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Francophone Africa at fifty$
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Tony Chafer and Alexander Keese

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780719089305

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719089305.001.0001

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Gaston Defferre’s Loi-Cadre and its application, 1956/57: last chance for a French African ‘empire-state’ or blueprint for decolonisation?

Gaston Defferre’s Loi-Cadre and its application, 1956/57: last chance for a French African ‘empire-state’ or blueprint for decolonisation?

Chapter:
(p.15) 1 Gaston Defferre’s Loi-Cadre and its application, 1956/57: last chance for a French African ‘empire-state’ or blueprint for decolonisation?
Source:
Francophone Africa at fifty
Author(s):

Martin Shipway

Publisher:
Manchester University Press
DOI:10.7228/manchester/9780719089305.003.0002

The decolonization process in itself was very much characterized by personal decisions and networks between individuals, which in a way can be understood as precursors to the Franco-African links of the post-1960 period. Martin Shipway focuses on these links with regard to the elaboration of the Loi-cadre (or framework law) of 1956 that provided semi-autonomy for France’s African territories and was a milestone on the road to decolonization. Leading colonial officials, such as Governor-General Robert Delavignette and the high commissioners at Dakar and Brazzaville, were involved in this project, while the support of most leading African politicians, such as Léopold Sédar Senghor, was based on certain key conditions. However, according to Shipway, the reform process was most strongly driven by the pragmatism and political dynamism of the Law’s principal architects: Minister of Overseas France and mayor of Marseille, Gaston Defferre, and Ivorian political leader and French Minister of State, Félix Houphouët-Boigny. It shows the political agency of the colonized in a process mediated through the participation of individual actors.

Keywords:   Decolonization, France, Africa, Loi-cadre, empire

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