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Which clippings match 'Postcolonial' keyword pg.1 of 3
28 APRIL 2013

Eurocentrism permeates our common cartographic representations

"on most maps, Europe and North America are situated on top–allowing us to believe that these countries are really 'on top of the world'. Africa, Australia and South America are always situated at the bottom. Why never the other way around? Cartographers make assumptions about the world (North is assumed to be at the top) and these assumptions have become normalised and are viewed as 'common sense'.

But these politically embedded assumptions help to structure how we see the world and our place in it. Few of us ever stop to think about the politics of cartography and what it says about Western cultural and economic imperialism and domination. Few ever think how these unexamined assumptions structure the way we see ourselves, to what extent and on what basis we rate our own worth (or supposed, entirely imagined, lack thereof) or how it restricts our imagination and limits the ways in which we think it is possible to excel and thrive in this world."

(Pierre De Vos, 23 April 2013)

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TAGS

Africa • apolitical • assumptionsAustraliaBritish Librarycartographic metaphorcartographic representationscartographychartcultural artefactcultural hegemonycultural imperialism • economic imperialism • economic significance • Eurocentric legacy • Eurocentrism • Europegeopolitical mapgraphic representationhistorical maphistorical narrativeshow we see the worldinformation visualisationinterpretationmapsmetaphors of reality • neo-European • neutralnormalisation process • normalised • North America • Northern hemisphere • objective perspective • our place in the world • physical geography • political assumptions • politics of cartographypost-colonialismpostcolonial • postcoloniality • reterritorialisationSouth AfricaSouth America • Southern hemisphere • standardised classification • The Lie of the Land (exhibition) • the worldthe world around us • top • understanding of the worldunexamined assumptions • visual critique • visual representationworld mapsworld politicsworld view

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
20 OCTOBER 2012

Alain Resnais and Chris Marker's: Les Statues meurent aussi

"Les Statues meurent aussi, co–directed with Alain Resnais. This 30 minute short film has a chequered history of censorship that at one time elevated it to a somewhat mythical status (2), and which prevented it from being brought into the wider public eye until some 16 years after it was completed. After its first screening at the Cannes Film Festival in 1953, and in spite of winning the Prix Jean Vigo in 1954, Les Statues meurent aussi was banned in France by the Centre National de la Cinématographie between 1953 and 1963 owing to its controversial anti–colonialist stance (3). While a truncated version was made available in 1963, the unabridged film only became available in 1968.

Les Statues meurent aussi was commissioned by the literary review and publishing house, Présence Africaine, which was set up in 1947 in Paris as a quarterly literary review for emerging and important African writers. Founded by the Senegalese thinker Alioune Diop, it housed the writings of some of the most important francophone thinkers in the latter half of the 20th century, such as Aimé Césaire, Ousmane Sembene, Léopold Sédar Senghor, in addition to French metropolitan writers such as Jean–Paul Sartre and Albert Camus. The journal also translated groundbreaking works by Chinua Achebe and Wole Soyinka into French for the first time. Having emerged so soon after the new French Constitution of 1946 had declared a 'French Union', Présence Africaine's publications signalled a new, post–colonial status for French and francophone thought, embracing what was then a key notion: that of négritude (4). It is this notion that the second half of Les Statues meurent aussi engages with most deeply, and perhaps most controversially, especially as it strives to connect the death of the statue with the rise in the commercialisation of African art for the pleasure of the colonial classes. Indeed, it is against the backdrop of a France that had so recently lost its colonial power, but which still retained many of the quasi–Manichean distinctions between white, Western culture and black, African culture, that (and in spite of their claims to the contrary) Resnais and Marker's film projected its passionately anti–colonial, anti–racist, even anti–capitalist audio–visual collage. It is little wonder then that such a film should have been censored until the late 1960s, by which time it might have lost some of its topicality, but none of its political vigour."

(Jenny Chamarette, 14 September 2009, Senses of Cinema)

[1] Sarah Cooper, Chris Marker, Manchester University Press, Manchester and New York, 2008. As Cooper points out, Les Statues meurent aussi is available as an extra on the French DVD release of Resnais' Hiroshima mon amour, Arte France and Argos Films, 2004.

[2] See Roy Armes' entry on Les Statues meurent aussi in his The Cinema of Alain Resnais, A. Zwemmer/A.S. Barnes, London and New York, 1968, p. 34.

[3] This is heavily documented in scholarship on Marker and Resnais. In particular, see Cooper, p. 12; Emma Wilson, Alain Resnais, Manchester University Press, Manchester and New York, 2006, pp. 22–4; Nora M. Alter, Chris Marker, University of Illinois Press, Urbana, Chicago, 2006, pp. 58–9.

[4] For further details see V.Y. Mudimbe (ed.), The Surreptitious Speech: 'Présence Africaine' and the Politics of Otherness, 1947–87, Chicago University Press, Chicago, 1992, pp. 3–4.

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TAGS

1953 • African art • African cultureAlain Resnaisanti-capitalism • anti-colonial • anti-colonialist • anti-racist • audiovisual • audiovisual collage • censorship • Centre National de la Cinematographie • Chris Marker • colonial classes • colonial powercommercialisationcritique • death of the statue • European imperialismfilmfilm essayFranceintercultural • Les Statues meurent aussi • negritude • post-colonial • post-colonialismpostcolonial • Presence Africaine • Senses of Cinema (journal)statue • Statues Also Die • Western culture

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
08 JUNE 2012

David Lange: Nuclear Weapons are Morally Indefensible

"Most New Zealanders watched David Lange contest and win the 1985 Oxford Union debate, arguing the proposition that 'nuclear weapons are morally indefensible' with a mixture of pride and astonishment. After decades of knowing our place, and several years of government by homunculus, suddenly we had a Prime Minister who could stride the international stage with insouciance. And briefly, we seemed to matter.

