Sarah Parker Remond Centre


Transcript: In conversation with Musab Younis

This conversation was recorded on 13th January 2023. Speakers: Dr Luke de Noronha and Musab Younis.

INT:     Hello, I’m Luke de Noronha, lecturer at the Sarah Parker Remond Centre here at UCL and today I’m delighted to be speaking with Musab Younis. Musab is a senior lecturer in Politics and International Relations at Queen Mary University of London. He works on international political thought, with a focus on race, empire and anti-colonialism, especially during the late 19th century and the 20th century. For the last few years, he’s been teaching at Queen Mary, the University of London Institute in Paris and he's a regular contributor to the London Review of Books, with some excellent essays in the LRB.

            Today we’re going to be talking about Musab’s book, On the Scale of the World: The Formation of Black Anti-colonial Thought, which was published by the University of California Press at the end of last year. This is a book about how anti-colonial ideas circulated across the Black Atlantic between the two World Wars and the way in which anti-colonial thinkers were necessarily theorising on the scale of the world. Thanks for joining us, Musab. My first question, can you tell us what you mean by ‘thinking on the scale of the world’?

MY:      Thanks for having me, Luke. What I mean by ‘on the scale of the world’ is actually something quite literal: I mean on a global scale. And the reason that I wanted to point this out is that, going through the archives produced by radical anti-colonialists, Pan-Africanists, various black radicals of the inter-war period, I noticed very quickly that there was a kind of insistent focus on the scale of the world, and that contrasted with the kind of language that I think has become common in more recent years.

            And it really struck me how a Sierra Leonean writer, for example, – and I open this book with this anecdote in 1919 – talking about the Paris Peace Conference declared that the grand machinery of the world needs to be reconfigured, in order to find an appropriate place for Africans and the African diaspora. It struck me that despite people living in colonial conditions, where their access to the world was actually very restricted in lots of ways, they nevertheless saw their own liberation, political liberation, from the depredations of colonialism, as being contingent upon some form of reorganisation of the whole world.

            So that’s really what On the Scale of the World is about. It’s about the wide angle focus that these thinkers insisted on and what it’s not about – I guess the kind of obverse to the scale of the world - is a form of provincialism. And I can talk more about that, but I see this archive as resolutely, and in a really important way, anti-provincial and anti-localist as well.

INT:     Maybe you could say a bit more about that archive, because I suppose for people who haven’t read the book, what are the importance of the kind of print cultures that make up some of this archive to this kind of worldly perspective.

MY:      It probably helps me to say a little bit about how I came to find these archives. I’d been interested in Pan-Africanism as a political project and, for my master’s thesis, I wrote about Kwame Nkrumah and other people’s project to create a United States of Africa between 1957 and 1963, when the Organisation of African Unity was founded and kind of put an end to that dream in that form. Truman Other Peoples’ Project to create a United States of Africa between 1957 and 1963, when the Organisation of African Unity was founded and kind of put an end to that dream in that form.

            And one thing I realised, reading about that post-independence period, was that so much of the ideational kind of basis of it had been laid in the inter-war period, in the period just before independence for most of these countries. So I became very interested in that kind of ideological, really in a way a kind of revolution, I think, in thinking about colonialism, and that was particularly the case across the Black Atlantic. I was especially interested in West Africa and the Caribbean, but also their connections to Europe and the US.

            So the kind of main archives I looked at were really almost all texts produced by West African and Caribbean figures, in either those places or Europe or the US, and yet much of it was not published as kind of political tomes of political theory, or books of economics, and yet they spoke about politics, and economics and all those things. And so a lot of it is newspapers and the archives are held in various colonial locations, or in West Africa or the Caribbean.

            That was important to me, because I also wanted to show the ways in which that anti-colonial theory was produced and communicated across distances, also is very significant to the kind of content of that theory, so form and content here are really one and the same and can’t be separated. And there was something very significant about the ways in which these imperial technologies had been seized upon by anti-colonial thinkers, in particularly the newspaper but also the telegram, also travel, and shipping. That said something, I think, about their view of the possibilities contained within modernity, despite all of the problems that were also there.

INT:     Fascinating. Maybe we could talk a little bit more about the period, because in one sense, I’d like to say more about what your book adds to the historiography about this period, the inter-war period, and then also about how it makes an intervention into theorisations of anti-colonial thought. Because you do mention really usefully, I think, references to the idea of a world system, or kind of Third Worldist theory, or Pan-Africanism, etc. and how perhaps are you making a kind of corrective, that we might be looking in the wrong place for where some of this theory comes from?

