Vingtième Siècle 131, juillet-septembre 2016
Les gauches et les colonies
The Left and the Colonies
The political influence of colonial actors
The Birth of Vietnamese Republicanism
Global Circulations and Colonial Connections
This article explains the origins of Vietnamese republicanism by studying the story of one man, Phan Chau Trinh, at the intersection of global and colonial movements. French ideas did not arrive in Vietnam solely through the colonial school system. In fact, Phan Chau Trinh preferred to express his ideas in Chinese. Before going to Paris in 1909, he first visited China and Japan to study new ideas coming from the Western world. However, France and the colonial connection were nonetheless important. It is therefore important to take both facets into consideration to understand how and why republicanism found such fertile ground in Vietnam in the early 20th century.
Algeria's Engineering of Socialist Colonial Policy
From Beni Saf to Paris, via Algiers
This article analyses how colonial policy was developed by French socialist federations in colonised Algeria during the interwar period. It explores the federations’ relations with the Socialist Party’s national leadership and Algerian politics more broadly. It shows how doctrinal evolution was linked to the broadening of militant social horizons on the ground. In fact, the concept of colonial and colonialist socialism was gradually revised into a more nuanced vision that took into consideration the evolving socialist doctrine in Algeria. Nonetheless, the Algerian socialist movement ultimately had little influence on the colonial policy of the French Socialist Party as a whole.
The Comintern, the French Communist Party and the Call for Algerian independence (1926-1930)
This article examines the difficulties faced by the French Communist Party in developing its anti-colonial activities in France and Algeria during the second half of the 1920s. The French Communist Party was the first political entity to call for the abolition of the indigenous status, and then for Algeria’s independence. While following orders from Moscow, the Party encountered strong grassroots resistance on both sides of the Mediterranean, opposition that is meticulously described here using Comintern archives. The circulations and transactions that took place between Moscow, Paris, and Algiers within Communist circles are crucial to understand both the emergence of the Algerian national movement, and the birth of militant anti-colonialism in France.
The Messalistes and the French Left
Nedjib Sidi Moussa
This article analyses anti-colonial transactions between pro-independence Algerian activists and French revolutionaries during the interwar period. It focuses primarily on the organisation led by Messali Hadj, called the Étoile nord-africaine (the North African Star). The organisation’s unique relationship with the labour movement and its evolution among Algerian immigrants in France differentiated it from other Algerian political entities. The period analysed in this article illustrates Algerian activists’ quest for autonomy, as well as their search for alliances with their French comrades despite disappointments regarding the Popular Front.