Anti-Colonial Political Thought

1 July 2022 - 2 July 2022

McCrum Lecture Theatre, Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, CB2 1RH

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Richard Bourke, Kings College, Cambridge
Shruti Kapila, Corpus Christi College, Cambridge
Hussein Omar, University College Dublin


Andrew Arsan, University of Cambridge
Faisal Devji, University of Oxford
Adom Getachew, University of Chicago
Lawrence Hamilton Witwatersrand, University of Johannesburg
Leslie James, Queen Mary University of London
Shruti Kapila, University of Cambridge
Sudipta Kaviraj, Columbia University
Jean Khalfa, University of Cambridge
Pratap Bhanu Mehta, Ashoka University
Hussein Omar, University of Oxford
Neguin Yavari, Columbia University
Musab Younis, Queen Mary University of London
Faridah Zaman, University of Oxford


One of the most dramatic geo-political developments in the twentieth century was the demise of the European empires, which had been gradually formed and re-formed since the early modern period. This process of disintegration was accompanied by the rise of anti-imperial polemic, both in European metropolitan centres and in various imperial dependencies across the globe.

This conference will focus on arguments against empire deployed by those who resisted its authority in numerous colonial settings spanning Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and the Far East. Contributors will reconstruct the ideologies deployed by key intellectual figures embroiled in the process, including Pearse, Ambedkar, Gandhi, Nasser, Cabral, Fanon, Nkrumah and Khomeini. The academic literature has tended to identify opposition to empire as an instance of ‘nationalism’, thus reducing a complex range of responses to a single ideological counter. The aim of this conference is to attend more carefully to the diversity of political languages that were originally employed.

Entrance to the McCrum Lecture Theatre  is located through the Eagle Pub archway via Bene't Street. The venue is fully accessible with step-free access. There are disabled toilet facilities in the McCrum Theatre Foyer. Please see the link to the venue on this page.


Supported by:

CRASSH Yellow Logo            (Trevelyan Fund)     

    (The Smuts Memorial Fund)




If you have any specific accessibility needs for this event please get in touch. We will do our best to accommodate any requests.

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