            Finally, you read in both French and English, so you’re trying to make an argument about the connections that aren’t always made between Francophone and Anglophone circuits of anti-imperial thought, and of imperialism itself. So if you could say a little bit more about that moment, and the circulation of ideas, and are they going across from French and English speaking anti-colonial thinkers, how are these ideas circulating?

MY:      If I just pick up on that last point, to start with. I think there is a really important form of travel and communication across languages, not just French and English, but they are two of the main imperial languages of the period. In a way, I guess it’s quite surprising that, given the prevalence of anti-colonial writing, writing that was critical of colonialism in both languages at the same time, and the form of the communication between them, that scholars have very rarely looked at these forms of writing together.

            One of the big exceptions is Brent Hayes Edwards’ book, The Practice of Diaspora. So I wanted to really take Edwards’ method in a way – and he works in literary studies – to say, can we also look at political writing from a kind of political framework, an international theory framework, in the same way?

            One thing that really interested me was how these texts are speaking to each other and speaking to many of the same themes. An example is that there’s a proliferation in the inter-war period of newspapers in West Africa. So this is like a golden age of West African newspapers and newspapers are recognised as being the basis of West African nationalism, so they are politically very significant. People like Nnamdi Azikiwe, who are newspaper editors then become presidents of their respective countries – Nigeria, in his case.

            At the same time as that’s happening, in the US there’s the proliferation of newspapers like the Negro World, Marcus Garvey’s newspaper, which are formative and extremely significant moments in the history of black radicalism, internationalism, nationalism. And at the same time, in inter-war Paris a range of black radicals, many of whom fought for the French in the First World War and then have remained behind in Paris go on to found a series of newspapers.

            So these three locations I was particularly interested in. These newspapers which, of course, occupied different political positions, ranging from more or less critical of colonialism, or more or less compromising or uncompromising. Nevertheless, they’re all dealing with trying to theorise what colonialism is, what race is, and how liberatory future for Africans, and the African diaspora, might be secured. So I thought it was really important to look at those texts together in one book, and that’s one of the things I tried to do.

            One of the things it helps us to show – and this speaks to your question about the specificity of the inter-war period - is the ways in which, the inter-war period, certain changes, in particular to do with the accessibility of travel, and print, and also literacy, which remains restricted to an elite in certain contexts, especially in West Africa, but, nevertheless, expands massively, compared to the late 19th century, or even the early 20th century.

            So these features, like travel and literacy - obviously the First World War and the effects that that’s had, potentiate Pan-Africanism as an idea and Black Internationalism, and Third Worldism, in general anti-colonialism, in a way that, even if those ideas were not completely new, they hadn’t been able to take this form before. Pan-Africanism was about uniting the dispersed constituencies created in part through the trans-Atlantic slave trade, but that requires a certain technological capacity that had been much more restricted before. So I think there’s something very specific that happens in that inter-war period to do with this interaction between the moment and what it offers, and then the idea of global transformation.

            Of course, as I mention in the book, the idea of needing to transform the world, of forms of globalism, are really common in the inter-war period, and 1919, the end of the First World War, is a moment when many people from many different places and contexts are thinking about what the world should look like and how we might organise the world differently. And I guess one of the aims of this is to show that people in Africa and the Caribbean, and elsewhere, are thinking seriously about those same questions.

INT:     I suppose there’s been a set of debates about the relationship between nationalism and worldliness, often in the context of the period of decolonisation after the Second World War. So I’m thinking there was a lot of debate after Adom Getachew’s book, Worldmaking after Empire, and a kind of conversation about the ways in which different anti-colonial thinkers were or weren’t seeking only to claim one nation state, or whether they were connected to pan movements. I suppose trying to trace the tragedy of the post-colonial for many formally colonised nation states and societies. How do you think your book adds to this set of debates about that question of nationalism and internationalism?

MY:      I think it’s a really important question. In a way, it’s one of the places I got to quite early in the research of the book, because I was really interested in the disjunct between theories of nationalism. I’m thinking here particularly of the body of work known as ‘nationalism studies’, which seeks to abstractly theorise what nationalism is and how it came about, etc. and how to define it, and then the history of, in particular, black and African nationalisms but I think it goes more broadly, for anti-colonial nationalisms in general.

