1 ALGERIANS REMEMBER: AN ORAL HISTORY OF FRENCH COLONIAL ENCOU NTER By KHADIDJA ARFI A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF D OCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2014
2 2014 Khadidja Arfi
3 To the Algerian people and those whose testimories have been neglected in writing their h istories around the world and at all times
4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I thank my professors for their support throughout my studies at the University of Florida and many other institutions I express my deepest thanks and gratitude to Dr. Peter Schmidt for his continuous mentoring support, and advice. I expr ess my gratitude to my committee members Dr. Faye Harrison Dr. Abdo ulaye Kane, Dr. Maria Stoilkova and Dr. Paul Ortiz for their encouragement and very constructive critiques throughout this project. I am grateful to Algerians in the town and village s of Dellys, Algeria. They were most welcoming, loving, generous, and supportive in making this project a successful one I e specially remember in my prayers those among them who passed away and l eft this world before I was able to publish and transmit their te stimonies. I thank many Dellysians who were so helpful in facilitating my stay and aiding me to access many places and insti tu tions. I mostly present my great gratitude to my host family for the ir compassion and support and for providing me with delicious food and comfortable stay throughout my fieldwork. I am grateful to my parents Mohamed Kheder and Souag Fatma, who never stopped showing their love and compassion until they p assed away. I cherish their love for knowledge even though they were deprived of schooling during the colonial era T hey would be very proud with this achievement. I am gr at e ful to my fami l y at large for their lov e and respect, especially, my siblings, sisters and brothers in law, uncles and aunts, cousins nieces, and neph ews who hav e been very supportive of this project. I thank my sister Souad for her support and enlightening chats that made my writing go smooth. I am so thankful for my daughter Soumaya whose kindness, love and friendship are beyond description. I thank her and her husband Noureddine for their words and encouragement and for giving me the chance to be a grandmother and cherish for the rest of my life my precious and ama zing
5 grandkids, Mariam, Youssef, and the coming one. I thank Mar iam and Youssef for their laugh s ma king my day every time I hear them. I pray t hat their lives will be happy and fulfilling I hope they would be among those who love knowledge and live in peace and harmony with the world Finally, I cannot say enough to show my appreciation and love to my love and husband Badredine for his contin u ous support throughout life and especially my studies and the writing of this dissertation Thank you for a long life companionship. This is a life dream coming true : learning, writing and teaching My u ltimate gr atitude goes to my Creator, Allah Almighty, Alhamdu li Allah.
6 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 4 LIST OF TABLES ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 10 LIST OF FIGURES ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 11 ABSTRACT ................................ ................................ ................................ ................... 13 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 15 Reflexive Thoughts ................................ ................................ ................................ 15 Significance of the Topic ................................ ................................ ......................... 16 Literature Review and Theory ................................ ................................ ................. 18 Contact or Colonialism ................................ ................................ ............................ 18 The Anthropology and History Debates ................................ ................................ .. 21 Postcolonial Approaches to Algerian Colonial Past ................................ ................ 22 Historicizing Subaltern Voices: the Challenge ................................ ........................ 27 Social Memory and Trauma ................................ ................................ .................... 28 of Colonialism ................................ ............... 37 2 METHOD AND SETTING ................................ ................................ ....................... 39 Method ................................ ................................ ................................ .................... 39 Oralities D efinitions ................................ ................................ ................................ 39 Personal Interest and Academic Endeavor ................................ ............................. 43 Conducting Fieldwork ................................ ................................ ............................. 44 The Challenges of Social Obligation ................................ ................................ ....... 47 Setting ................................ ................................ ................................ ..................... 47 Pre colonial Political and Economic Development ................................ ........... 48 Entering Dellys ................................ ................................ ................................ 52 3 SOCIAL TIES IN COLONIAL TIMES: WE ARE ONE BIG FAMILY ........................ 60 Marriage and kinship formation ................................ ................................ ............... 66 Marriage Formation among the Autochthons of the Casbah ............................ 68 Marriage and Kuluglis Alliances i n the Casbah ................................ ................ 72 Marriage Connecting Casbah and Villages ................................ ...................... 73 The Casbah, a Place of Memories ................................ ................................ .......... 74 Subsistence and Sharing ................................ ................................ ........................ 78 Relationships with Colonials ................................ ................................ ................... 87
7 4 REMEMBERING EDUCATION: WELL STREAMI NG RESISTANCE .................... 93 Colonial Impairment of Institutions of Learning ................................ ....................... 93 Exodus of Dellysian Minds and Defamed Zaouat ................................ ............. 99 Colonial Control of Land and Estate (habous) ................................ ................ 101 ............................... 103 Local Remembrances of Mission Civilisatrice ................................ ................ 106 Recalling the French School ................................ ................................ ........... 110 Unpred ictable Nationalist Consciousness ................................ ............................. 118 Restating the Links of the Islamic Umma and Reform ................................ .... 118 Introduction of the National Algeri an Reformists ................................ ............ 119 ................................ 121 Memory of Abdoun School ................................ ................................ ............. 124 ................................ ................................ ............ 128 Sidi Ammar, the Reformed Arabic School ................................ ...................... 131 5 THE OTHER WITHIN: CITIZENSHIP, SUBJUGATED BODIES, AVARIOUS MINDS ................................ ................................ ................................ .................. 138 ................................ .................... 139 The Goumi Phenomeno n ................................ ................................ ...................... 148 The Development of Goumia in Villages ................................ ............................... 150 Liminal Goumia and the Lamb that Exiled a Whole Village ............................ 151 The Goumi who Gave Life and Death ................................ ............................ 153 The Perception of Al Goumi, the Vicious ................................ .............................. 154 Al Goumi: More Vicious than the French ................................ ........................ 155 Al Goumia, the Evil Eye and the Cow ................................ ............................. 156 Al Goumi the Molester and Women: Courage and Su rvival ........................... 157 The Tale of M.A: Remembering the Most Infamous Goumi ................................ .. 161 Reflections and Conclusion ................................ ................................ .................. 171 6 PRELUDE TO REVOLUTION: AWARENESS OF RIGHT FOR DIGNITY ............ 173 7 REMEMBERING THE THAWRA: THE ALGERIAN REVOLT FOR DIGNITY AND FREEDOM ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 185 ................................ ................ 186 Eve of Thawra and Armed Struggle ................................ ................................ ...... 188 E arly Casualties of War ................................ ................................ .................. 190 Social Life and Native/Nsara Relations Altered ................................ .............. 192 Becoming Mujahid ................................ ................................ ................................ 193 Old Resistors and the Thawra ................................ ................................ ........ 193 The Intellectuals and the Thawra ................................ ................................ ... 195 The Scheme to Bec ome Mujahid ................................ ................................ .......... 198 Desire to Become Mujahid: Killed before Killing ................................ ............. 199 From Colonial Army Service to Jebel ................................ ............................. 200 Hope in Lost Bullets and Rusted Pistol ................................ .......................... 202
8 The Strategy for a Successful Thawra ................................ ................................ .. 203 T he Khalia: The Cell ................................ ................................ ....................... 203 Mot de Passe (Password) ................................ ................................ .............. 206 ................................ ................................ ............. 207 Secrecy ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 2 08 European and Algerian Material and Moral Support to Thawra ............................ 209 European Sympathizers' Role in Re volution ................................ .................. 210 Revitaillement/Distribution ................................ ................................ .............. 218 The Challenge of Hiding Medical Supplies ................................ ..................... 219 ................................ ........................ 220 Women Feeding Mujahidin and Washing their Clothes ................................ .. 221 s Skills Covering for Mujahidin ................................ .......................... 223 ................................ ................................ ............. 224 ................................ ........ 224 8 CAN THEY FORGET? MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD TRAUMA AND VIOLENCE ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 227 Tormented Best Years of Childhood ................................ .............................. 229 Eager to Reveal Abuses of Colonialists ................................ ......................... 235 ................................ ............................... 239 Pardon me, They Defecated over our Heads ................................ ................. 240 The Sequels of the Death Labyrinth ................................ ............................... 241 9 CONCLUSION ................................ ................................ ................................ ...... 250 Social Memory ................................ ................................ ................................ ...... 252 Memory Work ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 256 Approaching the Past: Oral History and Oral Tradition ................................ ......... 260 Emergent Subaltern Voices vs. Colonial and Historical Representations ............. 261 APPENDIX A INFORMED CONSENT ................................ ................................ ........................ 269 B SCHEDULE INTERVIEW ................................ ................................ ..................... 271 C INTERVIEWS AND MEETINGS SCHEDULE ................................ ....................... 276 D DELLYS MAPS ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 279 E MARRIAGE ALLIANCES COLONIAL DELLYS ................................ .................... 282 F AL HAJ AL ARBI AL IDRISSI OFFSPRING AND KINSHIP CHART ..................... 284 G ................................ ................................ ............................. 285 H PICTURES OF FLN MEMBERSHIP CARD ................................ .......................... 286
9 I KHUYA AL MUJAHID SONG ................................ ................................ ................ 287 LIST OF REFERENCES ................................ ................................ ............................. 288 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ................................ ................................ .......................... 300
10 LIST OF TABLES Table page 3 1 The Naming Chart Comparing Traditional and Colonial Rule ............................. 63 4 1 The Arabic, French, and Quran School Teaching Times ................................ .. 133 4 2 Education Information of Male and Female Participants ................................ .. 134 C 1 Interviewees Codes, Names, Genders, Place and Meeting Day ...................... 276
11 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 1 1 Various forms of a continuous resistance to colonialism. ................................ .. 38 2 1 Series of artifac ts, craft materials in Dellys ................................ ........................ 50 2 2 Series of Takdempt village sites ................................ ................................ ......... 53 2 3 A general view of Ladjenna and the shore ................................ ........................ 54 2 4 Ladjenna shore west side of Dellys center ................................ ......................... 55 2 5 Remnants of the ancient wall of Dellys town. ................................ ..................... 56 2 6 Old and new images of the principal route in town of Dellys .............................. 57 2 7 Series of Dellys town ex French quarters landmarks ................................ ......... 57 2 8 Series of Dellys Casbah landmarks ................................ ................................ .... 58 3 1 Dellysian elders remember. ................................ ................................ ................ 62 3 2 r of Dellys during Interview ................................ ............ 65 3 3 Remnants of the casbah Al Idrissi home ................................ ............................ 69 3 4 Architecture of old casbah homes in Dellys ................................ ........................ 75 3 5 Childhood friends remember ................................ ................................ .............. 81 4 1 Places of worship in Dellys town ................................ ................................ ........ 98 4 2 Series of colonial s chools ................................ ................................ ................. 105 4 3 Zohra Khetib Touji (right) with her friend Kheira reminiscing ............................ 125 4 4 Mausoleum and school of Sidi Ammar in the m iddle of Dellys town ................. 132 4 5 Reflecting on the politics of education in colonial times ................................ .... 135 5 1 Members of Dellys communi ty remember violent events during colonialism:. .. 147 6 1 ............ 174 6 2 Fatma Chernouh Charadi at her home during interview ................................ ... 177 6 3 Siblings Ali and Fatma ben Achour (left) with friend Baya Tahtali Souag. ........ 182
12 7 1 Mohamed Belkhaoua to the left at the mujahidin center. ................................ .. 195 7 2 I ........ 212 8 1 I magine French oak wine barrel turning into barrel of torture. ......................... 244 8 2 Dellysians who lived and recounted colonial violence. ................................ ..... 245 8 3 Ahmed Briki during interview ................................ ................................ ............ 246 D 1 Maps of Dellys and surrounding villages. ................................ ......................... 279 H 1 Picture of FLN membership card (in and out). ................................ .................. 286
13 Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy ALGERIANS REMEMBER: AN ORAL HISTORY OF FRENCH COLONIAL E NCOU NTER By Khadidja Arfi May 2014 Chair: Peter Schmidt Major: Anthropology Dealing with the colonial past in the postcolonial present is a deeply textured matter that scholars from different disciplines have been addressing from various perspectives. The i nvestigation of the Algerian colonial past encounters and involves intertwined complex phenomena and as such requires a critical, realis tic method of inquiry I investigate the colonial discourse from a postcolonial perspective. In this pursuit, I use ethnographies of memorable events of colonialism juxtaposed to readings and critics of colonial sources. Many colonial writings were undergirded i n dichotomies that pre determined the outcome of their inquiry. They ended up focusing on a specific discour se at the expense of others. They silenced many voices, neglected various experiences, and buried a variety of memories. The dissertation investigatges narratives which are uniquely positioned in bring ing back to the foredfront these voices, ex periences, and memories to make sense of many past and current ambiguities about before, during, and after independence.
14 My fieldwork was in Dellys, Algeria a port town and early colonial outpost and settlement. I was able to interview more than 100 elderly Algerians from town and villages. I used oral history and oral tradition approaches based on a life history model to probe how people who lived during that era remember, that is, how they recount their lives i n the colonial encounter space. As such, I bring new and neglected approaches to the forefront of Anthropology and other social science disciplines, especially the study of colonialism, to help re imagine a more vital relationship to orality. When disciplines are increasingly more investigating the past through the voices of postcolonies promises to enrich many disciplines, thereby moving away from dichotomizing the colonial encounter to in vestigating tensions of empire. Historicizing Algerian colonialism requires a re reading of colonial records in ctions that survive they also enrich our knowledge of past events that are crucial to comprehend our present and create a future which is inclusive rather than silencing and suppressing.
15 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION Refl exive Thoughts My fascination with storytelling and oral history began in my childhood in the village of Takdempt, Dellys, Algeria. There I was surrounded by elderly relatives whose wisdom and compassion played a n important role in shaping my personality. My interest in writing about the Algerian past through the gaze of those who were part of it is r ooted in the years I lived with Almost every evening she would gather all of her grandchildren around her and then spend long hours introducing us to another world through imagined stories of life struggles and challenges and to entice us to listen attentively but also interact with her storie s, identifying so much with her stories to a point of becoming one with the narrative. We laughed, we cried, we had our eyes wide open, and covered our faces but attentively followed her narration of various plots in the story until it was time to have din ner and go to sleep. On another level, Mani was a genius in entertaining about ten kids every night while their mothers prepared dinner without disturbances. Narrating the Algerian story of colonialism is a personal endeavor. This dissertation project all owed me to return to my native land (Csaire 1956/1995 ) and sit one more time with the elderly, with many great Dellysians in their homes, gardens and public places. These are emotional settin gs and aid memoires that help them to remember, thereby allowing their past events to materialize through words, emotions, and landscapes. G oing through the various steps to change a spoken narrative in to a
16 written one is no simple work; yet, the significance of the finished project is worth while spending long hours br inging it to fruition Significance of the Topic This dissertation adds to a large body of recent scholarly work that locates with in the former colonies the Other against whom the very idea of Europeaness was expressed (Said 1978; Todorov 1993; Behdad 199 4 in Cooper and Stoler 1997: 5). My (Mi gnolo 2000: 6) 1 The significance of my study lies in its multidisciplinary character and as a result, promises to promote a worldly culture (Beji: 1982, 1997) within which difference thrives. At a time when disciplines are increasingly more intertwined and dependent dologies, investigating the past through the voices of postcolonies promises to enrich many disciplines. My dissertation contributes to the discipline of anthropology in a number of dimensions. First, it aims at exploring and recording the people narra tives and memories of events and their significance to current times. Second, it contributes to the body of work which argues that anthropology should never have nor should it now or in the future collaborate d with colonial imperialism. It should inste ad be a witness, investigating and reporting the colonial encounters between conquerors and native 1 According to Mi g nolo critical reflection on knowledge production from both the interior borders or the modern/colonial world system ... and its exterior borders (11). Such thinking cannot come from modern (Western) epistemology itself nor from a territorial (e.g., from inside modernity) one because it becomes a machine of appropriation of colonial differe/a/nces (9). It is going beyond the linearity of history and beyond western geopolitical mapping (37). It shows the limits of modern epi stemology, in both its disciplinary and area studies dimension (6). Border thinking celebrates difference without having to descend into pure relativism. Border thinking from the perspective of subalternity is a machine for intellectual decolonization, fr om a perspective of subalternity, from decolonizaton, and, therefore, from a new epistemological terrain where border thinking works. Subalternization of knowledge is the legitimization of the colonial difference (12).
17 peoples throughout the world. Those who bear witness have an ethical responsibility to document the realities of colonial encounters or any other human con flict for that matter instead of being intermediaries in fashioning exotic images that might permanen tly mark certain symbolic repre s entations of the subjugated 2 Third, it contributes to the study of colonialism, past and present, and its myriad of outc omes which have been major topics of study in anthropology. Fourth, it contributes to developing and supporting a comparative approach to the study of cultural encounters and colonialism. Moreover, this study has significance for writing hist ory, a discipl ine critiqued for strong position at the theoretical and methodological levels a position that listen s to the This project also contribute s experience s It will hope fully resonate with their voices to help reveal years of memories, thoughts, and inspirations about their pasts, presents, and futures. As such I want to historicize the remembrance of the Algerian experiences with colonial voices Finally, I hope to contribute to ot her research inquir i es such as folklore, geograp hy, and oral and women studies to name a few. My hope is to lend a support ive hand to investigations that give a chance to millions of people to have 2 of the Algerian harem (Algerian Women in their Apartment 1834) represented for the European viewer the exotic ; yet, for European intellectuals, it symbolized a vision of orientalism. As Hannoum put it ubmissive women, both of which are marks of un 2010: 6).
18 d ifferent and alternative histories from what has been wr itten about them without their consent. Literature Review and Theory In developing the framework of my research, I rely on three types of literature: history/anthropology, methodology/theory, and representation/subaltern. I draw on insights from bodies of literature that call for and practice critical revision and re visioning of past writings on colonial encounters in the Algerian F rench situation and elsewhere. My project is thus built both as a critique of previous writings and as an empirical investiga tion, bringing new and neglected approaches to the front of the social science disciplines. I also emphasize and put to use approaches to the study of minority, subaltern subjects and memory of violence and trauma in the Algerian context I seek to help r e imagine a more vital relationship t o orality and the spoken word. Contact or Colonialism There is an ongoing debate over the use of the terms co lonialism or cultural encounter ( Loom ba 1998; Paynter 2000a and 2000b; Murray 2004, Harrison and Williamson 20 04; Silliman 2005). G eneral ly speaking, colonialism is taken to mean the control of one power o v er a dependent area or people. However, t he remembered reality is the colonial settlers invading not empty places but rather grabbing fertile land with no rec ognition of indigenous right of property Similar to other colonized lands, in Algeria the colonial government privileged thousands of Europeans to become landowners and settle in Algeria. They are represented as the producers of colonial history and cultu re whereas the indigenous are silenced and their traditions and histories ignored. Although d uring the European dominated colonial encounter
19 Algerian agency played an important role in determining the shape that the enc ounter took (Cooper 1994: 1529), th e indigenous were either not included in the colonial discourse or included only as it fit ted the colonial discourse without being named as such i.e., completely erased I t is thus 1992; Thomas 19 94 in Sillim an 2005: 58) from the standpoint of those who were marginalized. Much of the focus in colonial and nationalistic discourses highlights the binary positions of the colonizer vs. colonized groups, presenting them separated as if they never interacted with on e an other. Postcolonial histories have been written based on such conceptualization s nationalistic to construct a continuous narrative history. A careful reading of such a continuous narrative clearly shows a serious lack of attention to other types of narratives; narratives that reveal the existence of s within the same space, relationships that are not recognized. A few examples that emerged through my oral history investigation are sites o f cooperation in work enviro n ment s assistance to neighbors, colonial functionaries, settlers and soldiers resisting colonial discrimination Often times o ur gaze focuse s on one or the other. If an Other is mentioned, it is in generalized or neglectful way s, forgetting that it is through the interactional narratives based on events and settings within their heterogeneity that we are able to understand the complexities, ambiguities, and contradicting messages. Many get impressed by the use of the resistance and nature of colonialism and what is being resisted. As a result, we read literature with no representation from either party. My study examines how people perceived and
20 integra ted their circumstances, made their choices, and constructed their ideas about the larger society in the colonial and postcolonial era. I thus politics and the politics of culture by constantly shifting the scale from the most spati ally specific (e.g., politics of the village or family ) and examine the originality and power of political thought by what it appropriated and transformed from its entire range of nalyzing n arratives related to tensions of colonialism, the dichotomizing categorization of colonizer and colonized should not become a trap leading to a neglect of much more important and basic tensions of empire. That is, we should diffe rence was continuously and vigilantly crafted as people in the colonies refashioned Yet in the social realities of people, their lives intersect on many fronts. My study focuses on indigenous remembrances of the interactions with and within the colonial settlements during colonialism. I argue that it is living near each other in space and time that constructs such interactions, whether mutual (friend/enemy) or circumstantial. Thus, a "colonial culture" (Thomas 1994 in Silliman 2005: 66) in the postcolonial theory of colonialism is a product of such relations. Through various testimonies and narratives, I show that a culture is not simply imposed from a European core or presumed as a u niform entity. Rather, i and in the interaction between individuals (Thomas 1994; se e also Gosden 2004; Murray 2004 in Silliman 2005: 66). I agree with Silliman that the shared landscapes, experiences, and hist ories between colonists and indigenes that created a new world real and imaginary
21 Hence, it becomes much more compelling to think of these situations in terms of surviving, accommodati ng, and transgressing. Such a conceptualization of colonial contact provides us with a better theoretical and methodological framework. For example, labor under colonialism is more than economic or political force imposed on indigenous people by colonial s ettlers. It also includes many other dimensions, whether as a vehicle for social action on the part of those performing the labor or as a struggle for survival. Many historians and anthropologists have satisfactorily spoken and written about such a space i n studying the past. These debates in both anthropology and history do provide pertinent approaches to the study of the colonial past. The Anthropology and History Debate s Many contemporary anthropologists have addressed the discipline's past shortcomings Anthropology has been 1983 ; 2001 ), an approach that was prominent in the 1950s during French colonialism (Breckenridge and van der Veer 1993: 48). Such a position puts the anthropology of colonial times n ot far from the orientalist and the colonial project. I agree with Lele that without bringing the voices from within is unscientific, unreasonable, and unfair (Lele in Breckenridge and van der Veer 1993: 69). History as a discipline, says Giddens, cannot be analyzed outside social science. Methodologically, there are no distinctions between other social sciences and history when moving away from an interpretation of historical actions (Giddens 1979: 231) justified in the na a more contextual and historical examination of the apparatus that collected and classified knowledge of Africa and Asia (Cooper 1994: 1529). The postcolonial critique
22 advocates eth nographies of memorable events that may be juxtaposed to reading of colonial sources. Twentieth century discourse is marked by the dichotomous characterization of a a categorization coul (Asa d 1987 : 604). Yet, there are others who believe tha t in contemporary times such a Great Divide between peoples w ithout and peoples with history; between peoples indifferent to and peoples devoted to history seem s to have dissolved (Faubion 1993: 36 ). Still, w hat colonizers have in common is that as soo n as they conquer they put in place institutions that work to erase the past of the colonized. T hey instead endeavor to produce new forms of knowledge which endow leg theoretical and empirical investigations that are at the same time scientific and embued with consciousness (Breckenridge and van d er Veer 1993; Anwar 1963; Sa id 1978 ; Fabian 1983; Lele1993). This helps in opening new ways for r eimagining and realizing a cooperative world by taking the human condit ion around the world seriously. Such incentives will help in develop ing critical thought and rationale for changing the human condition based on shared human ethics. Postcolonial Approaches to Algerian Colonial Past This dissert ation investigates colonial discourse by adopting a postcolonial critique and analysis. Reading between the lines of colonial and national archives hints at the silenced voices that have been historicized in such a way that t heir opinions, narratives, aspi rations, and pains are overlooked. People s lives are turned into
23 statistical studies, geographical or colonial surveys and other explorations that compress and suppress the embedded human experiences until they disappear. Hundreds of historical, sociologi cal, anthropological as well as medical studies became, directly or indirectly, agents of hegemonic powers and facilitated (and some still do some to 1978). The past e specifically the memories of the survivors of more than a century and quarter of colonial times is emphasized via the living world In contrast, i Fabian 2003; Mills & Walk er 2008), despite having been ignored and silenced for decades thereby bringing to the front their intrinsic role in making sense of many ambiguities before, during, and after the war of independence. I found a multiplicity of voices whose interpretations o f the past considering the cruc ial differences between an original tragic event and its future remembrance (Derrida 1986; Argenti and Schramm 2010: 18) in their heterogeneity speak to personal exp eriences as well as many others who lived through the hardship s of subjugation and colonial humiliation. This project historicizes the natives/settlers encounters from various representations. First, I consider local narratives in the form of life histories and oral tradition. Second, I explore the literary colonial no n representation of indigenous and settlers interactions. In this section and throughout the dissertation, I briefly introduce and review the works of intellectuals who interacted with the Algerian situation from various fronts depending on the ir time, position and personality. Such intellectuals include the politician Alex de Tocqueville (1840s), the social scientist Pierre Bourdieu (1950s 1990s), the French historian Charles Robert Ageron (1960s), and the
24 postmodernist David Pro chaska (1990) Of interest is how these intellectuals were affected by colonial encounters and how they responded to these encounters differently. During the analysis of such works on colonialism, it is important to recognize the human experiences at temporal and spati al levels. Despite being Western thinkers, their positions in history differed tremendously and thus their respective interactions with the Other hold significant diversity. Tocqueville saw that those who fought France would not survive unless they submitt ed. He imagined a future of mixed races between natives and Europeans (Todorov 1988). Bourdieu perceived colonialism as the cause and source of the dismantling of the Algerian population. As a result, he could not recognize a relationship between the two p eoples under the condition of war and resistance (Colonna in Goodman and Silverstein 2009; Goodman in Goodman and Silverstein 2009; Bottero 2009). For Ageron historiography, despite being very informative, does not take advantage of the very recent events toward decolonization to record th e testimonies of the people (Pro despite being the surface the daily experiences and ten sions of th e heterogeneous fabric of Bone current name: Annaba (Holsinger 1993), a city which, until today, is used as an emblem for a European settlement in North Africa. In comparison to other regional studies, I agree with Burke that there is so far no work on North African history or anthropology with the theoretically grounded sweep of the Indian Subaltern Studies Group (Burke 1998:15). At this stage I present a postcolonial discourse of the remembered and transmitted sense of relationship between th e colonizer and the colonized. Yet, it is imperative to remember that the crafting of a narrative would not escape being
25 influenced by the spatiality, temporality, as well as the subjectivity of the crafter(s) including the researcher and the informant. T his does not diminish the fact that it is the continuously remembered, talked about and reconstructed stories of colonial times that are the focal point. In this endeavor, I also draw on many insights from other colonial situations around the world. For e xample, in the Indian situation historiographers are critiqued for having been content to deal with the peasant rebel merely as an empirical person or a member of a class but not as an entity, whose will and reasons constituted the praxis called rebellion ( Chakrabarty 1998: 475 6). Tensions and contradictions have been at the heart of the formal colonies of European settlement as shown by scholars who have investigate d settler colonialism based on histories and memories in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa (Coombes ed. 2006). I hence d raw on the postcolonial critics who scrutinize and challenge historical, anthropological, and sociological works (e.g., Sai d 1978; Bhabha 1994; Spivak 1999 ; Prak ash 1994; Mi gnolo 2000; and Chakrabarty 1992, 1998). These critics provide compelling arguments for a (Chakrabarty 1992: 2). This call for a rev ision and a deconstructio n of historical discourses is today a global phenomenon. In adopting a postcolonial perspective, I am able to share and create a literate milieu in which disciplines and theories are not static but subject to challenge and rethink ing. In their study of colonialism, both Nationalists and Marxists are critiqued for not breaking free from Euro/ethnocentric discourses. In their historiography projects,
26 ( Prakash 1994: 1475). Postcolonial scholars also embrace Western and the Enlightenment idioms. According to Patterson, on the one hand they are against the on the other hand, thei and others, accept many concepts e.g. H uman freedom, democracy, reason and many critical idio ms and categories as fact, unchallenged, unconsciously believe in their European origins. Such thinking not only emphasizes the centrality of Western thought in the world today but also ignores and silences other idea s. Those who believe in the continuity of knowledge take the European Enlightenment as being shaped in the e ncounter of many traditions of the world throughout human history. From the postcolonial point of view, being critical is to deconstruct the progressive mission in the colonial space. P rojects of contradictions in the idioms and praxis of the enlightenment era and beyond. It is through postcolonial reviews and critiques that we learn how to undo many Eurocentrisms and the s tructure of Western domination and focus on other imaginations t hat have been denied any participation. I follow scholars who read (colonial) records against their grain. In the Indian colonial experience, these scholars have rethought history from the per spective of the subaltern, a perspective that resonates with my project. They sought to dispel the sought to appropriate and that conventional historiography has laid to waste (Prakash
27 remember their past differently from how historians recall it. The chal lenge is to historicize the subaltern voices (Spivak 1988). Historicizing Subaltern Voices: the Challenge Investigating subaltern voices is no t easy task. There are many challenges coming from within the disciplines as well as encountered during fieldwork (Pandey 1995). Despite these hurdles, this project follows the path of researchers who have been inquiring about subaltern voices from various perspectives, whether writing about the struggle to write subaltern histories (Pandey 1995) or how to narrate al ternative hist ories (Schmidt 1995; Andah 1990b and 1995 ; Vargas Arenas 1995; Handsmand and challenging, yet with time, like history from below su baltern voices will bring change in historical writing. Documenting unprivileged and silenced voices disturbs the totalizing and normalizing character of historical writing because the subalterns, such as in the case of the colonized Algerians, speak of th eir realities. In this ways of structuring time and space in historical/anthropological/archaeological research; er marginalized places] and, at the same time to examine the range of constraints that so far have inhibited this 1 ; 1983b need to shift to human life and agency. I thus focus on the lived processes of daily life
2 8 and Lamb Richmond 1995). An additional chall enge lies in how to narrate alternative histories, especially if the study of history already deals with microcosmic levels of a whole. It is time for subalterns to narrate their own meaningful pasts in their present to help shape a better future. This wor k is about listening to the voices that have not been heard before. It transgresses in situating the text or the fragments differently and uses sources as repositories of truth or reality as well as sites of contending histories and politics (Pandey 1995: 227). To avoid falling into a trap of focusing on the oppressed and not noticing other moments in their pasts, the focus during the interviews i s on listening to voices without pressuring the speakers to take a specific direction in their thoughts and narr atives. It also entails paying close attention to the unfolding life histories and crafting 231). The study of the unheard, subaltern voices from the edges is challe nging but not impossible. My approach is first to recognize them and believe in the importance of such endeavor. My aim is to tell another story, a story that the people who lived it recount as the truth. Their alternative viewpoints not only contest the o fficial histories but they also enrich our awareness of elated or agonizing events that are crucial to comprehend our present and create a future that is encompassing rather than silencing and suppressing. Social Memory and Trauma Historicizing memory of colonial violence and trauma relies heavily on the point of view of the victims, those who are voiceless in the media and organized official
29 national meetings. Despite such a long neglect, the wounded are not isolated as individual casualties. They are members of communities, witnesses, and narrators of atrocities that they cannot forget. They belong to villages and towns and to a society that shares the pains of t he wounds that ac cumulated in lifelong suppression s Investigating colonial trauma follows an anthropological paradigm, because the trauma of violence does not affect one victim only In addition, as dramatically put by Marie Anik Gagne (1998) it also of human relationships, which, as a consequence, directly affect future generations" (Gagne in Danieli 1998:357). Such an understanding of the memory of trauma is based on the premise that c ollective memory is not the collection of individual memories but is a result of consistent interaction with others ( Halbwachs 1992). It is t hrough commemorative performances and bodily practices that the recollected images and knowledge of the past are conveyed and sustained Therefore, the idea of an individual memory that is separate from social memory is an abstr action almost devoid of meaning (Connerton, 1989: 37 39 ). M oreover, m emory in its complex ity stems from the interface of so cial and psychological processes (Cole 2001: 2) that should be taken seriously into account When narrating the atrocities of colonialism and the war for independence, Algerian survivors are surrounded by peers and younger generations who, with eyes held open in disbelief, listen attentively to the stories. Similar to Holocaust narrative s, Alger ian survivors talk about their experiences openly and "share tacit acknowledgment Kirmayer (1996) explains that Holocaust trauma whether in the form of personal/mono logues or communal narratives, both processes serve to maintain
30 memory. Algerian narr ators recount their stories to remember their struggles in colonial times that ended with the painful war of independence. They want others to understand their past, but m ore than that, they encourage them to learn from its good and bad times and use the past to transform their present for a better future. Many studies are moving away from a psychological approach when study ing traumatic memory T hey instead focus on how c ulture shapes the traumatic memory through "the role of tropes, idioms, narrative, ritual, discipline, power, and social context colonialism, we also find a theory o f collective trauma in Algeria that offers an alternative to an individualizing, psychoanalytic model (Rothberg 2009: 89). According to Antze and Lambek (1996), memories (good or bad) are conceptualized as a practice, an act of gazing. They are produced ou t of experience and, in turn help to reshape it. As a result, narratives of trauma memory" (Kirmayer 1996: 175). Memory of trauma plays a central role in reconstructing such painful events and hel p in writing Algerian colonial history from the point of view of victims, emphasizing the words of those who went through violent events and who are still haunted by images, sounds, and lost souls. Using this perspective, this research aims to include and accept such painful times in Algerian history. It refuses to deny or suppress it in moving to build a better future. Rothberg (2009) looks at memory as multidirectional, that is, taking into account various ways peoples interact with and being affected b y memory d iscourses. In his book, author who wrote about the impact of WWII. The focus is on
31 cedures which until then Csaire 1972 in conceptions is translated an a rethinking of trauma and civilization al discourses within the theory of m ultidirectional link between trauma studies a nd Holocaust studies has already been made and c onnecting trauma studies to coloni alism studies cannot be neglected but should instead be taken seriously, thereby helping to consider The shared histories of racism, spatial segregation, genocide, diasporic displacement, cultural destruction, and perhaps most importantly savvy and cre ative resista nce to hegemonic demands provide the grounds for new forms of collectivity that would not ignore equally powerful histories of division and difference (Rothberg 2009: 23). Narratives that retell the trauma of colonialism (Lloyd 2000). represe nt the untold stories and the unturned rocks that not only reveal also help in connecting survivors in time and space in their grief and healing. More importantly, they expose a traumatized past for the sake of a restore d future. From early colonialism, Algerians were convinced that the tormentor s exemplified in co lonialists and their armies and in their power would never protect them and provide them security. For generations, Algerians young, old, male, and female were violated and witnessed violence done to others. Althout they survived they were nonetheless traumatized so deeply as to suggest that survival was as traumatic as suffering b rutality it self. As explored throughout the chapters especially in Chapter s 5, 6
32 and 8, acts of violence are recollected as atrocious events. Edkins (2003: 4) calls such compelling, not pleasing to the ear, and terrifying to retell because of their Despite a great awareness of colonial trauma, many survivors in Algeria are hesitant to speak up or share their stories with the world. There could be many reasons for such a reluctance. During colonial times, an absence of trust ed venues through which to narrate stories could have be en a major reason for not speak ing up. T he French government endeavored to systematically disrupt any type of indigenous awareness, tracking each person and family for any type of expression. Those wh o were traumatized by violence and torture, if hospitalized, were treated in isolation. The Dying Colonialism 1959) written after leaving his position in 1956 as the head of the Psychiatric Department at the Blida Joinville Hospital in Algeria. The Algerian social structures, too, controlled its members and still do for many. In many individual cases, trauma was recognized Yet living conditions within a community often r eached alarming levels and, hence, families were often much more concerned about how to survive the next violence then dealing with the traumas of the past Finally, in bloody period other atrocities accum of the 1990s is perceived by many Algerians as a curse in which brothers killed one an other, thus widening mistrust and often equating both colonizer and one's own people in atrocities (Bedjaoui et al. 1999) This leaves survivors of both periods in perplexity, not able to
33 express the unspeakable calamity and human tragedy. Nonetheless, what should be emphasized are the therapeutic aspects of r emembering and narrating trauma. We often hear people However, this kind of advice to those who are involved in rebuilding traumatized lives does not consider the following questions: Do such individuals really forget what happened to them? What needs to be done to help the wounded heal and turn into productive members of society building a strong future? Since WWI, scholars have been speaking about the incapability of forgetting the trauma which often act on the subject as a def ining mark of personal identity ( Brown 1920; van der Hart et al. (1989); Antze & Lambek 19 96; Roth 1996; Leys 2000 ). V an der Hart, Br o wn, and van der Kolk (1989) recognize that transforming traumatic memories into narrated memories is not easy to achieve in severe or chronic cas es of trauma and that the restoration of memories alone does not necessarily cure (380 in Leys 2000: 10 9). However, they emphasize the therapeutic importance in voici ng traumatic memories. S ince the work by Freud and Janet m any aut hors have taken the posi tion that narration cures because it understanding even in the absence of empirical verification arguing by the same token t hat memory conceived as truth telling is over estimated but that memory conceived as narra tio n is crucial" (Leys 2000 : 117 118 ; Ryes 1996 ). (Herman 1992). Courageously, they narrate the memory of traumatic event in depth and in detail transforming and integrating it into their life story.
