les colonies. Face au musée, le deuxième sommet du triangle est le monument à la #mission_Marchand qui, depuis les années 1970, fait régulièrement l’objet d’actions anti-colonialistes allant du tag au plastiquage. Le dernier sommet révèle quant à lui « La France apportant la paix et la prospérité aux colonies » sous les traits de la #déesse_Athéna.

    S’inspirant des bases d’une #pédagogie_critique explorée par les universités de Décoloniser Les Arts (DLA), cet ouvrage revient sur les débats et les luttes menées à travers le monde autour de #statues, célébrant esclavagistes et colonialistes, « au pied desquelles le pouvoir dépose des gerbes de fleurs. »

    Accompagné d’une riche sélection d’images d’archives et ponctué par les interventions visuelles de l’artiste Seumboy Vrainom :€, Françoise Vergès nous livre ici un texte incisif qui propose une nouvelle manière d’aborder la ville.

    https://shed-publishing.com/De-la-violence-coloniale-dans-l-espace-public

    #décolonial #colonisation #colonialisme #urban_matter
    #TRUST #master_TRUST #livre #violence

    ping @cede @isskein @olivier_aubert @_kg_ @karine4

  • Penser un #monument

    Dans le sillage des manifestations « #Black_Lives_Matter » et des grèves de femmes, l’examen critique des monuments s’est intensifié depuis 2019, également en #Suisse. À présent, le débat grand public s’est focalisé sur certains #monuments en souvenir de personnes ayant des liens avec le #colonialisme. L’#ASSH souhaitait élargir et approfondir ce débat dans le cadre de son 75e anniversaire en 2021.

    https://penser-un-monument.ch
    #grève_des_femmes #statues #jeu

    ping @cede

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  • Rapid Response : Decolonizing Italian Cities

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    ping @postcolonial @cede

    –—

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

    • #Negotiating_Amnesia

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

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



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

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

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

    • My Heritage ?

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

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

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



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

      #héritage

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

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

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

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

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

      Riscrivere la storia insieme

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

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

      Le strade «rinarrate»

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

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

      Da un’idea di Igiaba Scego

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

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

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

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

      #histoire_niée #storia_negata #récit #contre-récit

    • Decolonizzare la città. Dialoghi Visuali a Padova

      Descrizione

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

  • site web conçu dans le cadre d’un cours « Cartographier les controverses » (Sciences Po Paris, master communication, 2021-2022)

    https://controverse2021.wixsite.com/deboulonnage

    Déboulonnage de statues. Controverse autour des monuments liés à l’esclavage et à la colonisation

    "La République n’effacera aucune trace ni aucun nom de son histoire (...), elle ne déboulonnera pas de statues"
    Emmanuel Macron, allocution présidentielle du 14 juin 2020

    Start Now
    Avant d’étudier les possibilités d’avenir pour les statues présentes dans l’espace public liées aux périodes esclavagistes et coloniales, il s’agit de comprendre ce qu’est l’objet de statue en lui-même et ce qu’il représente. La multiplicité des aspects sous-jacents fait de la statue un objet non-identifié, responsable de la formation d’une controverse.
    Avant d’étudier les possibilités d’avenir pour les statues présentes dans l’espace public liées aux périodes esclavagistes et coloniales, il s’agit de comprendre ce qu’est l’objet de statue en lui-même et ce qu’il représente. La multiplicité des aspects sous-jacents fait de la statue un objet non-identifié, responsable de la formation d’une controverse.
    Avant d’étudier les possibilités d’avenir pour les statues présentes dans l’espace public liées aux périodes esclavagistes et coloniales, il s’agit de comprendre ce qu’est l’objet de statue en lui-même et ce qu’il représente. La multiplicité des aspects sous-jacents fait de la statue un objet non-identifié, responsable de la formation d’une controverse.
    Avant d’étudier les possibilités d’avenir pour les statues présentes dans l’espace public liées aux périodes esclavagistes et coloniales, il s’agit de comprendre ce qu’est l’objet de statue en lui-même et ce qu’il représente. La multiplicité des aspects sous-jacents fait de la statue un objet non-identifié, responsable de la formation d’une controverse.

    Cette déclaration répond aux nombreuses actions d’altérations, du graffiti à la destruction totale, visant des statues qui figent dans la pierre des figures impliquées dans l’esclavage et la colonisation. Lorsque certains luttent pour les maintenir debout, d’autres défendent la dimension cathartique de ces gestes. Derrière la pierre, c’est l’homme glorifié qui est combattu. La destruction comme un premier pas vers l’émancipation. La taille, le poids des matériaux, autant d’obstacles qui rendent leurs destructions spectaculaires.

    Depuis de nombreuses années, certains recourent à ces pratiques en invoquant les mémoires heurtées de victimes - ou descendants de victimes -, esclaves ou colonisés de l’ancien Empire colonial français. Toutes les statues ne sont pas regardées, toutes les statues ne sont pas contestées, toutes les statues n’émeuvent pas. L’espace public, où trônent ces monuments, cristallise les tensions d’un processus en cours.

    À la fois œuvre de glorification d’une personne, souhait d’une époque ou d’un moment de l’histoire, la statue est aussi un objet d’art. Elle porte un certain héritage du passé. La statuaire se retrouve parfois au cœur des préoccupations de déboulonnage bien qu’en réalité, les actions politiques, préméditées et spontanées, soient les seuls véritables boulons de ces statues. Si l’expression “déboulonnage des statues” est techniquement approximative - les statues ne sont pas boulonnées - elle est malgré tout utilisée pour sa dimension métaphorique. Le déboulonnage dans sa terminologie cristallise tous les actes de vandalisme à l’encontre des monuments de pierre, de marbre ou de bronze, détruisant le prestige des héros qu’ils représentent. Ces statues, neutres a priori, fondues dans un paysage urbain devenu quotidien, sont en réalité comme endormies. Elles se réveillent à la faveur de tensions politiques et sociales. Le débat médiatique résume ces enjeux en ces termes « faut-il déboulonner les statues ? ».

    En réalité, au-delà des sensibilités morales de chacun, cette controverse est un jeu de piste où les savoirs des sciences sociales se superposent, se répondent, et parfois se confrontent. Mettre en perspective les regards que posent les sciences sociales sur ces objets. Examiner les avenirs possibles pour ces statues contestées. Voici les bornes de notre enquête, la notice de nos ambitions.
    "Statuer sur les statues"
    Que sont ces statues ?
    Que font ces statues ?
    Que fait-on de ces statues ?

    (...)

    #déboulonnage #statues #mémoires_colonisations #mémoires_esclaves #controverses_postcoloniales

  • Why every single statue should come down

    Statues of historical figures are lazy, ugly and distort history. From Cecil Rhodes to Rosa Parks, let’s get rid of them all.

    Having been a black leftwing Guardian columnist for more than two decades, I understood that I would be regarded as fair game for the kind of moral panics that might make headlines in rightwing tabloids. It’s not like I hadn’t given them the raw material. In the course of my career I’d written pieces with headlines such as “Riots are a class act”, “Let’s have an open and honest conversation about white people” and “End all immigration controls”. I might as well have drawn a target on my back. But the only time I was ever caught in the tabloids’ crosshairs was not because of my denunciations of capitalism or racism, but because of a statue – or to be more precise, the absence of one.

    The story starts in the mid-19th century, when the designers of Trafalgar Square decided that there would be one huge column for Horatio Nelson and four smaller plinths for statues surrounding it. They managed to put statues on three of the plinths before running out of money, leaving the fourth one bare. A government advisory group, convened in 1999, decided that this fourth plinth should be a site for a rotating exhibition of contemporary sculpture. Responsibility for the site went to the new mayor of London, Ken Livingstone.

    Livingstone, whom I did not know, asked me if I would be on the committee, which I joined in 2002. The committee met every six weeks, working out the most engaged, popular way to include the public in the process. I was asked if I would chair the meetings because they wanted someone outside the arts and I agreed. What could possibly go wrong?

    Well, the Queen Mother died. That had nothing to do with me. Given that she was 101 her passing was a much anticipated, if very sad, event. Less anticipated was the suggestion by Simon Hughes, a Liberal Democrat MP and potential candidate for the London mayoralty, that the Queen Mother’s likeness be placed on the vacant fourth plinth. Worlds collided.

    The next day, the Daily Mail ran a front page headline: “Carve her name in pride - Join our campaign for a statue of the Queen Mother to be erected in Trafalgar Square (whatever the panjandrums of political correctness say!)” Inside, an editorial asked whether our committee “would really respond to the national mood and agree a memorial in Trafalgar Square”.

    Never mind that a committee, convened by parliament, had already decided how the plinth should be filled. Never mind that it was supposed to be an equestrian statue and that the Queen Mother will not be remembered for riding horses. Never mind that no one from the royal family or any elected official had approached us.

    The day after that came a double-page spread headlined “Are they taking the plinth?”, alongside excerpts of articles I had written several years ago, taken out of context, under the headline “The thoughts of Chairman Gary”. Once again the editorial writers were upon us: “The saga of the empty plinth is another example of the yawning gap between the metropolitan elite hijacking this country and the majority of ordinary people who simply want to reclaim Britain as their own.”

    The Mail’s quotes were truer than it dared imagine. It called on people to write in, but precious few did. No one was interested in having the Queen Mother in Trafalgar Square. The campaign died a sad and pathetic death. Luckily for me, it turned out that, if there was a gap between anyone and the ordinary people of the country on this issue, then the Daily Mail was on the wrong side of it.

    This, however, was simply the most insistent attempt to find a human occupant for the plinth. Over the years there have been requests to put David Beckham, Bill Morris, Mary Seacole, Benny Hill and Paul Gascoigne up there. None of these figures were particularly known for riding horses either. But with each request I got, I would make the petitioner an offer: if you can name those who occupy the other three plinths, then the fourth is yours. Of course, the plinth was not actually in my gift. But that didn’t matter because I knew I would never have to deliver. I knew the answer because I had made it my business to. The other three were Maj Gen Sir Henry Havelock, who distinguished himself during what is now known as the Indian Rebellion of 1857, when an uprising of thousands of Indians ended in slaughter; Gen Sir Charles Napier, who crushed a rebellion in Ireland and conquered the Sindh province in what is now Pakistan; and King George IV, an alcoholic, debtor and womaniser.

    The petitioners generally had no idea who any of them were. And when they finally conceded that point, I would ask them: “So why would you want to put someone else up there so we could forget them? I understand that you want to preserve their memory. But you’ve just shown that this is not a particularly effective way to remember people.”

    In Britain, we seem to have a peculiar fixation with statues, as we seek to petrify historical discourse, lather it in cement, hoist it high and insist on it as a permanent statement of fact, culture, truth and tradition that can never be questioned, touched, removed or recast. This statue obsession mistakes adulation for history, history for heritage and heritage for memory. It attempts to detach the past from the present, the present from morality, and morality from responsibility. In short, it attempts to set our understanding of what has happened in stone, beyond interpretation, investigation or critique.

    But history is not set in stone. It is a living discipline, subject to excavation, evolution and maturation. Our understanding of the past shifts. Our views on women’s suffrage, sexuality, medicine, education, child-rearing and masculinity are not the same as they were 50 years ago, and will be different again in another 50 years. But while our sense of who we are, what is acceptable and what is possible changes with time, statues don’t. They stand, indifferent to the play of events, impervious to the tides of thought that might wash over them and the winds of change that swirl around them – or at least they do until we decide to take them down.

