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History from Down Under

E. P. Thompson's The Making of the English Working Class and Australia

Ann Curthoys

E. P. Thompson's The Making of the English Working Class was influential in Australia as it was throughout the Anglophone world. The focus of interest changed over time, starting with the fate of those of The Making's radical protesters who were transported to the Australian colonies, and then focusing on questions of class formation and the relationship between agency and structure. The peak of influence was in the 1980s, especially in the rising field of social history, and a little later in the burgeoning field of cultural history. Yet The Making's own limitations on questions of gender, race, and colonialism meant that feminist and indigenous histories, which were transforming the discipline, engaged with it only indirectly. In recent years, as the turn to transnational, imperial, and Indigenous histories has taken hold, Thompson's influence has somewhat declined.

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South African Remains

E. P. Thompson, Biko, and the Limits of The Making of the English Working Class

Isabel Hofmeyr

E. P. Thompson's The Making of the English Working Class exercised a substantial influence on the South African academy and acted as a key shaper of a “history from below” movement in the 1980s. While Thompson's influence in South Africa has been celebrated, the limits of his circulation are less frequently explored. This article takes on this task by placing The Making alongside Steve Biko's I Write What I Like. Biko was a major figure in the emergence of the Black Consciousness Movement (BCM). The article compares the interlinked formations of which the two texts formed a part—the BCM displaced white radical intellectuals, who retreated into class analysis as an analytical alternative to race. The article also examines specific copies of the two titles found in South African libraries and uses the different patterns of marginalia as a way of tracing the individual impacts of the two texts.

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Gerrit K. Roessler

This article examines Ulrich Horstmann's science fiction radio play Die Bunkermann-Kassette (The Bunker Man Cassette, 1979), in which the author frames fears and anxieties surrounding a potential nuclear conflict during the Cold War as apocalyptic self-annihilation of the human race. Radio, especially radio drama, had a unique role in capturing the historical imaginaries and traumatic experiences surrounding this non-event. Horstmann's radio drama and the titular cassette tape become sound artifacts that speak to the technological contexts of their time, while their acoustic content carries the past sounds into the present. In the world of the play, these artifacts are presented in a museum of the future, which uses the possibilities of science fictional imagination and speculation to create prosthetic memories of the Cold War. The article suggests that these memories are cyborg memories, because the listener is a fully integrated component of radio technology that makes these memories and recollections of imagined events possible in the first place.

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From Black-Blanc-Beur to Black-Black-Black?

“L'Affaire des Quotas” and the Shattered “Image of 1998” in Twenty-First-Century France

Christopher S. Thompson

Since the mid-1990s, France's national soccer team has been given considerable significance in French debates about post-colonial immigration, national identity, republican citizenship, and the enduring legacies of French imperialism. This article explores the role played by representations of the team in those debates with a particular focus on the so-called “affaire des quotas” of 2010–2011. It argues that those representations reveal that the boundary between the purportedly inclusive civic nationalism of French republicanism according to which any person willing to embrace the duties and rights of democratic citizenship may theoretically become French, and the exclusionary ethnic nationalism of the xenophobic Front national is far less impermeable than is generally assumed in France. Indeed, race and ethnicity inform notions of French citizenship even among persons who reject the essentialist views of the Far Right.

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Esra Erdem

In the ongoing debate on immigrant integration policies, the Sinus study on migrant milieus has attracted much attention for its clear stance as a proponent of a multicultural society. Brushing aside arguments about an ethnic-religious divide in the German social fabric, the study argues that social milieus constitute much stronger markers of difference than ethnicity. This paper provides a critical appraisal of the postethnic vision articulated by Sinus. However, it also raises some methodological issues concerning the collection and analysis of data on immigrant populations. The concluding section discusses the limits of a politics of difference based on milieus. It questions the potential of the Sinus study to move the German immigration debate forward towards a more democratic vision of citizenship, given its de-emphasis of social inequalities rooted in relations of gender, "race" and class.

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Daniel Sabbagh

In the United States, the expression “affirmative action” generally refers to a wide array of measures set up at the end of the 1960s by executive agencies and the federal judiciary. These measures grant some (more or less flexible) kind of preferential treatment in the allocation of scarce resources—jobs, university admissions and government contracts—to the members of groups formerly targeted for legal discrimination (African Americans, Hispanics, Native Americans, women, sometimes Asians).1 In France, by contrast, the main operational criterion for identifying the beneficiaries of affirmative action policies (in French, “discrimination positive”) is not race or gender,2 but geographical location: residents of a socioeconomically disadvantaged area will indirectly benefit from the additional input of financial resources allocated by state agencies to that area as a whole.

