May 22 2020

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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But of course it’s rather obvious why such texts won’t be included. Car on vous jugera du jugement dont vous jugez, et l’on vous mesurera avec la mesure dont vous mesurez.

Discourse on Colonialism

People need to think more, and Cesaire really nailed some good points in this. To calm his conscience born out of tortures rendered to the colonized or the mass killinghe considers the colonized as mere animal.

Skip to main content. He was only the latest in a long line of European conquerors that have subjugated and victimized millions of people since Discourse on Colonialism French: He practically quotes Marx, but not Lenin, while throwing around “comrade” and “proletariat” and “revolution. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.

And what causes that? At this point in his analysis, Cesaire makes a startling but very authentic claim. In the process, any kind of violence is silently approved by the white people of Europe.

It should have been possible for a well-informed man in to see that country for what it was. A civilization that uses its principles for trickery and deceit is a dying civilization. Discourse on Colonialism is a brilliant starter to learn about how it affects people and how the colonizers treat the colonized.

Cet essai nous en apprends plus sur le regard qu’ont certains occidentaux sur le reste du monde. I honestly wasn’t sure what that meant at first and it’s something that I quite commonly see for books about topics that pertain to society.


Monitoring work something sinister men. One of my beautiful experiences of reading post-colonial literature along with Edward Said’s Orientalism.

No trivia or quizzes yet. If he occasionally idealizes the precolonial cultures, at other points he admits that they were not ideal either, but shows that the colonialists allied with the most cllonialism elements in the traditional cultures, thus instead of advancing their civilization it held them back further.

He rejects Europe’s a posteriori claim that it brought material progress and Europeanization to Africa. It’s brilliant and fills the mind. He puts it eloquently: He defines the relationship as one limited to ” forced laborintimidation, pressure, the police, taxation, theft, rape, compulsory crops, contempt, mistrust, arrogance, self-complacency, swinishness, brainless elites, degraded masses”. They were cooperative societies, fraternal societies.


His interpretation flips the common narrative, in order to point out the autonomy that existed in colonizing foreign lands. From inside the book. Aug 27, Jeune Fille rated it it was amazing Shelves: In a series of very interesting quotations from “liberal” colonialists, he shows the identity of their colonial ideology with the Nazi ideology, and exposes the ideas that they used to justify colonialism and racism.

Flash forward a year and a few months, I’m reading Fanon and Glissant for class and studying for a PhD exam, and it’s finally time to take the plunge. Mannoni that colonialism was a divinely ordained mission of the West, and that all the Madagascan craved was to be able to depend on somebody else: Nearly twenty years later, when published for the first time in English, Discourse on Colonialism inspired a new generation engaged in the Civil Rights, Black Power, and anti-war movements and has sold more than 75, copies to date.

To wit, the birth of chemistry among the Arabs.

Discourse on Colonialism – Aimé Césaire, Robin D. G. Kelley – Google Books

Rather than elevating the non-Western world, the colonizers de-civilize the colonized. And for me, a person from a colonized country the impact was powerful. Europe is only concerned with the rights of man in relation to the White man, not Coolies and Niggers. Colonizers ceswire others like they djscourse less human and needs to be tamed while colonized starts suffering from inferiority complex and gets alienated with his own identity.


Or those who try to convince me that killing languages, cultures, and countries in the name of common good -AKA the good of the white man- is justified. This essay is a precursor discoursse the powerful writings of Franz Fanon, Edward Said colinialism many other post-colonial writers. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

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. View all 14 comments. As I became exposed to social justice and began learning about racism in a way you would never learn in school, I notice even amongst family members and people I go to school with, even I have perpetuated it at some point, we all do, things such as Colorism, Anti-Blackness.

This is a whole different topic altogether, but it’s also one of the reasons why Discours been wanting to read more non-fiction, to learn in more accurate and pinned down terms. Dec 19, Victoria rated it it was amazing.

Claiming to civilize barbarism, colonization negates civilization. He writes that when millions of blacks were tortured in Africa, coolies were killed in India, people were tortured in Madagascar the people in Europe never raised an objection. Of course, I had to underline a lot of sentences, not only for research, but also because I liked them.

Thus was born the idea of racial hierarchy. Colonialism, Cesaire argues, decivilizes, dehumanizes, brutalizes and degrades the colonizer. Evil is nothing new to man, Cesaire admits. Jul 24, Naeem rated it really liked it. An Independent Socialist Magazine