Celebrity Colonialism: Fame, Power and Representation in by Robert Clarke

By Robert Clarke

'Celebrity Colonialism' brings jointly reviews on an array of personalities, hobbies and occasions from the colonial period to the current, and explores the intersection of discourses, formations and associations that situation superstar in colonial and postcolonial cultures. throughout nineteen chapters, it examines the entanglements of reputation and gear repute in colonial and postcolonial settings. each one bankruptcy demonstrates the occasionally hugely ambivalent roles performed by way of recognized personalities as endorsements and apologists for, antagonists and challengers of, colonial, imperial and postcolonial associations and practices. and every of their approach presents an perception into the complicated set of meanings implied by way of novel time period 'celebrity colonialism'. The contributions to this assortment show that superstar presents a strong lens for analyzing the nexus of discourses, associations and practices linked to the dynamics of appropriation, domination, resistance and reconciliation that represent colonial and postcolonial cultural politics. Taken jointly the contributions to 'Celebrity Colonialism' argue that the exam of big name can provide to counterpoint our knowing of what colonialism was once and, extra considerably, what it has turn into.

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We have not changed. 23 Nationalism of this kind rests on the assertion of tradition, rather than an interpretation of history. It suppresses difference and change in order to uphold identity. QXP 16/11/05 12:02 pm Page 17 HISTORICAL AWARENESS IV Nostalgia – history as loss Traditionalism is the crudest distortion of historical awareness, because it does away with the central notion of development over time. Other distortions are more subtle. One that has huge influence is nostalgia. Like tradition, nostalgia is backward-looking, but instead of denying the fact of historical change, it interprets it in one direction only – as change for the worse.

QXP 14 16/11/05 12:02 pm Page 14 THE PURSUIT OF HISTORY times referred to by anthropologists as ‘traditional societies’. But such conditions no longer exist. In any society with a dynamic of social or cultural change, as indicated by external trade or social hierarchy or political institutions, an uncritical respect for tradition is counterproductive. It suppresses the historical changes which have occurred in the intervening period; indeed it positively discourages any attention to those changes and leads to the continuance of outward forms which are really redundant – or which we might say have been ‘overtaken by history’.

This argument was partly directed against the unreflecting empiricism which was much commoner among historians then than it is now. Carr wanted to dispose of the idea that following the trusted procedures of the professional will yield authentic or objective knowledge of the past. He showed that at every level of historical enquiry, from the choice of source materials through to the finished work of history, the present intrudes on the reconstruction of the past. What the most casual reader will carry away from reading What Is History?

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