    In recent months, I have been part of a team at the University of Manchester’s Centre on the Dynamics of Ethnicity (Code) studying the impact of the Black Lives Matter movement on statues and memorials in Britain, the US, South Africa, Martinique and Belgium. Last summer’s uprisings, sparked by the police murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis, spread across the globe. One of the focal points, in many countries, was statues. Belgium, Brazil, Ireland, Portugal, the Netherlands and Greenland were just a few of the places that saw statues challenged. On the French island of Martinique, the statue of Joséphine de Beauharnais, who was born to a wealthy colonial family on the island and later became Napoleon’s first wife and empress, was torn down by a crowd using clubs and ropes. It had already been decapitated 30 years ago.

    Across the US, Confederate generals fell, were toppled or voted down. In the small town of Lake Charles, Louisiana, nature presented the local parish police jury with a challenge. In mid-August last year, the jury voted 10-4 to keep a memorial monument to the soldiers who died defending the Confederacy in the civil war. Two weeks later, Hurricane Laura blew it down. Now the jury has to decide not whether to take it down, but whether to put it back up again.

    And then, of course, in Britain there was the statue of Edward Colston, a Bristol slave trader, which ended up in the drink. Britain’s major cities, including Manchester, Glasgow, Birmingham and Leeds, are undertaking reviews of their statues.

    Many spurious arguments have been made about these actions, and I will come to them in a minute. But the debate around public art and memorialisation, as it pertains to statues, should be engaged not ducked. One response I have heard is that we should even out the score by erecting statues of prominent black, abolitionist, female and other figures that are underrepresented. I understand the motivation. To give a fuller account of the range of experiences, voices, hues and ideologies that have made us what we are. To make sure that public art is rooted in the lives of the whole public, not just a part of it, and that we all might see ourselves in the figures that are represented.

    But while I can understand it, I do not agree with it. The problem isn’t that we have too few statues, but too many. I think it is a good thing that so many of these statues of pillagers, plunderers, bigots and thieves have been taken down. I think they are offensive. But I don’t think they should be taken down because they are offensive. I think they should be taken down because I think all statues should be taken down.

    Here, to be clear, I am talking about statues of people, not other works of public memorials such as the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC, the Holocaust memorial in Berlin or the Famine memorial in Dublin. I think works like these serve the important function of public memorialisation, and many have the added benefit of being beautiful.

    The same cannot be said of statues of people. I think they are poor as works of public art and poor as efforts at memorialisation. Put more succinctly, they are lazy and ugly. So yes, take down the slave traders, imperial conquerors, colonial murderers, warmongers and genocidal exploiters. But while you’re at it, take down the freedom fighters, trade unionists, human rights champions and revolutionaries. Yes, remove Columbus, Leopold II, Colston and Rhodes. But take down Mandela, Gandhi, Seacole and Tubman, too.

    I don’t think those two groups are moral equals. I place great value on those who fought for equality and inclusion and against bigotry and privilege. But their value to me need not be set in stone and raised on a pedestal. My sense of self-worth is not contingent on seeing those who represent my viewpoints, history and moral compass forced on the broader public. In the words of Nye Bevan, “That is my truth, you tell me yours.” Just be aware that if you tell me your truth is more important than mine, and therefore deserves to be foisted on me in the high street or public park, then I may not be listening for very long.

    For me the issue starts with the very purpose of a statue. They are among the most fundamentally conservative – with a small c – expressions of public art possible. They are erected with eternity in mind – a fixed point on the landscape. Never to be moved, removed, adapted or engaged with beyond popular reverence. Whatever values they represent are the preserve of the establishment. To put up a statue you must own the land on which it stands and have the authority and means to do so. As such they represent the value system of the establishment at any given time that is then projected into the forever.

    That is unsustainable. It is also arrogant. Societies evolve; norms change; attitudes progress. Take the mining magnate, imperialist and unabashed white supremacist Cecil Rhodes. He donated significant amounts of money with the express desire that he be remembered for 4,000 years. We’re only 120 years in, but his wish may well be granted. The trouble is that his intention was that he would be remembered fondly. And you can’t buy that kind of love, no matter how much bronze you lather it in. So in both South Africa and Britain we have been saddled with these monuments to Rhodes.

    The trouble is that they are not his only legacy. The systems of racial subjugation in southern Africa, of which he was a principal architect, are still with us. The income and wealth disparities in that part of the world did not come about by bad luck or hard work. They were created by design. Rhodes’ design. This is the man who said: “The native is to be treated as a child and denied franchise. We must adopt a system of despotism, such as works in India, in our relations with the barbarism of South Africa.” So we should not be surprised if the descendants of those so-called natives, the majority in their own land, do not remember him fondly.

    A similar story can be told in the southern states of the US. In his book Standing Soldiers, Kneeling Slaves, the American historian Kirk Savage writes of the 30-year period after the civil war: “Public monuments were meant to yield resolution and consensus, not to prolong conflict … Even now to commemorate is to seek historical closure, to draw together the various strands of meaning in an historical event or personage and condense its significance.”

    Clearly these statues – of Confederate soldiers in the South, or of Rhodes in South Africa and Oxford – do not represent a consensus now. If they did, they would not be challenged as they are. Nobody is seriously challenging the statue of the suffragist Millicent Fawcett in Parliament Square, because nobody seriously challenges the notion of women’s suffrage. Nor is anyone seeking historical closure via the removal of a statue. The questions that some of these monuments raise – of racial inequality, white supremacy, imperialism, colonialism and slavery – are still very much with us. There is a reason why these particular statues, and not, say, that of Robert Raikes, who founded Sunday schools, which stands in Victoria Embankment Gardens in London, were targeted during the Black Lives Matter protests.

    But these statues never represented a consensus, even when they were erected. Take the statues of Confederate figures in Richmond, Virginia that were the focus of protests last summer. Given that the statues represented men on the losing side of the civil war, they certainly didn’t represent a consensus in the country as a whole. The northern states wouldn’t have appreciated them. But closer to home, they didn’t even represent the general will of Richmond at the time. The substantial African American population of the city would hardly have been pleased to see them up there. And nor were many whites, either. When a labour party took control of Richmond city council in the late 1880s, a coalition of blacks and working-class whites refused to vote for an unveiling parade for the monument because it would “benefit only a certain class of people”.

    Calls for the removal of statues have also raised the charge that longstanding works of public art are at the mercy of political whim. “Is nothing sacred?” they cry. “Who next?” they ask, clutching their pearls and pointing to Churchill. But our research showed these statues were not removed as a fad or in a feverish moment of insubordination. People had been calling for them to be removed for half a century. And the issue was never confined to the statue itself. It was always about what the statue represented: the prevailing and persistent issues that remained, and the legacy of whatever the statue was erected to symbolise.

    One of the greatest distractions when it comes to removing statues is the argument that to remove a statue is to erase history; that to change something about a statue is to tamper with history. This is such arrant nonsense it is difficult to know where to begin, so I guess it would make sense to begin at the beginning.

    Statues are not history; they represent historical figures. They may have been set up to mark a person’s historical contribution, but they are not themselves history. If you take down Nelson Mandela’s bust on London’s South Bank, you do not erase the history of the anti-apartheid struggle. Statues are symbols of reverence; they are not symbols of history. They elevate an individual from a historical moment and celebrate them.

    Nobody thinks that when Iraqis removed statues of Saddam Hussein from around the country they wanted him to be forgotten. Quite the opposite. They wanted him, and his crimes, to be remembered. They just didn’t want him to be revered. Indeed, if the people removing a statue are trying to erase history, then they are very bad at it. For if the erection of a statue is a fact of history, then removing it is no less so. It can also do far more to raise awareness of history. More people know about Colston and what he did as a result of his statue being taken down than ever did as a result of it being put up. Indeed, the very people campaigning to take down the symbols of colonialism and slavery are the same ones who want more to be taught about colonialism and slavery in schools. The ones who want to keep them up are generally the ones who would prefer we didn’t study what these people actually did.

    But to claim that statues represent history does not merely misrepresent the role of statues, it misunderstands history and their place in it. Let’s go back to the Confederate statues for a moment. The American civil war ended in 1865. The South lost. Much of its economy and infrastructure were laid to waste. Almost one in six white Southern men aged 13 to 43 died; even more were wounded; more again were captured.

    Southerners had to forget the reality of the civil war before they could celebrate it. They did not want to remember the civil war as an episode that brought devastation and humiliation. Very few statues went up in the decades immediately after the war. According to the Southern Poverty Law Centre, almost 500 monuments to the Confederate cause went up between 1885 and 1915. More than half were built within one seven-year period, between 1905 and 1912.

    The timing was no coincidence. It was long enough since the horrors of the civil war that it could be misremembered as a noble defence of racialised regional culture rather than just slavery. As such, it represented a sanitised, partial and selective version of history, based less in fact than toxic nostalgia and melancholia. It’s not history that these statues’ protectors are defending: it’s mythology.

    Colston, an official in the Royal African Company, which reportedly sold as many as 100,000 west Africans into slavery, died in 1721. His statue didn’t go up until 1895, more than 150 years later. This was no coincidence, either. Half of the monuments contested over the past year were erected between 1889 and 1919. This was partly an aesthetic trend of the late Victorian era. But it should probably come as little surprise that the statues that anti-racist protesters wanted to be taken down were those erected when Jim Crow segregation was firmly installed in the US, and at the apogee of colonial expansion.

    Statues always tell us more about the values of the period when they were put up than about the story of the person depicted. Two years before Martin Luther King’s death, a poll showed that the majority of Americans viewed him unfavourably. Four decades later, when Barack Obama unveiled a memorial to King in Washington DC, 91% of Americans approved. Rather than teaching us about the past, his statue distorts history. As I wrote in my book The Speech: The Story Behind Dr Martin Luther King Jr’s Dream, “White America came to embrace King in the same way that white South Africans came to embrace Nelson Mandela: grudgingly and gratefully, retrospectively, selectively, without grace or guile. Because by the time they realised their hatred of him was spent and futile, he had created a world in which loving him was in their own self-interest. Because, in short, they had no choice.”

    One claim for not bringing down certain statues of people who committed egregious acts is that we should not judge people of another time by today’s standards. I call this the “But that was before racism was bad” argument or, as others have termed it, the Jimmy Savile defence.

    Firstly, this strikes me as a very good argument for not erecting statues at all, since there is no guarantee that any consensus will persist. Just because there may be a sense of closure now doesn’t mean those issues won’t one day be reopened. But beyond that, by the time many of these statues went up there was already considerable opposition to the deeds that had made these men (and they are nearly all men) rich and famous. In Britain, slavery had been abolished more than 60 years before Colston’s statue went up. The civil war had been over for 30 years before most statues of Confederate generals went up. Cecil Rhodes and King Leopold II of Belgium were both criticised for their vile racist acts and views by their contemporaries. In other words, not only was what they did wrong, but it was widely known to be wrong at the time they did it. By the time they were set in stone there were significant movements, if not legislation, condemning the very things that had made them rich and famous.

    A more honest appraisal of why the removal of these particular statues rankles with so many is that they do not actually want to engage with the history they represent. Power, and the wealth that comes with it, has many parents. But the brutality it takes to acquire it is all too often an orphan. According to a YouGov poll last year, only one in 20 Dutch, one in seven French, one in 5 Brits and one in four Belgians and Italians believe their former empire is something to be ashamed of. If these statues are supposed to tell our story, then why, after more than a century, do so few people actually know it?

