Gareth Curless, “Labour, Decolonization and Class: Re-Making Colonial Workers at the End of the British Empire” (08/04)

Jeudi 8 avril 2021 à  17 h : Gareth Curless (University of Exeter), “Labour, Decolonization and Class: Re-Making Colonial Workers at the End of the British Empire”

The strikes and labour riots that swept through the empire during the late 1930s are widely regarded as a watershed moment in the history of British imperialism. According to conventional histories, the unrest was a catalyst for a major reorientation of not just colonial labour policy but colonial attitudes towards social and economic development in the empire. Gareth Curless reconsiders this established narrative, using comparative case studies from Singapore, British Guiana and the Gold Coast.

While accepting that colonial states intervened more directly in the social and economic spheres of colonial rule after the late 1930s, Gareth Curless argues that these policies emerged out of pre-existing policies and debates in both London and the colonies, which in some instances can be traced back to the late 19th century; as the civilising mission gave way to the language of modernisation, colonial labour regimes continued to be concerned with the control, regulation and reproduction of African and Asian workers. Curless shows that the power of the colonial state was not absolute, however, considering African and Asian workers who frequently practiced more subterranean or `everyday’ forms of resistance such as absenteeism, industrial sabotage, theft and go-slow protests. He emphasises the role of class and `ordinary’ Africans and Asians, focusing on the emergence of class identity and consciousness as a result of struggles between colonial workers and employers and the state.

 

Participer à la réunion Zoom : 
Lien habituel, disponible auprès de Yann Béliard

Philippa Levine, “ ‘When I feel very near God, I always feel such a need to undress’: Religion, Nakedness and the Body Divine” (18 mars)

Jeudi 18 mars à 17h : Philippa Levine (Austin / Oxford), “ ‘When I feel very near God, I always feel such a need to undress’: Religion, Nakedness and the Body Divine”


Abstract: Diverse institutions have attempted to order and to organise, to regulate and to banish, to promote and to sell nakedness. Focusing on religion’s always ambivalent relationship with the human body, this talks explores a cultural history with surprisingly powerful contemporary resonance.

Réunion sur Zoom (lien habituel).

19 novembre: l’intervention de Rachel Holmes est annulée

Jeudi 19 novembre à 17h : l’intervention de Rachel Holmes est annulée. 

 En remplacement : Fabrice Bensimon (Sorbonne Université) : « Londres, 10 avril 1848 : les chartistes dans l’œil du photographe »

Résumé : Pour les chartistes, le lundi 10 avril 1848 était un grand jour. Depuis des semaines, ils faisaient signer la pétition pour la Charte du peuple. Celle-ci devait être remise au Parlement, et les chartistes se rassemblèrent au sud de la Tamise, à Kennington Common. Combien étaient-ils ? 400 000, selon leur dirigeant Feargus O’Connor ; 10 000 selon les autorités, une hypothèse basse qu’un dessin de presse semblait confirmer. Le mouvement allait ensuite décliner irrémédiablement 

130 ans plus tard, deux daguerréotypes émergeaient des archives royales. Bien qu’ils aient été abondamment reproduits depuis dans les manuels, les revues ou sur Internet, ces premières photographies politiques de l’histoire n’ont sans pas encore livré tous leurs secrets. Que nous disent-elles du chartisme et de ce moment politique ? Que nous montrent-elles du monde ouvrier, dans ce qui est alors la plus grande ville au monde, le Londres de la révolution industrielle ? 

Le séminaire ne pourra se réunir à la Maison de la Recherche, mais uniquement en visio. Lien habituel, disponible auprès de Yann Béliard yann_beliard(at)yahoo.fr

Jean-François Dunyach et Nathalie Kouamé, autour de leur ouvrage _Sous l’empire des îles. Histoire croisée des mondes britannique et japonais_ (Paris, 2020) (jeudi 15 octobre à 17h)

Jeudi 15 octobre à 17h : Jean-François Dunyach (Sorbonne Université) & Nathalie Kouamé (Université de Paris), autour de leur ouvrage Sous l’empire des îles. Histoire croisée des mondes britannique et japonais , Paris, Karthala, 2020. 

  Présentation (4e de couverture): 

Et si, au regard de l’histoire, le Japon et la Grande-Bretagne n’étaient pas véritablement des îles ? Derrière l’apparente évidence de ces terres entourées d’eau se cachent, peut-être, d’authentiques malentendus. Les innombrables lieux communs sur les cultures et les esprits mentalités prétendument insulaires de ces deux archipels posés à l’Occident et à l’Orient du vaste continent eurasiatique, méritent d’être interrogés. 