            And realising that there was a disjunct that spoke to the fact that often a form of nationalism, internationalism and pan-nationalism, let’s say in the African context, were all working together, in a sense, aiming to achieve the same thing, which was a form of changing the world, a reconfiguration of the world. And the reason that they were all connected was because there was a sense that the obstacles facing black liberation, and African liberation, were the imperial system as a whole, not just a particular empire, and racism and what they called the ‘global colour line’ at the time.

            Both of these things were essentially global in scale. So, therefore, what looked to some people in nationalism studies like doctrines, that are the products of certain kind of deeply held beliefs, you’re either a nationalist, or an internationalist, or a pan-nationalist, in this other context start to look a lot more like political tools aiming to achieve a certain form of reconfiguration.

            So one of the things I became really interested in is how did people, for example, Ghanaian political activists like J.E. Casely Hayford, come to understand the inter-relationship between their nationalism and their internationalism, and in a way that then becomes a question about scales and the inter-relationship between scales, and that’s one of the things I wanted to talk about in the book as well. But I think that there’s a reason, and I think Adom’s book is a really important contribution, in showing that the black anti-colonialism, the Black Atlantic anti-colonialism and nationalism of a slightly later period, was really engineered towards what she called ‘world-making’.

            I think it’s a really important moment, in general, in research into Black Atlantic nationalism and anti-colonial nationalism, is to question some of the kind of the sharp divisions that we sometimes see between nationalism and internationalism, which I think sometimes come from – and that’s my contention in the book – a lack of sufficient attention being paid to their worldly and planetary ambitions.

INT:     So when you say that the worldly and planetary ambitions of these thinkers can be contrasted with provincialism, are you thinking of provincialism as an unfair accusation made against these national movements, or are you thinking of it as another current within these kinds of spaces and times? Is the foil really about actually existing provincialism or political movements for that, or is it about a later period when things become provincial?

MY:      I think it’s both actually. For me, the accusation of provincialism, I have a chapter that focusses mainly on Garvey – and it’s the second chapter - and I try and show that Garvey is a complex figure. There are different forms of Garveyism, there’s different Garveyism’s that we can interpret. People are often very keen to find one thing and say, this is really the essence of Garvey, this is what Garvey meant.

            And one of the things I found is that the accusations of provincialism that are very often attached to Garvey and then what you see as Garveate black nationalism, they sometimes misapprehend some of the content of, let’s say, his conception of race, his conception of racial boundary, his conception of Africa, his concept of anti-colonialism. These can be contradictory, because he says different things at different times and Garveyism, as many scholars have shown, especially in recent years, was a really broad and diverse movement, operating in many different places, and it meaning different things to different people.

            But one of the things I show is that, for example, Garvey himself in an editorial in 1923, he expressed certain forms of scepticism, for example, about the definitional boundary of the word ‘negro’ and how to categorise it. He did that in response to the French Government claiming that the Moroccan and Algerian troops it was using to occupy the Rhine were not, in fact, ‘negros,’ they were not black, and Garvey expressed scepticism about trying to define this category of ‘negro’ in a way that reflected certain kind of biological reality.

            So moments like this I think are quite surprising, compared to if we think of someone like Garvey as a kind of racialist, or someone who believes fervently in the idea of biological race, because you can find elements of that in what he says, but you can also find deep scepticism and a sense of a kind of radically contingent understanding of race and its boundaries, and contingent on, specifically, the operation of global imperialism. And then one of the things I try and show, in that chapter, is the extent to which Garvey was really obsessed with globality and with the world. His newspaper, The Negro World, it’s interesting how few times people have really thought about that world element to that title, and why it was so important to him.

            So that was the element about trying to defend… not necessarily defend but certain complexify the idea that certain people are just provincial nationalists. But then the other thing is to also say that provincialism is, in some cases, a temptation that should be resisted, and I think the idea of provincialism has been… because of propaganda for localism that we’ve seen in recent decades, it’s become very hard to criticise provincialism. Provincialism is seen as almost a good thing, because it’s a form of resisting the domineering, what I refer to in the book as the ‘Apollonian gaze’ of globality, and whether it’s speaking from the perspective of Foucault, or Henri Latour, there’s this deep scepticism that’s been evinced towards the idea of globality, the global scale.