    This brings me to my final point. Statues do not just fail to teach us about the past, or give a misleading idea about particular people or particular historical events – they also skew how we understand history itself. For when you put up a statue to honour a historical moment, you reduce that moment to a single person. Individuals play an important role in history. But they don’t make history by themselves. There are always many other people involved. And so what is known as the Great Man theory of history distorts how, why and by whom history is forged.

    Consider the statue of Rosa Parks that stands in the US Capitol. Parks was a great woman, whose refusal to give up her seat for a white woman on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama challenged local segregation laws and sparked the civil rights movement. When Parks died in 2005, her funeral was attended by thousands, and her contribution to the civil rights struggle was eulogised around the world.

    But the reality is more complex. Parks was not the first to plead not guilty after resisting Montgomery’s segregation laws on its buses. Before Parks, there was a 15-year-old girl named Claudette Colvin. Colvin was all set to be the icon of the civil rights movement until she fell pregnant. Because she was an unmarried teenager, she was dropped by the conservative elders of the local church, who were key leaders of the movement. When I interviewed Colvin 20 years ago, she was just getting by as a nurses’ aide and living in the Bronx, all but forgotten.

    And while what Parks did was a catalyst for resistance, the event that forced the segregationists to climb down wasn’t the work of one individual in a single moment, but the year-long collective efforts of African Americans in Montgomery who boycotted the buses – maids and gardeners who walked miles in sun and rain, despite intimidation, those who carpooled to get people where they needed to go, those who sacrificed their time and effort for the cause. The unknown soldiers of civil rights. These are the people who made it happen. Where is their statue? Where is their place in history? How easily and wilfully the main actors can be relegated to faceless extras.

    I once interviewed the Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano, who confessed that his greatest fear was “that we are all suffering from amnesia”. Who, I asked, is responsible for this forgetfulness? “It’s not a person,” he explained. “It’s a system of power that is always deciding in the name of humanity who deserves to be remembered and who deserves to be forgotten … We are much more than we are told. We are much more beautiful.”

    Statues cast a long shadow over that beauty and shroud the complexity even of the people they honour. Now, I love Rosa Parks. Not least because the story usually told about her is so far from who she was. She was not just a hapless woman who stumbled into history because she was tired and wanted to sit down. That was not the first time she had been thrown off a bus. “I had almost a life history of being rebellious against being mistreated against my colour,” she once said. She was also an activist, a feminist and a devotee of Malcolm X. “I don’t believe in gradualism or that whatever should be done for the better should take for ever to do,” she once said.

    Of course I want Parks to be remembered. Of course I want her to take her rightful place in history. All the less reason to diminish that memory by casting her in bronze and erecting her beyond memory.

    So let us not burden future generations with the weight of our faulty memory and the lies of our partial mythology. Let us not put up the people we ostensibly cherish so that they can be forgotten and ignored. Let us elevate them, and others – in the curriculum, through scholarships and museums. Let us subject them to the critiques they deserve, which may convert them from inert models of their former selves to the complex, and often flawed, people that they were. Let us fight to embed the values of those we admire in our politics and our culture. Let’s cover their anniversaries in the media and set them in tests. But the last thing we should do is cover their likeness in concrete and set them in stone.

    https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2021/jun/01/gary-younge-why-every-single-statue-should-come-down-rhodes-colston?CMP
    #statues #mémoire #espace_public

    ping @cede

  • Les oubliés de l’Espagne

    En octobre 2019, le cercueil du général Franco quittait le mausolée où il était enterré depuis 1975.

    Une construction à la gloire du national catholicisme qui abrite près de 30 000 cadavres de la guerre civile. Le film se propose d’explorer les lignes de fractures qui traversent toujours la société espagnole dans le prisme de son exhumation.

    https://pages.rts.ch/docs/doc/11923852-les-oublies-de-l-espagne.html
    #film #film_documentaire #documentaire
    #Espagne #Valle_de_los_Caídos #Valle_de_los_Caidos #Francisco_Franco #Franco #dictature #histoire #mausolée #mémoire #guerre_d'Espagne #monument #José_Antonio_Primo_de_Rivera #falange #Eglise #national-catholicisme #réconciliation #disparus #Calatayud #disparitions #amnésie_générale #silence #peur #Juan_Carlo_I #réconciliation_nationale #amnestie #fosses_communes #loi_de_mémoire_historique #association_Arico #exhumation #transition_démocratique #enseignement #statues #justice #dépouilles #sépulture_digne #oubli #droit

    • For an academic reference and #counter memory, see also

      1. Iturriaga N. At the Foot of the Grave: Challenging Collective Memories of Violence in Post-Franco Spain. Socius. January 2019. doi:10.1177/2378023119832135

      “Understanding the development and meaning of collective memory is a central interest for sociologists. One aspect of this literature focuses on the processes that social movement actors use to introduce long-silenced counter-memories of violence to supplant the “official” memory. To examine this, I draw on 15 months of ethnographic observations with the Spanish Association for the Recovery of Historical Memory (ARMH) and 200 informal and 30 formal interviews with locals and activists. This paper demonstrates that ARMH activists, during forensic classes given at mass grave exhumations, use multiple tactics (depoliticized science framing, action-oriented objects, and embodiment) to deliver a counter-memory of the Spanish Civil War and Franco regime and make moral and transitional justice claims. This research shows how victims’ remains and the personal objects found in the graves also provoke the desired meaning that emotionally connects those listening to the classes to the victims and the ARMH’s counter-memory.”

    • Les derniers jours de Franco
      https://tv-programme.com/les-derniers-jours-de-franco_documentaire

      Retour sur la dictature espagnole du général Franco, qui a imposé son pouvoir autoritaire sur le pays du 1er octobre 1936 au 20 novembre 1975. Le 20 novembre 1975, le dictateur Francisco Franco s’éteint à 82 ans. Avec lui, c’est la plus longue dictature du XXe siècle qui disparaît. Le général a régné plus de quarante ans sur l’Espagne. Son médecin personnel décrit les coulisses saisissantes de l’agonie du Caudillo. Ses opposants évoquent la poigne de fer qui tenait le pays. Depuis la guerre civile de 1936, avec ses centaines de milliers de morts, jusqu’aux années 1970, prospères mais répressives, Franco a écrasé tous ses ennemis. Aujourd’hui encore, son fantôme hante l’Espagne. La crise catalane a réveillé de vieux antagonismes, Barcelone accusant le pouvoir de Madrid de sympathies franquistes. Carles Puigdemont, ex-président de Catalogne témoigne depuis son exil forcé.

      J’ai vu ce doc hier soir et son gendre (cardiologue véreux) qui a vendu les clichés, à prix d’or, de l’agonie du généralissime à Paris-match. Une vrai famille de pourris.
      https://seenthis.net/messages/816931
      https://seenthis.net/messages/748134

  • Léonora Miano : « c’est faux de dire que la République ne déboulonne pas : il n’y a plus de statues de Pétain »
    https://www.franceinter.fr/emissions/l-invite-de-8h20-le-grand-entretien/l-invite-de-8h20-le-grand-entretien-25-septembre-2020

    Léonora Miano, auteure d’"Afropea" (Grasset), est l’invitée du Grand entretien de France Inter.

    Léonora Miano n’est pas une Afropéenne (afro-européenne). Ceux qui se définissent ainsi ont grandi en Europe. Ceux qui se sont donnés un nom – Afropéens – dans lequel Afrique et Europe fusionnent, s’ils sont fidèles aux implications de cette association plus qu’à leur amertume, peuvent incarner un projet de société fraternel, anti-impérialiste et anti-raciste. 

    A l’origine, le terme « #Afropea » a été créé pour définir des musiques qui refléteraient l’influence de l’Afrique sur les sensibilités européennes. C’est devenu l’appellation d’un maillage humain pour parler de cette population européenne avec une ascendance africaine. 

    Dans une France en proie aux crispations identitaires, la perspective afropéenne apparaît encore comme une utopie. De part et d’autre, la tentation du rejet est puissante.
    […]
    Le « racisme cordial », c’est un racisme de l’intimité, explique-t-elle : "on peut coucher ensemble, on peut être « amis », mais on ne sera pas ensemble dans les espaces de pouvoir."

  • Pourquoi Macdonald, pourquoi maintenant ?

    https://www.lapresse.ca/actualites/2020-08-30/pourquoi-macdonald-pourquoi-maintenant.php

    Le déboulonnement de la statue de John A. Macdonald, samedi, dans la foulée d’une manifestation sur la réduction du budget de la police à Montréal, a relancé le débat sur le mouvement de réappropriation de l’espace public qui prend de l’ampleur aux États-Unis et au Canada. Pour mieux comprendre ces enjeux, La Presse s’est entretenue avec Mathieu Arsenault, professeur au département d’histoire de l’Université de Montréal.

    #statues #déboulonnage

  • Portland, ville symbole de la résistance à Trump
    https://www.courrierinternational.com/article/manifestations-portland-ville-symbole-de-la-resistance-trump

    Voilà plus de cinquante jours que les manifestations contre le racisme et les violences policières se succèdent à Portland, la plus grosse ville de l’Oregon. Le récent déploiement de forces spéciales du gouvernement fédéral n’a fait qu’envenimer les choses.

    #paywall

    • Cinquante-deux jours consécutifs de #manifestations. Si la #mobilisation contre les #violences_policières à la suite de la mort de George Floyd a fléchi dans les rues des autres grandes villes et des petites villes américaines, à Portland, dans l’#Oregon, « la détermination des manifestants va croissant », rapporte le New York Times.

      Et pour cause, la ville est devenue un #symbole du #bras_de_fer engagé par Donald Trump pour mettre un terme aux troubles et aux manifestations en déployant des #forces_spéciales de #police_fédérale.

      « Flagrant #abus_de_pouvoir »

      Le locataire de la Maison-Blanche a encore dénoncé sur Twitter ce dimanche 19 juillet les « anarchistes et agitateurs » qu’il considère comme « une #menace_nationale » et qu’il désigne comme responsables du « #chaos et de l’#anarchie » qui règne dans cette ville de la côte Ouest. Or « davantage de manifestants sont sortis dans les rues de Portland pour protester contre la #militarisation du #maintien_de_l'ordre », rendue palpable par le déploiement de forces spéciales de police fédérale dans la ville depuis le début du mois de juillet, souligne le quotidien new-yorkais.

      Dans un second article, le New York Times décrit plus précisément ces forces spéciales de police fédérale : « Des #agents_fédéraux vêtus de tenues camouflage et d’équipements tactiques, usant de #gaz_lacrymogène et de #brutalité, et embarquant à l’occasion des manifestants dans des véhicules banalisés », ce que la gouverneure démocrate de l’Oregon, Kate Brown, a qualifié de « flagrant abus de pouvoir ».

      La procureure générale de l’État a également indiqué que ses services avaient ouvert une #enquête à la suite de #violences sur un manifestant et avaient enregistré une #plainte devant un tribunal local contre les méthodes répressives illégales des agents fédéraux.

      Les agents présents à Portland font partie des « équipes à déploiement rapide mises en place par le ministère de la Sécurité intérieure ». Il s’agit d’une demande expresse du président américain auprès de différentes agences fédérales d’envoyer des renforts pour « protéger les #statues, #monuments et bâtiments fédéraux pendant les manifestations ».

      Tout un symbole

      Ces équipes incluent environ « 2 ?000 hommes issus de la #police_des_frontières, mais aussi du ministère des Transports et des #gardes-côtes qui viennent prêter main-forte au #Federal_Protective_Service », une agence fédérale peu connue chargée de la #protection_des_propriétés du gouvernement fédéral sur tout le territoire américain.

