Selective Empathy: Workers, Colonial Subjects, and the Affective Politics of French Romantic Socialism
During the 1830s and 1840s, romantic socialists in France wrote about three subjugated groups in the French empire: metropolitan workers, slaves in the Caribbean and Indian Ocean colonies, and Algerian civilians. Although these three groups ostensibly shared similar conditions of deprivation and violent treatment at the hands of the French state, socialists depicted them in importantly different terms, with the effect of humanizing workers and slaves, while dehumanizing the Algerians suffering French conquest and colonization. This article explores these presentations and examines the way they worked together to champion the socialist priority, the emergent working classes of the July Monarchy, and to indirectly endorse the settler colonial project in Algeria.
Andrews, N. J. (2018). Selective Empathy: Workers, Colonial Subjects, and the Affective Politics of French Romantic Socialism. French Politics, Culture & Society, 36(1), 1–25. https://doi.org/10.3167/fpcs.2018.360101