Beyond “Fashoda Syndrome”: The Rwandan Civil War and the Politics of La Francophonie in Africa

  title={Beyond “Fashoda Syndrome”: The Rwandan Civil War and the Politics of La Francophonie in Africa},
  author={Kate Spowage},
  journal={Language Matters},
  pages={25 - 4}
  • K. Spowage
  • Published 2 September 2019
  • Sociology
  • Language Matters
Abstract This article uses a case study to interrogate the politics of French in Africa. It examines French involvement in the Rwandan Civil War (1990–1994), and argues that by conceptualising institutions such as La Francophonie as “cultural” bodies, we risk obscuring their properly political functions. Through a consideration of the history of language in French colonial thought, and the translation of that history into the post-colonial idea of francophonie, the article foregrounds the… 

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