Colonial imaginaries and postcolonial transformations: exiles, bases, beaches

Kothari, Uma and Wilkinson, Rorden (2010) Colonial imaginaries and postcolonial transformations: exiles, bases, beaches. Third World Quarterly, 31 (8). pp. 1395-1412. ISSN 0143-6597

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Abstract

This article draws on Edward Said's notion of 'imaginary geographies' to explore how representations of small island states enabled particular colonial interventions to take place in the Indian Ocean region and to show how these representations are currently being reworked to support development strategies. It examines how particular colonial imaginaries justified and legitimised spatially and temporally extended transactions before focusing on two examples of forced population movements: British colonial policy of forcibly exiling anti-colonial nationalists and political 'undesirables' from other parts of the empire to Seychelles; and the use of islands in the region as strategic military bases, requiring the compulsory relocation of populations. While a colonising legacy pervades contemporary representations of these societies, such depictions are not immutable but can be, and are being, appropriated and reworked through various forms of situated agency. Thus an 'island imaginary' has become an important cultural and economic resource for small island states, most notably in the development of a tourist industry. The key challenge for vulnerable peripheral states is to create new forms of representations that contest and replace tenacious colonialist depictions to provide greater opportunities for sustained development. © 2010 Third World Quarterly.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > International Relations
Subjects: H Social Sciences
Depositing User: Nadya Herrera Catalan
Date Deposited: 23 Jan 2015 15:24
Last Modified: 07 May 2015 14:46
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/52369
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