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More than a Turn?

The “Colonial” in French Studies

Emmanuelle Saada

With the “colonial turn” in French studies now on the wane, this article attempts to assess its contributions. It suggests that one of the main thrusts of the “colonial turn” has been the reconsideration of the “Republic” as a framework for understanding modern French history: the colonies being the place where the Republic “contradicted itself” or, on the contrary, where its deepest tensions revealed themselves. While this perspective has been essential in underlining the importance of race in modern French history, it can be regarded as no more than an attempt to write a history of “France” enriched by the imperial perspective: indigenous worlds appear only secondarily in these analysis of the “imperial Republic.” This shortcoming echoes other criticisms that can be addressed to the “colonial turn” in French studies: the ahistorical use of the category of the “colonial” in the singular and the lack of satisfactory analysis of the “postcolonial.”

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Cécité partielle

Procédure d'adoption et colorblindness institutionnelle en France

Solène Brun

-même intimement liée à la question raciale, il est toutefois conditionné à un travail d'a-moralisation de l'expression des préférences racialisées au nom du pragmatisme et à des efforts d'euphémisation de la race de la part des institutions. En cela, et à partir

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Sarah Lyon, Mary Kelaita, Celia Lowe, L. Jen Shaffer, Christopher R. Cox, Constanza Ocampo-Raeder, James Finley, Barbara Rose Johnston, Amelia Fiske, Alex Blanchette, Julie A. Shepherd-Powell, Peter W. Stahl, Christopher Jarrett, and Amber R. Huff

ALKON, Alison Hope, Black, White, and Green: Farmers Markets, Race, and the Green Economy

CORMIER, Loretta, The Ten-Thousand Year Fever: Rethinking Human and Wild-Primate Malarias

DOBSON, Andrew, Kezia BARKER, and Sarah TAYLOR, Biosecurity: The Sociopolitics of Invasive Species and Infectious Disease

FOWLER, Cynthia, Ignition Stories: Indigenous Fire Ecology in the Indo-Australian Monsoon Zone

HUBER, Matthew T., Lifeblood: Oil, Freedom, and the Forces of Capital

KANE, Stephanie, Where the Rivers Meet the Sea: The Political Ecology of Water

KILCUP, Karen, Fallen Forests: Emotion, Embodiment, and Ethics in American Women's Environmental Writing, 1781–1924

KRUPAR, Shiloh R., Hot Spotter's Report: Military Fables of Toxic Waste

MORTON, Timothy, Hyperobjects: Philosophy and Ecology after the End of the World

NAGY, Kelsi, and Phillip David JOHNSON II, eds., Trash Animals: How We Live with Nature's Filthy, Feral, Invasive, and Unwanted Species

REECE, Erik, and James J. KRUPA, The Embattled Wilderness: The Natural and Human History of Robinson Forest and the Fight for Its Future

ROSTAIN, Stéphen, Islands in the Rainforest: Landscape Management in Pre-Columbian Amazonia

SIEBERT, Stephen F., The Nature and Culture of Rattan: Reflections on Vanishing Life in the Forests of Southeast Asia

SODIKOFF, Genese Marie, Forest and Labor in Madagascar: From Colonial Concession to Global Biosphere

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Tao Zhang

Despite some scholarly attention, the Native-American–Chinese association is mainly studied from the White perspective. One may get the impression that connections between the two similarly marginalized groups are either imagined or promoted by Whites for their own benefit. But, as a matter of fact, American Indians, joined by their White friends, did initiate associations with the Chinese out of their own racial considerations. One case in point is Pan-Indians’ reference to the Chinese in the process of forging a united and unique identity for the Indian race at the turn of the twentieth century. With those allusions, Native Americans were constructed into a group that was exceptional and progressive, benevolent and cosmopolitan—in short, a group that Whites should accept and respect as fellow Americans. Passively involved in proving Indians’ eligibility for American nationality, the Chinese emerged as racialized but less repugnant than they had been in Whites’ racist depictions. Pan-Indians’ citation of the Chinese thus registers the caution with which they navigated the constraints imposed by American racism in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.