      Ces renforts fédéraux « ont été déployés à #Seattle, à #Washington et à Portland », souligne le New York Times. Depuis, les images chocs, les vidéos amateurs et les témoignages se multiplient sur les réseaux sociaux et dans les médias américains pour dénoncer la violence de la #répression à Portland.

      Parmi les images les plus frappantes qui ont fait le tour de la Toile figure cette vidéo d’un groupe de mères casquées venues protester contre la présence des agents fédéraux aux cris de « Feds stay clear. Moms are here ?! » ("Allez-vous-en les fédéraux, les mères sont là !").

      Ou encore les photos et vidéos de cette manifestante nue exécutant un drôle de ballet devant les forces de l’ordre. Une manifestante anonyme qualifiée par le Los Angeles Times d’"Athéna", en référence à la déesse grecque de la guerre, émergeant « telle une apparition au milieu des nuages de gaz lacrymogène lancé par les agents fédéraux et ne portant rien d’autre qu’un masque et un bonnet noir face à une dizaine d’agents lourdement armés et vêtus de treillis militaire ».

      Le symbole même de la « vulnérabilité humaine » face à une répression disproportionnée.

      #résistance #Trump #USA #Etats-Unis #plainte #Naked_Athena #Athena

      ping @davduf

    • A Portland, la « milice personnelle de Trump » à l’œuvre

      Ils jaillissent de voitures banalisées, vêtus d’uniformes kaki tout neufs dignes de la guerre d’Irak, pour interpeller des manifestants, ou, trop souvent, de simples passants soupçonnés d’être de « dangereux anarchistes ». Une vidéo montre un de leurs commandos maîtriser à dix, avec l’aide d’un chien policier, un tagueur devant la cour de justice fédérale de Portland, Oregon.

      Ces forces de l’ordre inconnues, dénuées du moindre insigne déclinant leur identité ou leur administration d’origine, côtoient depuis près de deux semaines la police de Portland pour disperser les rassemblements de militants Black Lives Matter, toujours actifs depuis la mort de George Floyd. S’ils coordonnent parfois officieusement leurs actions avec les policiers locaux, connus pour leur brutalité, ils ne prennent leurs ordres que de Washington. Essentiellement du Department of Homeland Security, l’administration de la sécurité intérieure fondée après le 11 Septembre, aujourd’hui étroitement contrôlée par Donald Trump en personne – au grand désarroi des autorités locales, qui assurent n’avoir jamais demandé un tel renfort. « Ces dizaines, voire ces centaines d’officiers fédéraux qui débarquent dans notre ville ne font qu’envenimer la situation, a déploré Ted Wheeler, le maire démocrate de Portland. Leur présence ne fait qu’accroître les violences et le vandalisme. »

      Pour toute réponse, Donald Trump a annoncé qu’il entendait poursuivre ces déploiements dans d’autres villes, telles Chicago, Detroit, Philadelphie, Baltimore et Oakland (en Californie), ainsi que…New York, qui ne connaît plus de manifestations d’envergure, pour rétablir l’ordre dans des municipalités « mal dirigées par des Démocrates de gauche ».

      Aucune compétence sur la voie publique

      L’offensive de la Maison Blanche, décrite comme une manifestation d’autoritarisme et une crise constitutionnelle par l’Aclu, importante association de défense des droits civils, provoque un choc dans l’opinion. Révulsée, Nancy Pelosi, la présidente démocrate de la Chambre des représentants, demande le retrait des « troupes d’assaut de Donald Trump ». Tom Ridge, premier directeur du Homeland Security Department entre 2003 et 2005, a pour sa part rappelé que cette agence de l’Etat fédéral n’a pas été conçue « pour servir de milice personnelle à Donald Trump ».

      Le maintien de l’ordre est traditionnellement la responsabilité des autorités locales : des Etats mais plus couramment des maires des villes, des shérifs élus et des dirigeants de comtés. Les forces fédérales, tels le FBI, la Drug Enforcement Administration et les agences de lutte contre l’immigration clandestine, ne sont compétentes que pour les crimes et délits impliquant des mouvements entre plusieurs Etats ou dûment inscrits en raison de leur gravité dans une liste approuvée par le Congrès. Hormis pour la protection des bâtiments fédéraux, un prétexte largement utilisé à Portland, ils n’ont aucune compétence sur la voie publique, alors qu’ils quadrillent la ville impunément sans autorisation des autorités locales.

      Donald Trump, brutalisé par les sondages et en mal de démonstration d’autorité, a fait son miel du slogan de Black Lives Matter « defund the police », soit retirer ses financements à la police. Le mot d’ordre appelait à la fin de la militarisation du maintien de l’ordre local et au rééquilibrage des fonds publics vers les services sociaux ou de prévention de la criminalité. La Maison Blanche y voit l’occasion de se présenter comme la championne de la loi et de l’ordre face au prétendu laxisme des élus démocrates, quitte à attiser les conflits locaux avant les élections de novembre.

      Rempart contre le prétendu chaos

      Le Président n’a eu de cesse, depuis trois ans, de stigmatiser les « villes sanctuaires » qui limitent leur appui à ses campagnes d’arrestation d’immigrants clandestins. Il trouve maintenant une nouvelle occasion de monter sa base électorale, largement rurale, contre les zones urbaines, majoritairement démocrates, et de s’imposer comme un rempart contre le prétendu chaos. Donald Trump avait évoqué Chicago et son taux de criminalité terrible dès son discours inaugural apocalyptique de janvier 2017 pour promettre la fin de ce « massacre américain ». Mais on ignore l’impact qu’aura sa centaine d’enquêteurs fédéraux dans une ville qui a connu 62 attaques armées entre gangs le week-end dernier. Le maire de Detroit, comme celui de Philadelphie, demandent quant à eux poliment d’où le Président tire ses informations sur le désordre et la criminalité locale.

      Plus perfidement, Trump profite de la colère des polices locales, notamment à New York, ou le maire, Bill de Blasio, à réduit le budget du NYPD sous la pression de Black Lives Matter, pour tenter de déstabiliser les élus démocrates au moment où, certes, la criminalité augmente depuis le déconfinement sans pour autant renverser vingt ans de progrès spectaculaires dans la sécurité de la ville.

      Le Président a, de plus, accru son emprise sur les forces fédérales usant non du FBI, qu’il déteste en raison des enquêtes sur sa possible collusion avec Moscou, mais des agences qui lui sont dévouées, comme la police des frontières et l’Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), responsable des arrestations de clandestins. Ces officiers, dénués de toute expérience en matière de contrôle des désordres sur la voie publique, constituent la majorité des troupes en uniforme kaki qui traquent les tagueurs de Portland et pourraient bientôt imposer la marque Trump dans les ghettos du South Side, à Chicago.

      https://www.liberation.fr/planete/2020/07/22/a-portland-la-milice-personnelle-de-trump-a-l-oeuvre_1794940?xtor=rss-450

  • Statues contestées #1 : tempête mémorielle dans l’espace public
    https://parolesdhistoire.fr/index.php/2020/07/20/140-statues-contestees-1-tempete-memorielle-dans-lespace-public

    Depuis mai 2020, à travers le monde, les statues et monuments ayant un lien avec le passé colonial et esclavagiste sont contestées et parfois renversées. Une irruption des enjeux mémoriels dans l’espace public qui fera l’objet de cinq émissions du podcast. Aujourd’hui : Tempête mémorielle dans l’espace public. Durée : 40 min. Source : Paroles d’histoire

    https://content.blubrry.com/parolesdhistoire/statuescontestees1.mp3

  • #coronavirus : Pour une Anthropologie Anarchiste" de David Graeber

    https://d3ctxlq1ktw2nl.cloudfront.net/production/2020-3-9/63024987-44100-2-7f884f184abae.mp3

    L’anarchisme, en tant que philosophie politique, est en plein essor.
    De fondement de l’organisation dans le mouvement altermondialiste qu’ils étaient, les principes anarchistes traditionnels — autonomie, association volontaire, autogestion, entraide, démocratie directe — en sont venus à jouer ce rôle dans des mouvements radicaux de toutes sortes dans le monde entier.
    Et pourtant, cela n’a eu presque aucun écho dans le milieu universitaire.
    Les anarchistes interrogent souvent les anthropologues sur leurs idées quant aux diverses façons d’organiser la société sur des bases plus égalitaires, moins aliénantes.
    Les anthropologues, terrifiés à l’idée de se voir accusés de romantisme, n’ont pour seule réponse que leur silence.
    Et s’il en était autrement ? « On peut penser, à tout le moins, qu’être un professeur ouvertement anarchiste signifierait, remettre en question la façon dont les universités sont gérées — cela non pas en demandant un département d’études anarchistes —, ce qui, bien sûr, lui attirerait beaucoup plus d’ennuis que tout ce qu’il pourrait écrire par ailleurs. »

    Source : https://podmust.com/episode?podcast=bigbooks

    #audio #radio #podcast #anarchisme #histoire #politique #anarchie #communisme #féminisme #capitalisme #livres #livre #socialisme #marxisme

    • Décolonisons réellement notre quotidien !

      Il est un peu facile de s’offusquer maintenant sur une partie de notre histoire alors que la plupart d’entre nous, nous :

      – Participons à l’esclavagisme moderne en achetant H&M, Wish, Shein, Aliexpress, Zara, carrefour, auchan . . . .

      – Participons à la destruction de forêt du Sud en mangeant chaque matin du Nutella,

      – Détruisons les océans en utilisant du plastique pour tout et n’importe quoi ou en nous gavant de sushis au thon et de Fishsticks,

      – Fermons les yeux sur le génocide en Birmanie ou la famine au Yemen,

      – Nous réjouissons de la réouverture des frontières pour passer nos vacances dans un All inclusive de 1200 chambres construit sur une ancienne forêt primaire,

      – Continuons à vouloir notre poulet à 2 euros le kilo au mépris de la souffrance animale,

      – Sommes tout content du pillage des minerais d’Afrique, Amérique du Sud ou d’Asie pour construire notre beau smartphone ou la batterie de notre nouvelle voiture électrique.

      Alors oui, je trouve vraiment hypocrite de critiquer nos ancêtres et de se ruer sur les T-shirt Zeeman à 2.99 euros.
      Regardons d’abord notre impact actuel sur la planète et ses habitants et puis, on pourra se permettre de donner des leçons de morale.
      Car honnêtement, au vue de notre mode vie actuel, ce sont nos effigies que les générations futures (s’il en reste) vont piétiner....

      #esclavage #responsabilité #économie #presse pour les #générations_futures #statues #actualité et #histoire #planète #enfumage

  • APPEL. Décolonisons l’espace public ! - regards.fr
    http://www.regards.fr/idees-culture/article/appel-decolonisons-l-espace-public

    Un mouvement d’ampleur mondiale exige une décolonisation de l’espace public. De l’Afrique du Sud à Paris, de la Colombie à Lille, des USA à Nantes, de la Martinique à Bordeaux, etc., la planète entière voit se développer des mobilisations pour que cessent les valorisations et mises à l’honneur d’esclavagistes, de massacreurs coloniaux et d’idéologues et théoriciens racistes. Honorés par des statues ou des noms de voies publiques et d’écoles, ces symboles de plus de quatre siècles d’esclavage et d’un siècle et demi de colonisation, constituent une véritable insulte au peuple français en général et aux citoyennes et citoyens issus de ces peuples meurtris par l’esclavage et la colonisation. Ce mouvement est une bonne nouvelle pour tous les partisans de l’égalité. Il doit être soutenu et amplifié pour rendre incontournable la décolonisation, non seulement des espaces publics mais aussi des imaginaires collectifs et de l’histoire officielle.

