1st Edition

Entanglements of Modernity, Colonialism and Genocide
Burundi and Rwanda in Historical-Sociological Perspective

ISBN 9780367821111
Published October 17, 2019 by Routledge
224 Pages

USD $48.95

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Book Description

This book offers a novel sociological examination of the historical trajectories of Burundi and Rwanda. It challenges both the Eurocentric assumptions which have underpinned many sociological theorisations of modernity, and the notion that the processes of modernisation move gradually, if precariously, towards more peaceable forms of cohabitation within and between societies. Addressing these themes at critical historical junctures – precolonial, colonial and postcolonial – the book argues that the recent experiences of extremely violent social conflict in Burundi and Rwanda cannot be seen as an ‘object apart’ from the concerns of sociologists, as it is commonly presented. Instead, these experiences are situated within a specific route to and through modernity, one ‘entangled’ with Western modernity. A contribution to an emerging global historical sociology, Entanglements of Modernity, Colonialism and Genocide will appeal to scholars of sociology and social theory with interests in postcolonialism, historical sociology, multiple modernities and genocide.

Table of Contents



Part I

1. Genocide and Colonialism

2. Theorising the Multiplicity tf Modernity: Entangled Historical Routes to and through Modernity

Part II

3. Precolonial Burundi and Rwanda: A Historical Survey*

4. The Colonial Entanglement, 1905-1945: The Racialisation of Tradition.

5. Trajectories Towards Independence, 1945-1965: Multiple ‘Societal Self-Understandings’

6. Postcolonial Crisis and Genocide, 1965-1994: Traumas of Modernity.



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Jack Palmer is a teaching fellow in sociology at the University of Leeds. His research interests lie in theoretical debates concerning experiences, interpretations and trajectories of modernity, in the sociology of colonial-imperialism, and in genocide studies.