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Book Cover
Author Segalla, Spencer D., author

Title Empire and Catastrophe : Decolonization and Environmental Disaster in North Africa and Mediterranean France since 1954 / Spencer D. Segalla
Published Baltimore, Maryland : Project Muse, 2020
Baltimore, Md. : Project MUSE, 0000


Description 1 online resource (1 EPUB unpaged) : maps
Series France overseas: studies in empire and decolonization
France overseas.
Summary Empire and Catastrophe examines natural and anthropogenic disasters during the years of decolonization in Algeria, Morocco, and France, and explores the ways in which environmental catastrophes both shaped and were shaped by struggles over the dissolution of France's empire in North Africa. Four disasters make up the core of the book: the 1954 earthquake in Algeria's Chelif Valley, just weeks before the onset of the Algerian Revolution; a mass poisoning in Morocco in 1959 caused by toxic substances from an American military base; the 1959 Malpasset dam collapse in Frejus, France, which devastated the Algerian immigrant community in the town but which was blamed on Algerian sabotage; and the 1960 earthquake in Agadir, Morocco, which set off a public relations war between the United States, France, and the Soviet Union, and which ignited a Moroccan national debate over modernity, identity, architecture, and urban planning. Empire and Catastrophe is the first book-length study of environmental disasters during the decolonization of the French empire. Interrogating distinctions between agent and environment and between political and environmental violence, through the lenses of state archives and through the remembered experiences and literary representations of disaster survivors, this book argues for the integration of environmental events into narratives of political and cultural decolonization. Empire and Catastrophe will be sought after by environmental historians and North Africa area studies specialists as well as historians of France and French imperialism. Written in engaging prose, the book will appeal to the broader public's interest in natural disasters, and will become required reading for undergraduates in courses on natural disasters in world history
Notes "This book published as part of the Sustainable History Monograph Pilot."
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 263-280)
Notes Print version record
Subject Environmental disasters -- France -- Poltiical aspects
Environmental disasters -- Morocco -- Poltiical aspects
Environmental disasters -- Algeria -- Poltiical aspects
Imperialism -- Environmental aspects
Decolonization -- Morocco
Decolonization -- Algeria
French colonies.
France -- Colonies -- History
Genre/Form History.
Form Electronic book
ISBN 9781496222138