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Resurrecting Slavery: Racial Legacies and White Supremacy in France

Resurrecting Slavery: Racial Legacies and White Supremacy in France

by Crystal Marie Fleming


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How can politicians and ordinary citizens face the racial past in a country that frames itself as colorblind? In her timely and provocative book, Resurrecting Slavery, Crystal Fleming shows how people make sense of slavery in a nation where talking about race, colonialism, and slavery remains taboo. Noting how struggles over the meaning of racial history are informed by contemporary politics of race, she asks: What kinds of group identities are at stake today for activists and French people with ties to overseas territories where slavery took place?

Fleming investigates the connections and disconnections that are made between racism, slavery, and colonialism in France. She provides historical context and examines how politicians and commemorative activists interpret the racial past and present. Resurrecting Slavery also includes in-depth interviews with French Caribbean migrants outside the commemorative movement to address the everyday racial politics of remembrance.

Bringing a critical race perspective to the study of French racism, Fleming’s groundbreaking study provides a more nuanced understanding of race in France along with new ways of thinking about the global dimensions of slavery, anti-blackness, and white supremacy.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781439914090
Publisher: Temple University Press
Publication date: 03/01/2017
Edition description: 1
Pages: 286
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.80(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Crystal Marie Fleming is Assistant Professor of Sociology and Africana Studies at Stony Brook University.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

Introduction: Racial Resurrections 1

1 Slavery and the Construction of Race in France 25

2 Blackwashing Slavery: The Racial Politics of Commemoration 43

3 Activist Groups and Ethnoracial Boundaries 61

4 Racial Temporality in Action 92

5 "We Have a History": Slavery and French Caribbean Identities 128

6 Legacies 160

7 Reparations 181

Conclusion: Race-ing the Past and the Present 211

Appendix A Respondents Table 223

Appendix B Interview Questions 225

Appendix C Methodological Reflections 229

Appendix D Recorded Events 241

Notes 245

References 259

Index 271

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