  • Thomas Laqueur · While #Statues Sleep · LRB 18 June 2020
    https://lrb.co.uk/the-paper/v42/n12/thomas-laqueur/while-statues-sleep

    Afew years ago​ Susan Neiman published an article titled ‘History and Guilt’, which asked whether America can ‘face up to the terrible reality of slavery in the way that Germany has faced up to the Holocaust’. Her new book tries to answer that question, considering the ways in which the US can learn from Germany’s Aufarbeitung der Vergangenheit, its ‘working through the past’. The German Stolpersteine – brass bricks set in the pavement just high enough to cause the passer-by to stumble, stop and read the name of a murdered victim of the Holocaust who lived in a nearby building – inspired the eight hundred columns bearing the names of murdered blacks, county by county, at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery, Alabama, often called the National Lynching Memorial.* And German reparations over the past half-century are a model – precedent may be a better word – for Neiman and many others who argue in favour of some form of reparations for slavery. They seem to demonstrate moral principle in action at a national level. Dressed in its memorial trappings, Berlin today is the Nazi capital in sackcloth.

  • Mémoire. #Roosevelt, #Washington, #Jefferson : ces présidents américains déboulonnés

    La #statue de l’ancien président Theodore Roosevelt va être délogée de l’entrée du Muséum d’histoire naturelle de #New_York. Aux États-Unis, le débat national sur la pertinence de certains monuments s’est élargi à des personnages tels que les pères fondateurs George Washington et Thomas Jefferson.

    https://www.courrierinternational.com/article/memoire-roosevelt-washington-jefferson-ces-presidents-america

    #statues #mémoire #toponymie_politique #USA #Etats-Unis

  • La carte de la #mémoire statuaire par Christian Grataloup - Sciences et Avenir

    https://www.sciencesetavenir.fr/archeo-paleo/la-carte-de-la-memoire-statuaire-par-christian-grataloup_145329

    Les pratiques mémorielles collectives les plus courantes ne coutent pas bien cher. Il suffit de nommer. Plutôt que de numéroter les rues ou les établissements (scolaires, hospitaliers, militaires, etc.), on leur donne un nom, le plus souvent celui d’une personne, décédée de préférence. La dépense se limite à quelques plaques. On retrouve aussi ces dénominations sur les papiers à en-tête ou les cartes de visites, dans la mesure où subsistent encore ces pratiques prénumériques. Quel effet cela a-t-il pour le souvenir du (rarement de la) disparu(e) ? Très certainement peu de choses. Beaucoup de résidents ignorent qui était l’illustre dont leur adresse porte le patronyme et avouent souvent ne pas même s’être posé la question. Habiter avenue des tilleuls ou rue Gambetta ne change rien à la vie quotidienne ou aux représentations qu’on se fait de sa propre géographie. Littéralement, le plan de la ville n’est pas une carte-mémoire.

    #traces #statues #déboulonage

    • Les #pratiques_mémorielles collectives les plus courantes ne coutent pas bien cher. Il suffit de nommer. Plutôt que de numéroter les rues ou les établissements (scolaires, hospitaliers, militaires, etc.), on leur donne un #nom, le plus souvent celui d’une personne, décédée de préférence. La dépense se limite à quelques #plaques. On retrouve aussi ces #dénominations sur les papiers à en-tête ou les cartes de visites, dans la mesure où subsistent encore ces pratiques prénumériques. Quel effet cela a-t-il pour le souvenir du (rarement de la) disparu(e) ? Très certainement peu de choses. Beaucoup de résidents ignorent qui était l’illustre dont leur adresse porte le #patronyme et avouent souvent ne pas même s’être posé la question. Habiter avenue des tilleuls ou rue Gambetta ne change rien à la vie quotidienne ou aux représentations qu’on se fait de sa propre #géographie. Littéralement, le plan de la ville n’est pas une carte-mémoire.

      "Ah, s’il avait pu ne pas exister, celui-là !"

      Je me souviens avoir, il y a plus de quarante ans, enseigné dans un collège (un CES alors) de ce qui était la banlieue rouge. La municipalité communiste lui avait donné le nom de #Marcel_Cachin. Lorsque la vie politique française du XXe siècle figurait dans les programmes, je me faisais un devoir de citer l’homme politique communiste, longtemps directeur de L’Humanité. Je n’ai jamais rencontré un élève qui en avait au préalable une vague connaissance. Pourtant, cela faisait moins de vingt ans qu’il était décédé et l’environnement politique local aurait pu favoriser ce culte du héros. L’ignorance était aussi profonde dans l’établissement voisin baptisé (si j’ose dire) Eugénie Cotton. Chose amusante, il est plusieurs fois arrivé que des élèves s’écrient : "ah, s’il avait pu ne pas exister, celui-là !". On pourrait imaginer une dystopie où il serait possible d’effacer le passé, ce qui ferait disparaître tous les lieux portant le nom évanoui. L’abolition historique générant l’abolition géographique. L’amnésie gommant la carte.

      En supprimant une statue, ne serait-on pas quelque peu dans un processus de même nature, mais inversé ? Effacer la #matérialisation d’une mémoire, ce n’est plus, bien sûr, la glorifier, mais ce n’est pas non plus montrer quelles nuisances, quelles souffrances elle avait occultées. Passé le bref moment de satisfaction qu’apporte le sentiment d’avoir infligé une juste punition, comment pourra-t-on rappeler au quotidien ces nuisances et ces souffrances ? En érigeant d’autres statues, jusqu’à ce que plus tard d’autres mécontentements finissent par les prendre pour cibles, soit par regret des #célébrations antérieures, soit, plus probablement, parce que les personnages ou les actes célébrés apparaissent trop tièdes, trop ambigus. Ce sont les actuelles mésaventures de #Victor_Schœlcher, dont les représentations n’ont d’autres buts que de rappeler l’abolition de l’#esclavage (sinon, qui se souviendrait de cet assez modeste personnage politique du XIXe siècle ?), raison qui lui a valu d’être, avec #Félix_Eboué, panthéonisé en 1949 (et sa tombe fleurie par Mitterrand en 1981).

      Contextualiser et non effacer

      La colère qui aboutit au renversement d’une statue est d’aujourd’hui. Ce ne sont pas les comptes du passé qui sont réglés, mais des souffrances bien contemporaines qui s’expriment. S’attaquer à la mémoire des traites négrières et de leurs acteurs hurle la blessure constamment rouverte du racisme subi au quotidien. Mais en tentant de changer la mise en scène du passé – qui ne passe pas, selon la formule consacrée -, c’est la mémoire qui risque de disparaître, pas le racisme présent qui n’a nul besoin de profondeur historique.

      De fait, tous les historiens et autres spécialistes de sciences sociales ne cessent de dire qu’il faut avant tout contextualiser et non effacer. Bien sûr, je ne peux y manquer. Mais je contenterai d’un seul critère de mise en situation : éviter de réduire une personne et sa statue à une symbolique marginale dans ce qu’elles peuvent représenter. En 2005, la célébration du bicentaire de la victoire d’Austerlitz a avorté. Cela pouvait se comprendre par refus d’une exaltation militariste et impérialiste. Mais le grand reproche fait alors à Napoléon a été d’avoir rétabli l’esclavage aux colonies trois ans avant la bataille. Ce retour en arrière sur un acquis majeur de la Révolution, même s’il n’avait guère eu d’effet concret, est évidemment un acte honteux. Mais ce n’est vraiment pas pour cela qu’on a érigé des statues de l’empereur. La situation est la même pour la figure du roman national la plus honnie aujourd’hui : Jean-Baptiste Colbert. On peut le détester pour les mêmes raisons qui ont fait réinventer son personnage par la 3ème République : le fait qu’il soit un maillon essentiel dans la chaîne des bâtisseurs de l’Etat central. Le roman national en faisait un modèle à suivre pour les petits écoliers, en vantant sa capacité de travail : l’imagerie le montrait entrant dans son bureau très tôt le matin et se frottant les mains pour exprimer son plaisir de voir d’énormes piles de dossiers à travailler. Le colbertisme n’a que marginalement à voir avec le Code noir dont la haine dont il est l’objet témoigne d’abord d’une totale décontextualisation. Certes, il vaut mieux prendre des symboles qui tiennent la route et Christiane Taubira a très justement tranché sur la mémoire de Colbert en insistant sur les raisons toutes autres de sa célébration. Sacrifier la statue qui trône devant l’Assemblée nationale (d’ailleurs une copie) n’aurait pas grand sens et n’aboutirait qu’à provoquer d’inutiles divisions.

      Les oubliées, les opprimées, les minoritaires

      L’ancien contrôleur général des finances de Louis XIV connaît ainsi un bref moment de « popularité » qui n’a pas grand rapport avec la patrimonialisation généralisée dans laquelle nous baignons depuis au moins trois décennies. Dans un monde où toute ancienne usine, toute petite zone humide, toute vieille ferme est célébrée comme un lieu de mémoire si sa destruction est envisageable, ne resterait-il que les statues qu’il faudrait effacer ? Alors que, dans l’ensemble, on ne leur prête généralement aucun intérêt et que même ceux qui passent régulièrement devant elles ne s’y intéressent pas le moins du monde. Une solution est aujourd’hui souvent prônée : ériger nouvelles statues célébrant les oubliées, les opprimées, les minoritaires. Vu que l’immense majorité de la statuaire publique (et encore, compte non tenu des monuments aux morts militaires) représente des hommes blancs, souvent vieux, la tâche est impressionnante, digne d’une relance économique hyper-keynésienne. Mais les sommes monumentales (désolé, le jeu de mot est tentant) nécessaires ne seraient-elles pas mieux employées à remettre à flots les hôpitaux publics ? Il est vrai que ce serait sans doute un facteur de réindustrialisation, les bronziers ayant largement disparu du territoire national.

      Lorsque le président sénégalais #Abdoulaye_Wade a voulu ériger sur les #collines_des_Mamelles, près de #Dakar et face à l’Atlantique, l’énorme groupe statuaire qu’est le monument de la #Renaissance_africaine (52 mètres de haut, en bronze et cuivre), un seul pays s’est montré capable de relever le défi technique : la Corée du Nord. Statufier les mémoires est chose difficile. Deux passés particulièrement douloureux, la Shoah et les traites négrières se livrent à ce qu’il est convenu d’appeler une concurrence mémorielle. Des lieux ont pu être ainsi fabriqués, ainsi la maison des esclaves de Gorée où sans doute peu d’esclaves sont passés, mais peu importe. D’autres subsistent, comme la cité de la Muette à Drancy qui fut l’antichambre d’Auschwitz. Neuf juifs sur dix déportés de France passèrent par le camp de Drancy. En 2006 une sorte de jumelage mémoriel fut mis en place entre les municipalités de Gorée et de Drancy avec l’érection de deux groupes statuaires, un dans chaque lieu, réalisés par deux artistes guadeloupéens, Jean et Christian Moisa. Mais les deux célèbrent la fin de l’esclavage, pas la libération des camps.

      Finalement, la statue la plus durable serait celle qui n’a pas de corps. Grace aux déboulonnages opérés durant l’occupation pour fournir des métaux rares aux Allemands, ont longtemps subsisté sur bien des places de France, des socles vides, pourvu néanmoins d’une plaque. La solution a été adoptée pour un des très récents ensembles de statues érigées à Paris : le monument aux 549 soldats français morts en #Opex inauguré le 11 novembre 2019 par le président Macron. Le cercueil porté par les 6 soldats de bronze est non seulement vide, mais il n’existe pas. La statue idéale.

