HI062 | Autumn | 6 ECTS

Violence, History and Memory in Twentieth-Century Africa

This course offers historical, theoretical and empirical perspectives on the impact of political violence in the modern history of Africa. Opening with debates over theories of violence, memory, justice, and the complex temporalities that entwine them, the course then proceeds through a series of case studies. These include the violence of colonisation and decolonisation, postcolonial secession conflicts, contrasting forms of genocide, political oppression, liberation struggles and civil war. In each case, we may consider the causes and means of violence, issues of gender, youth, religion, politics or ethnicity, and the ways that these experiences have shaped collective memories, political practices of memorialisation, and difficult representations of the past. Throughout, questions of culpability, ethics and moralities will be tackled in relation to the various approaches to healing and 'living together again', dominated by the pressures of memory, silence, oblivion and, in some cases, justice.