Discourse on Colonialism is an essay by Aimé Césaire, a poet and politician from Martinique who helped found the négritude movement in Francophone. Half a century later Aimé Césaire’s Discourse on Colonialism has lost nothing of its dynamism and incantory power. Robin Kelley’s introduction is a valuable tool. Aime Cesaire – Discourse on Colonialism By Baba G. Jallow Cesaire begins his Discourse on Colonialism with a severe indictment of Western civilization.

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Discourse on Colonialism – Wikipedia

Want to Read Currently Reading Read. The colonialist knows that he is engaged in acts of violence against fellow human beings, but he refuses to acknowledge the fact because his is a sick civilization. Cesaire argues that Nazism is not unique.

It is to Cesaire’s credit that he understood that it was much easier to formally dismantle colonialism, than to get rid of the colonial state itself. He rejects Europe’s a posteriori claim that it brought material progress and Europeanization to Africa.

Cesaire combines poetry and history with a fierce and often humorous approach, the result is an almost mystical denunciation of colonialism. When Nazi Germany unleashed its war machine on the Jews and other nations of Europe, the colonial powers reacted with horror and indignation.

Discourse on Colonialism

He puts it eloquently: I will be a dam to the waves of imperialist, racist thinking, that are desaire against us, even if it will tear me down. For my part, I make a systematic defense of the non-European civilizations. As a member of the Martinican Communist Party, he does have some illusions yet in Stalinism, which he later broke colonislism as the introductory essay by Robin D.


To wit, the appearance of rationalism in Islam at a time when Western thought had a furiously pre-logical cast to it. Dec 23, Randall Wallace rated it it was amazing.

The bourgeoisie, as a class, “is condemned to take responsibility for all the barbarism of history, the tortures of eiscourse Middle Ages and the Inquisition, war-mongering and the appeal to the raison d’Etat, racism and slavery, in short, everything against which it protested in unforgettable terms at a time when, as the attacking class, it was the incarnation of human progress” p. We pretend, and some really are, shocked by Trump-ism today, but we only fool ourselves. One of my beautiful experiences of reading post-colonial literature along with Edward Said’s Orientalism.

Cesaire said it first and said it pointedly.

The West, Cesaire argues, did not invent science or ethics or morality, as M. Colonizers says that they are coming to improve the life of Barbary, but in fact they come just cesairw accomplish their profit, and this is what they are doing for the moment. The statements of people like M. Thus was born the idea of racial hierarchy. Especially when he brings in other writer’s works and critiques them and calls out their racism, he is a powerful writer.

For Cesaire, colonialism is a totally destructive enterprise. View all 5 comments. Of course, I had to underline a lot of sentences, not only for research, but also because I liked them. Europe is only concerned with the rights of man in relation to the White man, not Coolies and Niggers.


Cesaire claims that the racism of Europe does not bother him. Lists with This Book.

The very idea was an oxymoron. He argues convincingly that Naziism — w This was originally published in French in — an earlier version in — right at the beginning of the anti-colonial movement which followed Ceaire War II.

So, naturally his writing is poetic than academic. He also does make a few wrong statements which modern anthropology has corrected, but he’d likely be fine with that. An Independent Socialist Magazine Log In Sign Up. Due to its “harsh tone and radical statements”, [8] fesaire essay has been compared to “a declaration of war”.

It occupies little space in the text, but I hold back from a fifth star because of the author’s naivety about the Soviet Union, which he tentatively suggests as an experiment for a better system. But that’s sort of a lie because I did write a paper on Genghis Khan and I had to read Jack Weatherford’s Genghis Khan and the Making of the Oon World which was boring, the way he wrote it was, I don’t understand why his telling is so popular. The result is Mannoni

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