The “post” in “postcolonialism” implies that colonialism belongs to a bygone era. In this course we will question that assumption by using postcolonial approaches and a critical reflection on the role of racism. A historical analysis of the significance of imperial and racist thought patterns will help identify the continuities of these in modern society and politics, including critical considerations of the origins of the liberal order and foundations of what we understand as international relations, peace-making, and development policies. Using the case studies of Germany and the UK, this course will take up current debates such as the restitution of colonial loot and extend them to more frequently overlooked colonial legacies and imperial durabilities both in the formerly colonised and colonising nations. By the end of the seminar students should be able to answer the following: What are the main features of postcolonial theory and what types of methods or questions does it encourage? How are questions of racism and postcolonial approaches interlinked? How do imperial legacies continue to shape society, politics, and international relations in formerly colonised and colonising nations? Why is postcolonial critique relevant today?

Semester: ST 2022