Dans cet ouvrage, deux historiens débattent à partir de leur terrain d’élection, le Royaume-Uni pour l’un, le Japon pour l’autre, de la pertinence de la notion d’insularité en histoire. Dans ce dialogue où chaque archipel tend à l’autre un miroir, il est question d’identités, d’échanges, de cosmogonies, de littératures… Insularité subie, insularité proclamée, insularité dépassée : d’où vient la puissance des représentations et des fantasmes que recèle l’expérience insulaire ? Quel est, en somme, l’empire des îles sur l’histoire des mondes britannique et japonais ? 

Évoquant tout autant Robinson Crusoé que le mythe shintô de la création des îles japonaises, la colonisation romaine de l’île de Bretagne et les incursions mongoles au pays du Soleil levant, les pirates du Japon médiéval ou les ressorts du Brexit contemporain, cet ouvrage foisonnant, érudit et stimulant, s’adresse à tous ceux qui ont en partage le goût de « la différence historique ». 

  Attention : le port du masque est obligatoire dans tous les espaces de la Maison de la Recherche. 

La séance sera également diffusée sur Zoom : lien habituel, disponible sur simple demande fbensimon[at]free.fr

Ariane Mak: Enquêter en temps de guerre. De la crainte de l’espion à la controverse ‘ Cooper’s Snoopers ’ (1939-1945) (8 oct.)

Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6 e , Salle D421

Jeudi 8 octobre à 17h : Ariane Mak (Université de Paris) « Enquêter en temps de guerre. De la crainte de l’espion à la controverse ‘ Cooper’s Snoopers ’ (1939-1945) »

Comment enquêter en temps de guerre quand la figure de l’espion hante les esprits ? L’intervention se penche sur un point aveugle de l’histoire du Mass-Observation (1937-1949) – à savoir la manière dont cette organisation britannique de sciences sociales a dû faire face à une suspicion généralisée durant la Seconde Guerre mondiale. Celle-ci s’exprime en premier lieu dans l’enquête de terrain, alors que les enquêteurs du Mass-Observation, soupçonnés d’espionnage, se voient pris en filature par une population aux aguets, voire emmenés au poste. Cette méfiance se dit à un autre niveau dans la controverse médiatico -politique des « Cooper’s Snoopers » qui éclate autour de l’usage d’enquêtes scientifiques – et de l’enquête d’opinion en particulier – par l’État. Entre suspicion de surveillance politique et moqueries face à la prétendue scientificité des méthodes employées, le scandale s’étale dans la presse avant de s’inviter dans les débats de la Chambre des Communes. L’intervention interroge les rapports entre science et politique, et éclaire la figure ambivalente du scientifique et de l’enquêteur de terrain dans le Royaume-Uni des années 1940.

Attention : le port du masque est obligatoire dans tous les espaces de la Maison de la Recherche.
La communication d’Ariane Mak sera également diffusée sur Zoom : lien habituel, disponible auprès de fbensimon[at]free.fr


Florence Sutcliffe-Braithwaite: « Something changed, I’m sure it did, for women; it must have »: Deindustrialisation and individualism in working-class families in Britain’s coalfields after 1945 (1er octobre)

Attention : cette séance n’aura pas lieu à la Maison de la Recherche, mais uniquement en visioconférence: veuillez contacter fbensimon(at)free.fr pour avoir le lien


Jeudi 1er octobre à 17h : Florence Sutcliffe-Braithwaite (University College London) : ‘ »Something changed, I’m sure it did, for women; it must have »: Deindustrialisation and individualism in working-class families in Britain’s coalfields after 1945’
 
Economic historian Jim Tomlinson has recently suggested that deindustrialisation should be used as an alternative meta-narrative for understanding postwar British history, transecting the typical political narrative that structures understandings of the period – that is, the story of a ‘social democratic’ settlement inaugurated by Attlee and then disrupted in the 1970s and replaced with a Thatcherite or ‘neoliberal’ one.  Writing from the perspective of social and cultural history, I have recently written, along with Emily Robinson, Camilla Schofield, and Natalie Thomlinson, of the importance of growing discourses of popular individualism in the postwar decades, which, in a similar way, cut across and interacted with Thatcherism, but which were not driven predominantly by politics. In this paper, I analyse how deindustrialisation and individualism changed the structure and culture of family life in working-class families in Britain’s coalfields in the decades after 1945.


Florence Sutcliffe-Braithwaite travaille en particulier sur l’expérience des femmes dans la grève des mineurs de 1984-1985 https://www.coalfield-women.org 

Steven O’Connor : “‘This French force must be an asset and not a liability’: the British approach to coalition warfare during the Second World War” (27/02)

Steven O’Connor, de Sorbonne Université, présentera sa communication “‘This French force must be an asset and not a liability’: the British approach to coalition warfare during the Second World War” le jeudi 27 février à 17h. Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e, salle D421.

