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Postcolonial Realms of MemorySites and Symbols in Modern France$
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Etienne Achille, Charles Forsdick, and Lydie Moudileno

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781789620665

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781789620665.001.0001

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The Clamart Salon

The Clamart Salon

(p.55) The Clamart Salon
Postcolonial Realms of Memory

T. Denean Sharpley-Whiting

Liverpool University Press

This essay explores the Nardal sisters’ literary output and the twentieth-century literary salon as ground zero for debates about the multi-layered identity that is Frenchness, over and against French memory and sites of historical memorialization, histories of Negritude, and the history of French salons. It examines questions of French identity, exclusion and appropriation, gender, assimilation, and political culture as they relate to conversations at the Clamart salon and the writings of its hosts. The contrast between Frantz Fanon’s famous ‘Look a Negro!’ and its precursor found in a Paulette Nardal short story highlights the need to locate the sœurs Nardal into the long and rich history of Black France, but also to situate the salon in the broader ethos of race consciousness emergent in the Black Atlantic world of its time.

Keywords:   Soeurs Nardal, Memory, Negritude, Black French, Salons

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