            And I try to kind of reclaim that for critical politics and say that actually anti-colonialists found that global scale really important, often because they were trying to resist forms of provincialism that were being imposed upon them. So I give the example, in the chapter about West Africa, of indirect rule, and indirect rule is a kind of form of provincializing from the imperial perspective, and I think imperialism actually very often works through enforced provincialism. So people like [??? 23:10] Heyford and many others, [???] who resisted that, they very consciously often talked about trying to expand the spatial boundaries of the policies that they were interested in, beyond what the empire would like them to do.

INT:     Maybe we could talk a little bit about the distinction between globality and planetarity - you had some notes in this throughout because, obviously, the discussion about planetarity is quite alive, especially in the context of climate breakdown. But what’s the kind of case you’re making, in all this subtlety, about retaining globality, or about keeping both terms?

MY:      There’s a conception that’s quite common now, which is to say that these two things are very different and that globality refers to a kind of, let’s say, rational kind of knowable world. Maybe you would say the world a hundred years ago, at the time of the 1920s, when people were thinking about how the world should look. It’s kind of institutional but there’s a utopian element to it that’s based upon what we now know as a misapprehension of the capacity and limits of the earth and seeing the world really in a kind of humancentric way, through the lens of mankind / people. I say ‘mankind’ because there’s also a gendered element that’s been pointed out.

            So that’s how globality, and then planetary is posited as a kind of alternative to that, which is a way of thinking about the world that really recognises that the earth long pre-dates humanity, and will probably postdate humanity, and that there’s a kind of radical contingency to our existence as a species on the earth. Then there’s a sense of menace, the unknown forces, that kind of the planet holds. So there’s something much bigger, more expansive, there’s something about geological time, in the planetary, that isn’t there in the global.

            And I think that distinction is significant, in some ways, but actually I don’t completely buy it, and one of the reasons I don’t – and I mention this in the book - is that I think that both of those definitions to me reflect a kind of elite way of thinking about the global and the planetary, and they also, insufficiently I think, pay attention to the theoretical process by which we arrive at conceptions of scale. For example, if you think of the global, as many people do, as purely a product of the imperial vision, the racial vision, the need for empire to dominate everything, what you don’t see is the obverse to that, the opposition to that has also been global in nature because, in many ways, it’s had to work through the system that’s been constructed in order to dominate it.

            There isn’t a way, I think, of simply ignoring or bypassing globality by saying, it’s a product of power and, therefore, it can be rejected, and we can just simply turn to this other conception that’s kind of always been there. So I draw on this phrase by Edward Said called ‘surreptitious counter-narrative’ and I argue that the black anti-colonial thinkers that I look at, what they were often doing was constructing a surreptitious counter-narrative of globality, which was global in nature but which actually did the opposite things, to what imperial globality was seeking to do and, nevertheless, recognised that it had to operate on that scale.

            Now, when we think about the reasons that the idea of the planetary is popular today, and we think of anthropogenic climate change, and the more limited range of prospects, in some ways, that seem to be open to us as a species, I think actually that the history of the surreptitious counter-narrative, the history of taking a scale that’s been produced not in your interests but then seizing it and transforming it into something that can work in your interests, is actually very, very relevant and essential. So, in that sense, I think that black anti-colonial theory really should be the basis of how we start to comprehend the climate catastrophe.

INT:     Maybe we could discuss chapter four a little bit. I really loved this chapter, it’s titled The Body and the World. There are two things I’d like you to draw out from there, firstly, just tell us what you’re saying about theoretical and intellectual debates around the body in relation to your overall project and then I was specifically interested in the ways in which these anti-colonial thinkers of West Africa were concerned about the threat of settler colonial relations being instituted. Of course, this was undecided at this point, and the ways in which they’re looking across the space of the world, and history, to think about the process of colonisation and what they might need to prepare for or fight against. And you talk about extirpation as well, so if you could say a little bit about those things, that would be great.

MY:      This is one of the chapters where I actually look at these two archives together in the same chapter. So part of the chapter looks at West African writers, mainly journalists, in the inter-war period, who get very concerned with the idea that Europeans might start arriving en masse to settle in West Africa and what that would mean. The reason they start thinking that is that various organs of imperial opinion are advocating that that should happen and they’re advocating it in, quite frankly, genocidal language. They’re saying we can get rid of the Africans and put Europeans in their place.

