1st Edition

Reconsidering Colonial Heritage in West African Cities Urban Space in Cape Verde, Senegal and The Gambia

By Krzysztof Górny Copyright 2024
    192 Pages 61 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The material heritage of the colonial era is built into Africa’s cities, from their urban layouts, to their architecture, monuments and street names. This book discusses the varying responses to colonial heritage in West African cities, with a particular focus on the case studies of Praia in Cape Verde, Dakar in Senegal and Banjul in The Gambia.

    Europeans tended to focus on cities as centres of administration, and they were often both the starting points for settlement and the locations in which power was formally handed over to new African governments. Colonialism in Praia, Dakar and Banjul was abolished at different times, under different colonial powers (Portuguese, French and British) and amongst vastly different conditions of unrest. Based on extensive original research, this book demonstrates that the contemporary approach to the contentious issue of urban colonial heritage is often determined by metropolis-colony relationship before decolonisation, postcolonial diplomatic relations as well as present-day political decisions.

    The book uncovers a rich relationship between politics and urban space, and between new and old. Combining insights from political sciences, history, critical geography, heritage studies and urban planning, this book will be of interest to a wide range of researchers.

    1. Introduction to colonial heritage in West African cities


    2. Colonial heritage in modern-day Praia


    3. Colonial heritage in modern-day Dakar


    4. Colonial heritage in modern-day Banjul


    5. Conclusion


    Krzysztof Górny is a political and historical geographer specialising in research on cities and countries of Sub-Saharan Africa, where he conducts field research (e.g. in Ghana, Senegal, The Gambia, Rwanda or Guinea-Bissau). He works at the Faculty of Geography and Regional Studies at the University of Warsaw, where he teaches classes on political geography, historical geography, international conflicts, history and geography of Africa as well as urban studies. In 2020, he defended his doctoral dissertation entitled “Colonial heritage in contemporary urban space of West African cities”. He publishes articles in renowned international journals, such as Planning Perspectives, Journal of Urban History, Journal of Baltic Studies, Miscellanea Geographica or Land.