34 When narrating, v ictims of trauma have the opportunity to imagine having all the power they want and applying it to the perpetrator ( Brown 1920). Such an approach to traumatic memories is important to apply to narratives about colonial violence. Like those who spoke in the aftermath of WWI and WWII, speaking from postcolonial position narrators are in a position of power. They are not afraid to speak about past perpetrators and freely choose words and discourses when describing in detail the events and those who traumatized them. Through such a flexible traumatic memory starts losing its power over current experience....[and victims] are able to soften the intrusive power of the original, unmitigated horror" ( van der Hart and van der Kolk 1991: 450 in Leys 1996: 13 9). Much like Holocaust survivors, in many situati ons of colonial trauma 1996: 175). When recounting, many participants draw on discourses of violence to find meanings in the events and restructure their individualities therewith adjusting in their present lives. Those who were traumatized in childhood do not forget that period in their old age. Whether they were traumatized once or repeatedly (Hacking 1996: 68), many narrators focused during their constructed narratives on a specific trauma an d repressed other s ended outpouring of mixed metaphors, multiple explanations, and unfinished stories that center them as eye witnesses, actors, and victims" (George 1996:49). Those who survived atrocitie Yet, with time, that would change to a
35 narrative with motion, fee ling and meaning (Herman 1996) making the interpretation and anal ysis of the narrati ves complicated and challenging (Rogers et al. 1999) yet possible were connected to the same trauma despite the range of violence endured. Reconstructing trau matic memories is context landscape of local coherence to better manage or contain it, to present it convincingly to others, and finally to have done with it" (Kirmayer 1996: 182). Narrators described, visualized, and remembered scenes and events unfolding within the contexts where the violence and trauma occurred. In studying collective vs. individual experience wi th trauma, Kirmayer finds that Holocaust narratives emphasize recollection. Like the Holocaust survi vors, colonialism survivors when given the opportunity, feel compell ed to tell their stories bearing witness to their com collective performance of remembering and narrating makes it more possible for individuals to recoll ect and tell their personal stories" (Kirmayer 1996: 189). Indeed, traumatic violence experienced by a whole community constructs the possibility of a shared space of narrating and assembling the fragmented personal memories, reconstructing, and displaying a validated remembrance. What is prevalent is that like in the case of Holocaust survivors, Algerians who (Argenti & S chramm 2010), that needs to be commemorated an d collectively historicized (Kirmayer 1996: 190). When speaking out about violence and trauma, narrators are br e aking the silence, a silence that is socially as wel l as psychologically
36 determined. The phenomenon of trauma does engender amnesia and silence on its own. Yet when victims find and /or are given the right moment to release the pain and ac cept its occurrence (Argenti & S chramm (2010: 9) they move on with their lives. T heir narratives become constructive in historicizing colonial violence during colonialism. Memory of colonial violence plays a crucial role in challenging and correcting official history of the colonial era, since the invasion in 1830 to the end of the war years in 1962 Those who remember point to a wide range of exploitation of boys, girls, men and women, cutting across life styles and generations. They witnessed violence during their colonized life span that kept reminding them of their subjugation and of the power and tyranny of colonialists. Those who experienced and lived the disturbance of colonial violence express personal narratives of trauma. The scars of extreme poverty, illness, subjugation, and horrors of war still linger in popular memory rather than official history. Testimonies of survivors were sought and recorded a boundaries of culture and social group s and create a transforming power of what Michel (5). The process of remembering, retelling, and recording becomes the catalyst to historicize the traumatic events and with Recovering from traumatic memories takes time. Victims go through v arious stages: First, they gradually feel secure and in control of their body, mind, and environment. Next, mourning their losses is critical to be able to tell their story in a safe empathetic environment. Then, gradually the survivors are able to transfo rm traumatic
37 memory and express traumatic imagery and bodily sensation and integrate them into their life story. Finally, they reconnect with ordinary life strongly and securely. H ours of listening and recording the words that came from the hearts of many Dellysians and hours of analyzing their t ranscribed narratives allowed me to design this dissertation. Men and women of Dellys town and villages helped me imagine and comprehend that from the initial F rench in vasion of their land the resista nce remained alive and continued to be manifested in various forms throughout the years and during various political develop ments ( Figure 1 1 ). By streng thening kinship alliances, Dellysians were able to resist the h egemonic colonial politics of di vide and rule (Chapter 3). They showed me how their love of their land and respect of their ancestors became the well streaming force to resist in different forms but especially in reviving the ancestral education system as well as using colonial institutions of learning not as a sign of weakness or assimilation but for knowledge as power (Chapter 4). Through their informative narrati ves, they revealed their anti co l laboration with the colonialists whose extreme wickedness fo rced members of indigenous populations of various colonies to punish those who revolted, thus cr eating a culture of betrayal within the people (Chapter 5). Yet, they emphasized that the colonized status quo could not go on forever and by WWII, the awakenin g was real, establishing a prelude to the revolution (Chapter 6). The time of the thawra remains most memorable as a unifying revolt, which was long bloody and affected every home and every soul (Chapter 7). During memory work, recalling the time of war, abuse, and trauma was always present, bearing witness to colonial violence. Nevertheless, the realling also played a therapeutic role for those who suffered and witnessed violence, a way to find relief (Chapter 8). In concluding this work
38 (Chapter 9) as a researcher and an Algerian whose connection to this community is a lifelong relationship, my astonishment and wonderment is just a beginning for much more work on historicizing the voices of the silenced. Alger ian history is indebted to them if only we l isten ed Figure 1 1 Various forms of a c ontinu ous resistance to c olonialism
39 CHAPTER 2 METHOD AND SETTING Method My investigation focuses on the people who experienced colonialism and the colonial encounter. Part of such an endeavor aims at contesting and deconstructing certain types of colonial and postcolonial writings and texts. However, this cannot not be completed without recording the testimonies and memories of some of those who had firsthand experience with the settlers and colonia l encounter. Such testimonies occur r ed also in the form of oral histories and traditions that were passed on to younger generations and remembered over time. In this chapter, I briefly address approaches to orality including a brief discussion of the def inition of key concepts Most importantly, it also includes a discussion of why I adopted oral history as an anthropological method, how a personal interest turned into an academic endeavor, how I conducted fieldwork, and how the challenges of social oblig ations generated moments of exploration. I end the chapter with a brief presentation of precolonial social, political, and economic development and an entry into and exhibition of Dellys for the reader to imagine, through old and personal pictures, the bea utiful site of inquiry. Oralit ies Definitions My definition of these oraliti es is strongly derived from Vans ina (1985). I use oral tradition and history as a process and evidence. I also follow his guidelines on how to deal with verbal testimonies and te xts, how to get the messages, and how to transform them in to social products. I also benefit greatly from many other cases in which orality is
40 used as a method of inquiry (e.g., Price 1983; Benmayor 1988; Sienaert & al. 1994 ; and Draper 2000 in Denis 2000) Whereas o ral history is the historical information, usually tape recorded and sometimes videotaped, in interviews with participants who have fir sthand experience and knowledge of specific events and time. As an approach, oral history is a key tool in the study of recent past (Abrams 2010). When defining oral history, memory is central in extracting and preserving meaning (Ritchie 2003). R eminiscences, hearsay or eyewitness accounts about e vents and situations are sources for oral historians, which occurred during the lifetime of the informants ( Vansina 1985: 12). In my research, o ral history tells us about the long time hidden resistance and the transition to open political struggle and re v olution in Algeria. It plays an important as members of groups and a nation experiences neglected by archives repositories as well as stained b y many colonial writings in the past. As many scholars ( Vansina 19 85; Fri sch1990, Portelli 1991, 1997, H ow 1994 Denis 2000) emphasize, the practice of oral history is central. It is not merely a methodology whether in relation to issues of race, class, gender or groups. Oral history is also, and more importantly, seen as being the grounds of encounters between personal experiences and history, the spaces where the individual narrative of biography meets the collective narrative of history (Portelli 1997. 161). Th e success of an oral history is in the collaboration betwe en the interviewer and interviewee (Thompson 1978 ; F r isch 1990 )
41 An through continuous negotiation and (more or less) collaboration that a narrative comes to being. The duality of narrative making is based on a sense of equality between researcher and interviewee through which a new synthesis is achieved and because of which both will be changed (Portelli 1991: xiii). Like ethnography, oral history is a collaborative practice in which the fieldworker is engaged in a dialogue and a conversation with the interviewee and both are in dialogue with the text. Neither the interviewer's nor the interviewee's perspective is necessarily privileged. Oral traditi on s tradition s The oral statement can be spoken, sung, called out on musical instruments, and/or transmitted by word of mouth ove r at least one generation (28). If an oral tradition is not widely known in a given culture (Henige 1982; Vansina 1985), it is regarded as a testimony or evidence about something specific Oral t radition is the process of transmitting messages by word of mouth from one generation to another until the disappearance of the message. They are p ieces of news such as hearsay, d reams, visions, hallucinations; yet, it is easy to dismiss some of them based on our own rela tion s to such concepts. T heir role is important and sometimes their recognition is fundamental to comprehend the reason for their survival which could be linked to historical consciousness and of contemporary mentalities and ideologies ( Va nsina 1985: 7).
42 Oral history and oral tradition are fundamental tools and approaches in studying human conditions. As discursive styles, they are spread around the globe. In their composing, improvising, and memorizing functions, they are interpreted and understood as holistic human expression s (Sienaert & al. 1994 ). They continue to be performed even where they have al ready been recorded in written forms (Ong 2002 ; Misztal 2003: 23). They co exist side by side with other forms of history. They emerge as r ival texts and as aid memoires (Draper 2004 ). They may hav e multiple uses such as being source materials tapes and transcripts for film documentaries or other published works. As a systematic collection, oral tradition and history help preserve record ed oral stories or verbatim accounts and opinions of people who were witnesses to or participants in past events My aim in this project is to take part in the rehabilitation of the values of orality, especially among anthropologists. In French Conquest of Algiers 1890, Haggoy (1986) provides the reader with an excellent compilation of oral tradition that is preserved orally but also he published an Arabic version for those who understand the langu age, which could have potentially become a contribution to the cultural and symbolic meanings of the texts. Despite this weakness, such a work is nonetheless important. Richard Price First Time : the H istorical Vision of an Afro American People (Price 1983) is another exemplary work in documenting oral tradition. In my investigation, rich narratives and remembered accounts about the colonial past are constructed during the narration and remain symbolic and mea ningful to the society. In post colonial times in Algeria oral testimonies and tradition s remain among the population ready to being investigate d
43 Personal Interest and Academic Endeavor As a researcher and anthropologist, I find this investigation not only significant and interesting from a social sci ence perspective but it is also close to my heart. I was born in the town of Dellys and lived in Algiers until the age of twenty three before hores of Takdempt village close to my ancestral home and heard many stories about colonial times that kept me thinking about embark ing in such an enquiry. A year before my fieldwork, in spring 2009, I visited Algeria and specifically the town of Dellys. Du ring that visit, I interacted with some members of the community and visited various parts of the town I was especially struck by how it was changing a fter the 2003 devastating earthquake I started, then, imagining my return to the town for a deeper conv ersation with the elderly to learn from them how they lived during the colonial period. I showed my interest and my intent to spend the next spring and summer among them and they were most welcoming. After a few weeks in Alg eria and then coming back to the S tates, I became determined to focus on the region of Algeria for my dissertation topic. After passing my qualifying exams and presenting my proposal to my committee, I with the approval of my dissertation committee members decided that it was best for me was to start the fieldwork, especially that I was dealing with elderly people who might not wait for me much longer since many were already in their late 70s or older. I started right away applying for funds that would cover the expenses of my fieldwork In spring 2010, and prior to traveling to Algeria for my fieldwork, I prepared the necessary paperwork with the University of Florida IRBs (Appendix A) My fieldwork was funded by two grants: the Hunt & Jeanne Davis fund and Madelyn M. Lockhart and
44 John M. Goggin Award. My trip to Algeria was from April 27, 2010 until August 05, 2010. The time of inquiry was short; however, in my situation, I was well acquainted with the town of Dellys, the area of study and its people, and already knew many families who have been living there since colonialism. Prior to my trip, I started contacting people I knew in Algeria. I developed a good network of contact s among Dellys residents and got in contact with key family members. The next day I arrived at my host family, I started contacting participants for interviews and I selected most informants through snowball effect. Thus, the time I spent in Dellys was very productive. Conducting Fieldwork During my stay in Dellys, I was able to visit many different sites and areas whether to interview participants or explore historical sites. I visited many places that played the role of mnemonics in holding memories of colonial life. Examples of such important places were the colonial schools in the village of Takdempt and the town of Dellys and a few farms previously own ed by French settlers. In the center of Dellys town, I investigated about various colonial establishments. Such sites were the military hospital, the grand mosque, the old church, the wars reli gions in which I had access to some old archives, and other places that were important parts of the narratives and were often used as aides mmoires to elicit individuals an testimonies. I conducted formal and informal interviews in Algerian Arabic, my first language, and in some situations code switching between Algerian Arabic and French, especially among male interviewees. The town of Dellys and the village of Tak dempt ex French sett lement between 1840s 1962, both represented a focal point in my inquiry. During
45 my first week, I visited many current residents, first informally, and then asked for participation in the investigation, focusing on elders males and f emales. I also included many other residents in surrounding villages especially those who lived on farms and lands previously owned by colonial settlers. The participants, from both genders and various ages, were all survivors of the colonial period. I al so included informal testimonies of many younger participants who learned about colonialism in the post colony. The interviews were all audio record ed and some of them were videotaped I downloaded each interview (audio and video) into both my laptop and a n external drive. I then named and categorized them as audio, video and pict ures in designated files, ready for transcription and analysis. I also took thousands of pictures and hundreds of short video shots of peoples, the landscape and specific objects. These were very useful during the analysis, the final product of the dissertation as well as for other projects. I based my schedule interview on life history model. My interviewees were asked in general about their genealogy, education, home/neighborhood, spirituality, work, growing up during colonialism, their opinion about and part icipation in the revolution and how they viewed their lives then and today. Each title dealt with personal, famil y and communal parts (Appendix B ). My interviews were a convers ation, a listening, and a deep interest in the narrative of my participants. Simple interjections and follow up questions you feel when that happened?" helped enrich the narratives The success of my interviews was in my ability to be a good listener and interacting carefully with what I heard, saw and sensed. From time to time, I referred back to the list of questions
46 H owever, often times I just followed the thread of interesting stories and issues that I such as old photographs, newspaper clippings, or any other objects or ideas. Referring to such items, at any point during the interview helpe d start or deepen the conversation Thanks to an exceptional net of connections, I interviewed 100 official participants. There were 60 female and 40 male interviewees. Their ages ranged between 60 and 96 years old. The participants resided in thirteen various places as follow: 57 in Lajenna gardens, 10 in Dellys town, 1 in Mtal, 4 in Dashrat Takdempt, 7 in Takdempt village, 1 in Carrier, 2 in Ben Choud, 1 in Sehel, 3 in Azib Kouafa, 8 in Tizaghwiin, 2 in Baghlia, 2 in Borj Mnail, and 2 in Algiers ( Appendix D ). I met the majority of my participants in their homes but also in some relatives s. I also met several men at a Veterans of War C enter, others at an after school pro gram association and several women at an elderly women school program at a local mosque. Through such dialogues, the participants told narratives by digging into their memories and using their landscape to construct historical narratives about colonial ti mes 1840 1962. Coming back to the S tat es from fieldwork, I embarked into the next stage of transcribing and translating the interviews for further analysis. I had four transcribers from Algeria whom I hired to transcribe key interviews using the Arabic s cript. I translated the majority of the interviews from Arabic to English. I organized the transcribed testimonies based on the scheduled themes; however, certain interviews included other themes depend Nonetheless, hav ing
47 key words as themes helped me in finding common thread s among the various narratives as well as reaching important conclusions during the process of writing the The Challenges of Social Obligation Being of Dellysian parents, I knew that during my fieldwork I would have to fulfill certain social obligations, embracing both advantages and disadvantages. However, such events allowed me to participate in local social life without jeopardizing my data collection. Every moment I spent was part of my fieldwork. I am grateful to Dellysians for embracing me, trusting me with stories that, for some, have been in their chests for a long time, and for recognizing the significance of their testimonies about colonial Dellys. Setting According to historians, Phoenicians explored the coastal to wn of Dellys around the sixth B.C .E. naming it Outika (ancient town). They were the first to explore the land of Barbarie, know its people, and spread among them eastern civilization and sciences. Like othe r explored cities Be djaia, Djidjel, Tness, and Tandja, Dellys was culturally and commercially opened Eastwood on the ancient world, and northwood on Europe The brutal offence of the Romans on Outika changed its name to Rusucurus (Cap of fish) but also s tarted the Punic war between Carthage and Rome (246 241 B C .E. ) (A l Madani 194 7: 45). The Berber Empire was divided and Rusucurus was established around 42 C E. Consecutive conquerors and civilizations followed including Byzantine, Arabo Indalou, Othman, and French. Dellys first submission to French colonialism was in 1837. Marchal Bug eaud captured it in May 7, 1844 Outika the Phoenician, Rusucurus the Roman, Adima the Byzantine, Ted el les and Djneh Lakhdar the Arab, and finally Dellys the French persist e d as a beautiful coastal town (A ppendix D).
48 Pre colonial Political and Economic Development Destroyed by an earthquake, the ruins of the Roman Rusuccurus w ere later used to build a new town during the Islamic era which henceforth became known as Tadelles. The town was under the control of various governments of the Islamic Maghreb and at other times by local Qabail (Arabic) /Kabyle (French) ( Daumas M. and M. Fabar 1847 ; Feredj, 1990 ) Ibn Khaldoun mentioned Tedelles as an important town part of the Royaum e of Bedjaia governed by many such as Moezz ed Dola Ibn Somadeh, who fled Ishbilia (Spain) after being taken by Almoravides in 1091 1092 (Ibn Khaldoun 1983 in Benamane 2011: 28 29). Despite the competition between the various governments in the Maghreb re gion, the town was not affected demographically and commercially. The port of Dellys came under the control of the Spanish after they seized control of the royaume of Bedjaia. Despite the instability of the country, the town of Tadelles had more than a tho usand homes and a fortress that housed its governor. During French rule, Dellys became a commune that was part of the arrondissement of Tizi Ouzou (Kabylia) department of Algiers situated 100 km to the East of the capital and surrounded by many small vi llages (as mentioned down above ). During the French period, the colonial administration established military, administrative, and residential buildings in the old town (Chapters 3 and 4). The most attrac tive part s of the town were its C asbah at the center lighthouses, port and the S chool of Arts and Mtiers. In the early years of colonialism, a narrow gauge railway was built to help with the construction of the colonial port and transport building materials, merchandise, and passengers between Dellys and A lgiers. The train service was stopped around 1 939 and since then the town has been accessible through one major highway only
49 Many French voyagers (Pellissier 1836 ; Mascarello 1970 in benamane 2011: 54 55) wrote detailed accounts about town and village pe ople of Kabylia who were farmers of vast lands of grain as well as pastoralists and skilled practitioners of wool and linen dye. Women from the town and villages were skilled in wool making including tapestry, capes, and quilts. Village women were also fam ous for pottery making house utensils such as plates, mugs and small and large pots and for preparing and cooking food. They made large pot s for water called sebala and small ones for storing drinking water, olive oil, gee and honey called qulla. They al so made large containers from clay and h a y (not baked) called kufi used for storing a variety of grain s Fishing was an old practice that sustained the old town residents who collected their fishing nets full of a variety of fish daily, both from the sea a nd the river. They did not need a market for it, as visitors and historians noticed and recorded (Benamane 2011: 25 42 ; Chabani 2013: 213 14) Men and women practiced craft and basketry ( Figure 2 1) Women made hats and containers for bread and other uses in the kitchen and men made mats, shopping baskets and harvesting baskets. They exploited the resources of the landscape using leaves from a small palm called ed doom and a variety of Arundo Festucoides called Eddaliss 1 and Elqsab Culturally, the town pe ople were known, and still are, for their friendliness and musical abilities using guitars and lute ; they have been described as sophisticat ed as the people of Algiers 1 This indigenous plant name was local and was used for huts roofs. How the name of Tedless and Dellys became the name of the town is not necessary related to the plant name but still we can see that in this region the various species of this plant are very common in the landscape and used for various projects. According to Chaid Mesoudi, the term Tedles is close to Tadla or Tadel, w hich were famous names of Medieval towns in Morocco and Algeria. Yet, we do not know the original meaning of the word except that Mesoudi 2008: 34 35; the author cites Ibn Khaldoun and Hassen El Wazzan ca
50 A B C D Figure 2 1 Series of artifacts, craft materials in Dellys. A) Lut e made of local materials by a Dellysian artist; B) an indigenous plant used to make hats, mats, and baskets; C) D e liss an indigenous plant used to make crafts; D) Tizaghouin women making hats from indigenous plants. Photos cou rtesy of author, fieldwork 2 010 Economically, Dellys was recognized for two public places: the marsa docks, where cargos and fishing boats berthed, and the souq public market, for a diversity of local and foreign commodities. Like other Mediterranean cities and towns since old ti mes, Dellys was open to other cities and countries connecting with each other through the sea. Having a port or docks, Dellys was commercially important to locals and foreigners. The port was of some importance especially in commercial exchange between De llys and Algiers. Algiers relied on many agricultural products from the surrounding farming land of Dellys including a variety of grain, olive oil, fruits, vegetables, and other products. There are
51 various docks on the shore of Dellys town. The first one i s located on the northeast side and is covered by Rass attarf (Figure 2 4 ) protected from the northern and northwestern winds by elevated land The other dock is located on the n orth w est protected by ben Djenad / Bengut also elevated land (Benamane 2011 : 93 97). According to Dellys residents, this area was named al Aqwas the arches, one deep for berthing big boats and the other shallower for smaller boats. In the collective memory, the immigrants who fled Andalusia during the Spanish Inquisition arrived in the town through these docks. Today, al Aqwas remain s famous for berthing fishing boats. During colonialism, these shores and docks were under the control of the colonial army. Public markets, souq (swaq), represent the connecting spaces between the to wns and villages. A market location varies from place to place, from being in the center to the periphery of the town or village. It is always at proximity of a water source and by trees for shading. It is held on one specific day of the week and most of t he time named after that day or the place such as souq al Khmis or souq Thenia (the market of Thenia town). It is divided into different areas called rahba where the various commodities are separately distributed meat, grain s, oil, souq was located at the center. Dellys market was of great importance and people from various Kabyle land visited it every week for trade and other types of transactions (political, religious, c ultural, and reconciliation). According t o Benamane (2011 : 98), within the first period of colonialism (1844), the upper part of the market was appropriated by Bureau for the purpose of collecting intelligence on Arab politics (Hugo nnet 1858). The colonial administration afterwards took control of t he majority of the remaining part to
52 build a French school. Only a small part of it remained until independence (Benamane 2011: 98 101). The souq remained in use until the 2003 earthquake during which the center place of the market was damaged. Entering Dellys Although born in my ancestral town of Dellys, during my fieldwork period, I found the town of Dellys to have a unique place in the region. Getting in from Algiers, through the littora l national bus route (24), a number of small towns and villages preceded it including Benchoud, Thouabet, and Takdempt. River Sibaou came down the high altitudes of Mountain Mizrana and crossed the route to go on its way in the valley at the foot of Mount ain Bouberag, nourishing the planted land at its borders, before subsiding into the Mediterranean Sea. To the right of the route, mountain Mizrana was so close that it seems to be inviting pedestrians to climb and explore one of the oldest dashra (village) the origin of Takdempt village of the valley (Figure 2 2 ) The bus continued moving toward the ancient town. To the left, from the high altitude of the route, a panoramic view of the sea shore of Takdempt was an amazement to its viewers and a beginning of a love relationship with the landscape. The bright blue color of the sea and the incoming white waves fascinated me every time I passed by. A nice breeze with a smell of the sea created an unforgettable moment. The bus stopped at al Mtall first glance in Algerian dialect, which gave a general view of Del lys town. Despite the crowding of new buildings, the position of the growing town extended from the higher altitude of the chain of mountains of Assouaf and Bouarbi and went down to the shore of the Med iterranean Sea. I understood then the reason for the love residents and visitors alike developed for the town of Dellys.
53 A B C D Figure 2 2 Series of Takd empt v illage sites. A) T oward West, River Sibou and mountain Boubereg (taken from village), B) River Sibou and Med. Sea (taken from village) C) General view of village, river Sebou and sea (taken from Dashrat Takdempt), D) Mountain Mizrana (view toward East, taken from a home in Dashrat Takdempt) Photos courtesy of author fieldwork 2010 We were in Ladjenna (the Gardens that, in the last decade, have been expanding in development) located at the Western boundaries of the center of Dellys town (Figure 2 3) At the final bus stop and walking 100 meters east, we were by the entrance to the center. To the left and North, at the border of a gorge, Caf Talawaldun and its terrace was open for refreshments and a memorable view of the shore.
54 Figure 2 3 A general view of La d jenna and the sho re taken from Mountain Bouarbi. Phot o co urtesy of Hamida Belhaoua, 2013 The caf represented the place of daily relaxation for old and young Dellysian men and passing tourists. A panoramic view of the connection of the mountains and the sea fascinated those sitting at the edge of the balcon y. The camera could pick up as far as Bengut / Borj Fnar lighthouse in the middle of Ladjenna to the west. I looked down toward the sea to find a diversity of rocks in colors and shapes. Such stops remained precious, adventurous, and challenging places for young and old Dellysians and visitors (Figure 2 4 ).
55 A B Figure 2 4 La d jenna shore west side of Dellys center A) View of the shore catching Bengut lighthouse in Ladjenna ta ken from Tlawaldun caf; B) The old lighthouse at t he end of the cemetery, taken from the old dock. Photo s courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010. Close to the caf, the sight of the old multi religious cemetery (Muslim, Christian and Jewish) and its vegetation overlooked the sea. It characterized the cliffs z one, often starting fascinating discussions 2 the gated town and ended at a gorge on the shore. It had old monuments, Sidi Abdelkader, Sidi Brahem, and Sidi Abdellah mausoleums and the lighthouse of th e old port. The extraordinary site is a reminder of the continuity between past and present, dead and living, and peace on earth. Facing the town entrance, we could still see the remnants of an ancient wall. Dellysians recounted stories of the wall of sev en doors. That is, h ow, during the colonization of Dellys, for extra security, the French reinforced and developed t he 2 Contrary to other Islamic cities the distribution of the tombs in Dellys cemetery were not based on the tribe but the family Thus as Benamane stated "the family is the tribe of the individual" (2011: 131 ).
56 ancient wall to surround the entire town with seven gated doors 3 During my stay in Dellys town, only a few of the names of the doors rem ained in the collective memory. The infrastructure of the town did not show any marks or commemoration of such historical sites (Figure 2 5 ) A B Figure 2 5 Remnants of the ancient wall of D ellys town. A) Taken from the south side of town on Mountain Bouarbi courtesy of Hamida Belhaou a); B) taken from the old port of Dellys town, the stairs that are part of the w all entering Casbah from port. Photos courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010. Rou te 24 became the main boulevard named Rue Victor Hugo during the French colonial era. It divided the old town into two towns: upper and lower town, therewith stressing the fluidity within the old neighborhoods Huwam/sing. Huma 4 (Figure 2 6 ) 3 Accor ding to many old residents, a wall of 1.8 kilometers was constructed within a decade of early Dellys colonization 1847 1857. It had seven doors or buwab/sing. Bab as follows: 1) Bab al Assouaf to o the Nor t h West taking the inhabitants to the garden s, Ladjenna. 3) Bab Edzair and 4) Bab Isly, both 3 and 4 opened t o ward the South West on Mountain Bouarbi. 5) Bab Austeritz t o th e South. The last three doors were built toward other towns and the capital Algiers. 6) Bab al Qabail t o the Sout h tak ing toward other Kabylian areas. 7) Bab al Djadian or Bab el Bhar situated at the entrance of the port (Chaid Saoudi 2008: 97 M.Belhaoua, and the photographer anonymous; Dellys 2010 ). 4 Desp ite the various changes that the colonial system applied to the town in general, the natives of Dellys kept the appellation of the various neighborhoods in upper and lower towns or what they started Humat e nsara [Christian neighborhood]. Until today, the various neighborhoods appellations depend on their proximity to symbolic sites religious and functional ( Chapter 3)
57 A B Figure 2 6 Old and new images of the principal route in town of Dellys taken toward the East. A) An image of an old postcard (1870) of Route Victor Hugo duri ng colonialism, and B) Route 24. Photos courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010 Continuing on the main street, we got to what used to be the center of the colonial town (Figure 2 7 ) Despite a major destruction due to the 2003 earthquake, the European style of building was apparent on the colonial side of the town. Major buildi ngs stretched toward the e ast since 1847 including army, administrative, economic, religious, touristic, and residential development for colonialists during the colonization which Algerians appropriated after independence. A B Figure 2 7 Series of Dellys town ex French quarters landmarks. A) T he Beau Rivage hotel restaurant damaged in 2003, in renovation, B) the port quarter, view of co lonial homes and part of port. Photos courtesy of author, field work 2010. In comparison to the newer Humat al Nsara (Christian neighborhood) to the east, to the north. Speaking about old Dellys, prior to the brutal colonial invasion, old Dellysians c alled
58 by visitors throughout history (Figure 2 8 ) The well maintained town started from the shore and grew toward rs took the names of its saints and mausoleums, therebyh connecting glorifying faith with knowledge and compassion. The Huma also adopted the appellation of the paths (humat el Mizab) toward the bountiful sea or the balconies (el Djbissa) that allowed the residents to value their shipping and fishing port and the beauty of the sea waters that stretched as far as their eyes can see eastward as well as westward. A B C D Figure 2 8. Series of Dellys Casbah landmarks. A) Taken fr om the lower Casbah, the Mizab alley takes to port B) taken from the upper Casbah, sidi Mansour alley takes to town center, C) taken from the lower Casbah, the Djbissa balcony looks on port and mountain, and D) taken from lower Casbah, Kheira Souag Ammi by Sidi al Harfi Mauseleum looking on an old alley. Photos courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010. Dellysians who grew up surrounded by the vestige s of their old town reminisced about their childhood and young adulthood. Despite the times of hardship and misery caused by the daily colonial control of the population, inside their quarters, between their alleys, and their homes, they were relaxed and happy as explored in C hapter 3
59 In conclusion, my dissertation is based on both a re reading of colonial records an d an empirical inquiry bringing new and/or neglected approaches to the forefront of the social science disciplines. The words and narratives of those who survived colonialism are significant in strengthening and putting in to use approaches to the study of subaltern subjects to help re imagine a more vital relationship to orality and the spoken word in academia.
