Postcolonialism- a lecture for a Global Studies Theory class

This month I am sharing lectures, assignments and syllabi for a Global Studies theory class. Here is a lecture on postcolonialism that you are free to take, adapt, and use for your own classes. As you’ll see, some of these lectures may have references to my own experiences or location, so please edit them as needed. Please click on page 2 below to view the syllabus. Good luck with your class!

Shawn Smallman

Colonialism – an introductory lecture for an INTL 101 class

Colonial architecture, Macau, China. Photo by Shawn Smallman. August 2017

Even though I no longer teach face to face classes, I’ve always loved lecturing. Here I want to share an introductory class lecture that covers colonialism. If you are a faculty member, please feel free to use this lecture in your classes. Please note that this lecture is about eight years old as I post this, so you will likely want to update it.

Shawn Smallman, 2020

Pal Ahluwalia’s Out of Africa

I am teaching a new course “Theoretical Foundations of Global Studies Theory,” so I am reading broadly right now, particularly in the area of postcolonialism and critical theory. One of the best books that I have read has been Pal Ahluwalia’s Out of Africa, which argues that the roots of French postcolonialism lie in that nation’s long and tortured history in Algeria. He makes the argument by tracing the lives of key thinkers -Camus, Sartre, Cixous, Lyotard, Fanon, Derrida and Bourdieau- to show how their Algerian experience shaped their writings. In Algeria, the key question that people faced was “What is my identity?” Europeans from many nations adopted a persona of being more French than the French, in order to distinguish themselves from the Arab population. But this identity was contingent. For example, Algeria’s Jews first received citizenship, then lost it under Vichy France, and did not have it reinstated until six months after the war. This context shaped, for example, the experience of Helene Cixous, the famous feminist scholar. As the war forced people to take sides and decide on their identity -did they really belong in their homeland?- multiple academics experienced exile. …

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