Wednesday, April 23, 2008

A Passing: Aimé Césaire 1913-2008

I first came across the work of Aimé Césaire when I was writing my master's thesis and trying to learn as much as possible about anti-colonial writing. Césaire was a French Martinican, a poet, prose writer, and activist. He was one of the principals of the négritude movement that strove to forge a positive black racial identity in the face of colonial oppression. His efforts influeced Black Pride movements all over the world, including the United States. His anti-colonial stance also paved the way for the postcolonial (post-colonial, (post)colonial) critique that is so in vogue in critical theory right now. Edward Said writes of his debt to Cesaire in Culture and Imperialism.

Aimé Césaire, dead at 94. He shall be missed.

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