Negotiating Decolonization: The Limits of a Fairy Tale


In this episode of International Horizons, Valerie Rosoux, Research Director at the Belgian Fund for Scientific Research (FNRS) discusses the disagreements in the historiography of Belgium's human rights violations during its colonial activities in Congo, and how Belgium's case differs from those of Netherlands and France in coming to terms with their colonial past from the perspective of the elites', religion, and parties. In dealing with these, she argues that had Belgium's politicians known literature and focused on solving the inequalities of the present, they could have been more effective. 

Moreover, Rousoux claims that the Black Lives Matter protests informed the narratives around past colonialism and discrimination in Belgium, although Belgium's civil society's claims haven't been completely addressed. Finally, the author analyzes how historical figures such as Victor Hugo are deemed as racists, and the richness of these views outside scholarly paradigms.

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International Horizons

International Horizons is a podcast of the Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies that brings scholarly expertise to bear on our understanding of international issues. John Torpey, the host of the podcast and director of the Ralph Bunche Institute, holds conversations with prominent scholars and figures in state-of-the-art international issues in our weekly episodes.

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