Abstract: How does an army integrate foreign soldiers, overcoming the differences of language, culture, training and equipment?  Taking the Free French forces in the Libyan campaign of 1942 as a case study, this presentation will examine the problems resulting from Allied units serving under British command and how they were resolved. In particular, it will examine the work of the British army’s liaison mission to these Free French forces, named the ‘Spears Mission’ after its commander General Edward Spears, which played an important role in Free French success in 1942. The liaison officers of the Spears Mission represented Free French needs and problems to the British high command, while also having responsibility for ensuring that the Free French followed British procedures and orders. Managing Franco-British military relations was a difficult task and sometimes the Mission was the victim of both sides’ frustration. Yet, this presentation will show that despite setbacks, or perhaps because of them, interallied military cooperation gradually improved during the 1942 Libyan campaign, which saw the first sustained, large-scale deployment of Free French forces under British command.

« A House through time » (David Olusoga, 2018, BBC)

La séance du jeudi 30 janvier (17h, Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e, salle D421) sera consacrée à la projection du documentaire de la BBC « A House through time » (David Olusoga, 2018, première partie), sur l’histoire d’une maison de Liverpool depuis 1840. La projection sera suivie d’une brève discussion sur les sources disponibles pour l’histoire des individus.


Résumé : Ce documentaire aborde l’histoire de Liverpool à travers celle d’une de ses maisons en alignement, 62 Falkner Street, construite dans les années 1830 dans le quartier géorgien de la ville. L’équipe du film a tenté de documenter la vie des quelque 120 personnes qui ont habité l’adresse, depuis la construction jusqu’à nos jours. Initialement située dans un quartier bourgeois, l’histoire de la maison reflète le développement de la seconde ville portuaire britannique, puis son déclin après la Seconde Guerre mondiale, et enfin la gentrification de cette partie de Liverpool depuis les années 1990.
A sa manière, le film montre quelles sources variées peuvent être mobilisées pour documenter l’histoire des individus aux 19e et 20e siècles.

Dr. Jackie Uí Chionna: « Family Networks in the Revolutionary Generation: The Ryans of Tomcoole, A Case Study. » (28/11)

Dr. Jackie Uí Chionna, de National University of Ireland, Galway, présentera sa communication « Family Networks in the Revolutionary Generation: The Ryans of Tomcoole, A Case Study. » le jeudi 28 novembre de 17h à 18h30. Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e, salle D421.

The story of the Ryan girls is a fabulous family saga about a group of young women who were liberated by education and their own affirmative personalities in the early years of the 20th century…The standard biographies of Irish lives often ignore spouses and family connections, but these women were clearly influential on that revolutionary generation around them.’ Mary Kenny. Belfast Newsletter, 7 October 2014. Mary Kenny is an author, broadcaster, playwright and journalist.

Mary Kate (Kit), Josephine Mary (Min), Christina and Phyllis Ryan were sisters, and part of a close family circle, the Ryans, from Toomcoole, Co. Wexford, Ireland. Brought up in a strongly nationalist family, all of the sisters progressed to university, and their education, relationships and social circles placed them at the very heart of the revolutionary movement in the period 1912-1922.  Three of the sisters were in relationships with leading figures in the 1916 Rising – Phyllis and Min themselves served as messengers during the Rising. But they were also bright young women, who studied abroad, and whilst studying in London and Paris, they communicated with each other by way of a writing book or jotter, which was then circulated from one sister to another. They also wrote copious amounts of letters to each other, comparing notes on everything from political movements to their latest boyfriends and social lives. This will examine the correspondence of the Ryan sisters as a case study in the significance of family networks for the revolutionary generation in British and Irish history.

Sheila Rowbotham : « Memories of the  beginnings of  Women’s Liberation groups  in Britain  in  1969” (21/11)

Sheila Rowbotham présentera sa communication « Memories of the  beginnings of  Women’s Liberation groups  in Britain  in  1969” le jeudi 21 novembre de 17h à 18h30. Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e, salle D421

Sheila Rowbotham, who helped to start the women’s liberation movement in Britain, has written widely on the history of feminism and radical social movements, her most recent books are Edward Carpenter: A Life of Liberty and Love (2008) Dreamers of a New Day (2010) and Rebel Crossings: New Women, Free Lovers and Radicals in Britain and the United States. (2016) Formerly a professor at Manchester University. She is now an   Honorary Fellow  at  Manchester  and  has  received  an  honorary  doctorate  from  the  University of  Sheffield.

