The Racial Lexicon of Development in Postcolonial Africa: The Case of Ghana

Jemima Pierre (UCLA)
10/06/2014
 
If colonial rule in Africa depended upon a racial hierarchy that simultaneously consolidated supposedly “tribal” difference and white racial and cultural and political supremacy, what happens to this structure at the end of formal colonial rule? Following this, what does it mean to explore racial formations in our analyses of decolonization and the African postcolony? In this lecture, I use examples from my current ethnographic and historical research on resource extraction – specifically focusing on Ghana as a new oil exporter – to tackle these questions. I argue that “development-speak” converges with “oil-speak” to create a particular racial lexicon that upholds historical, (neo)colonial hierarchies. In so doing, I demonstrate one of the many ways that race continues to be rearticulated in postcolonial Africa.
* Co-sponsored by the Center for Africana Studies
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One thought on “The Racial Lexicon of Development in Postcolonial Africa: The Case of Ghana

  1. Say what? This looks like it is going to be an amazing presentation. I always wanted to have an honest conversation about the underlying effects Western foreign development throughout the continent of Africa. Hopefully, there is an opportunity to engage with the presentation. I am looking forward to it!

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