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Conflicts of Colonialism: The Rule of Law, French Soudan, and Faama Mademba Sèye

Cambridge University Press

Based around the life of Mademba Sèye, an African born in the colonial town of Saint Louis du Sénégal in 1852, who transformed himself with the help of his French patrons from a telegraph clerk into an African king, this book examines Mademba's life and career to reveal how colonialism in French West Africa was articulated differently at different times and how Mademba survived these changes by periodically reinventing himself. Investigating Mademba's alleged abuses of power and crimes that pitted French colonial indirect rule policy with its foundations in patronage and loyalty against its stated commitment to the rule of law and the civilizing mission, Conflicts of Colonialism sheds light on conflicts between different forms of colonialism and the deep ambiguities of the rule of law in colonial societies, which, despite serious challenges to Mademba's rule, allowed him to remain king until his death in 1918.