Pierre Purseigle : « Reparation, reconstruction, and remembrance. The reconfiguration of the transatlantic alliance in the aftermath of the First World War » (14/11)

Pierre Purseigle (Université de Warwick et IEA Paris Seine) présentera sa communication « Reparation, reconstruction, and remembrance. The reconfiguration of the transatlantic alliance in the aftermath of the First World War » le jeudi 14 novembre 2019 de 17h à 18h30. Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e, salle D421

Abstract : “Based on a work-in-progress on the comparative and transnational history of urban reconstruction after 1918, this paper sets out to explain why the Allied powers, and specifically Britain and the USA, never lived up the expectations of the “sinistrés.” This story however is not simply that of the dissolution of a wartime coalition. This paper will place the process of reconstruction in the wider context of wartime mobilisation and post-conflict demobilisation. It will seek not to reprise the long-lasting debate over peace-making and reparations, but to supplement conventional approaches to the consolidation of Western Europe after the conflict. It will highlight a long-underestimated circulation of representations, people and funds as well as the transnational networks of sociability that contributed to the reconstruction of Belgium and France. »

Laura Schwartz : « Feminism and the Servant Problem: Class and Domestic Labour in the British Women’s Suffrage Movement » (11/04)

Laura Schwartz, de University of Warwick, présentera sa communication « Feminism and the Servant Problem: Class and Domestic Labour in the British Women’s Suffrage Movement » le jeudi 11 avril 2019 de 17h30 à 19h. Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e , salle D421

« In the early twentieth century, more and more women fought for the right to professional employment and political influence outside the home. Yet if liberation from household ‘drudgery’ meant employing another woman to do it, where did this leave domestic servants? Both inspired and frustrated by a growing feminist movement, servants began forming their own trade unions and demanding better conditions and rights at work. Feminism and the Servant Problem is the first ever history of how these militant maids and their mistresses joined forces in the struggle for the vote but also clashed over competing class interests. Laura Schwartz uncovers a forgotten history of domestic worker organising and early feminist thinking on reproductive labour, offering a new perspective on the class politics of the suffrage movement and challenging traditional notions of who made up the British working-class. »

Laura Schwartz is Associate Professor of Modern British History at the University of Warwick. She has published widely on the history of British feminism, and is the author of A Serious Endeavour: Gender, Education and Community at St Hugh’s, 1886-2011 (2011), and Infidel Feminism: Secularism, Religion and Women’s Emancipation in England, 1830-1914 (2013).

Discutante : Rebecca Rogers (Paris-Descartes)

Contact : Fabrice Bensimon fbensimon@free.fr

Mrinalini Sinha : « Anatomy of a Protest: The Abolition of Indian Indentured Labor in the British Empire » (06/12)

Mrinalini Sinha, de University of Michigan, présentera sa communication  « Anatomy of a Protest: The Abolition of Indian Indentured Labor in the British Empire » le jeudi 6 décembre de 17h30 à 19h.
Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, Paris 6e , salle D421

Résumé :
« Kunti, a dalit (“untouchable” caste) woman, became the poster child for the nation-wide movement in India against the abolition of the system of indentured labor in 1917. The system, managed by the colonial government in India, had supplied approximately 1.3 million workers from India to plantations overseas in the aftermath of the abolition of Atlantic slavery in the 1830s. This paper explores how a woman at the very bottom of the caste hierarchy in India became the face for an empire-wide change. It will argue that Kunti’s role in the movement illustrates an important dimension of the abolitionist movement: the construction of the “people” (or the demos) as the subject of a new kind of politics in late colonial India. »

Emily Baughan : “Saving the Children in the 1960s: the Development Decade and the Decline of Humanitarian Internationalism” (29/11)

Emily Baughan, de University of Sheffield, présentera sa communication “Saving the Children in the 1960s: the Development Decade and the Decline of Humanitarian Internationalism” le jeudi 29 novembre 2018 de 17h30 à 19h. Maison de la Recherche, 28 rue Serpente, 75006, salle D421.


Résumé :

« The 1960s saw the rapid dismantling of the British empire, and the simultaneous rise of a British international development industry. A recent literature has argued that the rise of development at the moment of decolonisation was a means for British public and government to retain their position as global leaders after empire’s end. Development repackaged traditions of colonial rule as international benevolence, and repurposed imperial expertise for new international development projects.  In this paper, I provide a new perspective on British involvement in the ‘development decade’ of the 1960s, examining the relationship between humanitarian interventions overseas and the growing apparatus of the welfare state at home. The doctrine of development was highly dependent on advances in welfare in Britain. Development programmes were a space in which African and Caribbean nurses – many of whom had trained in the postwar British welfare state –gained power and position in their communities. It was these women, rather than expatriate male experts – who shaped the British development agenda on the ground.  Certainly, development was a legacy of British imperialism. Yet, development should also be understood as an attempt to globalise postwar welfare, and to challenge the very colonial legacies that it sought to embed. »