60 CHAPTER 3 SOCIAL TIES IN COLONIAL TIMES: WE ARE ONE BIG FAMILY In re constructing daily life under colonialism, social memory becomes a primary approach. Memories are vivid about food shortages and sharing. Racial prejudice mixed with kindness remain alive in the social memories of Dellysians. In many instances, physical structures elicit social memories of family life and neighborhoods Narratives construct a portrait of the French colonial army landing on Dellys shores, restructuring the town to serve its invasion strategies to make Dellys town one of its administrative hub s By opening new roads, the colonial army divided the town int o segments, creating a concrete separation between the old Dellysian neighborhoods and their residents. What was most memorable was the travesty when sacred spaces were demolished to build an army camp and hospital. As a form of intimidation and forced sub mission, the colonial army and administrators continuously s e ized ancestral lands, turning the nobles of the town into a state of impoverishment. And yet d espite the colonial control over land, they were not able to infiltrate Dellysian families or to reor ganize kinship formations and alliances. Under harsh and foreign rule, the Dellysian s found comfort in supporting each other and strengthening their families. In this chapter, I argue that social memor y and oral tradition shape our comprehension of the col onized survival strategies which were embodied in marriage alliances that allowed Dellysians to maintain and transmit their local culture and by the same token collectively continue opposing a conqueror that was overpowering their lives and livelihoods. Although the colonial army invaded Dellys town i n 1837 thereby making it an outpost, it had to face for years the fighting of the revolting tribes and populations in Kabylia. On May 8, 1844, General Bugeaud and his armies transformed the serene port
61 town into a French military base never mind its Saoudi 2008:138 141). The colonized land was divided into compartments (Fanon 1963: 37 38). The restructuring of the town was brutal. The French divided the Casbah with a wide road, nami ng it after the French figure, Victor Hugo. They s e ized the lands of helpless Dellysians, punishing them for participating in any form of resistance. The continuous seizing of land benefitted the growing infrastructure as well as colonial and personal gree d. A couple of years later, they demolished the ancient mosque at the east side of town and built in its place the army camp. In 1847, they erected an army hospital to serve the army and the growing colonial community. C olonial writing s offered a smooth r estructuring of the town to incorporate a presumed acceptance of the new modern changes. However listening to testimonies whose voice s were never included, introduce s other discourses and realities of a much complex history of early invasion ing of their homes and gardens (Figure 3 1) Zahia Khetib saying: The French built a hospital on the land of our grandfather. Its surface was down t o the marsa [port]. Our great grandfather was buried on that land close to his house and garden. When France decided to build the hospital, they forced our family out of their homes to m ove to their gardens in Qaluta [ outside the t own wall toward the West] (INT. 10). Aicha Azouzi Chabani also recalls her family stories of similar outrage. She reminds her grandkids of the real owners, explaining: We were aware. My parents used to tell us that the land underneath the hospital was the land of Sehnoun (materna l grandfather) and France took it from him. Further dow n was the land of Chabani (INT. 19).
62 Both families had no choice except to move to a designated lot in the remote upper side of town where they built small shelters. To appease the enraged population, after occupying and destroying the ancient mosque, the colonial army built another one across the street. Despite being built in a great style of architecture, many Dellysians Kebir [the grand mosque]. They preferred the small mosques inside the Arab quarters, such Saber and Sidi el Harfi Envisioning a coastal French town, the colonial administration established the new infrastructure towards the East and Southeast creating an army, administrative, economic, religious, touristic, and residential center that attracted French and Europeans to settle and love the beauty and climate of the town ( Veuillot 1845) In contradistinction they constrained Dellysians to their quarters and controlled them by separate decrees. A B Figure 3 1. Dellys ian e lders r emember A) Aicha Azouzi Chabani in her home and B) Zahia Khetib Alalou in her home with her friend and neighbor (my informant) Kheira Photos courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010. Fifty years later, settled colonialists moved from a colonial army to a civilian government administered by colonialists and excluding natives from governmental ts wer e attributed a
63 few positions such as a c aid (administrator), police, and tordjman ( a court translator ) Working for the French mayor who was in control of the whole commune o f Dellys, the aid was in charge of collecting taxes from local v illages and registering births a nd deaths. In other words, the c aid maintained order in villages as it was applied in town. Around 1890, the Algerian population had to submit to new census laws that affected many family genealogies forever. Each nuclear f amily had to register under a specific last name. One would think that such legislative action would be in accordance with precedent laws practiced locally. The costs of such violent law was a separation of many families in name forever ( as explained in th e next paragraph ) Despite these major changes in identity papers, there remains a stunning discourse among siblings and cousins with separate last names, a still vital knowledge of shared ancestry. Table 3 1. The Naming Chart Comparing Traditional and Col onial Rule TRADITIONAL FAMILY NAMING Vs. COLONIAL CENSUS Daar/ Household Daar Tacha'out Famille/Family Ma'bout Tacha'out Cha'outi Daar/ Household Daar Ben Chaid Famille/Family Zayed Zahed Chaid a bdelhanin Daar/ Household Daar Ben Souab Famille/Family Souab Souag Daar/ Household Daar Ou'azouz Famille/Family Azouzi Azaz Azouz Kerbouche Daar/ Household Daar a l Khaloui Famille/Family Khalouia Khalouiati Khalwi Khiliouan mayor of Dellys 1963 1972 and 1978 1985 (Figure 3 2) I now understand the dismantling of
64 many families as a result of the 1892 census personal experience in which his own family had their name changed from the ancestral families. He states several examples to explain the rationality/irrationality behind such family division s as Ta ble 3 1 shows above colonial administration decided to divide it into nuclear families each with a different name so there would not 40). Yet, one would think that it would have been same since the differentiation between the nuclear families would have depended or the advantage of the people but to make things easy for her. Therefore, when she used to look for them she was able established original name in the comm unity. Stories keep arising, imagining (INT.40). Although comical, stories of disgracef meaningful explanations of the devastating transformations that remained with a family
65 forever. In independent Algeria, the elderly feel chagrinned about transmitting to future generations a last name that they did not choose. It is hopeful but also sad to see many of my collaborators emphasizing that 'such and such' families are one family despite their separate names. Figure 3 m ayo r of Dellys during Interview. Photo courtesy of author, field work 2010. In postcolonial Algeria, a decree to reset the names is not yet an option. The n connection to their col lective ancestry? Will they be able to perceive a troubling legal status quo and correct it? The 1892 census law that was necessary to the stability of the colonial community on the shores of Dellys town paradoxically destabilized many Dellysian families for generations to come. Was this a sign of sloppy colonial administration or a well planned method to separate big families, maintain control, and nite large families that became a 11)? In Dhaoua
66 Bazizi (INT. 42) as they should be. Dhaoua uses the long lived carob tree as a metaphor for a well rooted family that extends for generations. Such odd legalities did not always benefit the colonial system because Dellysians had their own system to follow and kept naming each other in manner they had alwa ys used. As shown in T able 3.1, in Arab quarter s, each family home was called Daar + from Iser), or a nickname or a characteristic g iven to the family elder (e.g., Daar Haj al Arbi). Inscribing an exact name to each nuclear family, the colonial system was not automatically in control because people had their own kinship system to follow. The double system became a maneuver that Dellysi ans used to their favor throughout colonialism and especially during the war of liberation. history and tradition introduce subaltern discourses about the dismantling the communal herit age and the naming system imposed upon the indigenous people Voices and acts of resi sta nce emerge as signs of a hidden revolt that would persist despite continuous colonial discrimination. As explained in the next section D ellysian traditional kinship sy stem flourished far from colonial scrutiny. Marriage and kinship formation Oral history and tradition show us how intermarriage started between the autochthone families in the Casbah and kept branching to form, for the last two hundred years, a strong and knowledge of eac
67 was still is a big family as illustrated in the marriage all iances kinship chart of colonial Dellys (Appendix E ). Alth ough I present in this section detailed genea logical information, its relation to the broader thesis is that oral transmission of kinship histories persist s in spite of the trauma of colonialism and the war of independence. Such endeavor is of gre at importance as it reestablish es in history the place of the strategic area of Kabylia that have been devastated by the French colonization and administration. It is also intrinsic for the future generations of Dellys town and villages to learn of their g reat past through their genealogies and kinship connections thus reviving a lost practice of orality. In the town of Dellys, as it has been in most Algerian regions, consanguinial and affinial types of kinship were the basis of social connections. Young couples lived in a patrilocal resi dence, though many moved to a neo local residency when they had their own kids. Notably, in both patterns, the bond between the two families and the couple was generally a positive experience. Such a kinship formation was due to similarity and affinity between entities, shared historical and cultural connections. Older families mention proudly the multi origin of old folks of Dellys as M. Belhaoua clarifies Dellys had various populations coming to i t, Phoenicians, Romans, Arabs, Spanish, Turks, and French. Various civilizations took root here including Byzantine, Isl amic and Western civiliza tions (INT. 11). The ancestors came with the desire to settle down in the cultured small coastal town of Dellys. Between the 8 th and 1 5 th centuries, many Ulama traveled from Andalusia and al Maghrib to the coastal town to spread Islamic sciences and the Arabic language. Saber, Djabrouni, and Majdou ba and family al Idri
68 1). Many came from other Algerian regions, making Dellys their home and becoming merchants, fishermen, artisans, traders, and farmers. Yet others fled conflicts from various parts of the land and neighboring countries, specifically from Spain during the inquisitions in the 15 th century. During the Turkish presence, the 18 th and 19 th centuries, Turks married native females. Many natives from the surrounding Kabylian lands intermarried with other mi grants giving the town an Arabo Amazigh (Berber) character. For example, the Zouaoua, who originated from the Zouaoua tribe, were Amazigh Arabo Muslims and represented a large faction of the population in the town. The hundreds of years of mixing various nationalities and ethnicities had formed a society that flourished a nd had become a core community when France colonized Dellys an d the rest of the country in early 19 th century M face of European colonialists. Marriage Formation among the Autochthons of the Casbah While marriage rarely materialized between Dellysians and colonialists, and still do play an intrinsic role in strengthening the relationship among the deep rooted families in Dellys. Daughters and other in a web of kinship. To be able to understand this phenomenon, I present an illustration of the practice of such marriages. Several of my interviewees were cousins and shared one ancestral grandfather, Hajj al Arbi al Idrissi. Although colonialist administrators changed his name on French papers to Drisi or Darzi 1 his offspring did some research and found that he w as 1 The offspring of Hajj al Arbi al Idrissi present the story of changing his n ame to Darzi. According to H. M. Belhaoua (INT. 39) the discriminative colonial administrator, the French Mayor Kyrol, forced al Idrissi to
69 originally from the Idrissi family from a town called Taza in al Maghreb (Morocco). The Chabani, the Chaid, the Belhaoua, the Saber, the Wali, and the Souag, to mention a few, all call themselves cousins because their grandmothers were sisters. Like his cousins, Hajj Mohammed Belhaoua talks passionately about his great grandfather al Hajj al Arbi al Idrissi, a prominent scholar known for his piety and generosity. Relatives and neighbors benefited from his wealth during his life and for generations his of fspring have been living on the land he left to his daughters. Al Hajj al Arbi al Idrissi had four daughters. They married sons of local prominent families of similar character. Al Hajj al Arbi al Idrissi established an extended family that continues to th is day to call him our grandfather. Many remember how some people teased al Haj al Arbi family for having a large number of daughters thus giving away his linage to other families (INT. 6 1 & INT. 39). Amazingly, the offspring of his daughters r emember him and take pride of having him as one of their ancestors. The four girls of Hajj al Arbi al Idrissi and Zhira Fadaoui married into four older families of Dellys (Appendix F). Figure 3 3 Remnants of the c asbah Al Idrissi home. Photo courtesy of author, 2010 During my visit to the Casbah of Dellys town, I was accompanied by one of his name an d wrote it Darzi instead of Idrissi.
70 Offspring, Kheira Souag Ammi, the granddaughter of Aicha al Idrissi. She took me to the site of Daar Haj al Arbi al Idrissi located on the east side of the lower C asbah (Figure 4 6). It was one of the oldest and largest residences. According to Kheira, the ancestral home contained more than twenty rooms at two levels and a large courtyard with a large well in the middle Such moments of memory work are critical in r ecollecting past events and people. Not only do they record the history of certain families, but they also record the history of an ancient town that had been vibrant with various cultures settled on its shores. The ruined ancestral house al Idrissi came t o be unveiled as a mnemonic eliciting the remembrance of moments of the past. Kheira stood by the site with another casbah elder. Within few moments of listening to their reminiscing, I was able to imagine a living and dynamic home through the remnants of the twenty rooms, a vast courtyard with a well in the middle, and a bakery oven, adjacent to the house, built in stone. Despite not knowing her grandmother and greatgrandparents, Kheira was fascinated by the stories told about them. Like other offspring I spoke to, Kheira allowed me to visualize her ancestor, Hajj al Arbi al Idrissi, a freelance businessperson, who owned a lot of land in Ladjenna gardens and on the surrounding hills. Raised in a loving family, the daughters al Idrissi all lived at close p roximity in the been in Dellys for more than 700 years. The Saber family was prominent in town and owned homes on the northeast side of the Casbah. They also maintained, by t heir 2 Several 2 According to an act of purchase that the Saber owned, Mohamed ben Saber purchased a piece of land annexed to the grand mosque in 1694 close to Bab el Bhar [the sea door]. With the money, the mosque
71 members of ben Saber were scholars in Islam and jurisprudence. They were freelance merchants and owned a lot of farming land. They also owned large plots in Ladjenna that beca me later residences for their offspring. The second daughter Aicha married Haj al Wannass Abdoun, a scholar in Quran and a prominent Quran teacher in town and in various zaouat on the surrounding mountain villages (Chapter 4). The third daughter Yamina mar ried Mohamed, a son of Daar ben Chaid, one of the oldest and largest families in town. The Chaid family owned many homes in the lower part of the Casbah and on the main street. They were famous artisans making clay roof tiles, the most ancient building mat erial, used in Dellysian homes. Finally, the forth daughter Zhira married Ali, son of Daar Belhaoua. The ancestral home of the fourteen brothers of the Belhaoua family was in al Djbissa quarter, facing the marsa (port) in the lowest part of the Casbah. The y were known as builders, carpenters, fishermen, and shoe makers. They also owned land in Ladjenna gardens. Later on, Zhira and her husband Ali moved to Ladjenna and raised several children. One of their daughters married into their neighbor's family, to A li son of Daar Chabani. The Chabani originated from the Levant and other oriental countries Quran teachers. Their ancestral residences were in both lower and upper Casbah. They also owned large orch ards in Ladjenna and were freelance merchants. Through marriage alliances, his family connected with the autochthones of Dellys. He married a daughter of ben Saber and had two daug hters married into important families, Souag and Abdoun. was renovated (Ben amane 2011: 108 109). This piece of land became part of the Saber estate in the
72 This illustration shows the importance of oral history when learning of the formation of old families in Dellys and kinship politics as a form of resistance. Generations of religious figures, merchan ts, landowners, builders and artisans shared ancestors and their love for freedom, continuously opposing the colonizer to the end. Such remembered stories illustrate the resiliency of oral traditions in the region and the capacity of families to maintain t heir genealogies in the face of great adversity. Marriage and Kuluglis Alliances in the Casbah Dellysians also forged other types of marriages. Kuluglis were descendants of Turkish males and native females and participated in expanding various forms of mar riage alliances in Dellys and around the country. Although not very common, a few families in Dellys trace their heritage to Kuluglis until today; Daar Wali, mentioned up above, was one of them. These families also intermarried with other prominent familie s in Dellys. For example, one of the Kuluglis offspring, Mohamed Wali, married Zohra Balhaoua daughter of Ali Belhaoua and Zhira al Idrissi. Their two daughters Mouni and Ghalia married their cousins, the two brothers Chabani whose mother is Ghalia Belha oua. Thus, the first ancestor might have been a Kuluglis but within a few generations the kinship strengthened by connecting to other older families of Dellys town. This important early bonding throughout Dellysian history in peace and war strengthened the independent and hardworking on their own. Notwithstanding, they had similar feelings toward the colonizer never submit despite continuous restrictions until the end of colonialism.
73 Marriage Connecting Casbah and Villages Marriage also materialized between various villages in surrounding mountains and between mountain villagers and town peoples. Many mountain villages developed around Zaouat or Quran schools where the leader, his staf f, and their families interacted daily with each other. Like many others, Zaoua Sidi Yahia in Mountain Tizaghouin and Zaoua Sid Amar Sherif in Mountain Boubareg were both prominent in the wider region of Dellys. Intermarriage between Mrabtin 3 families bec ame a common practice throughout Kabylia and strengthened the various Zaouat. In Tizaghouin, members of family Mrabet intermarried with other Mrabtin of the northeastern town of Tigzert, specifically from Zaoua Boubeker. The fou rteen kids of Fatma Mrabet ( INT. 38) also intermarried with other Mrabetin. Thus, intermarriage strengthened the relationship between the following were also the first to oppose the colonial presenc e since 1840. They were the strongest supporters of the famous rebellion and battle of al Moqrani in 1871. Zaouat played an important role in educating and keeping the Islamic, Arabic, and Amazigh (Berber) identity of the peoples of Dellys (see Chapter 4). Town people respected Zaouat confrries for their religious nobility and educational service to the population at large. While town members joined Mrabtin families for the prestige of religious nobility, zaouat members were attracted to the cultural aspe ct of town life. The brothers Rouibeh (INT. 59) narrate the story of their 3 According to Ali Chikhaoui (INT.16) and others, the Kabylian Mrabtin ancestry goes back who came to the Kabylian Mountains from Saqia al Hamra in Mauritania as Quran teachers during Medieval Almoravid Dynasty between the 11 th and 13 th century.
74 Belhaoua) and a Tizaghouinian father (Bouyahiaoui) who settled in a Casbah home, becoming a longtime n family Bouyahiaoui gave their daughter in marriage to another Mrabtin family, a young man of the family Rouibeh from Zaoua Sid Amar Sherif in Mountain Boubareg. After living twenty days only in a village environment, the young bride and her husband not withstand mountain village lifestyle. With the help of her father, the young couple rented a room in the Casbah and b y 1912 Daar Mnaouar was built inside the Casbah. Today, family Rouibeh, the offspring of Mnaouar and Doudja, own several homes inside the Casbah. Despite the devastation of the 2003 earthquake, their homes stand strong. Such families are the hope that Dell ys Casbah will come alive again, strengthening their relationships through old alliances and building new ones. Because of its antiquity, the Casbah and its substantial qualities is a place of meaning, of social memories that are more vital in regards to f amily histories. The Casbah, a Place of Memories The Casbah embodied the most dynamic living space. The various areas called Huma (pl. Huwam or Humaat) epitomized the hub connecting residents to each other and to their living spaces. Traditionally, the Hum a appellation related to its closeness to different markers such as a fountain, the shore and the port, but most importantly to the sacredness of small mosques. Through Dellysian narratives, we acquire the source of the appellation of each quarter. Humat a l Mizab was located around a fountain that provided the residents with drinking water (Benamane 2011: 72). Al Djbissa stood on a large terrace with an amazing view of the port and sea. Humat Sidi Yahia, Sidi Mansour,
75 or Sidi el Harfi, all symbolized the sa credness of the space, while Sidi el Boukhari symbolized the hosting and generosity of the town, that is, sheltering strangers and feeding rich and poor travelers alike. Within the various neighborhoods, Dellysians felt like one family in which children we re not orphaned and found care when losing parents. The war of independence and the rural exodus accentuated the heterotopian (Foucault 1967; 2000) aspect of the Casbah. Yet, the sense of unity was its prevalent character, and for that reason colonialists A B C D Figure 3 4 Architecture of old c asbah homes in Dellys. A) Taken from the patio of the rem nants of a home, B) taken from the patio showing the well, C) taken from the neighbors terrace showing roof and patio of adjacent home, D) Taken from balcony northeast view on s ea shore and Mountain Bouarbi. Photos courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010. The C asbah was a fortress with doors. Shaped in Moresque style, the houses had blind walls. The windows faced the patio and the sea. Each patio had a well for washing. Fountains were located around the Casbah for drinking water. During several visits to the Cas bah in (2009 and 2010), and despite the devastation left by the 2003
76 earthquake, I was fortunate and privileged to enter several homes that were renovated, including Daar Khetib, Daar Drizi, Daar Yahi and Daar Mnaouar (Rouibeh) in the lower town and Daar C few homes (with guides) to only see remnants of their walls and patios to imagine how life might have been in the past. Upon entering homes that were in some habitable form, I was able to contextualize various narratives of a vibrant social life as explained in the following paragraph upon entering the home of Rouibeh called Daar si al Mnouar. With my video camera in hand and my informant in front, we entered a Moresque style wide door to first get to the sqifa (entrance hall). My informant reminded me that long ago residents used the sqifa to store hay and wood on one side, and kept a cow, a sheep, a goat, or a donkey on the other. On the same side, we could still see the remnants of a ch icken coop that provided daily eggs. The old resident Rouibeh explained some architectural aspects that hinted to the conservative aspect of the Casbah. Pointing to a wall in front of me with two openings on the sides, he explained: from the patio of the house, which every home in the nei ghborhood 58 ). By turning on either side of the wall, we got into the Housh (roofless patio). The patio (about eight by ten meters) was an open space surrounded on all sides by the building's structure. On the left side of the patio, close to the entrance, we could still see the well location. In Daar Drizi, the well was located between two homes, thus, each family had access to the water well without leaving its patio. At the g round floor of Mnaouar home, a few rooms, called beit (pl. biut ), surrounded the patio. Each room had its own small patio called s heen. The s heen served for various utilities, cooking or relaxation. The rooms benefited from the light and
77 sun coming throu gh the uncovered patio; each room had a small window toward the patio and another toward the sea. In this home, the upstairs floor was above the entrance wall, an apartment of one of the sisters and her family. In other homes, large families had their marr ied children each occupy one room downstairs during the day and one or two bedrooms ghurfa (pl. ghruf ) upstairs with windows toward the sea providing a nice breeze. As many explained, usually there was one bathroom located in the patio shared by all mem bers, family or residents. In this house, an upstairs bathroom was included. Casbah homes were originally built from locally crafted materials. The multi sized stones in cuboid shape were used to build the walls and stairs. Stairs were made of the largest stones one meter by half meter but the walls were made of a mixture of bigger stones at the bottom and smaller one forty to twenty cm in the rest of the wall. Builders used mud for stacking the wall stones. They used lime la chaux in French for painting walls in eggshell color and the doors and windows in bright blue, green, or red color. They also used the locally made clay roof tiles, a most ancient building material, in most roofs. With the availability of European roof styles, they also used Italian style tiles. Either way, the red roofs were a marker of Dellysian homes (in comparison to the Algiers Casbah that had terraces). Large beams from olive and other trees supported each house ceiling. In the ruined homes, we could still see the larg e beams that supported the ceiling, el guntas, starting from the front door and continuing throughout the rooms. Such building techniques have sustained some homes for more than 400 years. With the development of modern French industry in early 20 th centur y, a few houses such as the Rouibeh changed their ceiling supporting material to steel. The
78 Moresque style was also apparent in the arches throughout the home, at the entrance, windows frames, and thorough the surrounding walls between the patios and the r ooms downstairs and upstairs. It gave support and elegance to the house. The Rouibeh house had a riad (garden) that was accessed from various downstairs rooms. The family planted vegetables, fruit trees, and all kinds of flowers that brought them subsisten ce as well as beauty to the space. Leaving the Rouibeh house in Huma Sidi el Bouyahiaoui (Figure 3.4, A & B). Both seemed to be much more sophisticated in their buildin g style. The site of a few kids playing by their homes induced me to contextualize fountains, bakeries, and quranic schools. They all acted as mnemonics eliciting tales of a dynamic part of local life in the Casbah and of stories about various parts of the family when they encountered spaces with meaning place Subsistence and Sharing harshness of colonization, how they were marked by various historical episodes such as WWI and WWII, and, most importantly, how they turned those hard times into a time of sharing the bounties clearly demonstrates that oral history and tradition cannot be replaced w ith the colonial and archival history of Algeria. As seen in the previous section, the concept of place emerges from social interactions and relationships that generate future behavior (Kahn1996: 194). Those who experienced famine, scarcity of goods, and, more significantly, those who survived and found hope within each other, all illustrate a memorable story. Within their landscape and among their family members
79 and friends, they remembered and recounted. Their narratives are so vivid and moving that an au dience could only listen and record without any interruption. Listening to Dellysians speaking about their social life, I learned that colonial subjugation did not take over their lives. Instead, they painted a picture of a dynamic town full of life that left me in awe. In colonial Dellys, bakeries, shoemakers, grocery shops, and small schools animated the town on a daily basis, as did the celebration of many religious and seasonal holidays. I was impressed by the central role that bakeries played in the community. Bread making evolved from an ancient tradition among Dellysians and colonials alike. With a land rich in grains, seeds, and oils production, bakeries flourished and provided bread, the daily subsistence for town residents. Within the Casbah, fou r or five bakeries made and sold bread. A tradition of preparing loaves of bread and pastries at home, then sending them to the bakery was clever bartering, greatly important in providing a partnership between residents and bakers. Scarcity of currency did not disable the local businesses. Instead, an exchange partnership evolved covering the needs of both residents and bakers alike. Many female participants remember the daily task of taking a loaf of bread to the kusha (bakery). In her childhood, Ghalia La hmel lived in the lower Casbah. She remembers exactly where the located; by D 28). Ghalia reminisces how as a girl she used to carry loaves of b read on wooden plaques on her head to bake at kushat Razki in Huma Sidi al Boukhari. During those moments of earnest remembrance, Ghalia sent soul). Kushat Haj el Arbi was on t he other side of the alley to the east in humat Sidi al
80 Harfi. Doudja Saber was in her early teens, going to Arabic and Quran School daily. As she narrated with a smile on her face, she remembered how she used to leave the classroom to run home, take the l oaf of bread to the bakery, then return to her studies. At the end of class, she used to come back just in time to get the hot loaf of bread ready for lunch. Families did not pay the baker in money, but instead, sent him an extra small loaf of bread, for h provisions and even wood. On the other side of Rue Victor Hugo, other bakers did not bake the homemade bread but sold the bread they made. European bakeries in Humat a nsara (European neighbo rhood) also used similar means during the scarcity of entered European quarters, they ventured t o get French bread from Mme Cazo and Mme Martin bakeries. During WWII, life considerably changed in the Casbah, as it did in many big and small cities around the world and other colonies. People cannot forget the rationing of food, cooking gas, fabric, soa p, and many other necessities. The scarcity of daily necessities significantly affected the colonized society. Salah Souag, Mohamed Yahi (Figure 3 5 A & B), Mouni Wali and many others recall how they bought bread and tickets) to each family to allow them to buy their monthly provisions, including bread or grains, cooking gas, soap, powdered milk, coffee beans, and one meter of fabric. 45 war, the governmen t restricted the amount of grains for each family to 7.5 kilos pe 24). As children and young teens, they
81 remember getting in an early morning queue when it was still dark to get their rationed grains from Mr. Fiche, the Mal tese seller, and then grind them at home with a rha (the traditional stone grinder). Yahi vividly remembers those harsh moments, saying: Children had to do such tasks because the father had to go to work if he had any. For those of us who were little, we used to ask adults to help us carry the ba g of seven kilos of grains (INT. 24). A B Figure 3 5. Childhood friends r emember. A) Mohamed Yahi, B) Salah Souag. Photos courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010. Many expressed that such a little amount of grain was not enough. Most of them turned to purchasing bread instead. However, it was always 7.5 kilos of bread per month or the right to 250 grams of bread per day. A large family (about ten members) had the advantage to a loaf of one kilo (each member would h ave no more than 2.3 Scarcity of subsistence pushed people to be creati ve and to use even an egg to 24). They do not forget the hard times and the neglect their people suffered, yet t hey are proud of their skills to improvise and sustain their families.
82 Oral history also illustrated an image of a segregated colonial town in which, people were surviving by all means; yet, the few more fortunate got their necessities through a black mark 24). Most Dellysians could not plant grains for their daily bread, except for Bashna, a type of grain from which flour was not easy to bake. Only a few Dellysians who had their own farmland were able to plant a variety of wheat seeds for their daily consumption of bread and pasta. They were also able to buy extra provisions on the black market that boomed in those harsh situations. As ma ny remember, the poor preferred to sell coffee to get money for bread. A few Dellysian families were able to purchase extra coffee through the black market, from the poor who sold their shares to buy extra food and bread. Bastanji and stores, sold fabric but only Europeans and few Dellysians were able to buy it because the majority had no currency and could not afford the high price. Thus, the poor and lower working class population improvised in other ways. Yahi remembers how as teena gers his friend Salah Souag and he used to collect shatba (wood for baking) in exchange for one loaf of bread from Mme Martin, the owner of the bakery in Huma a nsara by the old post office near the church, he recalls, When we got Mme Martin five or six bu nches of wood, we waited until 12:00pm. If she had extra bread, she would give us in exchange half or one loaf of bread. At other times, she asked us to carry bread to the local prison. When we came back, she sold us one loaf of bread from the money she ga ve us for the wood. We used to get so excited that we w ere able to get more bread (INT. 24). d guests,
83 had no understanding of the causes of European wars; yet, the wars reminded them of their daily struggles to think of ways to find the money to pay for the ra tions at the end of the month. In comparison to the stressful situation of Dellysian families during WWII, colonialists were well equipped and suffered less. A large Dellysian family had the right to purchase no more than a meter of fabric per month. As M ouni Wali explains, the problem was that each month the family got a different type of fabric and the one meter would not fit any one of the family an adult person would need at least thre e meters to make a garment (INT. 20). With a family of six girls, the mother had to be very creative to provide clothing for her children. Relatives and neighbors exchanged with each other to find a proper way to make clothing Landless and u nemployed Dellysian families suffered the most. Zohra el Azli school, I used to keep a piece of bread and divided it between them. They ate it and waited for God to provide so never left home, went shopping, or 8). Such stories gave glimpses of the double subjugation (colonized by French and controlled by male relatives) suffered by many, es pecially women. Yet, families in the Casbah commemorated many days around the year, a reason for sharing and caring. In colonial times, Dellysians greatly appreciated their Holidays. Happy times relieved families from daily struggles. The community came t ogether in commemoration, sharing bounties with each other. Religious and agrarian holidays were sacred in the
84 Casbah and villages. Many reminisce about the days when they celebrated Eid al fitr at the end of the fasting month of Ramadan and, two months la ter, Eid al Ad ha at the end birthday), Ashura (Jewish Passover celebrated on the tenth of Muharam, the first month of the looner/Islamic calendar), and swiqa, feeding the families on specific days of the Islamic calendar. Agrarian holidays included Yanayer (the Amazigh New Year on January 12) and spring, summer, and fall festivals. Rich and poor celebrated, and as a community, they helped each other to provide a decent meal that day The more able provided gifts for the less fortunate. Thus, as remembered and emphasized by many, despite the extreme need that was prominent for the long period of colonialism, Dellysians (Casbah and villages) used the special days to alleviate the hards hip and feel connected to each other. Fishermen remember how the spring festival was celebrated. Although fish was a staple food for those living by the shore, Dellysians ate fish to celebrate the bounty of the season. H. M. Belhaoua reminisces about thos e days when in their home in Ladjenna his family used to get plenty of fish. One important fish was tchalba. In a fryer made of clay, the fish was fried and then put in a red pepper sauce and kept for the next day to share with family and neighbors. The Bo uri was another type of fish caught in the sweet waters of the river that was prepared in a similar sea gave them) of sardines, they share 3 9). Being individualistic life style, many prefer the days of the past despite colonialism, because then peoples were generous. Thus, they celebrated spring festival wi th the bounties of
85 the sea accompanied by Khfaf a type of doughnut eaten with honey. No one went hungry that day. At the harvest of figs each early summer and fall, those who owned orchards in Ladjena gardens outside the Casbah center invited their neigh bors to join (INT.11). When harvesting potatoes, the owners kept a portion of the harvest for those who were waiting for those days. Those who received a gift never returned the pot or basket empty, even if they put a p iece of bashna bread in it (INT. 11). Stories of generosity showed that Dellysians believed that they were one fami ly. They shared the bounties they had not out of favor but obligation. Thus, oral history tells us that most people did not starve since there was always someone who would open the door of generosity and kindness. When visiting families on Eid, explains Zo to take a plate of special pastry (hnayen, maqrut, and samsa). Then they also used to on, it is inspiring to hear many reminiscing about the days of their childhood and young adulthood, days when families cared for each other, shared the bounties, and were grateful. Within Dellysian families, stories of care and compassion kept giving a br ighter picture of their colonized lives. The communal aspect of each tradition was the secret of such happiness amid hardship. Among Casbah and Ladjenna families, the tradition of making hnayen (braided sweet bread) was of great importance, especially duri ng Eid al Fitr at the end of Ramadan. M. Belhaoua recalls how his family in Ladjenna kept the tradition despite not having bakeries in their neighborhood. Women got together and
86 prepared the hnayen at home, and then Mohamed and his cousins took them to the bedding of the elders). Carrying four or five plaques of wood filled with raised hnayen, the teenagers walked a few kilometers to bake them at the bakery in the Casbah as M. Belhaoua remembers, There were no cars or autobus. [Walking,] we took the hnayen to the bakery, waited for them to be baked, then by the end of the day brought them back home (INT. 11). However, in the mid 1950s during the war of independence, his pater nal aunt, who lived in the Casbah invited them to make the hnayen at her home. His aunt was in charge of making Hnayen for all three families including hers. The two families provided the ingredients (wheat flour, butter, eggs, sugar, raisins) and she prov ided her skills to make the pastry. By the end, as Mohamed recalled, the boy and girl cousins picked up baskets of hnayen and returned with their dear aunt to their homes, tired but excited and ready to celebrate Eid. Compassionate good hearts created a ce lebratory environment within the hardship of colonialism and even during the war of liberation. 24). The satisfaction from finding some food and refuge as well as clothing allowed Dellysians not only to survive but also turn their harsh environment into a bearable life and create useful tools, shoes, and utensils from raw and waste materials. Their grateful hearts were at peace because th ey did not consider bounties as their own doing but as mercies and miracles from God to share with all human beings.