Although New Zealand's nuclear–free policy did not become law until 1987, it was integral to early years of the fourth Labour government. The 1984 snap election that made Lange Prime Minister was called by Robert Muldoon when National MP Marilyn Waring withdrew her support for her party over the issue of nuclear ship visits. Labour won the election with a nuclear ban as a flagship policy.

The policy was popular among New Zealanders, but not without cost. Our relationship with the US deteriorated in the early weeks of 1985. On the same journey that took him to Oxford, Lange, four days before the debate, met with a US State Department official who outlined the retaliatory measures that the US would be taking against New Zealand. The ANZUS alliance of which New Zealand had been part since 1951 was effectively cancelled at that meeting."

(Public Address, 14 October 2004)

This is the introduction to the transcript of the Rt. Hon. David Lange's 1985 Oxford Debate. The transcript is copyright to Public Address. It was prepared by Russell Brown and Fiona Rae, with the consent of David Lange. Thanks are due to Radio New Zealand's Sound Archives/Nga Taonga Korero (File: Media Numbers T4705 to T4708), Infofind, the Parliamentary Library and Barry Hartley.

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TAGS

1951198419851987 • alliance • ANZUS • Aotearoa New ZealandAustralasia • Australia New Zealand United States Security Treaty • cold warcritique • David Lange • destructionethicshistory • international stage • Jerry Falwell • Labour government • Marilyn Waring • mass destructionmilitary conflictmoral purposemorality • morally indefensible • New Zealanders • Nga Taonga Korero • nuclear • nuclear weaponnuclear weapons • nuclear-free • Oxford Union • Oxford Union debate • Parliamentary Library • peacekeepingpolicypolitical policy • political reform • postcolonialPrime MinisterRadio New Zealandrepresentation • retaliatory measures • Robert Muldoon • security treaty • sound archives • televised political debatetreatyTVNZUniversity of Oxforduranium • US State Department • USAweaponweapons

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
15 APRIL 2012

Statistics New Zealand Tatauranga Aotearoa: Digital yearbook collection

"The New Zealand Official Yearbook has provided a comprehensive statistical picture of life in New Zealand since 1893. 'Handbooks' and 'Blue books' of statistical information go back even further."

(Statistics New Zealand Tatauranga Aotearoa)

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TAGS

1893Aotearoa New Zealandbirth and death • census data • Census of Population and Dwellings • cultural identity • Digital yearbook collection • economic statistics • environmental statistics • fiscal statistics • Indigenous people • language and culture • Maorinational cultural heritage onlineNorth Islandpopulation statisticspostcolonialsocial statisticsSouth Islandstatistical informationstatisticsstatistics can tell you most things • Statistics New Zealand • Statistics New Zealand Tatauranga Aotearoa

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
16 MARCH 2012

Babakiueria: the colonialisation of European Australians by Indigenous Australians

"Presenter Duranga Manika (Michelle Torres) describes her fascination with white people and their customs and explains how she spent six months living with a 'typical white family' (Tony Barry, Cecily Polson, Kelan Angel, Margeurita Haynes). She also asks members of the general public for their opinions on white people and speaks to the Minister for White Affairs (Bob Maza).

[Geoffrey] Atherden's script takes stereotypes of Australian culture and, with tongue–in–cheek humour, views them as though for the first time, as mysterious, alien and strange. Here, the barbecue is singled out. Elsewhere Manika describes the football match as ritualised violence and betting at the TAB as a religion, while a police commissioner calls the Anzac Day March a ritual where white people 'honour their warrior ancestors' but wonders why it can't be done at home.

Presenter Duranga Manika's ethnographic study of white people simplifies, patronises and mystifies her subjects. Every mundane detail of this one family's everyday life is invested with serious cultural significance. Bob Maza's Minister for White Affairs compresses a history of government treatment of Indigenous Australians into one self–satisfied, authoritative figure. It is interesting that while these characters treat 'white' culture with such fascination, they treat 'black' culture as such a given that the audience does not find out much about it."

(Kate Matthews, Australian Screen)

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TAGS

17881986Aboriginalalien and strangeANZAC • ANZAC Day • ASO • audio and visual heritageaudiovisual archiveAustraliaAustralian cultureAustralian Screen • authoritative figure • Babakiueria • barbecue • Barbecue area • BBQ • belongingblack culture • Bob Maz • Bob Maza • Cecily Polson • colonial misrecognition • colonisationcultural anthropologycultural critiquecultural perspectivecultural significanceculture and customsethicsethnographic studyethnography • Euro-Australians • European Australians • fictitious land • First Australiansflagfootball • for their own good • gambling • Geoffrey Atherden • government treatment • humourIndigenousIndigenous AustraliansIndigenous peopleinvasion • Kelan Angel • Margeurita Haynes • Michelle Torres • Minister for White Affairs • mockumentary • National Film and Sound Archivenative peopleNFSApatronisingpostcolonial • powerboat • racial inequality • racial profiling • religionritual • ritualised violence • role-reversal • satiresatiricalsettlementstereotype • TAB • tongue-in-cheek • Tony Barry • typical white family • untamed land • white culture • white people • white settlement

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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