      #statues #Christian_Grataloup #toponymie_politique #effacement #contextualisation

      ping @albertocampiphoto @isskein

  • Thinking of statues of racists reminds me of Namibia. Let’s talk about the Reiterdenkmal (Equestrian Monument) or Südwester Reiter (South West Rider) that used to be up in #Windhoek.
    The statue went up on January 27, 1912 on the 53rd birthday of #Kaiser_Wilhelm_II, the last Kaiser and the leader who oversaw Germany’s colonial run in Africa and the Pacific, including the settlement of German South West Africa.
    The monument honors the German soldiers and civilians who died during the 1904-07 Herero Wars, the —and I can’t stress this enough — genocidal military campaign waged against the Herero & Nama. This is what the inscription on the monument said:


    Considering statue-making as a propaganda tool, historian Andres Vogt wrote in The Namibian “the representation of persons in the form of an equestrian monument was a privilege reserved for highest nobility like emperors, kings and princes only.”
    https://www.namibian.com.na/44210/archive-read/To-move-or-not-to-move---On-the-relocation-of
    We don’t have to reach far to understand the level of insult that is invading people’s land AND THEN monumentalizing your conquest. German historian Joachim Zeller (his work is good) wrote in the same paper that it was “an unequivocal monument of victory.”
    https://www.namibian.com.na/49115/archive-read/The-German-Rider---An-Apolitical-Soldiers-Memorial
    After some years of protest, the monument was removed from its plinth on Christmas day 2013. It now sits inside Alta Feste, the fortress-cum-museum that used to be the HQ of the imperial German army.

    I mention Andres Vogt because after the removal he was very angry: saying that the Namibian government was being “insensitive” about the country’s heritage.
    https://www.namibian.com.na/index.php?id=118130&page=archive-read

    “Heritage” does a lot of heavy lifting, and when it comes to public monuments it is almost always invoked by those who are fearful about symbols of conquest (which is why neo-Confederates make me laugh, y’all lost lol) + colonial domination disappearing from public memory.
    But those monuments will never disappear anywhere people are living in the eternal shadow of the material violences they represent. Public space is a contested arena for memory: those monuments seek to represent the eternality of European violence and the people are saying no.
    Tear them all down, reconceptualize the multivalence + evolution of things like “history” and “heritage,” and if you’re being precious about the monuments perhaps consider why idolatrous statues to white supremacy are sacred to you lol
    Currently, folks in Namibia are fighting to take down this statue in Henties Bay. A few days ago, Lebbeus Hashikutuva started an online petition for its removal. It went up 42 years ago, during apartheid (it’s only 12 years older than the state itself)
    https://neweralive.na/amp/gallows-make-mockery-of-black-pain-petition-seeks-to-remove-offensive-lan

    A good piece about the noose within the context of the genocide; Hashikutuva also describes how it functions as a racial warning, that it isn’t at all just a reminder to keep the beach clean.
    https://www.guernicamag.com/will-mcgrath-the-noose-in-hentiesbaai

    “Seeing comes before words. The child looks and recognizes before it can speak.”

    We are, with statues and in all places, fighting a war over memory and knowledge and recognition; white supremacy cannot win.

    #mémoire #statues #toponymie_politique #Namibie #colonialisme #colonisation #monument #Allemagne #monument #racisme #espace_public

    ping @neotoponymie @reka

  • Glasgow launches detailed study of its historical links with transatlantic slavery

    THIRTY years ago, Glasgow gave the name “#Merchant_City” to a historic quarter of the city centre.

    Few eyebrows were raised at the time but, as Susan Aitken, the present leader of Glasgow City Council, said this week, such a move would today be “unthinkable”, for Merchant City, a popular residential, shopping and leisure area, has streets named after merchants – tobacco lords, and members of the “sugar aristocracy” – who profited on a substantial scale from the slave trade.

    As the historian Professor Michael Lynch observed a decade ago, “nowhere in Britain does the built environment act as a more overt reminder of the ’Horrible Traffik’ than the streets and buildings of Glasgow’s Merchant City”.

    This week the council became the first in the UK to launch a major academic study into historic bequests linked to transatlantic slavery.

    To be carried out by Dr Stephen Mullen, a noted academic historian who has studied the city’s links with the trade, it will leave no stone unturned.

    There will be four specific stages. A detailed audit will be carried out into historic bequests made to Glasgow Town Council, to see if there are any connections with transatlantic slavery. Statues, street-names, buildings and Lords Provost with any such connections will also be examined.

    Records relating to the City Chambers, a striking Victorian building completed in 1888, will be scrutinised to see what proportion of funds came from donors with connections to the slave trade.

    The fourth area will compile evidence to inform any future strategy for Glasgow itself. The council says that Dr Mullen’s year-long study will lead to a wide-ranging public consultation on its findings and on how Glasgow should move forward.

    The move comes a few months after Glasgow University said it would pay £20 million in reparative justice over the next 20 years to atone for its historical links to the transatlantic slave trade.

    A detailed report into the issue, co-authored by Dr Mullen and thought to be the first of its kind in the UK, found that though the university never owned enslaved people or traded in goods they produced, it “indirectly benefited from racial slavery” by anything between £16.7 million and £198 million in today’s money.

    One of the donors to the university was the celebrated inventor, James Watt, the son of a West India merchant and slave-trader, who supported him in his career. Watt also worked for his father as a mercantile agent in Glasgow during the 1750s. His statue has stood in George Square, within sight of the City Chambers, for some 200 years.

    Speaking on Thursday, Dr Mullen, who in 2009 wrote an influential book, “It Wisnae Us: The Truth About Glasgow and Slavery”, discussed the extent to which Glasgow’s links with the transatlantic slave trade are embedded in the modern city.

    He said: "Some street names are well known. We already know that Buchanan Street was named after a slave-trader. We already know that Glassford Street [in the Merchant City] was named after John Glassford, whose Shawfield Mansion was on the site.

    “We already know from the Glassford portrait in the People’s Palace that a young enslaved boy lived on that street. We already know that the Cunninghame Mansion [on Royal Exchange Square – the core of which is now the Gallery of Modern Art – was built by a tobacco lord and had successive associations with colonial merchants.”

    Dr Mullen added: “The exact nature of the slavery connections of these individuals will be confirmed and further research could elucidate hitherto unknown connections of individuals connected to other streets, buildings and/or statues”.

    He said his study would be the “first systematic attempt at a holistic study of these aspects of Glasgow’s built heritage”.

    In terms of statues, he said he currently was unaware of any dedicated to tobacco lords or members of the “sugar aristocracy”, though some examples might yet arise. For the time being, he did not believe that Glasgow has the same celebration of slave-traders as does Bristol, with Edward Colston.

    Dr Mullen noted that cities such as Bristol, London and Liverpool have already renamed bridges and international museums, or have erected additional plaques, to recognise the presence of slave-owners and enslaved people in certain sites.

    “Cities in the USA, such as Philadelphia,” he added, “have also developed strategies to address the unacknowledged slavery past of prominent figures such as George Washington. These strategies will be taken into consideration.”

    Ms Aitken, the council leader, acknowledged that the authority would face criticism, from ancestors of those “deeply affected” by the slave trade, or from others accusing it of “needless self-flagellation or of dredging up aspects of our past that we can’t change, in the cause of political correctness.”

    But asking Dr Mullen to study the city’s troubling historical links was the right thing to do, she added. Pointing out that slavery fortunes continued after the system was abolished in the West Indies in 1834, she said, “I believe that as a city we now have to know the reach of that slave-economy wealth. We need to know how to properly address our past, and we need to know to allow Glasgow to move forward from its past”.

    The announcement received an enthusiastic welcome from Sir Geoff Palmer, Professor Emeritus in the School of Life Sciences at Edinburgh’s Heriot-Watt University and a noted human rights activist. “We cannot change the past - that is impossible - but what we can change are the consequences of the past”, he said.

    Ms Aitken told The Herald that there would be “no more ‘Merchant Cities’, no more things being named after people like John Glassford”.

    She added that discussions were taking place as to whether a line could now be drawn under the name of Buchanan.

    This could affect the huge Barclays Bank development in the Tradeston district. “The developers are calling it Buchanan Wharf. I’m not able to say anything specific about that but what I can say is that these are conversations that we are having, and I think there are open ears and open minds to this conversation”.

    She believes there is a lingering sense of “discomfort” in Glasgow around the legacy of slavery.

    “We should be deeply uncomfortable about what happened, and about Glasgow’s role was.

    “But we need Glaswegians, and future generations of them, to have a sense of comfort in confronting it - comfort in understanding that this is something we cannot ignore. We cannot just say, ‘It was a long time ago’.

    “We want them to have comfort in the knowledge that we’re doing the right thing by not only uncovering as many of the facts as we can establish now, but most of all in understanding what the impact is now”.

    She added: “There will be a lot of Glaswegians who will have no problem in understanding that when you look at what is happening to African Americans in terms of the Black Lives Matter campaign, and the dreadful things that they see … We have no difficulty in intellectually making the connection with slavery, and what was done to African Americans, and what they have suffered in the years since, and seeing that this is part of a continuum of racism".

    She added: “What the concrete outcomes will be of this new study are open to question. Maybe by this time next year, by the time of Black History Month, we will be getting closer to answering that question.

    “Stephen’s work will be almost completed and we will have been having those conversations with the city, and we may have answers around maybe changing some street names, or maybe elucidating some street names rather than changing them.” ‘Elucidating’ could mean displaying supplementary historical background information.

    Ms Aitken accepted that there was a “difference of opinion in those things’ and said her own view leans more towards elucidation than to changing street names.

    “Most importantly, those people who are still living with this legacy [of slavery] need to tell us what is the best thing for them”.

    She said she “genuinely doesn’t know” whether the council will consider making any sort of reparations. Reparations did not always have to be strictly financial.They could take the form of the council embedding what it learns from Dr Mullen’s work in the curriculum - “making sure that ignorance stops with this generation”.

    Reparation could also mean “investing in the people who continue to live with that legacy and addressing that legacy”.

    More immediately, the Glasgow Life organisation will appoint a curator who will develop a strategy for the interpretation of slavery and empire in Glasgow Museums. A display on the legacies of empire, race and globalisation will take place in the City Chambers.

    “It’s not about having an exhibition here and an exhibition there,” Ms Aitken said. “It’s about having on display, right the way through everything, a consciousness of that legacy and that history, and that that it is reflected in the language that we use”.

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/18026659.glasgow-launches-detailed-study-historical-links-transatlantic-slavery/?ref=twtrec
    #histoire #esclavage #Glasgow #toponymie #toponymie_politique #architecture #James_Watt #université #Buchanan_Street #Buchanan #Glassford_Street #John_Glassford #Shawfield_Mansion #Cunninghame_Mansion #esclavagistes #villes #géographie_urbaine #urban_matter #héritage #mémoire #statues #noms_de_rue #économie #Barclays_Bank #Buchanan_Wharf

    ping @reka

  • Faut-il déboulonner les statues qui glorifient la #France coloniale ?