87 Relationships with Colonials Oral history is central to reimagine life among Dellysians but also their relationships to colonials who were their neighbors, supervisors, coworkers, soldiers, teachers, or classmates. In comparison to detailed narratives about Dellysian interactions as explained above, memories of Delysians relationships with colonials are limited yet, they help re construct an image of the segregated society that had limited settings to interact. Such narratives are distinctive in being rare in colonial history of Algeria and in French colonial memoirs. Algerian voices and narratives thus bring different and enriching discourses to the interrelation between Algerians and colonials. Interactions between Dellysians and colonialists were not based on family relations but on situational events. Many Dellysians I spoke with remembered living in the same town as French and other Euro pean professionals and colons, yet memories of positive daily interaction were fewer. On Rue Victor Hugo, Dellysians could observe participate. Fatiha Hanin remembers watching t he church priest interestingly called by Dellysians Merabou 4 and other people in front of a funeral procession walking to the cemetery. There are stories about Majdoub, an old Dellysian who used to be the hearse us, your father takes the Christian dead'" (INT. 45). The daughter naively used to say, (INT. 45). Majdoub worked in the 4 Marabout ma b is a French concept coming from the Arabic word mrabe t meaning Muslim saint or religious personality (Ageron, 1967:1287). Local Dellysians use the same concept meaning Christian priest. Yet, they do not pronounce it mrabet in Arabic but merabou in French.
88 proximity to the French but d 24). From the Casbah, many Dellysians could see the army barracks. Residents of the Casbah remember how they watched from their windows French soldiers raising the flag each morning and lowering it each evening accompanied by the French anthem. At a business level, Dellysians perceived colonials as privileged. In comparison, many Dellysians worked under the control of European settlers. As Behja Abdi explains, her brothers worked for Italian fishermen and only upon independence were they able to own their own fishing boats (INT. 26) 5 In the late 1930s as a youn g girl, Fatiha Hanin residents] were Nsara (Christians) who were privileged, and, lucky those Dellysians who escribed colonialists owned most materials and more importantly, they were free while De llysians were not. A daughter of a fisheman, Fatiha recalled the day her father returned from the t and coffee/bar owner at the port caused such a frustration. He discriminated against Dellysian fishermen, accusing them of filth and bad odor, and throwing their cases of fish away. ome before the 5 sting in the army during WWII. They returned from France with no advantages and remained fishermen until they retired. France neglected the rights of her subjects despite benefiting from them as she pleased.
89 powerful colonialist called on soldiers to punish them. The disconnection between the two populations was emphasized by the institutionalized racism that was a daily reality felt by Dellysians. Despite living in close proximity, the French set up an apartheid like system. Dellysians youth were banned from sports activities at the beach port. They could not use the plongeoir (diving board) by the Sport notic entertainment center while their European peers used it daily and on special occasio ns. A. Chabani remembered events when colonialists used poor Dellysians in certain games to entert ain European vacationers (INT. 4 French side of town was animated with activities. European s from the surrounding colonial villages joined their peers in center town to take part in celebrations. However, Dellysians felt like outsiders who were not welcomed but who also refused to take part. Children were of course attracted to the fun that fill ed the Blansa. What they remember was not good times but how the Dellysian policeman, Louness Amarouche, kicked the loved to watch the festivities. Many national festivities honored the colonial achievements in the colonies, but children were not aware of such complexities, only wanting to have fun like the other children. During the interviews, many Dellysians held b ack positive stories about colonizers will create the assumption that they were good. This would erase t he 1). Yet, their detailed narrations of ten helped many
90 survivors to appreciate the kindness of some Europeans who on many instances stood against the discriminatory system and supported Dellysians' rights. Outside center town in Ladjenna gardens, colonialists and Dellysians were on better term s. Many Dellysians narrate stories of mixed neighborhoods that started to take shape. Many Europeans (old and new immigrants) bought land from Dellysians in Ladjenna, becoming neighbors. Being equal homeowners and farmers facilitated the bonding between ma ny Dellysians and their European neighbors. They entered each shared food and garden fruits. With the newcomers, Dellysians followed the well established tradition of commun al sharing of vegetables and fruits, especially on harvest day. The two sisters in each other, eve 67). They remember their European neighbors by name: Mme Ranchot on one side and Mme Du Bois on the other. Fatiha Hanin's family lived in the Casbah but owned a summer home and garden in Ladjenna. She explains that in town she did not play with Nsara (Christian/European) children. However, in the gardens the granddaughter from his orchard. Many European families spent their vacation in Ladjenna and became good neighbors. Contrary to the divided cen ter, the interaction between Dellysians and Europeans in the gardens followed the Dellysian norms, a caring and sharing community. In summary, the 1840 brutal French colonization of Dellys convinced the ir community, livelihood, and sacred
91 spaces. Unprotected, they saw their Casbah split to suit colonial aims: new roads separating families, lands taken from owners, mosques demolished, and new colonial structures expanding. To cope with colonial spite, the y found comfort in supporting family and friends. Marriage alliances more than any other connections helped them to endure in the face of a destructive colonial power. Under the harsh conditions, Dellysians were able to reshape their lives and together emp hasize their resistance to invaders. Over different times and forms, the colonialists viciously fought the communal altered name for each nuclear family. Despite the p ossibly distressing effects of separating families forever, the people of Dellys ignored the colonial reform and census and used their traditional ways of naming and kinship system. The imposition of the colonial system on the one hand and the population's refusal to submit on the other created a dichotomous environment that with time deepened the separation between local and colonial ways of life. Dellysians turned to their families and friends, strengthening their partnership through patrimonial and commu nal activities. The power idiom that was certainly a reality in the Casbah and small villages. Dellysians relied on their transferred knowledge, skills, and traditions This infuriated colonialists that often Moresque homes, small mosques and schools, narrow allies, uneven stairs, fountains, and bakeries allowed Dellysian families to f orget for a moment that they were colonized. The little they had, they shared it with their families, relatives, and neighbors. The collaboration between skillful families and small businesses in the Casbah created a
92 sustainable community environment that allowed its peoples to appreciate the daily bounties and survive the hard times of colonialism, especially during the Great Wars and the rationing system enforced by the colonial government. What kept the Dellysian community unified was the celebration of religious and agrarian holidays, sharing the bounties with each other and honoring the sacredness of the day. The inspiration of those days are still effecting many survivors who reminisce about the days of happiness and gratefulness. In the post colony, D ellysians see how communal life has changed. It seems that the gratefulness, sharing and caring were more meaningful before. It gave them then the strength to survive the hardship of colonialism but also to forge good relations with many colonialists who s hared similar ethics of equality, communal life, and sharing the bounties. Mixed communities started to form between Dellysians and European settlers outside the center. They started to flourish and create a community based on relative equality and shared ethics. Unfortunately, the dysfunctional racist colonial administration followed a system of discrimination that favored colonialists and their collaborators over the peoples of Dellys. In the next chapter I explore memories of he educational systems and of Dellysians who lost hope to find enlightenment and success in the so called French civilizing mission.
93 CHAPTER 4 REMEMBERING EDUCATION: WELL STREAMING RESISTANCE If one day, people decide to live Destiny will no d oubt respond Night will no doubt dissipate Chains will no doubt break Whoever never felt l ife celebrating him Must vanish like the mist This is what living creatures had told me And their enlightened spirits talked to me The wind howled in the vast path Over the mountains and under the trees If souls longed for life Destiny would definitely respond (The Will to Live by Qassim Chabbi 1933) (Appendix G) As discussed in C hapter 3 in 1844 French colonialists invaded Dellys' shores and town with the pretext of using it as an outpost to fight the Kabyle resistance. They ons. In this chapter, voices and discourses of Dellysians help the reader explore the initial damage to Dellysians institutions of learning, particularly Arabic language education and Quran studies as well as the consequences of colonial control of land an d estates. The oral history and tradition embody the local dismay over the secular French school policy that developed exclusively for the colonial settlers and a minority of Dellysian collaborators. While the French celebrated the centenary of the empire one hundred years after the invasion of Algeria, an emergent nationalist consciousness guided mindful members in Algerian communities a remembrance that is still vivid I argue that since the 1930s, conscientious Dellysians not only reshaped Quran and Arab ic schools but also took French colonial schooling seriously as a pragmatic and instrumental bridge to their emancipation from colonial control. Colonial Impairment of Institutions of Learning In the Algerian collective memory, daily humiliations of local people by French colonialism are still very much alive. In the town of Dellys, survivors of colonial viciousness recounted for generations the violent dismantlement of the communal
94 centers especially mosques and zaouat, thereby forcing into exodus educator s and powerful families who were the core of their communities. The unforgettable violent colonial demolishment of the communal mosque in Dellys town represented the beginning of local resentment of the colonial presence in the area. Accordi ng to Marchal memoir (Pitois 1945) Dellys fell under the control of the French army on May 07, 1844. According to the Algerian historical archeologist, Benamane (2011), a local port captain named al Mouloud ben al Haj Alla l, who had been in contact with the French army since 1843 collaborated with French in that event Eight thousand soldiers entered Dellys while their armaments arrived from the sea on a military ship The massive invasion and overwhelming force was able to triumph over an already weakened A its supporters. Dellysians remember Allal as the first collaborator with the French invaders. After the conquest of Dellys, on May 9, 1844, job was to follow the orders of Marchal Bugeaud and Lieutenant Periot, the new gov to move residents from the strategic port site around the mosque to other empty homes and plots. The stories of this tragic forced removal from ancestral homes and places of worship are still vivid in the memory of many elders (Chapter 3). Archives and oral traditions both recount the initial transformation of the town by focusing on the after as a temp orary hospital for injured soldiers. In 1847, the colonial government demolished the communal mosque to build in its place the army hospital and barracks. al Kebir (the g
95 sacred place, their religious institution, and their center of wisdom, enlightenment and unity. their engagement with other people (living as well as ancestral) and through their interaction with varieties of material culture" (Mills & Walker 2008: 13 14). Two important locations the ancestral mosque and the colonial mosque stood as the mate rial dimension and as mnemonics; one was obliterated and the other was manufactured. M embers of the community referenced again and again to thes e two locations in express ing not only their remembrances of events but also in convey ing their sense of identity their convictions, and their practices. These and other o ral history and oral traditions have not been taken seriously by some Algerian rese archers, cate gorizing them (Benamane 2011 : 10). Yet, when learning of local practices, the same researchers depended on powerful discourses provided by elderly collaborators who were recipients and transmitters of the oral tradition and oral history of the town. During my fieldwork, a number of elders stated clearly that their o (communal mosque) represented the central space of their community. Prior to colonialism communal mosques in Tamazight or Kabylian Language). The assembly of Dellysians was also called Ahl al learning, teaching and managing th eir town and community (Chaid Saoudi 2008: 190, Benamane 2011:109; Chabani 2013:225 6). Older and younger Dellysians animated
96 discourses around the destruction of the communal mosque and the building of the colonial mosque. Elders remembered not only the d estruction of the communal mosque, but also the erection o Kebir (Grand Mosque) on the other side of the street under the supervision and control of the French colon ial administration. Dellysians understood from the very beginning that the coloni al disparaging strategy, which constructed new buildings in the str ategic locations and which controlled the important local infrastructure, namely, religious and educational institutions was clearly a design for control ing the land and its people. Imam and Mufti became th 4). Dellysians recalled that year after year the imam who Day celebration. This event reminded Al gerians of their subordination in what was 47), government executives, army officers and soldiers entered the mosque to take part in the ceremony during which the Dellysian i mam performed a prayer for the success of France. As clergy officers of the colonial government, the imams were French payroll and could not refuse to lead the religious celebration and pray for the French army and government success. However, f or the Dell ysians whom I knew, the colonial subjugated peoples imams on French payroll to enforce colonial ideals. As Mills and Walker (2008) observe, during memory work many other events emerge, one memory calling up another. We can see at work in H.M. Belhaoua who
97 Casbah, for daily prayers and teaching. He recalled that many elders never set foot in whom among them were Hamoud as co independence in 1962, many residents prayed in their homes or went to sidi al Harfi in the Basse Casbah or sidi Abdelwahab in Ladjenna. They preferred to pray behind a (in Kebir. Thus, Imam S., known Kebir a nd go to sidi al Harfi to lead daily prayers (Figure 4 1). As a security measure, especially during the nat e never mentioned the they [army ] would come and 12). The imam and congregations in the small mosques were cautious in what they discussed. As religious 200), avoiding political discourses, to spare the mosque colonial harassment and control and to allow residents and visitors to enjoy their daily congregational prayers and children to acquire Arabic and Quran learning. However, d espite their careful maneuvers, Dellysians had to endure continuous provocations throughout colonization and specifically during early insurgencies and the n later during the war of independence (1954 1962) The colonial army and administration closely watched Algerian institutions of wo rship and education. Wounded by the harsh
98 colonial times, Dellysians could not hence forget the French colonial plan to eradicate Islamic and Arabic institutions of learning and to establish French institutions around Algeria, hoping to change the land to make it fit the colonial empire project and yearnings. Therefore, i n the aftermath of the invasion, Dellysians like other Algerians and Ara INT. 4). A B Figure 4 1. Places of w orship in Dellys town, A) the colonial Grand Mosque and H opital, Gallerie n.1 http://alger roi.fr/Alger/dellys/pages/0_dellys_galer ie.htm accessed on 1/27/2014 at 10:30 pm, B) Sidi al Harfi Mausoleum. Photo B courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010. The French domination over strategic aspects of the town and its community engendered however a culture of resistance. Locals silently boy cotted colonial institutions including the mosque that in their eyes was devoid of sacredness and authority as a place of worship and communality. What the colonialists had not anticipate d though was that they had to confront a population which maintained an antagonistic defiance expressed in novel expressions that were integrated in the local colonial heritage and memory, notwithstanding the fact that the population was being silenced, subjugated and sometimes saw some of its members becoming corrupted.
99 Exodus of Dellysian Minds and Defamed Zaouat The unforgettable primary tragedy resulting from the colonization of Dellys was the exodus of educated Dellysians that res ulted in weakening the zaouat ( sing. Zaoua ) The colonial settlers targeted men who oppos ed the conquest of Algeria, starting with the dismantlement and control of their communal institutions and then forcing them to flee to areas outside of direct colonial control. Many leaders were exiled to other countries including Tunisia and Syria 1 By e xiling the learned elders and sheikhs of institutions, thereby preparing the land for awaited European settlements. The weakening of the zaouat, learning centers, was especially accelerated after the 1871 rebellion. The colonial attacks perpetrated against various resisting tribes around Dellys town weakened and impoverished the maraboutic confederation. As a result, the zaouat in Kabylia Mountains were dismantled. Acc ording to both local oral tradition and colonial archives, famous zaouat became army barracks for colonial forces. As mentioned earlier, the colonial army and administration exiled, imprisoned and deprived many leaders and their students of the established and inherited privileges including the availability of teachers, teaching materials and the management of the boarding schools that traditionally had been open to students and scholars from all over the country and abroad. With time, the image of the fam ous zaouat and their teachers dete riorated. As Chabani observes, 1 Among Dellysians mentioned in both colonial an d local history were si Ahmed at Tayeb ben Mohamed ben Salem (the khalifa [successor] of al Amir Abd al Qadir over grand Kabylia) exiled on September 2 4, 1847. Among those who left for Damascus (Syria) were sheikh al Mubarak as Dalsi (wakil [leader] of zao Mahdi as Saklaoui (sheikh of zaouat sidi Abdu Rahman in Ait Irathen), and Si al Tayeb ben Mohamed ben Salem on a fleet to Syria he died in Syria in 1857 (Feredj 1990; Rob in 1904: 90 92; in Benamane 2011 : 64).
100 Quranic teachers became no different from an illiterate person. They lost the pedagogy and ways of teaching. The problem was that the teacher taugh t [Qu ran] without understanding (INT. 4). F or Dellysians, the French colonials uprooted the old tradition of learning in all Algeria them. Since the invasion, some colonialists were conscious of the desperate situa tions in Algeria. In 1847 Alexis de Tocqueville who took part in a special commission wrote Nous a vons mis la main sur ces revenus (ceux des fondations pieuses tion public). Nous avons laiss tomber les coles, dispers les smin aires. Autour de nous, les lumi dire que nous avons rendu la socit musulmane beaucoup plus ignorante et plus (Tocqueville 1962: 323 in Ageron 1967: 318). [We put hands on these revenues (those from the pious foundations designed to meet the needs of charity or public education). We allowed schools to fail [and] seminaries [zaouat] to disappear. Around us, the li ghts are out...that is, we have made the Muslim society more ignorant and more barbaric than it was before they knew us] (my translation 2013). Situations that Tocqueville deplored were pleasing to others. Richard along with other officers of Bureaux Arabs professed voluntarily that when the Quran schools crumble and the Arab population becomes ignorant, it would be possible to teach the Algerian something (Richard 1846 in Ageron 1968: 318 319). Many Dellysians recounted stories of colonial restrictions on the impoverished zaouat and Quran schools. This practice started early in colonialism, between July and August 1850; a decree forbade any reference to religion in the Quranic schools (Ageron 1968: 319). This might have been understood as an oxymoron but st rict colonial rules on local teachers went as far as forbidding them from using a blackboard, teaching arithmetic, geography, history or
101 sciences as many informants testify. Colonials allowed only the memorization of Quran without commentary or Arabic gra mmar, intrinsic for comprehending and interpreting texts. During my fieldwork among the people of Dellys, I found that local memory was intrinsic to grasp ing the politics of the French invasion. The locals analyzed colonial practices b ased on the tr ansmitt ed tradition and history F eelings of continuous resentment to ward d uring memory work ; feelings that were even though they were evoking the extreme destruction and the transgressive acts of and the changes that occurred during the colonial era Stories of the destruction of the communal mosque kept coming. M ore than that however it is the construction of colonial stru ctures in its sacred space increased the state of subjection. The vivid image of remains embedded in the minds of Dellysians as a result of the manufacturing of a mosque to replace the one that the French administration had itself destroyed in pursuing the dual goal of calming the and controlling their activiti es within the sacred space. The French dismantled many zaouat that were never to be replaced especially due to the exodus of their scholars. What remained in dishonest generosity which since early colonialism, had contributed to amplify an already existing resentment of a population that had been excised from a landscape wi th which it had deep conn ections Colonial Control of Land and Estate (habous) The institutions of learni ng, a waqf (religious endowment ), had remained part of the Dellysian heritage until the French colonial administration took control not only of the
102 log istics but also its estate s (Nann 2009) The exploitation of the land and institutions by the colonial power intensified between the 1840s and the 1890s (Ageron 1964) thereby creating a quandary for the local population. The colonial administration escalat ed its appropriation of local estates as part of its politics of tracking the best local land and ench Algeria, local family endowments ca me to be viewed as problematic. Habous [family endowments] frustrated the efforts of French settler s to buy land In 1832, the colonial government decreed to take by force a ny land owned by a tribe, family, or commun ity if it was not the property of a specific individual person and/ or if there was no proof to justify such a personal property. The colonial administration seized most of the land in this way Prominent Dellysians lost many parts of their land, even in c a ses of documented ownership. According to their offspring, the land was taken from them by force, such as in the case s of the families of Hajj al Arbi al Idrissi (INT. 38), the Sabers (INT. 6 1) and the Chabanis (INT. 4). All of the Muslim waqf (e.g., mosq ues, schools, cemeteries etc. ) as well as other types of institutions became the property of the government. The control was extended further with the 1891 census policy and the destruction of the Algerian family, which pushed families toward poverty, dep rivation and subjugation (Chapter 3). Ironically, the decree for the separation of religion from government in 1905 was appl ied to Christianity and Judaism but not to Islam. Since the Islamic waqf had already become government property, the law did not app ly to Islam By eliminating the legitimacy of waqf and habous estate since 1844, governmental laws allowed the land to be sold to new ly arriving European settlers and colons. The
103 pastureland also became the property of the government, and thus Bedouins cou ld not find land for feeding their animals. Many informants recounted stories about the colony restricting use of communal lands including forests, woods, farming land and seashore Moqrani in 1871, colonialists sized hundreds of thousands of hectares of farming land from the local owners both individual and communal. Due to violence, famine, and disease, hundreds of thousands died. Until the beginning of the war of independence in 1954, nine million or the majority of Algerians lived in poverty and insecurity. Interestingly, many old waqf and habous estates were reinstated to the community when members bought them from the French government during auction sales, with the purpose to turn them into local institutions of learning. Indigenous According to colonial archives, around 1846 1848, the colonial administration classified Algerian schools as incompetent as a way for preparing the ground for a French secular education which by the end of the 1800s, guaranteed an integrated of the French revolution in the colonies. Furthermore, French administrators continuously pursuing a policy and practice of manipulating traditional institutions and their functions. The remaining zaouat that survived such offences became a refuge to few educators who engaged in teaching in order to survive within im poverished compound s According to Ageron, many educational manuscripts in zaouat were lost and destroyed forever. The colonial government was closely following the situation since with the deterioration of native public education meant that there would be no more schools from which to draw cadis (Muslim judges), muftis (Muslim counselors and
104 consultants), or even moudares (professors) and mouaddebs (teachers) (Ageron 1968: 317). These native functions were needed not to fulfill communal obligations, as h ad been traditionally practiced. Rather, they became necessary instruments for the colonial state to control all native institutions, specifically religious bodies. Thus, according to many historians, the government opened medersas (schools in Arabic) to f ulfil the functions mentioned above 2 The presence of a few scholars meant that a relatively developed public Islamic education w as diminished and replaced by secular colonial schools, which initially were built for the growing French settlements. After fi fty years of colonization and fighting to eliminate the Arabic and Quran schools, the colonial public school opened its doors to Algerians in 1883. As early as 1845, and as expressed through political discourses, the goal was to bring Algerians closer to the French through the latter language, history, and culture. The result was a nation whose children, when educated in French schools, did not feel they belonged to a French, Arabic or Islamic system. With no allegiance or hopes to find suc cess in either French or weakened native lifestyle, an alienated community arose. As their daily struggles testified it was hard to find success through an education system that on the on hand, and yet on the other ha nd, implemented a discriminatory system that subdued its subjects. Arabic learning of course had already lost its role and usefulness in the professional work place For girls, neither Arabic nor French was going to help them to become better 2 Simultaneously, many Algerians went overseas for upper Islamic education, to Az zeytouna (Tunisia) and al Azhar (Egypt) universities, a practice that challenged the authority o representatives. The Muslim population trusted and preferred to consult the knowledgeable Ulamas (Islamic scholars) returning from Islamic universities rather than corrupted men controlled by the colony. Many Algerians remembered grandparents and great uncles who were recognized for th eir scholarly work and boycotting French run institutions. Among their people, they were the source of knowledge and council.
105 homemakers. De spite the rosy scenario of the Europeans and keeping natives "in the dark" became the reality in various towns and villages. According to Ageron during the Second Empire ( 1852 1870 ) liberal politics toward the edu cation system in Algeria focused mainly on the colons of Algeria (Ageron 1968: 317). In the town of Dellys, constructing new villages for the new European settlers included a school for their children. In town and in the colonial village of Takdempt the ad ministration established an elementary school for residents living within and around each school (Figure 4 2 B) Students going to junior high school had to move to boarding schools in Algiers. Figure 4 2. Series of colonial s chools, A) Dellys School o f Art s and Mtiers, old photo scan. Courtesy of Mahfoud, 2010 and B) Takdempt Primary School P hoto courtesy of author, fieldwork, 2010. In 1877, the School of Arts and Mtiers (Figure 4 2 A) opened in Dellys town promoting an educational system for indi genes and Europeans studying side by side. Located at t he entrance of the town on the w est side facing the sea, it replaced the Fort National school in Kabylia that had been burnt during the insurrection of 1871. Since the 1880s, the school had beco me a ce nter for indigenes and settlers equally, with the aim of creating a mixed society in the colony with patriotic sentiments toward metropolis
106 Fran ce. The possibility to put side by learning centers was not e asily accepted, as Antoine Leo writes. Alexis Lambert, who was an Algiers d eputy firmly spoke against co education, arguing that Europeans advancement was compromised due to learning side by side with a handful of inferior indignes (Leo n 1991: 154). His opinion was that Europeans would benefit more from attending such schools in the metropolis where they would be able to entertain and renew their patriotism among European s only Fifty years later, in the 1930s and 1940s, only a minority of Dellysians we re able to go beyond primary school; if lucky, they could gain entry to art school s not to become a professional artist making artisanal jewelry. As recounted by many Dellysians, the challenges facing children schooling were v aried, multifaceted and intertwined with extreme poverty, the politics of the time and local antagonism. Local Remembrances of Mission Civilisatrice Sitting with Dellysians, I was repeatedly informed that the local French administration required Algerian f unctionaries to send their children to school whereas scholling was not required for other children. The majority of those who attended schools did so only for a few years of primary school, learning simple arithmetic, writing, reading, and French speaking Good students furthered their studies when their parents paid for their higher studies (junior/high school). Yet, many other families had little interest in the French school. According to born in late 1800s early 1900 s, acquired a few years of French school ing However, their parents were not supportive of French schooling and during farming seasons the children's schooling was interrupted. In comparison, the majority of Dellysian girls, in town and villages, did not attend French schools. What is captivating in many narratives
107 was the resentment held by some families toward French schools. Two people, M. Belhaoua and S. Souag M. Commenting further, M. Belhaoua presented his father al Arbi with a German coworker in a car shop in 1942, saying One day, the German came back from town and found a letter in Arabic neglected your language an coworker, surprised. My father was ashamed. How he did not know how to read his language, so that was when he made the promise (INT. 11). This powerful remembrance clarified why M. Belhaoua never attended French sc hool and shed light on Algerian identity in crisis during WWII. A simple remark by a German coworker awakened al Arbi Belhaoua, causing him to reject a passive lifestyle. Al Arbi was able to read and write the French language, the language of the empire. Y et, he was not able to decipher the Arabic words on a piece of paper, shaming him into realization that he had turned his back on his ancestors. He decided then not to send his young boy Mohamed to learn the language of those who made him forget his roots. Instead, Mohamed was enrolled in the local Quranic/Arabic school to acquire his ancestors' language and values. After the sudden death of his father, al Arbi, Mohamed uncles tried to enroll him in the French school with no success. The French school acc eptance rule, remembered M. Belhaoua, even in the late 1940s, still prioritized European children and Algerian children of functionaries and merchants. Mohamed seemed to be affected mostly by the school principal, who despite being an
108 him said Instead, Mohamed enrolled in sidi Ammar Arabic School. In the context of the changes in French politics toward Algeria in the late 1950s 3 his younger siblings were allowed to study in the new French school that opened in 1958 in Ladjenna, a walking distance s in education, like others, M. Belhaoua expressed his discontent. During memory work, a father as a moment of awakening for change. Like Mohamed, Saleh was born in the mid thirties and never attended French schools. His family stood against French learning promoted by the colony. During our discussion, he took me back in memo ry to his childhood, in the presence of his maternal and paternal gr andmothers and his father Salah recollected their discourses around the French school and their ch and to pray but studying at the French school is for alkhbiza (gaining bread/ wor n attorney or a bashagha 4 so you go to Despite his illiteracy, the father decided that his children would not learn the French language which around French school att endance marked S. Souag because it created a divide in thinking between the members of the extended family and the community, categorizing 3 In 1958, President de Gaulle launched the Constantine Plan during the t hird Republic in order to keep Algeria French; newly proclaimed Algerians right to equal citizenship then allowed them equal rights in education. 4 Like, Qaid, Bashagha is an administrative position held by Algerians that the French administration inherite d from the Othman era. Algerians perceive such a function as collaborative with the colonizer (Chapter 5).
109 some to be religious, patriotic, and others to be pragmatic and opportunistic. Salah recalled an argument between his two gra ndmothers. He said, I remember once, Mamma (paternal grandmother) and jadda (Maternal [French] and we do not need th eir study ing. And the one who likes them he reflected during his memory work, despite not learning French or en tering modern just let them [colonials] 3). As I explain later, families who detested colonialism and boycotted its institutions were among the first to join and organize Islamic reformed schools. Contrary to others, they rejected French control over their lives. Passed on from generation to generatio assimilation tenets shared with each other and with their young ch ildren. In contrast to Saleh and Mohamed who lived few kilometers away from French school, those living at c lose proximity within the town and Casbah, their abilities to send their children to school depended on their socio economic backgrounds and political views There were functionaries, merchants and little bourgeois who sent their children to school. At the same time there were those who were extremely poor, could not afford to buy school supplies, and struggled with no help. Yet there was a third category of Algerians whose political outlook barred their children from enjoying learning. The Dellysian oral history around colonial educat ion was powerful, and without it generalizations.
110 Recalling the French School provide d illustrations of memories about being a student in the public French school during the colonial situation. I next discuss four such cases. Since a young age, Mnaouar dreamt of becoming a professional. At the age of 89 years, Mnaouar spoke with much conf idence. Despite being blind and not seeing my face, he was one of the most engaging participants in my fieldwork. His knowledge of the local landscape and heritage (Chapter 3) and memories of specific events and dates fascinated me. When we spoke of the sc hooling period, I was able to sense in him a child deprived of what he loved the most, learning. I understood quickly that after a few years of schooling (1932 1934) in the French public school, the chance to get beyond primary school was cut short, not be cause of his failing in his studies but because of his the expenses for putting his son in a junior high school outside town. The powerful memory oriented Mnaour to express his dismay over the situation. Being among the best st udents in his class, Mnaour raised an image of the French student that we seldom read about in colonial writings, he said, I was more intelligent than Nsara (Europeans) were. I was first and the French were last in the class rank. I am sorry but they were little bourricots not smart. I was always first in class but when I finished my [primary] Harrach [junior high school ]. It was impossible (INT. 58 ). Although his father had a municipal job, his low wages meant that he could not afford to send his son to higher education and pay for boarding school and the required sets of clothing, bedding, and classroom materials. Like most residents in the Casbah, all what his father could do was to provide daily food for his family. The irony captured by Mnaouar was that although most European children from rich families did not
111 succeed in their schooling a s adults, they supervised hundreds of poor Algerians who worked for the success of col heartbreaking events, Mnaouar showed no blurring of memory or forgetting Europeans who succeeded in their studies. He mentioned them by name, one by one, vileged them for boarding school. Among them were sons of a local judge, military men, and professionals. More importantly, he recalled the kind of work the successful European students performed when returning to Dellys. Being a good student, his memory o f the classroom was on personal achievement in the school system. Despite his advancement in primary ip) for advanced learning. Mnaouar was not bitter when reminiscing about his apprenticeship which consisted of mending shoes with a French settler in the town of Bordj Manael (40 kms south of Dellys). He learned the skill which interestingly allowed a frie ndship to form between the two men that lasted for a long time. Listening to Mnaour was a lesson in history. Born in 1921, during the hardship of the European wars and the spread of extreme poverty, like many oth ers, Mnaouar represented the underprivilege d class deprived of basic needs and education. The social and economic decline of the country was strongly connected to the political milieu embodied in discrim inatory practices between rich and poor, and colon and indigne. As a result, the progress of De llysian children was clearly negatively affected. Yet, a few fortunate parents worked hard to ensure for their children an education
112 Mhamed Khider (1929 2010) was educated in French schools. Despite advanced age and health issues, M. Khider evoked some of his primary school teachers by name, mostly Europeans. Contrary to Mnaouar, M. Khider's memories of Dellys town focused mostly on his Dellysian friends who were the majority of his classmates. M. Khider and a few of his Algerian classmates became successf ul professionals, doctors and instructors. He recalled having good relations with European students, especially those living close to his home and a calm atmosphere in which Dellysians and Europeans spoke Arabic and French with each other saying, We had a good relationship with our teachers. However, we never entered the French quarters. We did not know what colonialism was nor understood why we learned French (INT. 42). In the late 1930s, these children were far removed from early colonial confrontation s that their grandparents and parents experienced. They grew up in a colonial culture that passively disengaged the political from daily experiences. Algerians and colons lived thei r daily intimate lives separately but nonetheless did share other spaces su ch as public schools. Born in 1932, H. M. Belkhaoua also attended the local French school. Contrary to the others, his memories reflected his character as a resistor to colonialism since a young age, a memory work that might have been influenced by his pol itical action (Mills & Walker 2008: 9). Talking about education, H. M. Belhaoua moved between different events and from the past to the present, casting his discourse as a combatant 5 I 5 During our interview, I noticed emphasis on the name of the school today, commemorating a s haheed (Algerian martyr) who died fight commemoration of s haheed s was apparent during my stay in Dellys. Although I was born in the village of Takdempt and visited it on occasions, I was astonish ed at the recent change in the landscape the renaming of distri cts, streets, municipalities, and schools in Dellys town and villag es after local shaheeds. People reminded me that the primary school Radouan Gaceb in Dellys town and the primary school Hamoud Achir in the village of Takdempt were named after two of their courageous sons of Dellys who
113 continued listening to his reflections on the sacrifices they had to m ake during colonialism primarily in education. Like Mneouar, coming from a modest family, he refrained from further schooling at the end of eighth grade and enrolled in an apprenticeship at a local barbershop. Yet, during our interview, I was under the im pression that he had a college level education. Through our discussion, I learned that, ironically, he continued his higher education in the confinement of French prisons during the war after his arrest for his resistance activities (1957 58). He recalled entering primary school in 1940 at the age of seven or eight years. He evoked many of his Algerian classmates who died as shaheed during the war of national liberation but also others who survived to become executives in the Algerian government after indep endence, such as A. R. Benhamida who became the first minister of education During his recollections, H. M. focused on his first teachers who were Algerians children but not Europeans 6 Being bilingual, teachers ait Ameur and Akreche were in charge of educating Algerians while European teachers taught European children at all levels and Algerians at higher levels only. Such separation in early childhood classrooms prep ared both Algerian and European children to accept the constructed separate lifestyles not only at homes and quarters, but also in primary classrooms. As many others recalled, preschool classrooms were designed for children of European descent and selected children of the Algerian elite class only. When asked about his gave their youth for freedom. When I visited Takdempt School, I was surprised at the level of nationalistic Hamoud Achir, was hangi ng on the wall facing the door. Beside it was the framed national anthem that memorialized the men and women who died for their land and people. paternal cousin was shaheed. 6 For more information on Algerian teachers during colonialism, s ee Collona 1975.