            And that wasn’t unusual, to advocate genocidal imperial policy at that time, but there was an attempt in West Africa to try and understand, what does it say about imperialism in general, and the British imperial system in particular, that these forms of opinion can be articulated, regardless of whether or not they reflect ‘official imperial policy’, which, as we know, is always in flux and often beholden to settler interests in certain contexts. But what does it mean about imperialism that our bodies, our existences, as colonised Africans, are so open to potential extirpation, i.e. rooting out and replacement by Europeans?

            And then in another part of the chapter, the second half of it really, I look at black literary writers working in Paris at the same period. So the founders of the ‘Negritude Movement’, especially Aimé Césaire and René Maran, who wrote, Batouala, a really important novel, which is the first novel by a black person to win the Prix Goncourt, in France, the most famous literary prize.

            What I find is that they’re also doing quite a similar thing in these texts, they’re different kinds of texts. They’re not newspaper articles, they’re literary works and yet, in all of these different literary works, we find this insistent return to the question of what it means to be racialised and the bodily experience of that. But the ways in which the bodily experience of racialisation, the feeling of being hemmed in, pinned down, isolated, there’s a really interesting strain of this writing, which talks about ‘the lonely black body’, ‘the loneliness of race’, in general.

            So there’s a really interesting kind of correlation between that and what the West African writers are saying at the same time and I think what this speaks to is a way in which the personal, intimate, bodily experience of race and colonialism were extrapolated, by black anti-colonists into an understanding of the global system of race and empire as a whole.

            So there was a kind of method by which these scales were inter-related that I think is really important. I draw on people like Katherine McKittrick to suggest that one of the things I think this shows is that we can start thinking differently also about geography, and about this inter-relationship between the scales, which helps us to address, I think, some of the lacunae that often emerge when colonised subjects, in general, are seen as, in a sense, victims of space but never producers of space; and that’s one of the things McKittrick points out.

            So I think that chapter, one of the things that I was trying to do that was maybe different to what has been done before, is that I was trying to show that thinking about the body in relation to empire and thinking about what’s been called the ‘intimate frontiers of empire’ doesn’t just mean looking at the home, or the school, or the dormitory, or the prison, in the imperial context, and showing how imperialism is produced within intimate relations, but it’s also to say that, for many of these anti-colonial thinkers, the intimate and the bodily, the corporeal, was a kind of root to the global.

            It was a way of understanding a planetary and global system as a whole, and that leap, from the body to the world, I think is so significant to how we think about race and colonialism in general and especially in terms of how that goes on to influence and be a part of thinkers who are perhaps more well-known, like Frantz Fanon, James Baldwin, and including people that I look at like Du Bois. There’s something very significant here about the ways in which the body and the world are connected in their work, that I think it’s a really important advance that was made at this time, in terms of thinking about the connections between those two.

INT:     Maybe we can end, because I know that in other parts of your writing, your essays, you’re very much writing about the contemporary politics of race and racism, so I’m wondering if we can try and build some bridges across this period of this work you’ve done, the historical work, and thinking about the contemporary politics of race and racism. So, the broad question, things I’m thinking about, are how you see the relevance of some of the theoretical conversations and political movements that you’re tracing particularly, and some of the resonances and differences between that time and our own.

            Of course, the opposition there is especially stark – and we’re not in the inter-war years - but there are also some resonances that I find striking, particularly around whiteness, which we haven’t talked about, around kinds of demographic concerns that you talk about in inter-war France, which I didn’t know about but are of interest to me, around the hardening of the immigration regime. I do know about the 1924 Act in the US, as the famous high point of eugenic immigration policy, and I’ve read about the connection between the dominions in the US and the UK, thinking about whiteness and policies, but you bring France in, which I didn’t know about.

            So this kind of demographic concern which seems, to me, very central to the radical right, at the moment, and the spectre of uncontrolled immigration, the ethics of the lifeboat, etc. So there’s that and the connections between racism, and also, maybe, on the more hopeful side, what you’re arguing around globality against provincialism and how you any lessons we might take from that, for those involved in anti-racist struggle, in thinking about the scale at which they do that work.

