June, 2010 archive

Book Review: Benjamin Claude Brower, ‘A Desert Named Peace: The Violence of France’s Empire in the Algerian Sahara, 1844-1902′

Wednesday, June 9th, 2010

Through the study of French violence in Algeria, the author situates his work in the broader historiography of colonial violence. He argues that violence is not a singular phenomenon but one with a complex logic that manifests itself in many forms and thus, it needs to be addressed from multiple angles. This same complexity applies to responses to colonial violence that cannot always be simplified into mere acts of anti-colonial resistance. By establishing an overarching paradigm in which the perpetuators of colonial violence and of Algerian responses to it are considered as “actors,” the author offers a rich and sophisticated analysis that moves beyond the simplified dichotomies that usually characterize studies of colonial violence and anti-colonial resistance. –– Review by Amal Ghazal for H-Net: http://www.h-net.org/reviews/showrev.php?id=30418

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