114 French teachers, H. M. specifically recalled Mr. Gaurond who told him one day that memories re vealed the impact of such statements on an Algerian child who went to school for learning but he/she was always reminded of his/her place in society T he French school a n establishment of learning was evoked in memories as a discriminative institution te aching Algerian children to consent to their position of non citizens whose humanity was inferior to his/her French classmates. Ironically, they were encouraged to dream of jobs that were reserved for Europeans only They were told to learn specific skills that would prepare them for their future. The segregation they experienced was not based on separation of the races or ethnicities but instead on accepting their position as prescribed through the colonial institution. H. M remembered more than cl assroom outside activities frustrated his mind then and now. Like many oth er participants, H. M. remembered the memory was about the partaking of stude (French) Borage (English) & B oushnaf (Arabic) used during WWII in France for making cough syrup. In H. flower collection. He explicitly remembered the steps of collecting the purple flowers in bags for the white priests of collect the greens of the plant for food. Using schoolchildren to collect the medicinal
115 Dellysians with settlers through e ducation gave an image of a shifting period producing diverse discourses as shown in the next case. Discrimination and deprivation of citizenship and the right to school became a political game that local administrators used as a threat against specific De llysian families continuous apprehension of colonialism. In 1941, at the d Saber went to French school. A f ew years later, he was expelled not for failing but for reasons that went beyond classroo m issues As he o leave t 6 and cousin Mohamed all had to leave their school with no explanation given to them Enraged by such a mistreatment on sc hool grounds, his best friend Ha ssen Majdouba left the room with him, tell ing the offi their right to schooling but was relocated in the public sphere. The families were denied even the right for a daily bread subsidy d uring WWII, a right given by the government to all constituents. suspended. Baker Boudgaire who was o ne of the local bakers and a friend of the Sabers, could not go a gainst the decree by giving them their daily bread, saying in
116 bread [for you] toda ere among the prominent families in Dellys (Chapter 3) and were able to survive and provide for their families through their family grain production. said, That night, baba Ali [paternal uncle] called Dahman [ cousin ] to get the sacks of grains from storage and send t 2). schooling due to the colonial policy of exclusion. T he civilizing mission indeed continuously worked to reinforce the calculated programs of the colonial administration. Around this time, such discriminatory policies became a wakeup call for many Algerian and European intellectuals to create awa reness among the people that such colonial discrimination had to stop. A lternative solutions and support were provided for t hrough communal and social associations in an attempt to overcome the forced harsh inished the year at sheikh Tchaklat Quran school. His desire to attend boarding school in Algiers was put to a halt During subjugate the intrepid population, among them his f amily. Having no alternative schools and pressed by family circumstances, at the age of eleven to which he matured sooner. His brother Mostefa, who was four years older than him had already finished middle school studies and needed to pass the brevet, the entrance exam to the lyce (high school) in Algiers. In his well
117 Mostefa, a brilliant student, whose right French authorities. Yet, Mostefa was able to continue his education because of a collaboration between the French school principal and his maternal uncle by faking the school principal, who helped him go back to school and get his b for the emergence of a much more complica ted coalitions that moved away from the binary opposition of colonizer vs. colonized. We were able to imagine Principal Michelin as an intellectual whose noble values could not accept the racist system, but rather went against it even if it meant he had to act unlawfully. Still, Mostefa faced new narrative to represent a voice for those who should not be voiceless. The Sabers were rich, intellectuals, and free thinkers. B ecause they expressed their opinions during colonialism, various members of the family suffered discrimination and remained indignes with no privileges. Despite their elite position in the community, resisting colonial rule dispossessed them of basic soci al rights. Furthermore, many of the youth were deprived of an education, something that Europeans took for granted. In sum, children in colonial Dellys illustrate special targets in the political games a priority during colonial times, yet, it was and is relevant in the memories, imagination, and mapping of the colonial empire. In comparison to the privileged European children, indigene youngsters became aware of their lower position in the colonial spac e at the moment they first put their feet into schools The selected memories of four participants showed the perplexing
118 circumstances and painful realities that faced young minds early in childhood. Speaking about their education, the participants came fr om poor and wealthy families and yet shared the memories of a segregated society. Their French schools taught them not only math, reading, writing, and history, but to remain in a designated position, a non equal to the children of European ancestry. Like to stop and look at the disparities they fashioned. Engulfed in building an empire, they overlooked the growing resentment and an a wakening within the Algerian community. Through well crafted narratives, Dellysians related how European racism in Algeria materialized when Algerians started to be educated, especially becoming fluent in both Arabic and French. After WWII, the world opene d up and French education was spread more equally along with Arabic among Algerians sustained by a judicious consciousness that Algerians adopted as they looked forward toward national liberation. Unpredictable Nationalist Consciousness The nationalist aw akening was not unique to Dellys town ; it also took place in beyond abstention. In 1930, such resistance started with the reformist movement of Ben Badis but was foll owed by a general change in the Algerian attitude toward the French school by first promoting French learning and then demanding equal rights and status. Restating the Links of the Islamic Umma and Reform To understand the reconnecting of the Algerians in tellectually with the Islamic Umma we must start in the early 1900s, that is, when Algerian scholars and intellectuals connected to other Arab and Muslim minds outside Algeria became conscious that their condition could not persist. The visit of the Egypti an reformist scholar and grand Mufti
119 (jurist), Mohamed Abdu (1845 1905), to Algeria in 1903 was a historic event during which Algerians adhered to his party Al Manar Impressed by his message on ioned the road to a new reformed society. The link between this part of the Maghreb and the vast body of the Islamic Umma community was restored, ending a rupture in which Algerian Islam was isolated and closed to any generative influence (Merad 1967: 32 3 reform, Algerian followers considered Islam as a flexible faith, capable of adapting to modernity when freed of the superstitious beliefs that had become widespread among the population. Reformist ideas of sheikh Abduh started to germi nate in Algerian minds, especially in big traditional and cultural centers. The number of those convi nced by his ideas was not large; yet they had enough intellectual and social influence to gain sympathy (Merad 1967: 34). The death of sheikh Abduh in 1905 caused an emotional turmoil among Muslim intellectuals of Algiers but the kindled light did not die. Introduction of the National Algerian Reformists In the late 1920s, time was fertile for new ideological tendencies. The ambition of Algerian Ulamas was to create a unique movement, which could unite under one doctrine the whole country as well as diverse theological schools, including those with charismatic tendencies (Colonna 1975: 38). Between the First and Second World War, argues Merad (1967), Algeria n history was dominated by two phenomena on social, cultural, and political levels. The first was the awakening of public Islamic opinion about Algerian political problems. The second was the timely appearance and the development of a Muslim reformist move ment of oriental perspective becoming active around the time of the European celebration of the centenary of French Algeria ( 13). The 1930 centenary celebration was magnificent. Gaston Boumergu e, the president of
120 the French R epublic (1924 1931), traveled to Algeria to celebrate, starting with the inauguration and unveiling of a grandiose monumen t nine meters high situated on the beach of sidi Feruche, the 1830 landing place. Evans (2012) describe s the centerpiece monument as comprising two female allegoric al figures: on the one side France, maternal and generous, and on the other, Algeria, looking upwards for protection and guidance. Such an emphatic statement about the civilizing mission, writes Evans, ly that France had bestowed justice, health, and prosperity on a w triumphs, the French in Algeria and in France paid less attention to nascent Algerian developments. They superstitiously assumed that no organ ization c ould function outside nationalist party, nonetheless, the French government was impressed with the founding of a religious movement with a reformist tendency, st rictly attached to Arabism without activities a midst Muslim communities Nor did they knew i ts attitude toward France (Merad 1967: 14). Lacking Arabic language ability, F rench officers could not penetrate the movement and fathom its doctrines and goals. Nor did they have any interest in dissecting the new movement to understand it a clear indication about the condescending European attitude toward Algerian political and r eligious activities. founded during 1925 Hami d ben Badis (1889 1940) in the e as tern town of Constantine along with like minded reformist Muslim scholars including Mobarak al
121 Mili, Tayyib al Ibrahimi, and Tawfiq al Madani (1947; 1976) Their first activity was the production of the moderate nationalist journal al Mou ntaqid (the critic) in 1924, which did not last for long since the French authorities banned it in 1926 (Stone 1997: 147). It was followed by two official periodicals Al Shihab (The Meteor) and Al (Clairvoyance) and another irregular publication A l Islah (Reform), edited by al and beyond, under the guidance of men of convict ion who led their people toward decolonizing their minds before their land. In his study of the reformist movement, Shihab Relying on the aimed at i ntroducing rhetoric directly views of the movement. How did Algerians embrace the reformist discourse and implement their ideals at the local level? Such inquiry is cru cial for appreciating the relentless resistance to colonial rule. The remainder of the chapter will deal with this aspect through Dellysian remembrances and constructed narratives. In this section, I During my fieldwork, the topic of the reformist organization came up in various discussions, primarily the impact of its ideology on the population and of its various activities that transformed the spirits and attitudes of various sub communities in Dellys and around the country in the years following its foundation. Locally, the association Ulama (the Muslim scholars association ) and its local branch Islah (the reform association). In the collective memory, it
122 represented, and still does, a religious association with the nationalist endeavor to reform the Algerian identity. Local Dellysians still remember those times of excitement in which subjugated p eoples were awakened to organize and change their situation. An Arabist intellectual, author, poet, and artist, Ameur Chabani was among the fascination with ben Badis an d the other membe rs of the association was great; as he put it brilliant people Chabani fel t, as it did with the unqualified sheikhs despite their memorization of the Holy Quran. Rote learning, without thought of the sacred text's meaning turned people under the harsh colonial situation to passivity with no ability to discuss or answer any rel igious or cultural questions let alone deal with ideological matters. seeking to restore A lgerian historicity and break the silence imposed by the colonial hegemony. Within the first years of the birth of the association of Ulamas, a few of its members produced historical books that had been the primary sources for Algerian learning of Mili and al Madani, produced detailed national histories that we 52). In 1928, Al Moubarek ben Mohamed al Mili wrote Tarikh al Djazar fi l qadim wa l hadith (Algerian history in past and present, Vol. 1 in 1928 and Vol. 2 in 1938). Al Kitab al djazair (the book of Algeria 1932) became a cornerstone in
123 52). These scholars have been commended for their courage in clarifying the centuries of the Algerian sou l buried, distorted, and denigrated by Western historians who suppressed any evidence of a Muslim Algeria. These books as well as the weekly writings of the association became famous for the epigram Islam is our religion, Algeria is our homeland embodied in their sayings and acts. M. Yahi was impressed with and influenced by the Algerian historians. As a retired Arabic teacher, he used such knowledge to instruct the youth about their history. Du ring our interview, M. Yahi expressed the need to edu cate Dellysian youth who hold a distorted image of their land, that is, an image that is still tainted with colonial discourses which sought to spread ethnic divisions and animosity among the natives. A. members of the association cooperated with their supporters within each community. The first step was to repossess the places designated for educating Algerian children. As mentione d earlier, in early colonialism, the colonial administration appropriated many with local wealthy residents to repossess and buy the habous land to be used for their childr en's educational activities. In the town of Dellys, Sidi Ammar School and the local small mosques were established to teach Quran and Arabic in a modern way. As reform school methodologies in teaching Quran. During my fieldwork, d evoted students remembered their teachers by name, among them were Sheikh Abdoun, Sheikh Tchaklat, Sheikh a Sayem, and Sheikh Hamza who were located within the town of
124 Dellys, its Casbah and Ga rdens. The teachers were well equipped to teach the memorization of Quran at various levels. To illustrate the role of these teachers let me now focus on the memories of various students of two Quran teachers, al Wannas the former taught in the Casbah schools and the latter in Sidi Abdelwahab mosque in Ladjenna. Focusing on the place and tools of learning as mnemonics, the oral reconstruction of classroom teaching and materials allowed the listener to imagine far distant (in time and space) forms of teaching and learning. These narratives drew images of learning in polarized and unstable circumstances that, for sure, affected young minds. For many students, an abruptly ended early education marked them with unforgettable memor ies. Memory of Abdoun School On June 25, 2010, after touri ng the Casbah with Kheira Souag Ammi, one of the elders and a close collaborator, we all ended our day at the home of her friend Zohra Khetib Touji in Dellys town (Figure 4 3) We spent a few hours talking about various Wannass Abdoun left me wondering how such local oral knowledge about colonial times ha ve been neglected. Zohra was a little girl in the mid 1930s. During her generation, girls did not attend the French school. The neighborhood girls went to the Quran School, learning first with sheikh Hamza at Sidi Ammar Arabic/Quran School located on the town's principal street. Despite being a bright student, at the age of eight, Zohra stopped going to You cannot go up to the street anymore Narrating the event, Zohra still could not comprehend their reasoning; she only said that ervatism. Similar
125 within her family. We were left to imagine that subjugation did not end with colonial bigotry, but gender discrimination was practiced within cert ain families, easy to conceal on the pretext of protection of loved ones. As Zohra remembered, a relative encouraged her parents to let her go back to school and they finally allowed her to study with sheikh Abdoun. She felt privileged to attend the sheikh Zaituna University, as part of his educational strategy, Sheikh Abdoun provided spaces for community kids to teach them Quran writing and memorization within the Casbah. taught us [girls]. We studied at Mama (INT. 31). Figure 4 3 Zohra Khetib Touji (right) with her friend Kheira reminiscing about co lonial times, Dellys, Algeria. Photo cou rtesy of author, fieldwork 2010. were no chairs and desks. While she continued her descr iption, I imagined the sheikh si tting on a wooden box covered with sheepskin and the blackboa rd hanging on the wall. Sheikh Abdoun would write the Arabic alphabet and verses on it for the students to
126 read and transcribe on their luha (personal wooden board). Since Zohra excelled in the first school with her new teacher, she was able to help new st udents and tutor them in class. At age nine, Zohra encouraged many gir ls in her neighborhood to follow her example She recalled them all, one by one, that is, about 18 girls. In a well formed detailed narrative, Zohra informed me about the quranic class material and techno logy; she described from memory, We sat to study. We wrote on al luha (board) with al qasba (bamboo pen) using smaagh (ink). Mama Mouni prepared the ink for us. She put raw sheep wool in a pan and roasted it then she put water and left it to soak. She then strained it and put the liquid in duwayat (small ink containers). We dunked the pen in ink and wrote on the board. The sheikh used to bring selsaal (a special white clay) from waad Obey (valley Obey) and shaped [from bamboo stem] the p en for us. When we memorized an ayah (a verse of Quran), we erased. Mama Mouni had a big bassinette full of water to wash the board. Then, she used that water to sprinkle flowers, so it [holy water] would not go in the saqia (contaminated sewage). After er asing, we put another layer of clay. Every morning we went, the teacher asked the one who memorized to erase her board and the one who did not would keep memorizing. We used to erase the board with a small stone and then allow it to dry in the sun. After d rying, the clay became white like snow. Then in the afternoon, we went back and started writing a new lesson, a new ayah to memorize (INT. 31). In her early eighties, during our visit, I found Zohra to have a great mind and spirit. I was impressed by her power to remember details about the traditional practice of Quranic learning that despite close proximity to colonial modernity remained prominent in local lives. Such technology could not be forgotten since it was embedded in their landscape and was perfo rmed with care and reverence. A bright and confident student, Zohra belonged to an overly protective family whose focus during colonialism was to shelter their girls and women. As she shared her memories, Zohra moved from the joyous girl who acquired know ledge by being the
127 she said. At every utterance, Z ohra expressed her sadness How could she be deprived of continuing her memorization of Quran with one of the great scholars, surrounded by loving classmates (INT. 31), she lamented. Her family did not notice her daily successes but only cared about getting her home to help her mother. After one year of learning, Zohra was an ambitious girl with rare cap abilities. While other students took three or four days to memorize, Zohra had the gift to know new verses every day by heart and era se her board the next day to start a fresh with new ones. In one year only, she was able to write and read Arabic script a nd memorize four or five hizbs out of sixty chapters While s action, Zohra used a strong word that embodied the practice of keeping girls behind closed kept me in the house) years old hajbuk (kept you in the house?) exclaimed, telling me of the alternative practices of daily chores, cooking, and helping with the little siblings. Listening to Zohra, I imagined a young girl trapped in her old body, sensing her extreme sadness after being denied what she love d the most. With great emotion, she related, Then I cried and cried so much. I cried night and day. You do not want to see me that way. I cried. I was so sad. That Quran, it was burning in my heart. Then, at 16 years old, they gave me away in marriage (IN T. 31). Despite the great sadness, growing up to become a wife and a mother, Zohra learned many other skills in life. As a young woman, she learned to sew, becoming the b irthplace of Islam in the company of her friend Kheira and other Dellysian women and
128 gaining h er ultimate freedom from the shackles of colonialism and constrictive family norms. Gracefully, Zohra lived with the memory of the blessing of learning Quran and reading and writing the Arabic language. She revealed her gratefulness for being one of the rare women of her generation to gain skills that helped her in old age. In a sweet melody, accompanied by her friend Kheira, they sang a childhood song commemoratin g Birthday. She remembered how Mama Mouni, wife, sat with all of the girls and sang praises for the prophet. She remembered when both she and Kheira went to pilgrimage and together sang the praises to the Prophet standing by the historical monument in Medina a dream that was granted for these women who have been deprived of learning. In old age, Zohra enjoyed an active life among her loved ones. Sheikh M. S. Tachlat is another great Quran scho lar. After finishing his Islamic studies in Zaituna University, he returned to his neighborhood of al Gattar and got established as the Quran teacher in sid Abdelwahab mosque in Ladjenna. On a nice afternoon on erview at his residence in Ramla neighborhood in Ladjenna. His relat ive and neighbor Zoulikha Souag Tchaklat accompanied me. These families keep until today a close kinship connection (Chapter 3). After independence, they became neighbors, building their h omes on ancestral lands in Ladjenna. Having two informants of such backgrounds present together was of great importance to reconstructing the time of their early learning of the Quran. During memory work, they were reminiscing about a precious period and r eminding each other of various matters in relation to the school and their dear sheikh Tchaklat. I learned how their sheikh performed various roles. He was the Quran teacher to the neighborhood
129 kids, marriage clerk, Islamic undertaker, and a religious coun selor and healer. Both the comp 1 s extreme ability (INT. 6 1). He had the ability to recognize a spelling error in a large volume of the Quran. Using an Algerian (INT. 6 1). This ability helped him in tran smitting on a daily basis the words of the holy Quran into the hearts and the minds of his students who were at different levels of memorization. Re imagining the one classroom of the little mosque, like other ex students, e the place they cherished the most. Sheikh Tchaklat divided the students into rows sitting on mats. The first two rows for girls followed by two or three more rows of boys at various ages and levels. The teacher sat between the rows for boys and girls. Mu rahmani ar rahim ([Allah is] the most merciful the most companionate) and so on, dictating for each child the part of the quranic verse he/she should transcribe (INT. 6 1). Many who shared their stories described Sheikh Tchaklat as caring for his pupils, dictating from memory for each one of them to write the words of the Quran on his or her board. They remembered him as the teacher for many generations, including his own brothers who became Hafidh (perfect memorizers of Quran). Upon independence,
130 he became an Arabic teacher at local schools, still keeping his devotion and helping to Tchaklat Schoo l in Lajenna became a community. The Belhaoua were also student s of Quan. While Mohamed attended every day, his cousin H. Mohamed learned the Quran when he was not at the French school. It was his father, the carpenter, who made boards for the school. When how in the winter when boards were hard to get dry, they took them to the local coffee shop to dry them by the fire. Th ey reminisced about those moments in the coffee shop, sipping a cup of tea while waiting for their board to dry. Like other students, H. M. was his sense of humor wh ile making the memorization of the Quan fun for the children. Following the national awareness of the reform movement, the teaching of the Quran advanced tremendously in the town and zaouat. Under the guidance of the fellowship of renowned hafidhs (memoriz ers) of Quran, Dellysians commemorated a time of rebirth connecting them to their neglected heritage of Quranic script and memorization. Reflecting on the Dellysians I met, each remembrance and narrative was unique, recounting various abilities, resilienci es, and challenges within the families and practices, most students expressed the limitations of learning by rote. When reflecting on hundreds of verses memorized, H. M. Belhaoua did not appreciate the exclusion of
131 These narratives reflect a trans formation in the perception of what counts as learning and knowledge. By the late 1940s, youth were dissatisfied with traditional memorization of Quran and sought to comprehend and interpret the sacred text directly without intermediaries. Like many Algeri ans elsewhere in the country, Dellysians embraced the learning of the Arabic language that encompassed the literature of a rich civilization. Sidi Ammar, the Reformed Arabic School Other than spreading Quran learning through competent sheikhs as mentioned up to open hundreds of free Arabic schools around the country. In the town of Dellys, the French administration regulated the Arabic education in sidi Ammar and the Quran schools (Figure 4 4) Yet, according to many accounts, the de velopment of the reform school challen ged the previous French rule that forba d e any indigenous education and guided silenced people to know their rights and obligations. langua ge separate ly from Quran, which gave an opportunity to students to learn how to analyze and comprehend various Arabic texts. When comparing Quran and Arabic school, many Dellysians found that writing, reading and memorizing Quran were important, yet withou t learning the fundamentals of the Arabic language this would leave the student unable to comprehend, explore and interpret the text. Dellysians were impressed with Madrassat al Islah (the reform school) in sidi Ammar run by Sheikh Ahmed Ben Hamida (died in 2009). Before him was sheikh Bouzouzou and sheikh Hamza. Sheikh Ben Hamida came from a maraboutic family in Tizaghwin. Ben Hamida's education was bilingual, having studied in French schools and graduated from the Islamic Zaituna University. After his g raduation, he became an
132 spreading saint veneration and fanaticism. He also had a profound education in Arabic literature, an ability that left powerful memories among youth of his time. Figure 4 4. Mausoleum a nd school of Sidi Ammar in the middle of Dellys t own. Photo courtesy of Hamida Belhaoua, 2013. Located in the higher part of the Casbah on the border of the road (24 ex Victor Hugo), sidi Ammar institution was established prior to colonialism as a school of learning with one large room. Later on, it was renovated to include a two level building with two teachers. According to Benamane, among the famous activities in sidi Ammar was the constitutive meeting of the free schoo l in 1932 under the leadership of Mohamed at Tayeb Nacer and his team of the local reform organization (Benamane 2011: 114). S idi Ammar was among the first to be renovated s ince the destruction of the May 21, 2003 earthquake. During our interview, Chabani education and transmission of religion through the local branch. In his book, he states that the Arabic language under the guidanc
133 (Chabani 2013: 226 227). Chabani lists the nineteen names of the Dellysian founders and members of the reform organization. When entering sidi Ammar Arabic School, students came from vario us backgrounds. Those at tending Quran schools were more educated and had more understanding of vocabulary and rheto ric, explained M. Belhaoua (INT. 11). New students were oriented to sidi Yahia School which is located by the grand mosque on the upper side of the Casbah, to learn the alphabet and Quran script for two years. T hey then join ed Arabic, including literature history and religion themes 40). Like Tchaklat Quran School, the Arabic School was able to accommodate a diversity of students between those attending French and Quran schools. It was a program absorbing various types of students. It symbolized a model of a well structured school whose agenda was to embrace all Algerians. To be able to manage the school without any confli ct with other establishments, especially the French school, sidi Ammar school several of my partic ipants explained. Table 4 1 down bel ow is an illustration of the different schools teaching times, Table 4 1. The Arabic, French, and Quran School Teaching Times School type Teaching time (am) Teaching time (pm) Time at school Sidi Ammar 6:00 am 7:30 am 4:30 pm 6:30 pm 3 H. and H. French school 8:00 am 11:30 am 1:00 pm 4:00 pm 7 H. and H Quran school Dawn 7:30 am 1:30 pm 4:00pm + Breaks 3 H. and H. By following the above schedule, the students who enrolled in the various schools were able to fulfill the required learning without interfering with the other school
134 schedules. Chab ani describes French language as being squeezed between the two Arabic periods. To him this is a marker of the cleverness of the Ulama association. By the end, said Chabani, Despite learning French and even English, these students became competent in the [standard] Arabic language and able to speak it without making mistakes (INT. 4 1). While it was challenging, Arabic learning stimulated Dellysian children to learn the fundamentals of their language and heritage that had been neglected in the French colon ial school since early colonialism. Children, such as M. Belhaoua, who were deprived of French schools, enrolled in the Quran and Arabic school system that answered their call for education. Despite the successes of the reform school, only a very small (mo stly male) minority was able to attend the three schools As shown below (Table 4 2) about half of the interviewed females did not have any type of schooling. However, these include women who were raised in villages where there was no access to any school s. Table 4 2. Education Information of Male and Female Participants EDUCATION INFORMAT ION OF 103 Males (M) and Females (F) PARTICIPANTS No schooling Quran Q French Fr Arabic A + Fr A + Fr + Q A + Q Fr + Q 50 F 8 F 4 F 1 F 0 F 0 F 1 F 7 M 7 M 7 M 6 M 6 M 4 M 2 M In the collective memory, the Arabic school was recognized for its efficient management and high academic standard s. Sheikh Ben Hamida used an effective system that incorporated, in the same room and during the same time, various levels of st udents without favoring one group over the other. As many remembered, fascinated
135 by such approach, he divided the students into three levels with each studying a different topic within the same time and space. Using a traditional method of teaching, studen ts would be able to learn Arabic grammar, reading and comprehension skills in three years M. Belhaoua enjoyed writing composition the most as well as grammatical analysis and comprehension of Quranic texts. Students expressed themselves in beautiful narra d them to enjoy extra curricullar activities including acting and reading poetry. The cousins M. Belhaoua and A. Chabani (Figure 4 5) reminisced about the times they both sp ent in al Guettar, c aptivated by the beauty of the surrounding landscape, writing poetry and narratives about the river, the sea and the mountain. Chabani was enchanted by Arabic literature. Despite his inability to continue with his sheikh, he evolved int o an Arabic teacher, painter, and a renowned poet and writer. A B. Figure 4 5 Reflecting on the politics of e ducation in colonial t imes. A) M. Belhaoua (left) at the Islamic Boys and Girls Scout in Dellys town. B) Ammar Chabani surrounded by books at his home. Photo courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010. The Arabic teacher Ben Hamida was remembered for breaking down the conflict between the two systems of learning, Arabic and French. Through continuous
136 praised the reform school for financially supporting underprivileged students of the French school, which allowed them to be admitted in Algiers high schools and theretofore continue their higher education with success. O ther activities in the reform school b eside academics namely, Islamic Boyscout, stirred nationalistic sentiments, transforming and guiding Algerian youth toward emancipation As shown in this chapter, despite the tightening grip of the colonial empire, th e unabated in various forms. Through the voices of Algerians, who are the inheritors of the continuous struggles, the story of a spring of resistance developed withi n the landscape, the landmarks, and a diversity of mnemonics that aided in transporting the events to current times via recorded memories. Dellysian discourses represent a sample of how colonial times are remembered throughout the country. Because of the p eoples' link to and knowledge of their past, they are an exemplary community for writing Algerian history. During memory work, the focus on the disgraceful colonial act and community, created, when I first met them, an outline for this chapter. In their narratives, they continuously showed that their sacred institutions, including mosques, schools, and zaouat could not be replaced by colonial institutions despite the appe al of defiance as seeing through colonial agendas. They revered their elders for their shrewdness when facing a "civilizing mission" that promised Algerians an enlightened life once their landmarks and history had been dismantled. Their stories do not end there but add a new chapter that disturbs and challenges colonial achievements.
13 7 A new generation of skeptics caught the fallen torch to lead the way toward an emancipation of minds. Dellysians speak of the Muslim reformists who were able to instruct an awakened people that their religion is Islam, their language is Arabic and their land is Algeria. Throughout the country, the unified message restated that, in modern times, education is emancipation. Therefore, they equated the reformed Quran and Arabic schools with the French school, connecting all Algerians to a meaningful past and the love of knowledge. Such ideology reversed the message of the civilizing mission that clai med the supremacy of Western knowledge. The memorable reform school transmitted a tradition, embracing knowledge in all of its forms as long as its purpose was to spread peace and equality and fight bigot ry
138 CHAPTER 5 THE OTHER WITHIN: CITIZENSHIP, SUBJUGAT ED BODIES AVARIOUS MINDS Colonial France in Africa engaged thousands of indigenous men as auxiliary units in its wars. They were manipulated to wage mercenary attacks on their people and neighboring countries to breakdown popular revolts. This created bot h physical and psychological devastation among the populations of small towns and villages. Such events are embedded in the memories of those who survived. In this chapter, I focus on the people of Dellys town and surrounding villages, investigating and an alyzing events related to the time before and during the Algerian war for independence (1945 1962). Their narratives explain ed a complex connection of the population to those who collaborated with the colonial army, composed of Algerian officials policing the population, Moroccan and Senegalese mercenaries and Algerian auxiliary soldiers called goumia or Harkis. For most of the men and women participants (65 95 years o ld) who were interviewed, this wa s the first recording of their stories. The oral historie s of this silenced population help historicize the colonial past and its atrocities, and also give meaning to past and present popular antagonisms and the perpetuation of a discourse s, landscape, and culture. It untangles the complexities of colonial social bonds, their formations and disruptions, and the behaviors of various parties. Fifty years after independence, narratives of Algerians play an intrinsic role in deciphering coloni al events: how human behaviors and values were fluctuating and forming subjective perceptions that remain embedded in the discourses of the people. thin and cruelty of outsiders. W e share the perplexities of m any Algerians over the devastation of complete communities, failing
139 to understand the breaking of the trust, and left out unprotected to flee revengeful souls. This project anticipates raising the silenced and wounded voices in the hope to find explanation s to the tragedy of a people caused by their long troubling colonization. Co loniz T he end of WWII marked loved ones and the commemoration of their dead ; this h appened all over Algeria Nonetheless, it also marked and oppression under the French rule. Algerians marched, asking for more social, economic, and political equalities while waving the green and white flag, the symbol of Algerian autonomy. A French police officer shot and killed the man waving the flag. As a result, mobs among the Algerian protesters took out their fury on European settlers, killing more than a 100 individuals. In response, f or weeks the French colonial power and settlers killed tens of thousands of indigenous people in Setif, Gualma, and Kharata in the eastern region of Algeria ( Kaddache 1975, Stora 1991, Mekhaled 1995, Rey Goldzeiguer 2001, Pervill 2006, Planche 2006, Reggu i 2006, Vtillard 2008). This genocidal killing represented both the beginning of an era of mass revolt in all Algerian cities and towns and the beginning of a strong and brutal repression by the French colonial power using all kinds of forces. Like other colonized nations, Algerians participated in their coloniz e fight unknown enemies the Franco Prussian war of 1870 71, WWI, WWII, and the Vietnam War. Like many other African veterans, Algerians were sent to the troubled colony, Indochina. In explains that
140 Soldiers came from North Africa, where national consciousness had reached an advanced level and became a pressing issue, found it hard to reconcile fighting against a people with whom they had no feud while the fates of their own countries remained to be determined. Morale among units decreased considerably during the course of that long, bitter campaign, as manifested by the desertion of many, including low rank[ing] officers, to the ranks of the Algerian n ationalist movement (Gershovich 1999:14). When Algerians revolted for more rights and justice to have equal civil status with European citizens in Algeria, they were confronted with the deployment of colonial armies. A century and a half after the 1789 French Declaration of the Rights of Man, Algerians like other colonized populations were not included in what France and the allies fought for in the Great War. The winners did not consider new forms of justice for the colonized. Contrary to the French proclaimed ideals, the colonized were used to brutalize each other in systematic ways Thus, French officials used African armies to crush all signs of popular revolt in various Algerian regions, leaving embedded in the memories of t he survivors a tainted image of their brethren in colonization as machines of the cruel colonizers, ravaging total communities. Senegalese a nd Moroccan auxiliary soldiers we and omes and villages. The official French war archives give a historical account of the formation of the regiments in the colonies since the conquest of Algeria in 1830 (Clayton, 1994). The first units of outr mer were formed, including La legion trangre, then the Algerian tirailleurs and tabors known as hunters of Africa. At the local level, these units were trained under the supervision of white officers. In 1873 they were united under the XIXe but the title remained in use u ntil the end of the colonial era. Conversely, as Gershovich explains,
141 The dispatch of significant metropolitan troops for an indefinite time abroad was too dear a political price to pay. The republican legislator was particularly reluctant to commit Frenc h conscripts for such tasks. As the nation in arms concept replaced the professional small mercenary armies, and career soldiers were absorbed by mobilized civilians, so grew the need to recruit colonial soldiers, mainly in Africa, for the creation and mai nte nance of the empire (Gershovich 1999: 10). The French colonial power used all means necessary to extend its grip on the vast land o f Algeria from early colonial times Opportunistic members of the society and foreign forces from Africa were manipulated to stop the exploitation of fertile land. As Fanon (1963) observed to his surprise, Every time there was a rebellion, the military authorities sent only the In postcolonial times, the oral history of such disturbing colonial phenomenon is transmitted at various official and unofficial occasions. Dellysians remember how many Algeria ns were pushe d to be opportunistic As a result, colonialists used them as a buffer between them selves the masters and the subjugated Alge rian population. Ali Sahibi (Figure 5 1 A ) still rem ember ed vividely names and events from when he was a little boy, The real colon s were French, like Abo. Gabrielle Ab b o who married the wife not him. She was his house cleaner then he married her. She was an Arab. They called her Fatma. I remember when I used to sell the colons sea urchins and fish. They used to have parties eve ry Sunday afternoon. Gabrel Abbo was the Mayo r of Mayo rs Meer lamiyar. So, all of the Mayo rs such as Guibo of Baghlia, Arnold, and others, they used to come [to town] all tog ether, drink and chat. His [Abbo ] wife walked with a baton in her hand [kick ed of the Algerian kids away from the party]. She was a big woman like a monster (INT. 49). A resident of Dellys town, Ali Sahibi recalled from his childhood memories a woman an d her brothers who served the French settler during their entire lives. Raised in extreme
142 poverty, Fatma 1 became the housekeeper but later on turned into the mistress to the famous colon and Mayor Gariel Abbo of Abboville colonial village ( current town o f Sidi Daoud), while her brothers worked as guards. Orphaned at a very young age, Ali and when Abbo, the chief Mayor, used to meet with the various mayors of the reg ions in the blansa (central place) in the town of Dellys Fatma would accompany him to hold a baton and kick away the unwanted poor Algerian kids. She remained in the memory of those children as a monster. To make the pacification of Algeria trouble free, the French colonial administration set various social appointments over local populations for specific Algerians. Among them was the position of bashagha or a governor of a region Under his responsibility are various caids or the leaders who collected t axes and de a lt with indegenous issue s in the surrounding villages. According to Ali s ome of t hem, appointed their own sons as c aid, a favorable position through one can aquire more privileges. Alas, the favored status did not last forever, for during the war of did not respond positively were categorized as collaborators and traitors and w ere targeted to be eli minated and killed. Many people in Dell ys remember ed the day the m ujahidin killed the local c aid Doudja Saber remembered that day because the goumia and the French army terrorized her family and claimed that her brot her was the one w ho killed the c aid before fleeing to the mountains. She reca lled : 1 Fatma is given to their daughtors honoring Fatima Zahra, the daughter and heir of Prophet Mohamed.
