Commemorating Race and Empire in the First World War Centenary

Edited by Ben Wellings and Shanti Sumartojo

£35.00
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ISBN: 9781786940889

Publication: November 30, 2017

This edited book draws together interdisciplinary perspectives on the treatment of race and empire in commemorations of the Great War. Beginning with discussion of how race was understood during the War, the volume goes on to track how these depictions have influenced national commemoration around the world in 2014-18. Great War commemoration in Europe has been framed as a moment of national trial and as a collective European tragedy. But the First World War was more than just a European conflict. It was in fact a global war, a clash of empires that began a process of nationalist agitation against imperial polities and the racisms that underpinned them in Asia and Africa and one that drew in settler societies such as Australia and New Zealand. The Great War centenary is thus the first global commemorative event, the ‘centenary to end all centenaries’. Despite the global context of commemorative activity, however, these events remain framed by national and state imaginaries and ones in which the ideas about nation, race and imperialism that animated and dominated men and women during the Great War sit uncomfortably with modern sensibilities. This raises a political difficulty: how to commemorate (if at all) race and empire, or more pointedly, racism and imperialism during the Centenary?

Ben Wellings is Senior Lecturer in Politics and International Relations at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. He is the author of English Nationalism and Euroscepticism: losing the peace (Bern: Peter Lang, 2012). Along with Shanti Sumartojo he is co-editor of Nation, Memory and Great War Commemoration: mobilizing the past in Europe, Australia and New Zealand (Bern: Peter Lang, 2014).

Shanti Sumartojo is a Vice Chancellor’s Research Fellow in the Digital Ethnography Research Centre in the School of Media and Communication at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia. She is author of Trafalgar Square and the Narration of Britishness, 1900-2012 (2013), and co-editor of Nation, Memory, and Great War Commemoration (2014) and Refiguring Techniques in Digital-Visual Research (2017).

Preface 1. ‘Commemorating Race and Empire during the First World War Centenary’, Ben Wellings, Matthew Graves and Shanti Sumartojo Part I – Rediscovering and Rehabilitating Empire, 2014-18 2. From ‘Coolie’ to Transnational Agent: the ‘Afterlives’ of World War One Chinese Workers, Paul Bailey 3. Marigolds and Poppies: commemorating ‘Indian’ War Dead, Peter Stanley 4. Situating the Belgian Congo in Belgian Great War Commemorations, Enika Ngongo and Laurence van Ypersele [translated by Ben Wellings] 5. Maori and Great War commemoration in New Zealand: Biculturalism and the Politics of Forging National Memory, Katherine Smits Part II – Representing Race and Empire, 1900-20 6. Resénégalisation and the Representation of Black African Troops during World War One, Elizabeth Rechniewski 7. ‘A new, strange race’: eugenics and the Australian soldier in the First World War, Deirdre Gilfedder 8. The First Circle of Memory: First World War Postcards of British Imperial Troops in Marseilles, Gilles Teulié 9. Aesthetic Form and Political Function: Artistic Representations of Algerian and British Indian Troops in First World War Recruitment Posters, Cherie Prosser Part III – Memorialising Race and Empire in Settler Societies, 1919-2018 10. A Tale of Two Monuments: The War Memorials of Oran and Algiers and Commemorative Culture in Colonial and Post-Colonial Algeria, Dónal Hassett 11. Anzac, Race and Empire: Memorialising Soldiers and Warriors in Australia, Shanti Sumartojo and Ben Wellings

Format: Hardback

Size: 239 x 163 mm

256 Pages

ISBN: 9781786940889

Publication: November 30, 2017

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