    Ils s’appellent #Marchand, #Faidherbe, #Bugeaud et ont fait la #gloire de la France coloniale du 19e siècle. Aujourd’hui, les #monuments érigés à leur #mémoire suscitent la #polémique et sont parfois vandalisés. De la gloire à l’#oubli, voire à la #destruction, petit tour d’horizon de quelques unes de ces #statues qui sont, parfois, aujourd’hui contestées.


    https://www.francetvinfo.fr/monde/afrique/senegal/faut-il-deboulonner-les-statues-qui-glorifient-la-france-coloniale_3202
    #toponymie #histoire #colonialisme #colonisation #Afrique #vandalisme

    • Pfff ! ça fait du monde !

      Parmi celles à Paris que je connais bien pour passer (ou être passé très régulièrement devant), je cite de mémoire : généraux (ou maréchaux) Gallieni, Lyautey (qui a remplacé un Mangin fondu par les Allemands), Mangin (justement), Joffre et parmi les officiers morts aux colonies, Francis Garnier, Paul Flatters, sans compter le grand nombre (mais sans statue…) morts de fièvres et parasitoses diverses…

  • Faut-il déboulonner les #statues qui glorifient la #France_coloniale ?
    https://www.francetvinfo.fr/monde/afrique/senegal/faut-il-deboulonner-les-statues-qui-glorifient-la-france-coloniale_3202

    Ils s’appellent Marchand, Faidherbe, Bugeaud et ont fait la gloire de la France coloniale du 19e siècle. Aujourd’hui, les #monuments érigés à leur #mémoire suscitent la polémique et sont parfois vandalisés. De la gloire à l’oubli, voire à la destruction, petit tour d’horizon de quelques unes de ces statues qui sont, parfois, aujourd’hui contestées.

    #colonisation #histoire

  • #Guide du #Paris_colonial et des #banlieues

    #Rues, boulevards, avenues et #places, sans oublier collèges, #lycées, #statues et #monuments parisiens, sont autant de témoins de l’histoire et de la légende du colonialisme français.
    Alors qu’aux États-Unis, poussées par les manifestant-es, les statues des généraux esclavagistes s’apprêtent à quitter les rues pour gagner les musées, ce guide invite à une flânerie bien particulière sur le bitume parisien.
    Sur les quelque 5 000 artères et places parisiennes, elles sont plus de 200 à « parler colonial ». Qui se cachent derrière ces noms, pour la plupart inconnus de nos contemporains ? C’est ce que révèle ce #livre, attentif au fait que ces rues ont été baptisées ainsi pour faire la leçon au peuple de Paris et lui inculquer une certaine mémoire historique.
    On n’y retrouve pas uniquement les officiers ayant fait leurs classes « aux colonies ». Il y a aussi des « explorateurs » – souvent officiers de marine en « mission » –, des bâtisseurs, des ministres et des députés. On croise également des littérateurs, des savants, des industriels, des banquiers, des « aventuriers ».
    Laissons-nous guider, par exemple, dans le 12e arrondissement. Le regard se porte inévitablement sur le bâtiment de la Cité de l’histoire de l’immigration, l’ancien Musée des colonies construit en 1931 pour l’Exposition coloniale qui fut l’occasion d’honorer les agents du colonialisme et d’humilier ses victimes.
    Les alentours portent la marque de l’Empire colonial : rues et voies ont reçu le nom de ces « héros coloniaux » qui ont conquis à la pointe de l’épée des territoires immenses.
    Les alentours de l’École militaire sont également un lieu de mémoire très particulier, très « imprégné » de la culture coloniale.
    Dans le 16e, nous avons une avenue Bugeaud : Maréchal de France, gouverneur de l’Algérie, il pratique la terre brûlée et les « enfumades ». Il recommande d’incendier les villages, de détruire les récoltes et les troupeaux, « d’empêcher les Arabes de semer, de récolter, de pâturer ». Il faut, ordonne-t-il, « allez tous les ans leur brûler leurs récoltes », ou les « exterminer jusqu’au dernier ». S’ils se réfugient dans leurs cavernes, « fumez-les à outrance comme des renards ».
    Un peu partout, dispersées dans la capitale, on traverse des rues et des avenues dont les noms qui, tout en ayant l’apparence de la neutralité d’un guide touristique, sont autant de points de la cartographie coloniale : rues de Constantine, de Kabylie, de Tahiti, du Tonkin, du Dahomey, de Pondichéry, de la Guadeloupe… Toutes célèbrent des conquêtes et des rapines coloniales que rappellent la nomenclature des rues de Paris.
    Classés par arrondissement, les notices fournissent des éléments biographiques sur les personnages concernés, particulièrement sur leurs états de service dans les colonies. Des itinéraires de promenade sont proposés qui nous emmènent au travers des plaques bleues de nos rues en Guadeloupe et en Haïti, en Afrique, au Sahara, au Maroc, en Tunisie, en Algérie, en Nouvelle-Calédonie, en Indochine, à Tahiti, etc.

    Un livre qui se veut un outil pour un mouvement de décolonisation des cartographies des villes et qui propose un voyage (presque) immobile dans la mémoire coloniale de Paris.


    https://www.syllepse.net/lng_FR_srub_25_iprod_719-guide-du-paris-colonial-et-des-banlieues.html
    #colonialisme #toponymie

    cc @isskein

    • #Balade_décoloniale

      L’ensemble des noms de rues, places et avenues d’une ville comme Grenoble forme un système : le système ouvert qui dresse un tableau à la gloire d’une certaine histoire de la ville, de sa région et de la France. Ce « Panthéon urbain » construit discursivement et symboliquement un imaginaire urbain qui conforte un certain regard sur l’histoire, regard articulé à des notions comme « la grandeur de la France », « les grands hommes », « les grandes victoires de nos armées ». Toutes ces notions sont liées à des formes occultées de domination comme les guerres de conquête et le colonialisme, l’histoire du capitalisme et de l’hégémonie de la bourgeoisie, l’appropriation « scientifique » des savoir-faire populaires et des ressources naturelles.

      Afin de faire entendre une contre-histoire, l’histoire oubliée dans le récit historique des élites et divergente des formes académiques, nous avons organisé en partenariat avec Survie Isère, le FUIQP Grenoble, le CTNE « La balade Décoloniale ». Nous avons énoncé des non- dits de l’histoire, dénoncé des crimes et émis des contre-propositions pour remplacer le nom de certaines rues (ou apposer des plaques) : personnages ou événements décoloniaux, femmes, combattant-e-s pour l’égalité, non-blancs, petites gen-te-s…

      http://asso-contrevent.org/balade-decoloniale

  • Chialons en chœur contre les vieilles statues commémoratives iniques : le MONUMENT AUX HÉROS DE LA GUERRE DES BOERS (1907), à Montréal Les 7 du Quebec - Ysengrimus - 19 Janvier 2018

    Au temps des Guerres des Boers

    On tue des gens qu’on connaît pas
    
À quoi ça sert ?

    Gilles Vigneault

    Il y a donc dans l’air du temps cette tendance à chialer en chœur contre les vieilles statues commémoratives iniques. Je suis plutôt pour et je trouve particulièrement piquant de bien mettre en relief toutes les saloperies solennelles de fierté de merde qui trainassent encore un peu partout dans notre belle culture urbaine continentale. Bon, je ne ferais pas du dégommage des vieilles statues commémorant des iniquités révolues le but central de ma vie mais, quand même, il n’est pas inutile de s’aviser du fait que les ricains n’ont en rien le monopole de la niaiserie monumentale urbaine et que, sur ce point, le Canada ne laisse pas sa place, lui non plus http://ici.radio-canada.ca/nouvelle/1052813/petition-manifestation-elimination-statue-john-a-macdonald .

    Le John A. Macdonald montréalais du Carré Dorchester ayant reçu ce qu’il méritait en novembre 2017, je jetterai plutôt le dévolu de mon chialage méthodique et crispé sur le MONUMENT AUX HÉROS DE LA GUERRE DES BOERS (1907) se trouvant à Montréal, lui aussi au Carré Dorchester. J’ironise partiellement ici, mais pas que. Il s’agit surtout de montrer, d’un seul mouvement, l’importance de l’autocritique ainsi que celle de l’autocritique de l’autocritique. On rappellera, pour la bonne bouche philosophique, que ce qu’on perçoit n’est pas trivialement ce qu’on perçoit mais autre chose se donnant obligatoirement à la recherche. Mon chialage ici va donc se formuler en neuf points. Tous en chœur.

    Un monument de guerre. D’abord, au sens le plus fondamental du terme, ceci est un monument faisant, au premier degré et sans distanciation, l’apologie de la guerre. Ce n’est pas un monument sur l’agriculture, les spectacles hippiques ou l’équitation mais bien sur la guerre. La guerre, ce crime putride absolu, est présentée ici comme une réalité saine, valorisée et valorisante, méritoire, exaltante, presque joviale. Le traitement est laudatif, enthousiaste, hyperbolique. Il faut aller à la guerre. C’est une chose bien, appréciable, salutaire. On comparera, pour exemple, ce zinzin proto-fleur-au-fusil de 1907, avec l’installation monumentale du Mémorial canadien de la crête de Vimy (France) qui elle, date de 1936, et a au moins la décence minimale de dénoncer ouvertement les conséquences de l’absurdité guerrière. Les pleurs de la veuve canadienne de Vimy ne peuvent aucunement, eux, être perçus comme de l’apologie belliciste.

    La Guerre des Boers fut une guerre impériale. Arrêtons nous maintenant à cette Guerre des Boers elle-même. En gros, il n’y a pas de mystère. Les colonialistes britanniques en Afrique du Sud disent aux autres colonialistes du coin : poussez-vous de là qu’on s’y mette. Il s’agissait strictement, pour eux, de prendre le contrôle des ressources naturelles, notamment minières, de ce territoire immense et riche, dans le cadre du dispositif impérial victorien qui culminait alors et commençait à se fissurer ostensiblement au zénith, comme un pétard de fête. Les priorités de ce conflit, court mais violent, furent strictement impériales. Chercher à en dégager la moindre dimension éthique ou humanitaire est un mensonge frontal. C’est du brigandage de barbouzes pur et simple. Une succession de crimes (meurtres, déplacement de populations, occupations et rapines), point.

    Les Britanniques et les Boers étaient des colonialistes. Pour en rajouter une couche flibustière bien sentie, il ne faut pas chercher les petits saints, dans ce conflit. C’était clairement la guerre de la peste contre le choléra. Les Britanniques étaient les Britanniques, on les connaît bien. Le soleil ne se couche jamais sur leur ossuaire historique. Quant aux Boers, c’étaient des agriculteurs et des propriétaires terriens de souche néerlandaise, aussi rigides et fachos que leurs ennemis. Deux puissances coloniales en venaient aux mains sur le dos des populations locales africaines qui, elles, ne pouvaient que faire soldatesque de premières lignes dans les conflits de leurs deux occupants blancs, brutaux, et coloniaux (soldatesque ou pas, en fait — on évitait souvent de mettre des flingues dans les mains des Africains. On les parquait plutôt dans des camps). Vraiment : zéro partout pour les protagonistes, qui étaient tous ouvertement des racistes assumés pillant l’Afrique.

    Le Canada était réfractaire à entrer dans cette guerre. Ce monument est situé au Carré Dorchester, à Montréal. Montréal est au Canada, je ne vous apprends pas ça. Or le Canada de Wilfrid Laurier a vécu la Guerre des Boers comme la première grande crise existentielle de son rapport à l’impérialisme britannique. La question s’est posé avec acuité, pour la toute première fois : une guerre britannique est-elle nécessairement une guerre canadienne ? Le Canada d’alors n’a pas vraiment répondu oui à cette question. Il était déchiré, divisé par ce dilemme. Le clivage n’était pas seulement, comme on l’a dit souvent, entre francophones et anglophones, il était aussi entre impérialistes (pro-britanniques) et nationalistes (canadiens). Il faut donc poser la question prosaïquement, dans les termes du temps : comme notre nation ne voulait pas vraiment de cette guerre impériale extraterritoriale, qu’est ce que ce monument qui la promeut fout chez nous ?