143 On the day the C aid ben Azwaw was killed, my brother (anticolonial act ivist) fled to the mountain [for fear of being framed]. It was Ramadan and soldiers came to our house [searching for h im]. They poured the (you are terrorists) (INT. 59). Reclaiming the right to fight the colonial power consequently brought hardship on the people from both sides, those with or agains t the colonial administration. As a strategy to strengthen their position, the mujahidin put Algerians who were highly positioned in the French colonial administration and loyalists to the French empire in an extreme situation: leave the privileged life, s witch allegiance, and fight the colonial masters. The grand Mayor Abbo used poor Algerians to guard European privileges against a population living in misery. He also used mercenaries 2 to devastate the villages that allegedly contained suspected rebels. A lthough their villages are so vivid colonial archives and memoires never mention such shameful acts. H ighlighting these memories as vivid subaltern accounts does indeed provide potent alternative histories of colon ial Algeria Ali Sahibi spoke of Moroccans coming to the village of Sid Amar Sherif, located on the hills of Boubereg over the valley of (burnt land). He did not forg et the devastating actions of burning the books of the sheikh said cursed and became paralyzed. He even went to the zaouia and asked for forgiveness to get well, but the peo ple told him, 'Ask God because the sacred books belong to Allah, 2 Marrok and Senegaal are the names D ellysians used for African mercenaries by the local colonial administration to combat resistors during 1945 1950. We know for example that the Tirailleurs Sngalais were not only from Senegal but also from other colonies in East, Central, and West Afric a the Sudan, Nigeria and many others (Echenberg 1991 Aldrich 1996, Adara 2005).
144 used all means to remain in control. Even Fatma visited a mausoleum praying for he left for France and died there. During memory work and reminiscing m any locals did not blame Moroccan and Senegalese armies and instead displayed a nuanced understanding of the vicious colonial tactics which used neighboring communities against eac h other A s Ali contemplated France wa s tricky. They [colonials] first took Algerians to Morocco and used them to punish Moroccans when they revolted; then they brought the Moroccans to punish Algerians when they did the same (INT. 49). Africans understo od how France used them against each other for her o wn successes. A.Sahibi remembered image of the Arabic teacher walking with his hands on his head and the mercenaries beating him and other pe oples on the street. He shared with many others painful stories such as tossing cooking utensils, stepping on kneaded dough, and pooring cooking fuel on grains. ized Saber, such violence occurred when col onials gave the mercenaries the authority to act. The inhabitants of the villages vividly remember ed the opportunistic mercenaries W. Hussein (Figure 5 1 B) a retired Arabic teacher born and raised in the Zaoua of Sidi Ama r Sherif, explained that Mayor A bbo gave the mercenaries an order to devastate the villages and their inhabitants. Not only were t he mercenaries following orders to kill and destroy, but they also had free reign Qab (Figure 5 1 C) was a little girl in ear ly 1940s when the mercenaries came to her village in Sid Amar Sherif. She recalled I was seven years old when the sanigaal and marruuk came. They did not find anything [rebels hiding in the village]. When they entered the village a chicken we don't enter their homes and [those]
145 who do not give us chickens we get in and do what As Baya explicitly recalled th ey had to give the mercenaries all of the ir chicken a nd only then could they g e t rid of them She blamed members of the community, tr aitors, who sold out the resisto rs to Abbo. W annas Hussein specifically described the mercenaries as Moroccans from the Sh luh Mountains and sanegaal who devastated the villages. Accrding to his description, they were not respectful of anything. They were tools to the French colonial power, sent to discipline and punish the revolting population. They took anything they liked, that sustained the family. These troops also targeted women and snatched their maqful (earrings) from their ears and maguiass (bracelets) from their wrists, leaving them in tears. No one dared to speak up for fear of being hum iliated, tortured, imprisoned or killed. The mercenari es committed massacres, explained Wannas and were spread mostly in dshur (mountain villages) but not much in towns. As he narrated the inhabitants would fle e to the woods and rema in there until a rela tive would fi nd them and t ell them to go back, admonishing them that it is could not forget those who were shot and died Nor could he forget about the whole dashra which was burnt in Wlaad Mhamed village in Sidi Daoud, down to its last home leaving its frightened inhabitants in disarray. His narratives present ed the mercenaries as opportunistic targeting women for their jewleries ; as he put it ered a local man to get the gold and sell it for their benefit. When they could not find the man, in revenge they burnt three months that the mercenaries spent in the various villages around Dellys town
146 marked thousands of residents and creat ed in the minds of the survivors images of devious men ravaging all what came in their paths to please their masters. Other members of the community blame d the Moroccans for their transgressions against them, which they could not forg et. Ali Bessadi (Figure 5 1 D) was from a hardworking family who owned vast lands in Dashra of Takdempt and its va lley. He remembered with gravity, the presence of Moroccan and Sene galese mercenaries. He explained, In 1945, the French brought them to Alge ria to fight the popular uprising and PPA (Popular Algerian Party). I remember the raids on my family compound. The mercenaries mixed various grains (sh3ir, gamH, jalbaan, and Hummus / barley, wheat, lathyrus, and chickpeas) with fuel and broke all of the Kuwafa (the grain containers made of mud). They even stole our Hiyak (local tapestry) (INT. 48). Colonizers pushed the population to give up resistance and submit. However, the population did not submit and as A. Bessadi recounts, in Mountain Mizrana, Tay eb ben Brahim and Mohamed Zarouali, two famous local rebel leaders, killed 1 70 Moroccan s why I said commemorating the name of his courageous uncle. After that event, the PPA became very strong in Dellys. The re were no more razias 3 on the explained animal that the raids affected his mother and her children were a said with 3 meant in Arabic a typi of the behavior of the French African army identifying the term with violent and punitive act of pillage. ribes from whom they steal provisions
147 strong emotions This incident seemed to continue affect ing A.Bessadi and his views on Moroccans in general. A B C D Figure 5 1. Members of Dellys c ommunity rem ember violent e vent s during c olonialism: A) Ali Sahibi, B) Wannass Hussein, and C) Baya Qab (right) from Sid Amar Cherif, and D) Ali Besadi from Carrier Dellys, Algeria. Photo s court esy of author, fieldwork 2010. Not only villagers but also town dwellers remember ed the foreign mercenaries. S. Saber recalled the Moroccan and Senegalese mercenaries in Dellys town in 1945. He called mentioned incidents when he used to walk to the Quranic School in the neighborhood of Lajenna outside D ellys town walls. he day the mercenaries beat his paternal cousin Mohamed bad ly,
148 explained settl er and a neighbor), who saved him and brought him ho 2). Mercenaries were used in the town as a policing force to reinforce the Algerian police F.Hanin remembered the native policeman by his name but also s h ab el qshashab ( those wearing a traditional mrarka how they used to harass the cooking coal merchants such as her brother who was beaten and his merchandise taken away. Colonial powers brought mercenaries from var ious colonies. When they spread in towns and villages, interestingly, the population differentiated between Moroccan and Senegalese mercenaries. Algerians remember ed Moroccans and specifically those s army, in Morocco, for bei ng very tough. S. Saber described les Tabors Marocains a prominent ridge of long hair extending along the top of their heads. Local historians agree d that in comparison to Moroccans, Senegalese were cal m. When dealing with Senegalese in town, Algerian youth used to frighten them as A. Sahibi remembered they [Senegalese soldiers] fled Although the use of foreign mercenaries continued t hroughout t he armed struggle for independence (1954 1962), and is thus a very important topic to discuss, I next turn my focus to the use of Algerian mercena ries called Goumia or Harka who supported the European regiments in various Dellys arenas. The Goumi Phenomeno n The development of goumi (pl. goumia) during the war of independence in Algeria was important to investigate through the oral histories and oral traditions of colonial times. In towns and villages, painful and disturbing discourse s were embedded
149 in the l andscape of memory. During memory work, villagers and town people of Dellys had personal stories about members of their communities who became goumi, collaborators who stood by the side of the colonial army against Alge rians suspect ed of aiding the mudjahi din Yet, the oral testimonies were not simple revelations of betray a l Rather, they were compl ex phenomena that need to be taken seriously and analyz ed to comprehend the brutality and violence that entered every village traumatizing home s and changing wh ole communities forever. Prior to discussing the testimonies, it is important to examine the et ymology of goumi/goumia T he origin of the word goum within the French colonial system is related to the use of locals to police their own people in both Morocco and Algeria. According to Gershovich, The original goums were created in 1908 in the Atlantic coastal region of the Chaouia. Under French control and during the next two decades the goums spread throughout the areas (Gershovich, 1999:188). Goum meant grou p of men in the Arabic language. Transferred from a North African social fabric to a colonial institution, goum became the first name of the irregular army, based on indigenous peoples under French army control. It was followed by regular regiments such as the tirailleurs, spahis, moghazin 4 and harkis. In the midst of the war of independence, the concept of collaborators began to become m ore complicated and the goumi (purial, goumia or gouwama) shifted in meaning to apply specifically to those men collabor ating with the French army in Algeria to fight the mu jahidin and their sympathizers, that is, against those who declared war on the French colonial regime in Algeria. In his investigation into how some Algerians became gou mia/harkis, in Et ils 4 According to Gafaiti & al. (2009), M o gha z ins are Algerians who served a s guides and scouts for French armed f orces in Algeria.
150 sont devenue Harkis (And they became Harkis (1993), Mohand Hamamou cites Algeri ans to fight the rebels. Challe believe d that the use of the French of North African origin wa s a moral imp erative because they were the best hunters of the fellaghas or viewed the integration of Algerians in the pacification program (Hamamou 1993: 148). The goumia fought on th e side of the French army and took a direct part in punishing any segment of the population suspected for being sympathetic to the mujahidin. When a person was not part of the army, they would be called for selling their brethren because they feared colonial re prisal and torture. The harki (plurial, harkia or harka) however, became a more modern use of the goum concept, developing into a movement against the mujahidin and working for the sover eignty of a French Empire, which promis ed them full citizenship. During fieldwork, t he popular discourses and t he social memories about goumi were diverse. Each Algerian had a personal or family account in relation to the land, the revolution and the colonial power and its helpers the goumia. Both men and women related memories that express moments of disgrace in re lation to goumia, stories that we re often not easy to narrate. The Development of Goumia in Villages In the eyes of the community, betrayal and spec ifically siding with the enemy wa s a complex and troubling phenomenon. In the word of the Italian social science researcher Turn a Algerians, there we re those who decided freely to become goumi and others who were forced into becoming one Why did some members of the community become goumi, I ask ed the sisters Kh. and W. Cheikh?
151 replied W. However, those who had been working for the colon s their enti re lives became goumia for fear of giving up their privileges which means that they became goumia freely. The most notorious goumi remembered by the community turned into one when his brethren the mujahidin accused him of rape as discussed later. Others l ived close to the mountains and the colonial army supplied them with hunting guns, supposedly, to defend their villages and tribes against the rebels, called fellaghas by the colonials but called mujahidins by Algerians. T he colonial army punished and tort ured those suspected of helping and supporting the re volution and the mujahidin, often forcing them into the role of goumi. Hamamou (1993:155) is thus right to suggest that the French army in Algeria did not need in some situations to rely on persuasion or force to engage Algerian men as goumi. In certain situations, the army would trick a young man into becoming a goumi Another case might be that a young man could not convince the FLN that he had been forced to be a guard in the village and that he had ne ver informed the colons about them. Yet, another young man could have decided to become goumi on his own will. Liminal Goumia and t he Lamb that Exiled a Whole Village During memory work, narratives we re shaped to revea l unexplored events; namely, how a w hole village collaborated with the French army and became goumia due to harsh and strict rules of the FLN during the war of independence. The population had no choice except to listen and follow the intrusive rules on their private lives limiting their per sonal decisio ns. Many of my participants spo k e of the FLN prohibition of sacrificing a lamb on the day of Eid al Adha (the Islamic Holiday of Sacrifice ) as a sign of sadness and support to the revolution. During the interview, Zoubida Rouibeh Bazizi
152 still remembered a disturbing and life turning event for a whole family from a mountain village saying, The mujahidin decided that no Algerian was allowed to slaughter a lamb until the war was over. The population was reminded and if they did not follow, they w ould be punished. A group o f residents of a dashra e ast of Dellys town decided to practice the sacrifice. They went to the colonial authorities and sought their help. The French colonial administration gave them arms to defend themselves. Afterw ards, the w hole village became g usband and his siblings became g oumia and wore the uniform as auxiliaries. The cause was the Eid lamb. Then when France left, they had to depart for France and since then the cousin and the family have remained in France. We do not even know them (INT. 41). Surprisingly, the people from this village did neither torture nor kill any mujahid, Z oubida explained with distress, but since they raised arms (given by the enemy to defend themselves against the mujahidin) it made goumia but not [the same as other] the impossibility of defining them as one or the other. I was surprised that the only cause that put them in je opardy was their decision to practice the Islamic tradit ion of Ibrahim As my informant stated had to implement). Such statement s were ingrained in Dellysian social memory. For a long time, as an Algeri an, I knew that people were not practicing the Eid sacrifice during the war but I never perceived it as being a ruling of the mujahidin. A community's status changed in a very short time. Their new position followed them and became entrenched, that is, the y became part of the class of Harkis in exile (Crapanzano 2011, Evans 2002, and Alexander 2002 ). Their life in the village was probably the same as any other community but their defiance of the revolution ists' d irective turned into the colon advantage
153 The Goumi who Gave Life and Death The French army used many Algerian collaborators as translators since they spoke the local dialect. However their role went beyo nd translating the words of Algerians to their army superiors. As many remember ed immense role in suppressing voices by punishing them, threat ening, and even killing them. Zoubida recalled G. 5 as a well established goumi with the colonial power who had complete control over his people, specifically in Si d Amar Sherif. Avoiding long distance travel and the likelihoo d of being killed by FLN, such goumia remained close to the army, especially the SAS 6 and routinely terrorized the villagers in the company of army superiors. Many participants reminisced that M.A. and B.A. were active goumia in Dellys town and its villages while G. was an active goumi in the villages surrounding Abb oville. Zoubida blamed prison. In a long and painful narrative, she told me of the detai led events how t he mujahidin decided to kill G., the goumi using his own relative, a teanage boy; and how the failed attempt turned to harm her father in prison when Goumi G. planned to kill him in prison for allegendly showing pleasure about his calami ty. During memory work, Zoubida wa s trouble d by her childhood memories. She showed faireness in stating the facts the way she believed the y had happened. Yet, at the end of he r narrative I sense d an atte mpt of divid ing those who fought for freedom from those who fought against their people through t heir deeds but also how society 5 Although this goumi is well known in the society and even in colonial archives, I prefer to change his name since I had no chance to speak to him or those who represent him in Dellys town or villages. 6 SAS: Section Administrative Spcialis (Specialized Administrative Section) these camps had the purpose o ght otherwise join the rebels (J ohn Talbott 1980 and Vincent Crapanzano 2011). Others testify that when pushed into SAS, many young men were persuaded or compelled to join the Mkhazni or the harkis (Hama mou, 1993)
154 remember ed or commemorate d them. She describe d G. as being a vicious goumi. In comparison, his maternal cousi n wa s different con victions and separate fa tes Zoubida noted (INT. 41). Close to independence, G. left his home and people and fled to France, the ex colonial empire. At the same time, his cousin the mujahid was captured and killed by the colonial power He was subsequentl y honored as a martyr in independent Algeria naming after him Abooville, the ex as Abdiche town. Zoubida scar on his neck, a mark left by the slaughtering knife of G. and a reminder of the extreme violence dur ing the war of independence. Oral history was important in dec iphering the various reasons for becoming a traitor, a goumi. We learn that the colonial violent situation created events and circumstances that pushed many to be come wicked. More importantly, s uch evil acts were signs of the population distress and a disoriented attempt to survive. The memories of a painful past emerge d as therapeutic as many have been buried in the hearts of those who suffered (C hapter 8). More importantly, they we re the begi nning of a discourse of communicating the u nspoken to find meanings in the realities of a long century of suffering under colonial rule. The Perception of Al Goumi the Vicious In social memory, Goumia we re remembered to be vicious and more dangerous than the French officers and s oldiers. K. Brahem Abdi (Mimi) remembered the night a known trio of goumia in the town of Dellys burst into the house. She was very frightened because at that time her stepson was an FLN sympathizer and was collecting money and ot her necessities for the mujahidin. Mimi was pregnant with twins, and because of the shock, one of the babies died in her womb She re imagined the scene saying,
155 The goumia ran down the stairs inside the house yelling: 'Where are the men?' I got scared beca use I thought they were coming to take my husband and for sure, they would kill him (INT. 26). She remembered being relieved when the goumi explained that they were searching for a man who fled from prison. They searched the whole house before leaving. Th at night, Mimi was physically and emotionally tra umatized and she is still grieving in her old age. Al Goumi: M ore Vicious than the French It wa s common to find pe ople blaming the goumi but not the French soldiers. I would often retort with my inter v iewe es to provoke them. They agree d with me that goumia were following the colonialist supervisor s, but they usually quickly found a new narrative to confirm th eir continuous perception based not on ideals and theories but on lived events and marked bodies. To convince me Fatma Chernouh Charadi told me of an event when her migrant father in law came for a visit from France and was spending the night at her place. That night she heard a knock on the door and a mujahid came in. He wanted some money from her father in law, a common thing to do with migrant workers. She admitted him and gave him the amount of money he had reserved for them. The next night a French soldier came ushered by a goumi. The goumi started hara ssing her, saying that they had learned of them giving money to the fellag. She remembered denying the event categorically but he cursed her we gave money, bring them, and go ahead and in ?" I persistently asked. For her, the French soldier was civil and talked to her father in law in French. Mim icking the d ialogue, she repeated Officer: Marseille mlikha (is Marseille good)?
156 Father in law: Mliha (good). Officer: Bassah bladkum mashi mlikha. Bladkum bled fellag (but your country is not good, it is a country of terrorists!) (INT. 62). Despite the dem eaning language of the French officer, for her the French Officer only said fellag. The big goumi (M.A ) would call them firan (rats). She explained and kept quiet (INT. 62). According to Fatma women reflect ed on th eir dark past. They exposed the pai n caused by the colonial power a pain that became rooted in thei r bodies and landscape still feel ing this deep pain in their hearts. In her old age, Fatma Chernouh Charadi reflected about the present stating that Khad (They [colonizers] did tremendous harm and today she [France] is dear and even our own daughters are there [migrated to Fra s to witness a member of the community, one w ho spoke their language, becoming a traitor, cursing and leading offences supporting the coloniser. Al Goumia, the Evil Eye and the Cow ciousness exceed ed t he specific events of harassing the population and searching their homes i n the company of French soldiers and officers. Their image described repeatedly in narratives construct ed a venom ous personality that had the power to harm not only humans but also other beings. Their heinous behaviors support ed the spread of superstitio n. Some came to believe that with their stare they were capabl e of harming sentient beings. Saleh was a young man
157 during the revolution. He was a farmer and loved his cows that were a bl essing to the family. He recalled how his cow became bewitched and the n died f rom the evil eye of the goumi. H e reminisced We had a cow, may god accept her. I had to say the shahada (testimony of faith) for her soul [when she was dying]. I felt sad when she got sick, forgive you (three God bless, she was the biggest of all our cows. She was Contoise [type of cows], yellow and white; she was beautiful and had a huge udder, and her son was, God bl ess, 15 days old. The goumia came and opened their eyes. They gave her the evil eye. Yes, a cow can get the evil eye. I got her the doctor but he said she had no cure. The goumia gave her the evil eye. They used it everywhere. There was no place they did n ot get into. Eshamshmu (they put their nose everywhere) like dogs, I swear (INT. 3). This narrative fascinated me in many way s. Saleh mentioned the shahada (the testimony of faith in the Islamic tradition ) h Mohamed rassul Alla there i s no god but Allah and Mohamed is his me ssenger) to a dying cow, which wa s not a common practice. The shahada is usually said when accepting the faith of Islam but also on various o ccasions such as when a person is dying as a reminder of the po wer and mercy of God. However, it seemed that my participant had so much compassion toward his cow that he was treating her no different ly than a human being to ease her suffering. More importantly, t perception o f the goumi who invaded their privacy and disturbed the sacr edness of their landscape. In Saleh opinion the goumi became an eye, a gaze that had the power, like dogs, to find hidden materials in homes but particularly to harm sentient beings even to de ath. Al Goumi the Molester and Women : Courage and Survival Many women remember ed alongside with stories of courage and survival. Stories of rape we re told among women, however
158 seldom told as testimonies for fear of I met Radia Malki at her home in dashrat Takdempt. In her old age, she still remembered when the French soldiers and goumia came to her family home in her village. She was only 18 years old and married. Her husband was a migrant worker in F rance while she lived with his extended family. In her narrative, like many others, she described the goumia as being very harsh and vicious with women. When pressed to tell me what they did to them, she said or they do bad stuff to wom en, meani ng abuse. She remembered the trio of goumia who often came to search their home. The harshest and cruelest of them was M.A. ( mentioned further down in this chapter ) They terrorized women into admitting that their men were fellag that is, terrorist rebel told them, showing them the address where he lived in France. She was not afraid of them and old were not as outspoken and the goumia took advant age of their fear. She remembered how one goumi kept for cing her aunt and trying to persuade her to give him her daughter [for marriage]. I told them, said R. Malki, We are asking her to give us her dau Radia understood that they were tricking her, solated in their villages, ofte n without a man nearby, women became the protectors of their families. Abuse came in other forms such as being forced to move into concentration camps by soldiers and go umia. Behja Nougal Souag remembered when the army burn e d her family house in Thouabet and when her family fled to her maternal
159 grandparents' land in Lajenna, on the outskirt of Dellys town. The army and goumia followed them, pressuring them to move to the camp but her courageous mother refused screaming and t pieces, I would n remember ed the goumi cursing her mother. H e said You think you can get France out, if you were real people you would thank France for what s he is doing for you. France is feeding you and getting you bread and sardines. If you were smart you donkey Arabs, you would send your kids to school so they can eat bread and sardines (INT. 47). Despite the fear of being beat en by the goumia, Behja er replied to him, Tell [translate to] the French soldier, and if I knew French I would tell him myself. We do not care [for help] just leave. We eat cactus and live in huts. They kicked us out of our homes. Do not be anxious for us, just leave, we will be fine (INT. 47). Ironically, said Behja that year the army and goumia cut off the cactus plants in Thouabet. They literally believed her mother. In Thouabet, the usual fence around the garden was cactus while in Lajenn a it was bamboo. According to Behja the plants did not grow back for a while. Her family, like many others, left their homes and the symbolic cactus became reality. As mentioned in C hapter 6 women were involved in the revolution within their villages and small town communities. As a result, many younger and older women endured severe disgrace at the hands o f the French army and goumia. Daoua Baziz Karbouche wa s a resident of Lajenna. Both her family and husband were revolutionists. She had an important role in sheltering and feeding the muja hidin including her own cousins. When the French army suspected her involvement, they visited her at home when they knew she was alone. During memory work, she relived the continuous torture she endured at the hands of the goumia and French soldiers in he r house with no one
160 around to save her, except her courage and strong belief in her cause. Sh e recalled the event, They came in the morning to (torture) but they got nothing. Did you find anything on me; I asked them? (Was this the goumia or soldiers, I as k D. Bazizi Karbouche?) [They were both] goumia and soldiers. That day, I am nshahad. 7 I do that better than you, you are a goumi, hashak 8 You go to rooms then, and the whole area was khradess 9 I was tortured and the n I got up with the power of the Lord. I had no headache, no pain on my hands. I felt as if I had exercised. Then they went and the mujahdin came, may God have mercy on their souls... may we be among them (as martyrs in paradise) (INT. 43). Women more than men suffered the humiliation of colonialism. The war of independence brought with it acts of aggression against women within the privacy of their own homes. They remember ed facing the abuse of the goumia and their superiors the Fren ch soldiers courageousl y. They e ndured much pain the memories of which lived on but were pushed into oblivion until the day these women would be honored for their sacrifice which was no different from the sacrifice of those who raised arms as mujahidin. The memories of goumia as vicious members of the community remain ed among the survivals of colonialism. Each rememberence was unique though Each person wa s affected di fferently, yet the perception wa s the s ame. The cruelty of the goumia wa s not accepted. In comparison to the Fren s constructed as more 7 Nshahad or I say the shahada is a sentence meaning: I bear witness that there is no god but Allah and Mohamed is his messenger. 8 When mentioning a word that is not appropriate to the listeners the speaker says the word hashak such as excuse my word. 9 A land that has dense vegetation and no close neighbors
161 brutal. The goumia were selfish in supporting the enemy to harm own people. They we re not forgiven. Yet, when digging in memories, stories of goumia as victims of colonialism do surface to bring f orth new dimensions to the realities; that is, more specifically, how the cir cumstances drove would be goumia toward lo sing their humanity in order to survive. In the remainder of this chapter, I focus specifically on one goumi I name d M.A. to try to un derstand the phenomenon of turning to the side of the aggressor during the war and how the population reacted to it and is still affected by it. The Tale of M.A: Remembering the Most Infamous Goumi M.A. the Goumi is part of my childhood memory. Since I wa s a child in the early 1960s, I heard older family members talking about the goumi wh o lived in our house by force and about the after my father left for Algiers. I learned that M.A. asked my grandmothe r hoping to get some information from her about the wearabout of my father when a few m onths before moving to another place, the memories are very vivid among older family members. The colonial village of Takemdpt was in the late 19 50s early 19 60s deserted of its inhabitants and the goumia were in charge. Part of my endeavor, going back t o my ancestral land researching life under colonialism was an opportunity to understand more about the phenomenon of goumi in the town of Dellys. In this narrative, I present the voices of those who lived during colonialism and were affected by the atroci ties committed during the war of independence at the hands of the goumia. The detailed accounts are of great
162 importance to understand the complexity of their time of war. We also learn of the reasons that may have pushed M.A. to become a goumi, collaborati ng with those who colonized his country against his compatriots He represents the thousands of fathers, brothers, and sons who committed the unforgettable act, turning against their people and helping the colonizer to commit more atrocities, violating the sanctity of their homes, leaving a wound in all souls that no one knows yet how to cure. More than that, the constructed narratives reveal moments of compas sion from all parts which give hope that human redemption is possible. During fieldwork, M.A. the goumi wa s remembered as a tall man, with typical North African features. He was a mujahid before being pushed into a goumi and joining the French army in the fight against the revolutionists. To understand why he left the side of th e revolution, A.Sahibi raped and during the revolution, rape was forbidden. He transgressed against girls and very common and the FLN declared cap ital punishment for rape (Hamamou, 1993:165). The accounts about this significant man M.A. the goumi were divers e. Some came stories to each other becoming part of the social memory in Dellys town and vi llages. The constructed narrative represent ed these various view s rel at ionships and feelings. Through other participants, I was fortunate to visit family Cheikh to interview the elderly in the family. More importantly, I found two elderly sisters who had the most information about many events regarding the goumi M.A. Interestingly the older sister, Kh, at first refused to participate in the interview thinking that I was a reporter. Yet, little by little, she got
163 interested in the informal discussion abou t the past. I found the sister s Cheikh to be the most knowledgeable about the topic than any other participa nts The sister s Cheikh explain ed to me that M.A, a complex and mysterious personality, was a mujahid, a lieutenant in the mountain of Mizrana. The rumors came that he was playing with a woman It was his ex wife who was already divorced from him with childre n that M.A. kept harrassing and forcing her to have sex with him despite her refusal. She left him, they said when he marri ed a woman from a neighboring village. His fellow mujahidin wa rned him but he refused to follow their advice. A friend cautioned him of the mujahidin intention to kill him. Acc ounts about the goumi M.A. ofte n start first by mentioning his honorable posit ion of being a fighter against colonialism. In a way, despite h is moral weakness, he was respected for his courage to stand up against colonialism much ear lier than 1954 that is, before the beginning of the war of national liberation This statement wa s i mportant in th at the act of becoming a goumi wa s not caused simply by a tarnished personal character but include d many other details. The two sisters Cheikh were the only participants I met to have a personal connection to the family of M.A. F. Cheikh re nted a room in M.A. home in Dellys and son became a goumi. S One day, M.A. was sitting in the Hush (the courtyard) eating. A man came in and warned hi m. M.A. was mad, but he did not show [any emotions]. A mujahid told him what was going to happen. M.A. fled far away from his fellow mujahidin, broke his firearm, knocked on a door [of a village house], took a man by force and used him as a shield when he approached the soldiers, they told him to drop the firearm so he did and went closer. He
164 told them who he was and lbass goumi (he wore the uniform and became goumi) (A.A. through INT. 53). This constructed statement of th e father of the goumi represented a personal story retold a father expressing his opinion on the fate of his son who used to be respected for his courage. Yet, being accused of adultery and sentenced to death, the narr ati ve described a new phase ; that is, that of a goumi used by the French army, his former enemy, to fight the mudjahidin, his former bretheren in arms who then issued an order to punish him for his aggression against women. The stories of rape and taking wome n by force wa s the most tragic and memorable act of M.A. the goumi. During our discussion, I told the sisters Cheikh that when M.A came and lived in our house, he brought a woman with him. My statement took W. to the past to bring to life a nother person al memory rd Her memory allowed us to ima gine connection to this woman. W. witnessed the bi umbilical cord. After taking the two women by force, revealed another woman, B.D., leaving her after independ e of M.A. the courageous diminished to be replace d with a man of deceit who targeted specific women to fulfil his sexual desires and therewith engage in acts of revenge against mudjahidin. Several women told me of the dramatic rape of B.D. inside a Mausoleum that women of the village usually visited. M. A took revenge on her because of her brother, a mujahid. It wa s said that M.A. followed her. A man named A.D. warned him not to follow women inside the mosque; that wa s not acceptable. Not caring for what the elders said
165 in the village, M.A forced her insi de the mosque where he raped her. She was hiding from people because she got pregnant. When the mujahidin heard of the tragedy, they told her not to abort the baby, as he/she will be care d for like their own child. She did not terminate the pregnancy and h ad a girl. According to Kh. later on M.A. took her as a wife and she had another girl with him. B oth girls live d in their claimed that the mother received ame. B.Tahtali Souag reinforced the sto ry that B.D. was a young woman from family D. who was originally from her village. It wa s in sidi el Gh mosque, she said whe re M.A. raped her. She remembered when the raped woman came to the Tahtali home to meet with the mujahidin. They gave her moral sup port. According to B.Tahtali raped her another time and the mujahid in again gave her support In independence, the raped woman took the house of M.A. in town and wa s well established within the community. Her wounds we re not healed howe ver, but her memories we re turned into oblivion. The various versions of the rape of specific women by M.A. highlight ed different details depending on the personal connections to the story ; yet, they all point ed to the fact that women were revenge, a colonial tragedy. In their stories, women recount ed what wa s most meaningful to them. Many emphasize d the topic of raping virgins. Virginity, prior to marriage, in North African culture, wa s taboo and taken seriously. Participants remembered M .A. target ing young virgin women forcing them to marry hi m. F. Chernouh Charadi remembered the day M.A. organized a wedding ceremony in her small town She remembered that local music was played and M.A. called on women to ululate saying Zaghrdu!
