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Rethinking Universalism

Olympe Audouard, Hubertine Auclert, and the Gender Politics of the Civilizing Mission

Rachel Nuñez

Building on Joan Scott's argument that the struggles of feminists since the Revolution have been rooted in the paradoxes of republican universalism, this article explores how two nineteenth-century feminists—Olympe Audouard and Hubertine Auclert—sought to escape the problem of sexual difference through engagement with the civilizing mission. They criticized the civilizing mission as chauvinistic and misogynistic to reveal how republican universalism had failed to address inequalities of both sex and race. They also proposed more inclusive forms of universalism: in her writing on Turkey, Audouard advocated cosmopolitanism, in which all peoples, regardless of race or sex, could contribute to civilization, while Auclert, in her writing on Algeria, supported assimilation as a way to endow both French women and Arabs with the rights of French men. Yet their versions of universalism were no less paradoxical than republican universalism. Through cosmopolitanism and assimilation, they invoked new others and worked strategically to displace sexual difference with racial, national, and religious difference.

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Racialized Capacities and Transgressive Mobility

“Asian” Laborers and “Western” Urban Transportation in Colonial Manila and Singapore

Michael D. Pante

This article places race at the analytical center of a comparative urban transport history of early twentieth-century Singapore and Manila. It focuses on motorization, as seen in the influx and eventual dominance of streetcars and automobiles. The British and the American colonizers turned these Western-made vehicles into symbols of colonial modernity, defined in racialized terms. They regarded the different “Asiatics” as naturally ill-equipped to handle streetcars and automobiles, and when the colonized proved them wrong, the colonizers framed these acts using the racialist discourse of “potentiality.” Nevertheless, the native transport laborers appropriated motorized vehicles in ways that the colonizers did not imagine. Machines presented the natives a world of knowledge, which was maximized for financial gain. The acquisition of various forms of knowledge thus revealed a paradox of the civilizing mission: the colonizers exposed natives to the world of civilized knowledge, but the acquisition of this knowledge disrupted colonial discipline.

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Giuliana Chamedes

The conceptual history of 'economic development' is often told as a US-centered story. The United States, according to the standard account, turned to economic development as a tool in its struggle for global dominance during the Cold War. In line with recent research, this article demonstrates that the post-World War II boom in economic development had European origins as well, and that it originated as a joint response to the Cold War and to the unraveling of European empires. In particular, emphasis is placed on the little-studied contribution of a French Catholic activist who helped redefine economic development in the late 1950s and early 1960s. The Dominican Father Louis-Joseph Lebret stood at the head of an influential movement, which conceived of economic development as a way to save both France and Christianity in a moment of crisis for the French empire and for the Roman Catholic Church. In his writings, Lebret bestowed renewed legitimacy on the French 'civilizing mission.' He also revived elements of interwar Catholic thought to argue for the imperative of building a new moral-economic order that was neither communist nor capitalist. Far from a marginal historical actor, this theorist-practitioner was successful in his efforts, and gained followers for his vision of economic development in France, in Vatican City, at the United Nations, and in various former colonized countries.

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Richard Ivan Jobs, Judith Surkis, Laura Lee Downs, Nimisha Barton and Kimberly A. Arkin

de France entre fierté et impatience,” Le Monde , 21 January 2015. Amelia Lyons, The Civilizing Mission in the Metropole: Algerian Families and the French Welfare State during Decolonization (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2013). Review by

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“Algeria for the Algerians”

Public Education and Settler Identity in the Early Third Republic

Kyle Francis

of all republican officials who stood in their way. Finally, the official solutions devised in response to the revolt reveal a colony and metropole whose fundamental concepts—such as laïcité , republican universalism, and the civilizing mission

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J. Cammaert Raval

, to shield the British public and the world from the hypocrisy of the civilizing mission. The greatest strength of An Uncertain Age is Ocobock’s skillful drawing from archival material, life histories, and quantitative analysis. Conducting 80

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A Bridge Across the Mediterranean

Nafissa Sid Cara and the Politics of Emancipation during the Algerian War

Elise Franklin

to knit together the colony and metropole through policies that would protect its empire in Algeria. These policies came to the fore in part because of the varied application and even more varied success of civilizing missions in the colonies

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Entre Algérie et France

Écrire une histoire sociale des Algériens au vingtième siècle

Muriel Cohen and Annick Lacroix

Northwest Africa (Bloomington : Indiana University Press, 2012) ; Amelia H. Lyons, The Civilizing Mission in the Metropole : Algerian Families and the French Welfare State During Decolonization (Stanford, CA : Stanford University Press, 2013) ; Hannah

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Republican Imperialisms

Narrating the History of “Empire” in France, 1885–1900

Christina Carroll

colonial empire because Napoleon was a pragmatic conqueror whose regime had no central ideology or project, while France’s colonial empires were structured on institutionalized racial and cultural inequality and justified by appeals to a “civilizing mission

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Pushkar Sohoni

matched those of Asian elephants. Abraham Dee Bartlett, the superintendent of the London Zoo, was an enthusiastic supporter of taming African elephants. 33 The creation of animal handlers within the native population no doubt was another civilizing