    Une gloriole britannique sur le territoire montréalais. Je ne vous apprend pas non plus que la population de Montréal est historiquement de souche française (conquise par les Britanniques en 1760, et ouvertement occupée depuis). Planter ce vieux monument belliqueux britannique sur le sol de Montréal est donc aussi une insulte coloniale explicite aux québécois francophones, eux-mêmes. L’arrogance coloniale ici se dédouble. Tout ce Carré Dorchester est d’ailleurs cela : un ramassis hideux de statues pompeuses faisant l’apologie de l’occupant britannique sur Montréal. Son ancien nom est Square Dominion, et ça en dit long. On transforme Montréal en apologue d’un empire qu’il a subi plus qu’autre chose. Le Front de Libération du Québec, dans les années 1960-1970, dynamitait justement des monuments de ce genre, pour spectaculairement faire sentir sa critique de l’occupant britannique, tout en réduisant la casse utile au strict minimum.

    Cruauté envers les animaux. Regardons maintenant un petit peu la statue elle-même. C’est, à sa manière, une statue équestre, indubitablement. Or, justement, on devra un jour raconter adéquatement l’histoire du cheval dans les guerres modernes. Ce fut une immense boucherie animalière innommable. Ici, l’animal est d’évidence effarouché par les explosions d’artillerie ou la mitraille de tirailleurs embusqués. Son cavalier, descendu de selle probablement à cause des anfractuosités du terrain, force la pauvre bête vers le combat. Le thème statuaire central est justement cela. L’homme volontaire menant la bête réfractaire vers sa destiné sanglante. Il n’y a évidemment, dans ce mouvement, aucune critique de ce comportement. La charge symbolique canado-britannique involontaire (traîner une rosse qui se cabre vers un combat dont elle ne veut pas), est originale et presque touchante. Mais cela ne change rien à la dimension cruelle et révoltante du premier degré figuratif de cette catastrophe d’évocation

    Implication de la paysannerie et du prolétariat dans les guerres bourgeoises. L’autre pauvre bête dans l’affaire, c’est le cavalier lui-même. Un demi-million de soldats britanniques, la majorité d’entre eux d’origine paysanne et prolétarienne, ont été massacrés dans ce conflit de deux ans et demi qui n’aligna jamais que 45,000 Boers. Le dédain bourgeois pour les travailleurs en armes, le gaspillage humain cynique avec lequel les classes dominantes de cette époque envoyaient le prolo au casse-pipe en le traitant comme une commodité dans ses affaires, annoncent déjà les deux terribles conflits mondiaux à venir. Pour la transformation de la guerre impérialiste en guerre civile, dira, quelques années plus tard, Lénine aux travailleurs russes. Cela ne se fit pas dans le conflit que ce monument commémore. Le paysan et le prolétaire y ont servi le bourgeois jusqu’au sacrifice ultime, foutaise sanglante parfaitement inutile du point de vue de la vie civique et collective.

    George William Hill (1862-1934), un sculpteur bellicolâtre. Le statuaire auteur de cette œuvre n’a fait que ça de sa carrière : de l’art belliqueux, des cénotaphes de guerre, des premiers ministres à chier, des statues de soldoques. On promeut donc ici l’art figuratif monumental le plus servile et le plus soumis à l’ordre établi imaginable. Rien de moderne là dedans, rien de séditieux, rien de vif. De l’art public apologue à gros grains et ronron, tellement insupportable qu’on ne le voit plus vraiment quand on circule dans nos villes. En toute impartialité, il faut admettre que cette statue équestre de 1907 est une des moins ratées de ce statuaire. En la regardant, avec l’attention requise, on se dit que ce sculpteur aurait pu faire quelque chose de son art. Il faudrait la descendre de ce socle arrogant, par contre, qui est une hideur intégrale.

    Lord Strathcona (1820-1914), un grand bourgeois extorqueur. Notons, en point d’orgue, que ledit socle et sa statue ne sont pas dédiés au pauvre troupier anonyme qui tient son joual par la bride sous le feu, ou à ses semblables. Que non. Eux, ils ne sont que des objets. Le monument se veut une apologie lourdingue, veule et tonitruante, de ce Lord colonial canado-écossais mort en 1914 qui, lors de la Guerre des Boers, contra ouvertement les hésitations subtiles de son pays, le Canada, par ses initiatives privées fétides de rupin bouffi. Il engagea carrément un million de dollars (de 1902 — une somme mirifique) pour financer le Lord Strathcona’s Horse (Royal Canadians), un bataillon équestre qui alla casser du Boer pour l’Empire. Ce tycoon montréalais, politicard, négociant en fourrures, financier, magnat ferroviaire, était le grand bourgeois putride intégral, façon 19ième siècle. Et ce monument-hommage existe en fait pour lui et pour lui seul. Sans plus. Alors, la barbe.

    Je crois que, par la présente, j’ai dit mes lignes de chialage fort honorablement. S’il faut se résumer, en faisant court, on dira tout simplement que cette statue équestre est une merde inique intégrale et que sa passable qualité artistique (oui, oui, elle a un assez joli mouvement et assure un traitement thématique original de son sujet, lui-même pourtant fort étroit) ne la sauvera en rien d’une pesanteur symbolique lourdement répréhensible, déplorable, bourgeoise, coloniale, meurtrière, surannée, foutue. Ce qui est dit est dit, ce qui est dénoncé est énoncé.

    Faut-il pour autant la dégommer et le relocaliser dans une cours de casse. Là, d’autre part, j’ai mes difficultés. Les dégommeurs de monuments bien pensants, les abatteurs de statues larmoyants, cherchent bien souvent à effacer leur honte. Or effacer la honte c’est aussi effacer la mémoire et ça, c’est une idée hautement suspecte, qui porte souvent de fort nuisibles conséquences intellectuelles et matérielles. Non, je la laisserais là, cette commémoration d’un autre âge, comme on fait avec des arènes romaines (où il se passait pourtant fort peu de jolies choses). Simplement je placarderais devant, sur un panneau aux couleurs vives, ce que je viens tout juste de vous dire.

    Il est parfaitement possible de se souvenir sans promouvoir. Et les crimes d’antan nous parlent autant que les bons coups. Il est très important de savoir qu’il fut un temps où on croyait à ces énormités-là et que ce type avec son joual, deux criminels de facto, involontairement engagés dans une absurdité stérile et sanglante de jadis, furent un jour des héros anonymes, admirés hypocritement, adulés abstraitement, financés par des exploiteurs, cerclés d’une claque impériale ronflante et de thuriféraires bourgeois gras durs, planqués, et totalement imbus de leur gros bon droit inique de voleurs et d’exploiteurs.

    Source : http://www.les7duquebec.com/7-au-front/chialons-en-choeur-contre-les-vieilles-statues-commemoratives-iniques-

     #monuments #mémoire #histoire #patrimoine #culture #statues #guerre-des-Boers #impérialisme #Canada #Angleterre #Montréal #Art-Urbain #conformisme #empire-britannique #guerre #histoire #lutte-des-classes #symbole

  • Monuments of Lenin 100 years after Russian Revolution | The Wider Image | Reuters
    https://widerimage.reuters.com/story/monuments-of-lenin-100-years-after-russian-revolution
    https://photos.wi.gcs.trstatic.net/WBTnOVC7qqta06gXHeKsQ-bAhixu5fo4uMCuejMuzVugCbS0YLe7XBALQxzY

    A century after the Russian Revolution, the influence of its leader Vladimir Lenin has waned but his image remains on monuments built across the former Soviet Union as part of a cult of personality.

    Lenin was born in 1870 and became one of the 20th century’s most important leaders as the revolution inspired by Karl Marx transformed Russia and influenced Socialists around the world for decades.

    #soviétisme #statues #lénine #urss #ex-urss

  • Debatte nach Ausschreitungen in Charlottesville

    Die meisten Denkmäler feiern nicht Kriegshelden, sondern Sklavenhalter

    https://www.nzz.ch/international/debatte-nach-charlottesville-verniedlichte-denkmaeler-des-rassismus-ld.1312356

    http://nzz-img.s3.amazonaws.com/2017/8/23/137d00bc-62a8-437e-97c1-5df6b6bd903e.jpeg

    2017-08-24

    Donald Trump will umstrittene Statuen der Konföderierten aus dem Amerikanischen Bürgerkrieg stehen lassen. Das zeugt im besten Falle von Unkenntnis der Geschichte. Denn die meisten Denkmäler wurden zur Huldigung des Rassismus errichtet.

    […]

    Vielmehr wurden die meisten Standbilder der Helden im Kampf für die Sklaverei erst im 20. Jahrhundert aufgestellt – vor dem Hintergrund einer rassistischen, politischen Agenda. Sie sind Ausdruck jenes revisionistischen «Kultes der verlorenen Sache», der den Kampf der Konföderierten als legitimen Einsatz für die südliche Lebensart darstellt. Die Bedeutung der Sklavenhaltung für die Konföderierten wird in dieser Lesart gern heruntergespielt.

    Vielen Amerikanern scheint dies ebenfalls nicht bewusst zu sein – oder aber sie heissen diesen Kult bis heute gut: Eine mehr oder weniger knappe Mehrheit stimmt dem Präsidenten laut jüngsten Meinungsumfragen zu und würde die Statuen lieber auf den öffentlichen Plätzen behalten. Nur ein Drittel der Befragten fordert demnach, die Denkmäler der Konföderation zu entfernen. Es wäre jedoch falsch, von der Unterstützung für den Erhalt der Denkmäler unmittelbar auf eine rassistische Gesinnung der Befragten zu schliessen: Andere Umfragen zeigen, dass 86 Prozent der Amerikaner den Ansichten von Rechtsextremen nicht zustimmen.

    Nach Recherchen der Nichtregierungsorganisation Southern Poverty Law Center gab es zwei Perioden, während deren besonders viele Statuen in den Städten und Gemeinden des Südens aufgebaut wurden: Die erste Hochphase begann um etwa 1900, als die Südstaaten anfingen, Afroamerikaner mithilfe der sogenannten Jim-Crow-Gesetze zu entrechten und die Gesellschaft nach zwei Jahrzehnten der Integration wieder auseinanderzutreiben. Bis in die 1920er Jahre hinein wuchs die Zahl der Denkmäler, die der schwarzen Bevölkerung die Überlegenheit der weissen Rasse in Erinnerung halten sollte. In dieser Zeit erlebte auch der rassistische Geheimbund Ku-Klux-Klan eine Renaissance, der unmittelbar nach dem Ende des Bürgerkriegs ins Leben gerufen worden war.

    Die Nordstaaten tolerierten die Monumente im Sinne der Aussöhnung zwischen den Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika. Besonders General Robert E. Lee wurde zu einem beliebten Motiv: Er galt als verdienter Militärführer, der seinen Heimatstaat hatte schützen wollen und sich nach dem Krieg bemühte, die Wunden der Nation zu heilen. Ironischerweise hatte sich Lee selbst gegen solche Ehrenmale gewehrt und gemahnt, man solle nach vorne schauen.

    […]

    via https://diasp.eu/p/5951877

    #Denkmäler #Sklaverei #Rassismus #KKK #Charlottesville
    #Ku-Klux-Klan #Konföderation