166 they would do it out of fear, she said Through va rious narratives and scattered memories, an image of a simple human being fluctuated from a most courageous man to one of revenge He targeted women to humiliate the mudjahidin who forced him into a life of treason siding with their common enemy, those who humiliated and subjugated them on the ir own land. Yet, s not of a monster but of a man of history, a man who wa s well connected to his land, and a man whose courage and empathy emerge d amidst other savageries. As remembered, M.A became a highly positioned auxiliary soldier for France at the level of lieutenant in charge of the auxiliary soldiers. Yet, his past relations with the mujahidin kept haunting him. Talking about an incident, Kh. Cheikh presented the compassionate side of the colla b orator M.A., she stated One day, M.A entered the dashra pressuring the people to show him the grave of a mujahid recently killed and buried. When the grave was opened This might be one of his companions in the maqui when M.A. used to be a mujahid (INT. 53). Such rememberence showed that human beings are capable of compassion despite moments of rage. More importantly, in our psyche, we refuse to live without compassion even in our memories. We are often searching for moments of goodness to regenerate morality and abolish wickedness in others and ourselves. I found out that A.A., the father of goumi M.A. had a large hush (compound) in Dellys town close to the local mosque Unfortu nately, such stories came at the end of my stay in Dellys and I could not find a way to visit the family who might be the offspring of A.A. Since it was a sensitive topic, I preferred to only speak to other people
167 and learn through them of the social mem ory of the phenomenon of becoming a goumi. During my interview with the Cheikh sisters, Kh. revealed that during the war of independence, she rented a roo m in A.A. coumpound, which allowed her to know the family of the goumi from within. Thus, she differ ed from her sister in their memories and opinions about the goumi M.A. and his family. For example accordin g to her sister W., the father wa s goumi because when he went to pray in the mosque, his gu n fell on the floor. Kh. defended him, saying that he was using it as self defense and that he was not mujahi said Kh. At this point, I encouraged them to tell me more of such stories, sharing my own knowledge that M.A. saved many people but also when someone was in jail he would ask them for money to save them. asked d "Tell her about your relative. It was M.A who saved her," said ney," Kh. specifically starting to talk about a new eve nt; she narrated When I lived there, I told the father A.A, 'you know that I left my only son at the village working as a shepherd and spending the night at his uncle. The soldiers took him at night and beat him. The French army took my son to Kh. remembered how he, the landlor d used to come to each room each morning and evening to tell them good morni ng and good evening, she recalled his words of compassion and how he helpe d her get back her son, she said Charg asked. asked.
168 us 10 off his shoulder, threw it in my lap and left quickly. (What does it mean, I ask Kh.) That he is going to save him and he will not return without my son. Therefore, he left to the camp and saved my son. When my uncle brought my son to town for the doct or to treat his wounds, A.A. came to me and told me, 'Your (INT. 53). This powerful testimony represents a reputation was tainted with disgrace. Yet, acts of compassion redeemed him and in the memories of Kh. Cheikh, A.A. the father of the goumi, was her hero for he was able to bring her son back from death. For other s such act of pleading for those who were accused of trea son was humiliation. Y et in times of distress and confused l oyalties, such survival skills we re ne cessary b ecause as Kh. r emembered ld have killed him with torture. In the midst of violence, acts of trust and compassion were interwined with vigilance and determination. The population was trapped between various parties, the French army, the goumia, and th e mudjahidin. Often a wise de ci sion to act with one or the other could save the lives of many as illustr ated in Kh. Cheikh One day, A.A. gave me the key to the front door of the hush (courtyard) and told me to open the door for the residents [at night]. The next night I saw in a dream that the mujahidin came and told me to give them the key to enter and kill A.A. The next day, I gave him back the key. He asked me, for the people who stay la te, not me. If I open the door someone may push it and take me, no Sid 11 A., take back your key.' He told me, 'Thank you. 10 that is made of wool. 11 sayedi (M r. or master) in Arabic that preceeds any first name such as Sid Ahmed or Sid Ali.
169 Living within the co mpound of powerful people who might be feared by others for their collaboration with the French army did not weaken Kh. Cheikh. Actually, because she knew the family well, she was able to be truthful with them and refused to take tasks that could bring harm to her and t o the whole co mpound. Kh. Cheikh was wise to refuse to be in charge in the coumpound. Such moments of courage and resolve were basic to possibility of find ing goodness in all beings. She was able to see action s of compassion in members of the community who have been the symbol of treason and transgression. M.A. the rapist for many was also M.A. the sav i or for others, as he saved many men and women from the g rip of his superiors and the French army. His intervensions were often mentioned as heroic possibly redeeming his soul and memory. The end of the most memorable goumi, M.A., was quick upon the first days of independence on July 5, 1962. Various people of the community testified of witnessing the last moments of M.A. in Dellys. According to Zoubida the two goumia, M.A. and A.B.A., were set as an example. She remembers how they were taken from the town of Dellys by "ain Salem toward the villages with donke y ears on their head and people looking at them with disrespect" (INT. 41). According to F.Chernouh Charadi, women in various villages shamed M.A. and took revenge on him before he was taken away to ife, on the day of inde pendence, when mujahidin brought M.A. to her, h e had a wound that was open and some peopl e put salt in it. M.A. captives told her. "My ha nds Although I still hav e the mark [of his torture and abuse] but may Allah take my revenge (INT. 62). F.Chernouh Charadi remembers
170 hearing that they took him to Wlad Hmida and to Charraba to two families because he transgressed against them in a vicious way (rape). The end of the most memorable Goumi in Dellys was very sudden. A.Sahibi remembered speaking to M. A. face to face on Independence Day, he reminisced : I went to him and told him ; I am the one (M.A. was searching for A.Sahibi The mujahidin apprehended M.A., but what happened to him afterwards no one talks about Was he imprisoned? F or how long ? Was he executed? By whom? D oes he have a tomb? Such information does not exist The official memory of M.A. and oth er collabortors is absent ; yet in the collective social memory, M.A. is alive with mixed attributes of a great courageou s warrior, a feared rapist and a compassionate member of the community in the world of colonial violence. For those coming out of a violent wa r, even the day of celebration wa s evoked as having been tainted with violence. When the hunted came to be in charge, those who had fled to the mountains made sure to humiliate those who transgressed against them. During memory work, many partici pants a bstain ed from talking about the revengeful events targeting those who collaborated with the French army. It was a sour day of joy. On the one hand people were happy to be finally free of the colonial army but on the other hand they were full of r age, which they took out o n the goumia who were caught. Zoubida described or disaster because of the popular revenge and ridicule of those accused of being gou mi or traitor. An act that showed the continuity of the darknes s of the t ime of the war for independence against colonialism, even on the most joyful day of becoming free.
171 Reflections and Conclusion In postcolonial Algeria, fifty years after independence in a time of distress a nd disenchantment, the concern was abo ut children of Goumia who should not be blamed remember ed the first years of independence and the fate of the children of Goumia. In primary schools, the children of ex goumia suffered from social discrimination. Q.Khider. specifica lly recalled a boy by the name of O. who seemed to have so much hate, knowing who killed his father. He grew up and his hate grew even stronger. When the movement of the jibal 12 materialized, t the person who killed his father and then departed to the mountain. "When there is injustice, hate is inherited from gen erat Qader (INT. 56). ation, I commented that the role of history writing based on memories of tragic times to some extent plays a positive role in healing the wounds. There has to come a time when the person is able to meet those who cut his/her loved ones to pieces and then speak about it. After showing remorse there is closure and forgiveness. It is a kind of th erapy. This tragedy happened between the people of the same land and sometimes between brothers fro m the same family, one mujahid and the other goumi. The powerful testimories in this chapter poignantly capture the pain and suffering of people with common bonds of kinship and friendship gone bad. During the 12 The movement of jibal represent ed the 1990s black decade in various areas in Algeria. In Dellys, the mounta ins, (jibel in Arabic) represented the refuge of the resistance during the war of independence. They became that of the Algerian armed groups who revolted against or flew from the Algerian government armed forces.
172 deep conflict of the war of independence, thos e who committed evil were also capable of compassion.The dark legacy of French colonialism remains rooted in the colonized souls and epitomized in self hate. It is the responsibility of a population free at last to turn darkness into constructive lessons o f history.
173 CHAPTER 6 PRELUDE TO REVOLUTION: AWAREN ESS OF RIGHT FOR DIGNITY Early awareness of colonialism in Algeria materialized due to deep dissatisfaction over daily discrimination within the French colonial empire. Circumstances pushed Algerians int o disenchantment, resol ved to do what it would t ake to fre e the self and others from the dysfunctional situation that they found themselves in under colonial power. Algerians envisioned their people to live in a land they belonged to and loved. The Algeria n re volution did not start in 1954 but much earlier. As stated in the previous colonizing Algeria, Algerians felt neglected and transformed into a labor force for colonial sett lers who became richer and more powerful. Colonial Algeria was turning poor and working class, that is, the majority of Algerian people, lived in slums and mud huts, whi ch hindered their ability to prosper. During fieldwork, talking to Algerians in Dellys town and villages, I often heard react and fight for their freedom. Hugra is an expre s sive Algerian word that mean s continuous humiliation, prejudice, discrimination, and subjugation. In relation to colonialism, hugra was rooted in a living situation that Algerians experienced daily as shown through various examples The concept Hugra was constructed in the lived transgression, discrimination, and inj ustice of colonialists. In post coloniality, Algerians use h ugra to express their dissatisfaction with the present goverment bureaucracies in relation to discrimination the lack of work opportu nities housing, and safety. ugra deprived many Algerians of most basic human rights, safe refuge
174 from daily struggles, food to survive, and a safe environment for children to grow strong and stable. Figure 6 1. Haj Mohamed Belhaoua (INT. 39) reflecting on the concept colonialism. Photo cou rtesy of author, fieldwork 2010 When asked about early awareness of colonialism, Algerians, old and young, males and females, showed a deep hatred of colonialism. Such questions trigg ered memories recalling faraway stories of hardship during the 1940s in an apartheid like said H.M. and this H e remembered spending his childhood summers harvesting gr a little money but a lot of humiliation. During those days y oung men and women grasped any kind of work that would allow their families to survive extreme poverty, hunger, and suffering. As explained previously (Chapter s 3 & 4 ), Algerian families played a continuous role in rejecting colonial rules for generations When talking about the awareness of manhar Hallit 3iniya opened my eyes). Consciousness evolved just li ke that of a child who develops in
175 learning his /her first steps and words. The family elders showed their disenchantment toward colonizers and the youth observed and felt the tensions within the colonial situation in and outside the family environment. A c hild would go out only to witness, explore, and realize that they were truly colon ized. According to H.M. t hey [elders] (INT. 39). Elders, parents, and relatives all expres sed their ideas clearly with one another, and this fostered opposition to colonialism. Family members who were bilingual educated in both Arabic and French became an asset to those who were illiterate or had limited education. They were able to follow and share political news at home among families and friends. They got involved in the anticolonial discourses socially encouraging a unified struggle. European anti colonial movements and intellectuals such as Sartre and others influenced Algerian yout h who were privileged to attend French schools and colleges. The link between past and present discourses of resistance to colonialism became part of the Algerian oral history and oral tradition Younger generations in families examined their social situat ion using trusted venues and ideas through private family discussions. In contrast, local religious and educational institutions were less involved in raising awareness against discrimination. Despite having sheikh ben Hamida ( see Chapter 4) as an Arabic teacher, the Arabic school was not politically involved for fear of government al retribution. For the young Ameur Chabani and his comrades, their home environment inspired them to revolt. Long hours of informal discussions, drinking coffee and tea with old er uncles, cousins, and family friends allowed the youth to be involved in discourses that were politically oriented. Yet, like others, Ameur emphasized that the
176 relationship between education and awareness about colonialism was a combinatio n of family inv olvement in anti colonial movements and devout teachers who cared about forming intellectuals using Middle Eastern thinkers, activists and nationalists, such as Abou al Qassim Ash shabi, a Tunisian author and poet who authored the Tunisian anthem (Appendix G ). In addition to family awareness of the pressing time to liberate the land from coloniali sm, in the pre war period anti colonial movement such as PPA (Popular Party of Algeria) had an important impact on forming some leadership despite its limitation in membership and activities (Chapter 5). In Dellys town, political activism relied on close interaction between most trusted people such as older brothers, uncles and family friends who were politically involved since the 1940s. Gatherings were held in an u norganized fashion in specific homes. Yet, the impact that such congregations left on members of the family, friends and relatives was clearly displayed in their willingness to take part in the thawra, at the eve of the arm ed struggle through various mea ns. Since the 1940s, youth in Dellys noticed colonial armed forces pursuit of a few Algerian activists who were against colonialism. Ali Sahibi remembered the day Sahibi helpe d the activist escape before the French police discovered his whereabouts. However, as Ali reco unted, the police caught him. H e said, They caught me and asked me if I knew Zarouali, but I denied it. I remember they beat me with a qazoula [baton] on my hea d; I heard a started running and shouting. I was able to flee and they did not catch me (INT. 50). That day, the teenage boy understood that such local men were courageous to revolt agai nst colonial power. From then onward he was convinced that resisting would be the
177 way, even though it would mean to have a hard time. A few resistors escaped to the mountain and others were arrested and imprisoned. Ali Belhaoua and his cousins Mohammed an d Ali Chabani were all imprisoned for a year in Sarkaji prison in Algiers, f or being involved in the PPA. There they found incarcerated their PPA leader Benkhadda who later joined the FLN. The culture of resisting strengthened starting to transform into a unified front of liberation (FLN), including men and women, determined not to tolerate colonial transgression anymore. Figure 6 2. Fatma Chernouh Charadi at her home during interview, holding the picture of her younger brother Khalil who jo ined the FLN during the war of i ndependence commemorated as a martyr Photo cou rtesy of author, fieldwork 2010 Like their brethren, Algerian women were involved prior to and during the early years of the revolution. Dellysian women remembered the period of the first resistors to colonial discrimination, testimonies that reveal subaltern perspectives on resistence that have been excluded from most existing accounts about the revolution. Fatma Chernouh Charadi was only 16 years old and married when her father, husband, and other relatives and comrades including Zerouali, al Haddad, Ait Ahmed and others w ere
178 caught and imprisoned. T he French colonial administration believed that arresting the leaders of the move ment and putting them on trial sh ould take care of spreading the disenchantment among Algerians. However, the remembered discourse during the trial of some of the leaders revealed that the ignited light could not be diminished anymore. Fatma witnessed the army court trial of the group in the town of Blida, in Wester n Algiers. She remembered how, despite having no hope to be released and presumed to receive a death penalty, Algerian political prisoners spoke their mind in front of the French court system. She repeated the interaction between the prosecutor and each de tainee, Ali Al Haddad, Hussein Ait Ahmed, Chernouh (father), and finally Mohammed Zarouali. S he recalled, The prosecutor: Al Haddad: I do. The prosecutor: Al Haddad: I do. The prosecutor: you have a wife? Al Haddad: I do. I have my wife and children; sons and daughters. The prosecutor: And you do no t feel bad for them; for your wife? Al Haddad: I do not feel bad for them but I feel bad for the chair you are sitting on. I want to sit on it. I am afraid I will die before I sit on it (INT. 62). The daughter re imagined the trial then turned to Ait Ahmed, Kabyle leader, and said, The prosecutor: Ya el Haaj! Why did you do that? Ait Ahmed: It is my country; my country and the country of my ancestors! colonization (INT. 62).
179 Remembering each ruling, Fatma got to her father and urn came up, Fatma repeated his powerful discourse, she said, With no fear, he proudly declared his resistance to colonialists, saying, others wil (repeats 3 times) until death!] (INT. 62). Fatma, saddened but with pride recounted the harsh verdicts. Her was 19 years imprisonment in Cayenne prison in New Caledonia 1 ; he was released at the independence. and love for more than a decade. She remembered the stories of his impris onment, his vision to be release d and finally his liberation to join his loving daughter, family, and community to celebrate independence. Fatma was eager to tell me of he dream that came true; she said, While in prison, my father saw a dream th at gave him hope to survive, that She was tortured and jailed for her involvement in anticolonial activities). 1 Since early colonialism, Algerians were exiled to Cayenne prison. It was located in th e South Pacific Ocean, 20,000 kilometers away from their homes. Since early resistances, after Emir Abdelqader (1840s), El Muqrani (1870s), Aziz ben Cheikh al Haddad, and beyond, most of the exiled, if not killed, were not allowed to return but to live in a foreign land and culture, cut from their peoples and land forever. The early forced exiled exceeded 200,000 persons who joined the Parisians Communards in New Caledonia prisons. Historians cite that a third of them perished before arriving to the island and many al Haddad, is said to have been able to escape through Sydney, maybe to go to Mecca. Boumezreg, another early resistor, remained on the isl and and opened a business in posting. After 30 years of exile, he was allowed to enter Algeria in 1905 just in time to die at the age of 75 years old. Some of the survivors mingled with locals and even got married with Kanak women who were also colonized. The paradox was that in the eyes of the Kanak peoples, Algerian prisoners were viewed as French and were not accepted, thus doubly exiled and persecuted. According to the Hommage documentary, the new generations of Algerians in Caledonia are still not acce pted the way natives are (Youtube Hommage). According to Melica Ouennough (2006), historical anthropologist, based on her doctoral dissertation, found that the politics of forced assimilation of the descendants of Algeria in New Caledonia, specifically the descendants in Bourail and Caledonia, are strongly attached to the culture of patriarchs coming from Algeria. They are proud of their fathers who transmitted the sense of solidarity, religion, and the love of the country.
180 She get After a few months, Algerians got independence, and like others, the young woman Fatma was pr oud to have such heroic parents. Despite their limited resources, with no arms or organized front, they met secretly in the privacy of their homes. With only a few family members conscious of the resistance activities, they started the seedlings. They nour ished them to grow and flourish in shaping strong members of the society to fight During the era of of what his father and his male guests talked about in their private meetings. Yet because of continuous colonial punishment of his people, he sacrificed his youth and joined the revolution. As remembered and cherished by his older and only sister, his hop es were to leave behind a legacy, to never again be called children of manfiyiin (exiled) 2 in their own land, a derisive name for his exiled father and friends. The exiled represented the courageous heroes who committed their lives throwing the seeds on th e unpredicta ble land in hope that their off spring would find them in the turbulence of their lives, plant them with love and care, and then appreciate the fruits of freedom, dignity, and equality While in a colonial prison (1959), the Algerian singer Akli Yahia ten composed and sang a song, titled ya mujarab aHkili (you who tried hardship, tell me), part of his song, 2 Wliid or bent el manfi [son or
181 Qalbi maa yahmalsh ed del -ja al huma shbuh lamhayen (My heart does not support humiliation -oh! Peoples, men are ghosts of tragedies). With dignity, they embraced the consequences of the war of liberation. If only a few men were involved in the early struggl e against colonial subjug ation, women were much fewer. Confined to their local environments with limited interaction with the outside world, they had little understanding of the freedom movements and their symbolic meaning. Yet, when given the opportunity to gain such knowledge, they transformed in to agents of liberation with no difference from their brethren. At 14 years old, Baya Ta htali married her first husband in the late 1940s. Through him, she grasped the repercussions of colo e used to pray a nd say: May God brings victory to the star and the crescent 3 1). In her then unsophisticated mind, the young woman was puzzled and could not comprehend the symbolic meaning of the t he crescent and the star are in the sky, how does God e will fight France who took our land and used our goods. A war will break out a gainst the 1). Yet despite the limited information, such cogniza nce allowed Baya and others to reassess their lives and understand that what they thought was the natural state of being was in fact an imposed colonial reality Their awareness of 3 Africaine (North African star) was an early nationalis t Algerian organization (1926) founded by Messali Hajj. It was dissolved in 1929 then reorganized in 1933. It was dissolved in 1937. It can be considered a for runner of the FLN. Two months after its dissolution, PPA (Algerian popular party) was founded by the same leader to also be dissolved in 1946. It was followed by MTLD (movement of the triumph of liberation and democracy) that became more militant than pacifist. Without Messali Hajj, MTLD joined FLN in armed struggle. The pacifist orientation of these early movements changed to a more militant popular force.
182 colonial transgressions had risen from their segregated situation in which they sa w European colons having it all: lands with vineyards and various goods that Algerians saw but did not possess. They became aware that colonialism was the cause of their poverty on their own land. For Baya, the driving force behind their resistance was not poverty, but their passion for freedom. Figure 6 3. Siblings Ali and Fatma ben Achour ( left ) with friend Baya Tahtali Souag ( right ) during interview remembering colonial times in their village in Mecharef, Dellys, Algeria. Photo Courtesy of auth or, field work 2010. When I met Baya Tahtali Souag, she was a woman in the mid seventies, living independently in her home in Ladjenna. She remembered well those past times of struggle saying that We were convinced that those who fought for freedom were d oing it for there is no tangible proportional reward to fighting for freedom] (INT. 1). Young men and women followed their role models, those who initiated resistance to colonialism under extreme conditions Moreover, recruiting the populace to the cause came through artistic works and radio technology.
183 Artistic and patriotic work of Algerians and others around the world became a tool to spread awareness and recruit new members of th eir immediate communities to their cause opposing the colonial power. In homes, in the prairie, or on the underground radio program, the message was : Transmitted patriotic songs anashid were influen ti al elements of a growing anti colonial awareness among locals. The well formed poetry verses became strong innovative tools to enlighten active minds and sensitive hearts in to rejecting a stagnant and deplorable situation. Songs prepared the youth to be par t of the change, that is, as expressed beautifully by H. M. Belhaoua, We used to go to the woods to sing them [patriotic songs]; only among each other far from the roumi 4 Many families memorized them. It was a necessary step because they [average Algeria ns] did not know what it meant to be independent. When they saw a roumi they did not call him (the son of the flag) because they [Europeans] had a flag and Algerians did not. Since they had the flag (control), they did what pleased them (INT. 39). To be able to envision a life of freedom away from colonial oppression, individuals and groups reflected on basic human rights that had been nonexistent for them in their daily experiences. Words of wisdom and limited works of art shaped the prospect of imagining a life of dignity. Algerians who were desperately struggling to stay alive could not care about or understand the sense of winning wars in Europe. It is not strange to hear testimonies classifying not WWI, WWII or any other world wars as the most memor able world event but the thawra, the Algerian war of liberation. This exte nded event brought back to life in 4 Roumi; Singular/masculine, roumia; singular/feminine, rouwama; plural/masculin, and roumiyat; plural/feminine. It represented one of the names used to mean Europeans living in Algeria but also Fr ench who visited from the metropolis.
184 the forgotten possibility of being free of colonizers at last. However, most importantly, the prelude to the thawra had the most impact on the minds and emotions of youth who desperately wanted to enjoy what Europeans took for granted, equality through which they would recover their humanity. Since its early signs, the thawra was put on a pede stal an emblem of a popular struggle waged by men and women whose reality was unreasonably and unhumanely full of misery. When the arm ed struggle occurred, it took close to eight years of fighting and a sacrifice of more than one million souls to regain f reedom from French colonialists a topic that I explore in the following chapter.
185 CHAPTER 7 REMEMBERING THE THAWRA 1 : THE ALGERIAN REVOLT FOR DIGNITY AND FREEDOM This chapter deals with life during the thawra the revolution and war of independence. I investigate early involvement of Algerians, as individuals and families, find the roots to the transmitted popular dissatisfaction with the status quo under colonialism. The beginning of the thawra was a moment of conviction and resolve that changed a population from beingf in a state of desperation into one of defiance in spirit, words, and deeds. Since November 1, 1954, crushed spirits sang in of Alger expressed hopes and prayers for a blessed thawra that would break the shackles of colonialism. Yet, not all were on the side of the evolving young thawra, as people remember it ; we can clearly sense that there were discrepancies within the colonialized population (Chapter 5). We can imagine that those who were well established within the colonial government to be reluctant to ward chang ing sides. As a result, they were targeted as traitors and enemies of the people. Both mujahidin and colonialists used v iol ence to silence each other. Therefore a tragic and bloody period developed which was hard for people both to live with through and remember. Tragic events lived in the community are vividly remembered. However, d espite these traumas, the popular suppor t for the thawra continued unabated out of loyalty and hopes in its goal or out of fear and coersion. There is no doubt however that the thawra w ould not have been sustained an d w ould not have been able to achieve independence without the full support of A lgerian people who dreamed of being free of colonial France. 1 Thawra is revolution in Arabic. I intend to use it in Arabic throughout the chapter because of its importance in many testimonies.
186 Throughout colonialism, the availability of anti colonial materials and media seeking to spread a wareness in the Algerian population was very limited. Yet, as Frantz Fanon (1959) explains in the in his book Dying Colonialism (69 97), the change in Algerian attitudes toward radio in occupied Algeria the colonial domination, corresponds to no vital need insofar as the (72). It wa that is, ion ( in around 1955) set the mark f o r T perception o f the radio was r eplaced by one in which the radio came to be seen as the voice of truth and hope for an illiterate and uninformed population giving it strongly motivat ed in its 3). The voice of Algeria spoken from the djebels 2 reached the population through various radio frequencies transmitted from Tunisia, Cairo, Syria, and other Arab countries. During a meeting with Zohra Khetib Toudji and Kheira Souag Ammi, two women of Delly s town, who have been life long friends and relatives an interesting chat took place showing their fascination with the voice of hope that came through the radio: Kheira : 2 Djebel: mountain but here specifically meaning the maqui that was established on va rious Algerian mountains such as Mizrana in Dellys.
187 Zohra : We had the radio on jus t enough to hear his words. He was in Tunis. He speaks about al jabha 3 and what they did. Kheira : God gave him such a voice! Zohra : Yaa! He did (INT. 31) In their old age, the two friends are still captivated by the voice of the Algerian journalist who sp oke about al jabha on the radio For the Algerians who did not care to listen to thawra raising hopes and representing brotherhood and unity. Realizing how the radi o became so important for the popular revolution to continue and strengthen, French officials took strict measures in forbidding ownership of radios and batteries. The memo ries of such particular events were still vivid in the minds en radio batteries were forbidden. It was hard to find them for batteries without a permission slip from the commissariat. Listening to Z.S. observation, my first thought was that maybe the French army was afraid of eliminate batteries and silence radios that spread words of hope in the thawra which, for the colonial power, amounted to a threat. Colonists used whatever means they thought were necessary to stop the flow of communication between revolutionists and their people As put by Zohra know what they did to it. It made a noise like wor..wor..wor, and once in a while that hdira [tiny word] came up and we heard it. Then it would go away (INT. 31). 3 Al Jabha is the abbreviation of Jabhat attahrir al watani: the national front of liberation or FLN. Peoples, most of the time, though, say al jabha.
188 Soldiers broke radios when found in Algerian homes, especially those who were suspected of being revolutionists. revolutionary news program, restored the crushed hope of the population. When asked ma naffarHush? Tadkhallanna shwiya al bushra (We rejoiced. How could we not? Little al French radio that broadcast news on the number of Algerians killed by the French army, where, and how was increasingly supplanted by Sawtu al jazair which wa s raising the voices of silenced Algerians. Eve of Thawra and Armed Struggle The eve of the armed struggle for independence started on November 1 1954. It started in the eastern region of Algeria. Ali Sahibi, who at that point in time was not much aware o f the thawra, remembered a friend Ben Taleb who m he met in prison. were set up to stock collected various necessary materials including arms, books, and medicines The Algerian population understood the importance of expressing its defiance in one voice. The thawra, symbolically, exploded in the whole territory. They remembered that night well A s Zohra expressed it They said it started at midnight in Tigzert (por t town, East of Dellys). They (the war broke out) (INT. 31). Such remembrance took the two older friends to that first moment Kheira began singing the first verse of the revolutiona ry song while Zohra finished the rest
189 dhad al kuffar 4 that is, making differentiating between the colonial army and Nsara 5 who were their neighbors, sharing the same town. Yet, Dellys did not really get involved in the armed revolt until 1956. Ali Sahibi who was charged with delinquency in 1956 and for which he served some prison time, remembered that after he was released from prison and came back to his hometown younger cousin of Mohamed Zarwali the hero of the 1940s (mentioned in Chapter 5). He invited Ali to join the thawra but the lat t er, still under the effect of prison, declined the invitation Instead, he left to Azefoun town in Grand Kabylia, far from any trouble where he found work in the port. Yet, it did not take him long to become involved in the thawra by taking up various resp onsibilities such as collecting money and becoming i r e politique (the front: FLN Front de Liberation Nationale ). Ali confessed that he joined al jabha when he discovered it was a true thawra. The yout h, who lived under colonial subjugation daily, believed that it was their duty to make the thawra successful and help in dismantling the colonial forces. Friends and family members encouraged each other to take part in the thawra, even if only at a symboli c level. During memory work, the remembr ance of specific events explained the prominence of this heroic period for many young Dellysians. Saleh was in his early 20s 4 The verse sang by the two old friends translates in to, the first of November, Oh! Caller for the struggle (Jihad), say Allah is great! Oh! Lord make our revolution victorious against the kuffar (unbelievers or who do not appreciate the bounties of their Creator), in this context, the French colonizers. 5 Algerians called the Europeans who settled in Algeria through colonialism with three different names: 1) Nsara: Christians, 2) roumi (a) (singular) /rouwama (roumiyat) (plural): roman(s) and 3) gawri (a) / guwar (guawriyat) which is a borrowed word from th e French word guerrier(s) or warrio(s).
190 working on the family land in Lajenna west of the town. He was paying close attention to n ew development s of the thawra, looking for any opportunity to join in H e remembered how a rusted pistol his maternal uncle asked him to clean played a stimulating symbolic role in preparing him to get rid of fear and to decide to commit to the thawra. Yet they knew that freedom does not come easily or in a cheap way E arly Casualties of War Many remember the split within the Dellysian community during the war of independence. On the side of the Europeans, a few colons were against the army immersion in t heir area and stood on the side of struggling Algerians. On the other hand those who were in control hailed the army striking at resistors. On the Algerian side, the split was also evident between those who were officials working for colonialist interests and theirs and the rest of the population. Unfortunately, the divide did not take place and remain at the level of the political discourse ; it evolved into acts of violence. Thus, the eve of the armed struggle for independence was marked by various ki nds of disruptions and sabotage the cutting of electrical power barns, taking arms and ammunition by force, or slaying specific individuals. Dellysians could not forget the first casualties among Europeans and Algerians alike in De said M. Belhaoua was an adolescent walking everyday back and forth between Lajenna and Dellys t own to attend his Arabic classes ( Chapter 4). On t he next day after Mizir was killed he heard that the thawra had started. Fr om memor y, Mohamed Belhaoua described Mizir as a young man and the son of a colon, who owned a fourgon (minibus) taking passengers between Dellys and Tadmait t o the east. In Mohamed by sunse t. He was the first to die by the hands of muj
191 not know why he was killed, but they remember ed in various parts of the territory that there was a first bullet which signified the beginning of the thawra. The revolution ists targeted Algerians too. A q aid and a s hambit 6 we re perceived as being the symbol of double subjugation. They were colonial subjects trained to crush their own people (Chapter 5). Those who remember ed explain that the mujahidin warned them to quit their col hat's explaining the strict r ules of mujahidin. She remembered the tragic killing of two Algerian officials, saying: Qaid B.A. lived in Dellys town. I remember he was killed during t he day. Then, shambit B.Ya. took his position [as qaid]. They [mujahidin] warned his killing, she fled and took refuge in the Casbah (INT. 31). Zohra recounted the story the way s he heard it from the wife, who told her: la yka (I implore you by this angle said Zohra describing the tragic end of an Algerian who refused to stop working for th e French colonialists. She could not forget the traumatized widow who fled her home with her kids from the village of Nekhla and took refuge among the Casbah residents. T he people were marked by violence s ince the very first stages of the thawra but more importantly, they were affected by the killing of neighbors and could not forget the pain inflicted on various families. Such overwhelming testimonies are embedded in 6 Shambit (sing. /masc. and shnabet; sing. /plu.) is borrowed from the French garde champtre or rural police officer.
192 reveal ed the tragic events at the dawn of the thawra which need to be historicized. Social Life and Native/Nsara R elations Altered As the thawra started and evolved in aggressive way s so did the social order change too. The trust between Europeans and Algerians wa Hna nkhafuhum ( Nsara feared us s remembered as having become the norm in Dellys town. The fear of being killed at any time traumatized even those residents who were not involved in the coloni al administr ation. Zohra narrated an interesting event that described the fear that the tactics of mujahidin planted in the hearts of people who had little associa tion with colonialists. She said I remember the chikaat 7 who came by our home to sell lace a nd other household materials. We used to buy pretty and silky bedcovers from them. They used to come to our house to sell and keep chatting and talking with us in fluent Algerian Arabic. On one visit, the chika saw drops of blood on the ground in the patio That day we slaughtered a rooster [for She left and since that day, she did not enter the house. She might h ave thought we would slaughter her (INT. 31). Such a memorable event which can be described as laughable and peculiar, helps to explain the type of cultural prejudices between various groups. During the war it came to symbolize a rift in the midst of neig hborhoods. Not only did the dawn of thawra push residents in to following new sets of rules, but it also created new assumptions based both on reality and fear. Confusion infused daily life. 7 Chikaat (fem. /plur. and chika; fem. /sing.) was the name Algerians gave to Spanish gypsies who used were in good terms and in commercial contact with local Algerians until the break up of the war.
