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ORIGINAL FRENCH ARTICLE: https://www.humanite.fr/juppe-renon...

JUPPÉ DOES NOT WANT A FRANTZ-FANON ALLEY IN...

Translated Monday 11 February 2019

JUPPÉ DOES NOT WANT A FRANTZ-FANON ALLEY IN BORDEAUX
Monday, February 11, 2019
Rosa Moussaoui
The Mayor of Bordeaux gives in to the injunctions of the extreme right, which vilifies Fanon’s fight for Algerian independence.

It wasn’t a boulevard: just a discreet alley. On Thursday, the mayor of Bordeaux, Alain Juppé, decided to "suspend" the inscription of Frantz Fanon’s name in a public space. In December, the city council approved the choice to name a path in the new Ginko district in the north of the city after the psychiatrist from Marinique, a figure of resistance to colonial oppression and a fighter for Algerian independence. That was all it took to provoke one of those outbursts of hatred that nostalgic colonizers crave. Out of the backwaters of the Riposte Laïque website, it was RN [1] François Jay who gave the signal for battle, denouncing the tribute "to a man who, sixty years ago, took up the cause of Algerian terrorism". To equate the Algerian liberation struggle with a terrorist enterprise, to put the head doctor of the Blida hospital, a thinker of human emancipation, in the same bag as Daech: ignorance and niggling are disputing here for historical falsification. the shouts of a few excited extremists were enough to make Juppé back down. "Today, the choice of Frantz Fanon’s name gives rise to misunderstandings, polemics and oppositions that I can understand," explains the mayor complacently.

In Bordeaux, a former slave port, the names of the wealthy families whose fortunes were built on the "ebony wood" trade, draw a forgetful urban toponymy. Colbert, the author of the Black Code, has his street. Just like Faidherbe or Gallieni, great colonial massacreurs. And so the scandal would be, in this geography, to use the name of a freedom fighter? Fanon wanted to restore humanity where it had been denied. For him, this political horizon meant healing the colonized and discovering the man behind the colonizer. Only some rancid mind can find there subject to controversy.

Rosa Moussaoui

[1Rassemblement National, an extreme right wing political party


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