MY:      I think you’re really right to point out some of the surprising similarities and correspondences between that period and ours. Because I think that one of the things that confronts us today, 2023, in looking at the world is… perhaps one of the most profound things is this strange non-death of race as a concept and racism as a structure, whichever terminology you want to use. The non-death of race, Hannah Arendt had already said, eight decades ago, that race thinking had survived libraries of refutations and its capacity to continue to withstand refutation, I think, should provoke a sense of trying to understand what it is, and why it’s so useful and so powerful.

            It doesn’t just remain there as a kind of background hum, but undergoes these quite dramatic forms of recrudescence. So there are many well-known examples we could pull out in the world, of forms of liberal ‘post-racial’ politics being superseded by forms of overtly 1920s style racism and racist language. So how can that happen and why isn’t this thing going away?

            What my reading of this archive aims to show is that, if we think about race not just in terms of a set of ideologies, not just in terms of what people think, secretly maybe, behind closed doors, but what they really think, deep down. If we think of it not in terms of simply forms of affect that are de-tethered from politics, but instead as a form of global organisation, which is what the black anti-colonial tradition tells us it is, I think we learn a lot more about why it continues to exist and be so persistent and powerful.

            In particular we start to think about what it would take to dismantle it and this is something I’ve mentioned elsewhere in an essay, but it’s interesting to me, that so much of contemporary popular writing on anti-racism doesn’t talk about global redistribution of wealth, it doesn’t talk about significant material transformation of the global economy, and that was something that really preoccupied anti-colonial thinkers and yet it’s kind of vanished from contemporary discussions of race.

            To most West Africans of the 1920s and 1930s, at least the people who were writing in the region’s newspapers, anti-racism meant things like a transformation of West Africa’s economy and what they would often term as ‘a fair place amongst the peoples of the world’, their rectification of the unjust and unfair rules of trade and the forms of exploitation that had been imposed on West Africa by imperialism, and which they extensively theorised.

            So given that form of rectification hasn’t happened, perhaps it’s not surprising that race, the ideology of colonial inequality, continues to be so powerful, in a period where, not just the legacy but the kind of actual fact and persistence of that inequality remains, and remains in need of some form of justification.

            You mentioned demography, and it was really striking to me living in Paris to look at the correspondences between the 1920s, the 1930s and today, in terms of the language about demography, and race, and whiteness. In many ways, things haven’t changed significantly, and that’s also a question as to why they haven’t, and in what ways they haven’t. So I think there are really interesting genealogical work we can do, in terms of tracing the history of these ideas back through time.

            Also thinking about the ways in which these are trans-national ideas, and one of the things I try to show is that it’s not just anti-colonialism, or radicalism, that’s internationalist or global, the whiteness, imperialism, and different forms of world dominating concepts are trans-national and imperial and internationalist in nature as well.

            So what I argue is that you can’t actually understand the French State and its approach to its own demography, its own demographic make up, and without looking at the relationship between white supremacists in Europe and the US, and the ways in which they’ve actually existed in a kind of internationalist network in which they feed. They read each other, and they cite each other, and there’s a form of important exchange happening there, and that was something that was very often picked up on in West Africa and the Caribbean, those white supremacist texts were read very attentively.

            So I think that the element that you mentioned of the hopeful side of things, and it’s not necessarily wanting to give out predictions, which I think isn’t that useful, but the story of the Black Atlantic as not really just a place but a kind of, let’s say, an intellectual formation that’s constituted, in many ways historically, through the violence of enslavement, but then comes to radically exceed the bounds of that history and becomes something else entirely, and something through which global transformation actually has to, in a way, pass through. And I don’t mean that just politically but also culturally and socially.

            I don’t know if you want to use the words ‘a hopeful story’ but I think it’s a story that doesn’t justify completely pessimistic readings of history. There’s a kind of determinism whereby you can see oppressed people as simply replicating their conditions of oppression, leading to forms of tragedy and the inability to really escape domination. And I don’t think the anti-colonial history, the colonial and post-colonial history, of Africa and the Caribbean, says that. That’s not how I read those histories.

            And I think an attention to the actual literary and political production of intellectuals, of particularly the West African diaspora, which I look at in this book, point to something much richer and more productive than a simple kind of replication of imperial modes of being and thinking, as something much more interesting, I think, than that. For me, I think that the history of anti-colonial thought is, in many ways, hopeful and certainly a kind of rejection of an overtly pessimistic understanding.

INT:     I think that’s a perfect place to end. Thank you very much.