193 Such fears kept Algerians and Europeans in a stat e of constant vigilance, fearing death even if they were not involved in any hostilities Both M. Belhaoua and S. Saber remember ed the killing of Laubi, a retired French general and owner of the local bar in Lajenna. What seemed to be an attack by a few mu jahidin on the home of Laubi to get hold of his weapons turned into his tragic killing and that of his wife who fired at the mujahidin. Unfortunately, such killing s brought more harm to the neighbors after a few colons took it upon themselves in an act of reprisal to kill an old Algerian neighbor of Laubi. As a result, y oung and old witnessed more daily killings and more army control. In social memory, the tale of getting independence just started in the metamorphic chapter that turned many young men into b ecoming mujahid struggling for freedom. Becoming Mujahid s facilitate imagining and reconstructing the involvement of many in the armed struggle against colonialism. The subaltern testimonies emerge revealing that the first organizers of the secret resistance during the 1945 uprising (Chapters 5 & 6) were among the first to join the national liberation front (FLN). intellectuals to the mountains. However of the FLN members derived from various factions of the society. Old Resistors and the Thawra As remembered by many Dellysians, Ali al Haddad became one of the most important figures in the thawra in the area of Dellys. Colonialists had classified him s ince 1945 In the 1940s, he was imprisoned, pu t in isolation for three years, and then sentenced to die. Miraculously, he lived to be part of the popular revolution by leading youth in acts of
194 resistance (Chapter 6). S. Saber remembered famous Dellysian names who became mujahidin, among whom Mouloud Khetib, Rachid Khabash Mostefa and Mhemed Saber (brother and cousin), and Mo khtar Abdi. According to him, t hey all d ied on December 29, 1956, burnt with napalm on the mountain. Many youth were unsuccessfully struggling to enroll in various learning activities while helping their families survive. For them, the 1950s were a new cli mate promising good prospects for changing their situation and living fre e of colonial control. Saleh was prepared to join the struggle. When the situ ation asked for more commitment, he and other young men got involved in various tasks, as he reminisced, We could not go to djebel, so we helped otherwise. I did not have money, so I was collecting money. I used to buy things for mujahidin and watch For many youth like Saleh, volunteering for the thawra was the right path to follow, a position which concords well with the fact that the population has always resisted colonialism. Since the 1940s, the youth were hoping for the day they would revolt against colonialism. As mentioned in Chapter 3, many De llysian families rejected anything related to colonialists, which prepared Saleh and his friends well for being among the first to get involved in the thawra. With passion, S aleh stated that It is in our blood. Our parents and the whole population were waiting j ust for that, when the thawra would take place to end colonialism (INT. 3). Prior to thawra, his dream was to finish his learning in a zaoui, then go to Zaytuna institution in Tunis to specialize in Islamic sciences. The spread of diseases and extreme pove rty in the 1940s swiped the dreams away. Instead, he focused on farming and raising livestock to survive and help his family. The dream of becoming a scholar of
195 Quran evolved in to another aspiration. Like his peers, since 1954, he joined the popular revolt hoping for independence from colonial grip and oppression. Figure 7 1. Mohamed Belkhaoua to the left at the mujahidin center. Images hanged on wall, in commemoration of Dellysians killed d uring the war of independence. Photo cou rtesy of author, fieldwo rk 2010 The Intellectuals and the Thawra rejection of colonial culture and the ir espousal of the thawra at its very first manifestation. However, to the surprise and shock of all observers Algerian youth whose minds had been molded in colonial schools and were the emblem of pacification and assimilation plan in European culture, also j oined the revolution individually and in groups. Colonialists were deceived by the defiance of Algerian youth Although t hey appeared to have embrace d approach and seemed to be patriotic in defense of France this proved to be an illusion. Subjugated Algerians unearthed the buried desire to live with dignity through their fearless youth. This became a defeat ing moment for colonists who had been hoping that a new generation of Algerians would embrace French ways and be grateful to the
196 empire. Contrary to such anticipations, youthful imagination of the protector was instead shaped by embedded discrimination and continuous colonial disgrace they observed daily. At this point in the situation, Algerian youth of colonial schools agreed with their fellow Algerians in fighting continuous colonial transgressions on their land. In Dellys, the year 1956 is commemorated students decided to revolt around the country and strik e against colonial power Many families told me of their sons, brothers and cousins who decided to join the front of liberation and never came back. They were a ll killed in the mountains of Mizrana. Their families still remembered the food they were eating within the warmth of their homes when the soldiers came searching for them as well as the clothes they were wearing at the time they left their families for go od Other reminisced about the last visit their brother had with the family. They spoke of the unrealized hopes the family had for their educated sons and brothers. Saber, Toudji, Abdi, and Achir are only a few examples of the families in Dellys town and v illages who lost sons in their best ages. In memory of their sons, they cherished their last moments with them. Dellysians spoke highly of their children, of the intellectuals of Dellys who sacrificed their youth and life for an independent Algeria. The in tellectuals struggled to free their land from colonialism for the dignity of future generations. conventional me thods in eliminating the enemy. Another juncture is the role of intellectuals, who h ad been silenced for so long, which constitutes another subaltern history coming to the fore. This is a testimony to the level of violence that characterized the time of the revolution as well as to a rebellion that fell in to the trap of soph isticated strategies of
197 eradication of the French army. In this situation, as the story have been told, the desperate colonial government was targeting young Algerians who attended college in Algiers by using different methods, including poisoning their fo od. After being saved from food poisoning, the students fled the capital toward the mountains to join the armed rebellion in mass. There, they were targeted again by the mujahidin and perceived as spies for the enemy. As a result, many of them were massacr ed by order of the FLN leader then, Colonel Amirouche The operation Bleuitte (1957 1958), manipulated by the French secret services under the control of Alain Leger, shows the extremely dirty politics of war, a topic tha goes beyond t he scope of dissertat ion and is left for future research work During fieldwork, the double tragedy of Dellysian intellectuals was still alive in French government faced the Algerian students as po tential political food was poisoned at their cafeteria in Ben Aknoun dorms [in Algiers] Luckily, they did not die. Those who participated in the protest fled the city (INT. 11). At least s even young men from Dellys town fled f rom the city turbulences to djebel to join the ranks of mujahidin under the command of Colonel Amirouche, chef of Willaya III, in Kabylia. The colonial regime in Algiers continued in its fight, silencing Alge rian intellectuals. It designed a strategy of psychological manipulation of Colonel Amirouche, their greatest enemy. They made him believe that intellectuals were spies. A ccording to various narratives, y oung intellectuals who were perceived as adversarie s to combat from within intimidated Colonel Amirouche (a leader by conviction despite being tactics. A list of names of college activists was sent to Colonel Amirouche wi th FLN
198 organizers conveying the message. It is believe d that this resulted in the killing of 20 individuals. Amirouche believed that the letter was from FLN and that the students were working as spies for the French government. However, a fter a while, a yo ung woman from Algiers brought a letter from FLN organizers to colonel Amirouche, denying authorship of the letter that pushed him to execute young men whose aim was to be part of his army. Amirouche understood that he had been tricked, expressed regret later, the French army killed Colonel Amirouche when traitors, who were among FLN top organization, informed of his location. During my fieldwork, I found a newspaper article about his killing, a story based on a French officer testimony. Colonel Amirouche was killed on his way to Tunis to organize the provisional government. Those who became part of the thawra were common people from every walk of life So long silen ced and ignored, the emerging subalterned voices and testimonies lay their marks in history. T he thawra brought together enthusiasts to the front. They were front of lib were involved in providing them with food, shelter, and moral support. Yet those who desired to join the struggle had to pass many tests before becoming a mujahid. The Scheme to Be come Mujahid To join mujahidin in djebel one had to be prepared to leave everything behind and to face the possibility of death Unless being tested, words remain words. Those who desired to join djebel were tested to see whether they were ready to kill. S uch an act was regarded as the most dangerous ordeal since failure to pass this test could ensue in being killed. T he FLN desired to incorporate those w ho were part of the French
199 army if they believed in the cause because their readiness in b e aring arms wa s a strong asset for the revolution More importantly, to many the commitment to the thawra parallel ed their enthusiasm to do the unthinkable to help. Desire to Become Mujahid: Killed before Killing To become a mujahid, one had to be ready to take up ar m s to defend against or attack the enemy as explain ed by many informants. Those who showed the desire and were selected to make it to Jebel were always tested first Organizers would give the individual a shotgun and tell him to kill. Then, if he killed, he would go to jebel. However, for many, such an act would be their tragic end. Z .Khetib Toudji evoked the story of a the latter tried to kill a colonial police officer in the middle family Dri. He was going to kill a police officer but it did not go well. Another police how able to run, only to fall near a house. He fell and, as it transpire s in memories, the army scrutinized the Algerian community to discover the link between him and th e population. Soldiers are re imagined to enter every house and garden. They are said to have even pushed the residents to lift the body and place it in the middle of the street for the purpose of identification. Z. Khetib Toudji remembered exactly where s he was s t must have been on the residents, businesses and visitors who were asked to identify the body. As my informant narrated the event I was i magining the horrific event of forcing the residents to move the body one more time to the entrance of the town by the army barracks,
200 the town, in Qaluta, asking every person coming in or out of town about him until they k new who he was. The final stage of the tragedy testimonies of Dellysians who lived the tragic times of war construct the story of a young man whose desire to pass t he test by killing a police officer out of loyalty to ta wra ended with his death and left his mother in mou rning. From Colonial Army Service to Jebel The FLN encouraged Algerians who had been members of the French army to join the armed struggle. In compa rison to civilians, such potential recruits would be well trained in armed struggle All what they needed was to be convinced t o join the rebels. Many of them ended up joining the FLN ranks because the colonial army targeted them and their families as susp ected fellaghas (mujahidin). However, young men who decided to join jebel paid a higher price when the army caught them ; they were tortured until they confess ed and gave influential names of the resistance B. Tahtali His sister remembered when he was caught and how remorseful he was when under torture he confessed about his peer s, saying forgive myself that he [mujahid] was killed. He looked me in the eye before they killed rench army were o ften killed, yet, when they fled imprisonment they would always remain on the run. In this narrative, B. Tahtali Souag resolve in covering courageously the trails of t heir loved ones and other mujahidin. With great emotions, she told me about the event when the army learned of her brother
201 the ashira 8 (INT. 1). During memory work, the narrator was back in suspicion of the hidden mujahidin. As a listener, I imagined B. Tahtali Souag moving kitchen utensils to the f ront door and pretending to wash them. By using skills that were available and meaningful within her surrounding she was able to find a way to save the mujahidin from being killed in that event. As she re imagined, she poured a bottle of black pepper on th e ground to overwhelm the dogs with its strong smell. She was glad the soldiers left, yet as she recalled, her brother was prepared to shoot at the soldiers had he been discovered He was destined to die soon after as he was caught in an army ambush He t hereby left behind him a family, especially his sister, who had been marked by his death and had not been able to forget the detai led story the day he was killed. As she narrates, a nd later M.A. [the goumi] came to the family (who was at the time confined in the camp of the SAS 9 ). He showed a picture to my mother and (INT. 1). 8 hat is used for sleeping. 9 SAS, Section administrative specialise in French (Specialized Administrative Section). Throughout the French colonialism of Algeria, SAS changed in function depending of the time. It started in 1844 as Arab Bureau collecting in telligence on Arab politics. According to Hugonnet (1858), these institutions were the link between the Europeans who settled in Algeria since 1830, and the indigenous of this country (p.5). However, by 1877, these institutions were abandoned but only to r eappear in 1955, during the war of independence, as SAS. According to Mathias (2011), they were military teams living in Algerian villages, conducting pacification (constructing schools and roads and dispensing medical care) and collecting ix). I would add also, in this situation, taking people by force to these camps to prevent them from having any contacts with mujahidin. Many also were tortured in some camps that were designed as safe and secure refuge for the population.
202 Families were proud in commemorat ing their sons and brothers who were part of the thawra However, they could not mask the sadness of their loss. Feelings of loneli ness overwhelmed B. Tahtali Souag one brother killed, the other fleeing soldiers in Algiers, and her father trapped in France. During my fieldwork, I learne d that only a small minority had committed itself to be mujahid as the test was too hard to pass Hope in Lost Bullets and Rusted Pistol Revolut ionary work took place not only in organized events but also through personal relations. T here were two kinds of response to the efforts of spreading awareness about the thawra. There were those who became frightened and refused to be involved in any way a nd those who w ere excited and honored to be part of the change. By 1957, Saleh was in his early twenties. He remembered the first activities that he and his friend Ameur both engaged in as they hope d to get closer to the honor of becoming a mujahid. Their hopes rested even in the French army lost bullets, as he reminisced, One cannot imagine in what we had hopes. We hoped even for a lost When they left, we went running to find a lost bullet in the sand hoping to send it to mujahidin bullet (INT. 3). Saleh firearm. He recount ed the event of the rusty p istol an u ncle asked him to clean, he said middle of bamboo plants, far from homes close to the beach. I s tarted working on it diligently. I was not able to fix it to make an attentat (killing attempt) if I wanted to When I went to shine it again, soldiers had a ratissage (raid). It was a protection from God. They passed by me with t even notice them. They could have come by
203 destruction and death a few times, Khadidja (INT. 3). Having been e mbedded i n a landscape that was still present, their memories re emerge d when recounting their tale of courage and testing. Although they did not have a direct connection with the armed front, such activities prepared the youth to commit themselves and be ready to h elp as shown later. The Strategy for a Successful Thawra As explore d above, becoming a mujahid was not an easy ride. It took brave and committed members of the community to embark in to a violent world with no guarantee of succeeding. However, as Dellysians remembered, a strategy for a well organized thawra was based on the formation of the smallest committed groups among the population. Such organization was based on four essential elements : the khalia (cell), the mot de pass (password), eradication of muja hidin traces, and the ability to keep secrets. Within each organization, tasks were secretive, easy to follow but in need of strong human character and courage as it transpired to me from how members of the community evoked and reconstructed the details of such important endeavor s during the war of liberation. T he Khalia: The Cell The khalia (Arabic), cellule (French), or cell organization relied on a chain of command between its members. Each khalia had a leader called commi ssa i r e A k halia was comprised of several members but with no more than two members interacting with each other at a ny time The reasoning behind such a format ion was, as M. Belhaoua explained, If I was collecting [money] and I was arrested, I would not know who was in charge of the g roup, I only knew the one person who received the
204 money from me. Then that person would give it to the next and so on until it reached the one in charge (INT. 11). M. Belhaoua was still young when the war of liberation started. He was in charge of collecti ng money and spreading awareness among the youth. His optimism allowed him to spread the word even among the poorest who would not have been able to give more than a doro (penny). His aim was to spread national awareness and revive the notion and sense of freedom. As he recounted, the khalia system started at the family level, and then spread to the alley, neighborhood, town, district and country. The khalia functioned well, mostly among trusted people. Members of a khalia chose, carefully, whom they approa ched when spreading awareness and collecting money. At first, khalia members were mostly family members. In the Gattar neighborhood in Lajenna, Dellys, Haj M. Belhaoua was the head of the khalia and his cousin M. Belhaoua was collecting from another cousin When Haj responsibility increased, he organized another khalia led by his other cousin, Ameur During our interview, Ameur recalled his then I was in charge of a k halia with many members who did not know of each other member, the information or material would be already far away. In 24 hours the whole system would be going forwar 2.). The success seemed to be in the top down system embued from educated to illiterate spread like f allowed activists to pick at the right moment new adherents for their noble cause. The collector would not reveal who the money would go to. After a few donations and after
205 building trust, the ne xt step was to ask the same person to find another person from whom to collect donations, and so on. As former activists remembered it the khalia is a branched tree. Haj M. knew such a naHia (the head organizer in th e region); he said People brought me diverse materials. The cell was like a tree. I was at the top. The cell had branches that had other branches, and it ended with me. I was the organizer. I regularly met with R. Z. and his cousin M. Z. in their empty ho use. We used to colle ct grain and money. During the eight day strike, we had an order to distribute to the needy. Each of us distributed in his area. For us, we had Lajenna. We gave to the population and the population gave back (INT. 39). With various co llected materials and clear aims, it was also necessary to secure hiding places within their landscape without alarming the residents who were already prepared to support with provisions. Their neighbor Saleh also remembered the tight relationship among these active people. H is upper contact was Ameur ; the two were friends and relatives. He explained one of his tasks to someone who got a good pay; 200,000 francs [3,000 dollars in was always a successful mission. Answering my inquiry, Saleh explained that contacted] started crying. He cried for his money and he was sca red because he was afraid someone would inform on him and be caught. held t ight to such memories. Saleh and the other activists, all remembered the details of those times of resistance. They dealt with people they loved and tru sted and with other community members whom they approached privately in hope they would participate in the cause they sacrificed for.
206 Mot de P asse (Password) The mot de passe was the secret word or phrase used for identification when a commissa i r e or muja hidin contacted any active members. M. Belhaoua remembered when Commissa i r e A.M. came to the family home to meet with the uncle who was under his headship. M. Belhoua described elements of the visit, saying that The commissa i r e regularly came down on the 30th of each month. Before coming, he used to send a person under him to plan for the impending visit along with the mot de passe. Therefore, when the commissa i r e came and knocked, those inside opened the door only after hearing the mot de passe. The mot d e passe used to change every month M. Belhaoua remembered his uncle A. meeting the commissar for short periods of time (their house was very close to the army barracks) in the courtyard to give him what they had prepared, such as money or socks. A. Sahibi was a commissar. In his narrative, he explained the i mportance of changing passwords such that T. 50). He remembered how one day a group of men knocked on his door and started saying various words His wife refused to open the door when she heard pen, we are the youth. She did not trust the voice until she heard Sarbaha the men in for a meeting. During the war of liberation, allowing anyone in the home could be fatal for many families that dealt with mujahidin. H oping to capture activists, the army used goumia who impersonate d mujahid. However, t heir chance to have peop le open a door for them depended on whether they knew the right password Saleh remembered, around 1960, when mujahidin used to come to their homes for food and refuge in al Gattar, Lajenna. He narrated re imagining the scene in the present landscape,
207 The y [mujahidin] were always in our house. Almost every week we had to host a group, either to spend a day and a night, or two to three days in these houses. I used to sleep in the courtyard, so when mujahidin came, I guarded them. I mean, we had hard times. God protected us. Sometimes they came and other times French soldiers came with goumia. Mujahidin called my fathe the name of the muja hid. My father understood the goumi trick. He did not open. He knew that mujahidin would not call him by name (INT. 3). The undertaking of hosting mujahidin on a regular basis required extreme organization, collaboration, and secrecy. Many other Dellysians narrated stories of meticulous tasks serving their noble cause of liberating their land and people but also avoiding the retribution of the colonial army. Another important task that the oral history of the thawra reported was to erase footprints, that is, cleverly using various materials from the local landscape and culture. Simple actions, such as using olive branches or tobacco powder became essential to cl tracks from the home, garden, and trails. When narrating, A. Sahibi re imagined the route the mujahidin took in al Gattar neighborhood, of Lajenna; he said, A group of mujahidin left one of the houses to go to another one through the f ence in the garden moving to their desti nation to Ramla neighborhood. They moved along a narrow dirt path, the activists used olive branches to clear footprints) (INT. 50). Ali and Mohamed and many others explain ed that during more dangerous situations, activi sm ell. The activists in each neighborhood used to clear the trails especially those who
208 had provision shelters on their lands Remembering such tense events, many of my informan ts expressed the hardship they endured for freedom. Secrecy During thawra, keeping secrets became a skill and a tool for the resistance to succeed. People had to keep quiet and not share information, even with closest family members as Haj Mohamed explai ned, Even my own father and mother did not know what I was doing. My wife knew, but still not one hundred percent (INT. 39). His type of activism relied on quick decision making and he often had to come home late to sleep for a short time and then leave ve ry early in the morning. Activists told one an other very little about their tasks, not to doubt their comrades but to avoid troubling was also an activist, did not know of my brother and I shared information for task collaborati stated by M. Wali Chabani Khetib knew well the value of secrecy during the war. Various family members were mujahidin and activists. She recalls when her brother in law brought a package of tracts home, It was the day the army apprehended M. al Khaloui 10 He left the package [of tracts] with someone, and then my brother in law brought it home. We hid it away in the cellar. At night, soldiers searched for people. When they got to our house, they looked around but found nothing. Yet, they took my brother in law [for interrogation]. The next day, his brother took the package out of the cellar to another place. We [women] did not know what was going on. When they [brothers in law] talked, they did not talk around 10 A. al Khalou i was a mujahid from Dellys. He was married few years before he was ambushed in a cross fire and killed. While in Dellys during my fieldwork, I attended a commemoration of the Martyrs of Dellys. The younger brother of al Khaloui received the plaque that ho nored the sacrifice of the shahid and many other mujahidin. Few years ago, his wife Mina passed away.
209 us. [Women] were not talking with one another about war related issues. We were too scared to make mistakes that would jeopardize family safety. Women were not going out and busied themselves with cooking, cleaning and taking care of their families. Our awareness of the outside world was limited (INT. 5). M any people refused to get involved in activism for fear of being tortured. Thoughts of torture, imprisonment, and exile became disempowering for many. Yet for others like Saleh devotion to the thawra helped them persevere; as he expressed it Only those Maa nah hadrush Through the voices and emotional expressions of those who lived the events, t his section explicates how the success of the thawra depended on a well designed organization among the devoted members of the population within their own communities. Their tasks were successful by following simple skills which rem ain in the memories of those who survived colonialism as an emblem of their sacrifice. During memory work, such abilities become mnemonics that le d narrators into deep discussions re imagining episodes within their landscape among their people. European and Algerian Material and Moral Support to Thawra Popular commitment to the thawra materialized from various parts and in different ways. This section deals with the memories of Europeans and Algerian coming to aid the thawra. We learn that th eir parts we re mostly voluntary. Y et, most of the time they do not show their adherence for fear of being suspected by the army. Europeans and Algerians had their share of the service to the thawra through courageous events that their peers who survived colonialism st ill remember. As mentioned above, monetary contributions were the primary support to mujahidin. We learn that during the war of
210 independence, segments of the population, Algerian and European, men and women, provided daily necessities to mujahidin, such as food, clothes, bo ots, socks, medical supplies, and any needs that they might have asked for. Moral support was a most profound sustenance to those who sacrificed their lives on the risky path of freedom, often inspiring young mujahidin to endure the pain. Emotional support materialized in a variety of forms. They covered for mujahidin with their bodies and glorified them with words, which in the era of independence evolved into a new genre of folk songs. The closeness of committed peoples to members of the thawra created an environment of unity and communal bonds that erased the sense of weakness which had accumulated for generations under the colonial system. European Sympathizers' Role in Revolution Much like Algerians, Dellys residents of European desc ent inte racted with the revolution in complex ways This is another juncture at which the subalterns were able to counter the myth that colons and settlers were all united against the revolution. In the following excerpts, we learn of a few old European re sidents, including big farmers (colons), pharmacists, and doctors who supported in various ways the fight against colon ial discriminatio n. Intentions are not discussed; rather what rise s to the surface is ropeans (neighbors, employers, doctors, pharmacists, and friends) toward the thawra. Since secrecy was a must to have survival skill, the narratives reflect personal subjective viewpoints. Local Algerian and European relations during the war differed depen ding on the situation and the Algerian goumia and comers, such as French soldiers,
211 t rajliih 11 led in them 12 their neighbors and aimed at no t harm ing one another, thereby, safeguarding a lifelong relationship within the community. Their close relations required th em to cover for each other despite a dominant atmosphere of enmity. In this section, Dellysians commemorate several Europeans, each was remembered and honored for his or her courage to stand against discrimination wherever it was. They left a remembrance o f inclusion as Dellysians of European descent, who had similar interests and desires as their peers of North African descent, living in peace. Speaking of European settlers in Dellys and surrounding areas, we sense a relationship that went deeper in the p ast than the time of war. Some Algerians and settlers were close to one another in work and in other life activities. Badachi and managed vintage seasons, and was in charge of managing the land and home in Dashra, despite being close to the mountains, was safe from army bombardments. In comparison, neighboring dashras such as Thuwabet, south of Dellys town and sidi Amar as Cherif, to the southw est of Dellys were all emptied of thei r inhabitants after they were burnt. One wonders whether working as land managers for a colon o f great authority in the region kept 11 Tjawzilu el maa taht rajliih : Literally, it means, you run water under his/her feet. An expression said about someone who is fooled without noticing an ything for his or her naivety and unsophistication. 12 Les Arabs, a generalized naming of Algerians despite their ethnic dif ferences. Arabic speaking or Berber Algerians were all included under the same derogatory classification. Differentiating between Arab and Berber ethnically, the later was classified Kabyle. The term Musulmans was also used to include Arab and Berber, but in a more positive manner. We notice that the term Algerians was not used in distinguishing Algerians from Europeans; it was was Muslims vs. Europeans that was used to make the differentiation. Thus, the concept of Muslims was used as a national/geographic al category while in fact it was a religious affiliation.
212 suspicion while in reality they were secre tly involved in thawra. People also remember how mujahidin avoided skirmishes with the army on the route of Dashra Takdempt thereby safeguarding medication, clothes, and other goods smuggled to Mizrana Mountain. A B Figure 7 2 Informants remember the Photos courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010. Many residents of Dellys believed that the colon Geony Bruelle of Takdempt village worked with thawra. When mujahidin targeted the as repeatedly noted by many Yet, to rn some of his haystacks 13 (Figure 7 2 A) was an illumination rich with an impressive oral history of colons during the war. He remembered stories told by his father and older brothers, specifically, about the first time Bruelle started, like other Algerians, contributing money to thawra ; narrating a significant event, he said, 13 According to oral history, hey burning became an interesting phenomenon in wartime. Many colons are remembered to use the tactic of putting fire in haystacks on their land and say that mujahidin d id it so the government would not suspect them of collaboration. Yet, there might be other reasons such as claiming governmental insurance or monetary compensation.
213 Bruelle got some meat and asked my father to prepare a [Algerian] couscous dish for him. That night some mujahidin were in our house. Therefore, th ey told my father to ask Bruelle to pay his membership [to thawra]. My father refused, so they put a letter [addressed to Bruelle] with the food and sent it with him. When Bruelle got the letter, he was told to, specifically, give the money to his gerent D mujahidin never targeted him (INT. 66). For Ali, Bruelle was helping mujahidin not out of fear but out of necessity. Bruelle was an important authority in government and was able to involve the army to safeguard his goods; yet, h e preferred to deal with mujahidin on his own terms. He left a memory of a peaceful colon who cared about the community he knew for a long time. Ali respected should not know t is important here is that such acts left not a clichd memory of a colon, one of racism and subjugation but rather one of remembring a gentle farmer with his workers despite his rich s land (Figure 7 2 B) Just before leaving for France, in the midst of war, he sold his i ndependent Algeria. Not only were colons involved with the revolution, but also did professionals such as pharmacist s and doctors too the struggle, the French authorities decided to put an embargo on ant ibiotics, ether, alcohol, [and] anti tetanus vaccine. The Algerian who wished to obtain any of these medications was required to give the pharmacist detailed information as to his identity a local European pharmacist, of Italian origin, was not like other pharmacists who refused to sell medicine. Despite his inherited prestigious position in Dellys, many Dellysians
214 remember ed edicine to the injured. He concealed his acts of mercy; yet, through a secured collaboration betwee n him and his Algerian workers the flow of medicine to injured mujahidin was to help them fight the colonial armies. The use of trusted pharmacies to get medical supplies might have been a very dangerous and risky behavior for both Dellysians and Pied Noirs. After independence, Zamout remained for years in Algeria and did not beli eve the retaliatory propaganda on pieds noirs. The hidden support to the people that Zamout offered is acknowledged Dr. Hadida, on s also remembered as mujahidin doctor. There was a pact between Dr. Hadida and the mujahidin to treat them as many Delly sians recount M. Belhaoua recalled one of such events, They [mujahidin] got down from Beni Sliyam [mountain Dashra, Easten [civilian volunteers] went and got him [Dr. Hadida] from Dellys [town] (INT. 11). M. Belha oua emphasized that no one force him to treat the injured revolutionaries, explaining, They were civilians who went to get him. They took him to the place. [The routine was that], he treated the mu jahidin, operated on them, and gave them medicine. When they [French authorities] found out about him, he Dr. Hadida was another courageous man who, despite extreme army security, practiced what he was trained to do best, save l ives. Such honorable work may be seen as disloyalty to the empire, and yet there were people like Dr. Hadida who were guided by their conscience to help a human in need in spite of the political polarization.
215 The Grima were a well to do European couple wh o settled in Dellys. They lived in the town among Dellysians. They also owned land between Baghlia and Wlad Khdash to the south of Delly s town. Still, what the couple was mostly remembered for wa for mujahidin insid e their 1959:157 158). More than any other colon who collaborated with mujah idin, the Grima participated from the beginning of the revolution. Their fought, side by side, with other ei r legacy in Dellysian memory wa s alive for their position against colonialism and colonial governments. As a European family ( of Greek or Maltese origin), their acquired French citizenship in Algeria did not induce them into having a co lonialist mentality and in depriving Algerians of their rights of being equal citizens. Thus, when the time of resistance materialized, they were among the first to assist the thawra, as M. Belhaoua recalled in the following narrative, jahidin, and each morning, prepared two shopping bags, big ones, about mesura (more than ten kilos each), to be sent [to mujahidin] with groceries; all kinds: meat, fish, everything. This was going on for a long time, until 1959. Their peers [colons] smell ed trouble [got suspicious]. Grima were from the same colon social milieu; they walked, played, drank and did everything with them. When he mujahidin and asked them to burn a stable he owned in Wadubey (farming plains southeast Dellys town); that was part of a big farm. [Mujahidin] burned the stable not one or two haystacks, but, maybe five or seven Grima! They burned his (INT. 11).
216 I found that old and young Dellysians knew the Grima family and each had a story to tell about them. After the natural death of Mr.Grima, his wife remained in Algeria until she too passed away a few years ago. Everyone I talked to in town knew her as Mme Grima, who converted to Islam and was buried in the Muslim cemetery. S he left h er home in town to the family who took care of her until her last breath. It was still called daar Grima, with a shop by the house. Today, some people call them daar Grima, not knowing that their last name is different. When I visited the area, I was surprised to find the house no different from other nice Casbah homes. It had a water well in the courtyard with living sp ace surrounding it. Upstairs are bedrooms. A lemon tree, a jasmine plant, and many flowerpots gave the Dellysian style of a riad. I was surprised that the home was not on the side of the French quarters but rather within the Algerian Upper Casbah, facing s idi Abdelrahman, one of the oldest little mosques named after a zaoua sheikh of the region. Since the Grima remained in Algeria as Algerians, they remained the so l e owners of their vast land; they sold most of it. Today, despite being owned by others, the they chose to settle in, respected its peoples, and found comfort in helping others. They gained the honor of Dellys ancestors and true warriors. Not only were European colons and function aries remembered, bu t also were some colonial soldiers remembered as sympathizers of the thawra too The soldier barracks of Takdempt village were one such site where Algerians witnessed the juxtaposition of colonialist soldiers who rigidly implemented rul es of war with those who found a way to express sympathy to a wounded population. Like other young native teenagers, roaming around colonia l soldiers, Boualem Nesnass, raised in Takdempt, re
217 ce) with other village kids to watch television. Specifica lly remembered was a Martiniquan soldier who attracted Algerian teens. Boualem remembered a book about Joan of Arc that the officer gave him, mesmerized by the hand designed pictures of the book. Hi s narrative helped me imagine five boys and two girls standing around the officer while he told them the story. After reading the book to the village kids, the Martinic an soldier gave the book to Boualem an act that he cherished. He also used to teach the m French history. What Boualem remembered the most was that the Martinique officer glorified the atants re sist For Boualem, the Martinic an officer wa s telling them the stories to transmit to ns nous some des laches! Vous ; Martinic an s we are cowards, you [Algerians] you are earned the said Boualem. Despite being in charge of controlling the boundaries of the resettlement camps for Algerians in Takdempt, such officers developed a relationship with the youth. The Martinic an officer is remembered for his frien dly demeanor and his admiration of Algerians who were fighting for their freedom Despite being part of the colonial army, a simple Martinic an officer showed his support for a population that courageous ly stood against coloniali s m Algeria like his own cou ntry Martinique became a department part of the metropole In reality, the colonies were transformed to compartments not equal in rights thus pushing the populations to revolt not only for equal rights but also for decolonization (Fanon 196 3; ).
218 While specific European residents and soldiers in Dellys town sympathized with the Algerian revolution, many Algerian people in Dellys town and its villages gave their time, wealth, and life for the success of their combatants. In this sect ion, testimonies of several Dellysians take us back to the time of the war to walk among courageous men and women collecting and storing provisions and medications for the mujahidin to use. With great compassion and care, women fed the hungry fighters, was hed their stained clothes from blood and mud, and tricked away those who wanted to harm the young mujahid. Within their homes, they built shelters prepared for the dangerous tasks of saving mujahidin from a next ambush. They morally and materially sustaine d their brethren and turned their words into songs wishing to be together one more time under the freedom of their cherished land. Revitaillement/Distribution Those who gave their lives to support mujahidin were in charge of various tasks. till have, testifies (Appendix H ). Like many other locals, A. Chabani had various responsibilities. He was collecteur, ravitailleur, and agent de liaison collector, providing dail y necessities, and acting as liaison agent between Wilaya 3 and 4 (Kabyila and Algiers). One of his memorable challenging responsibilities was to accept a truckload of shoes that needed to be moved from home to home and be stocked in specific shelters unti l the right time came to move it to mujah idin. His collaborator, Saleh, recalled vividly the event how they nearly failed to complete it especially his fear of being caught or endangering families in th eir neighborhood. The youth moved boxes filled with a rmy boots and topped with tomatoes. He recalled the event with great emotions,
219 When soldiers arrived, we were in the middle [of moving boxes]. [those who moved the boxes] threw what they had in hand into the river and hid. I remember they ran to the shore Soldiers came down there. God blinded them. They did not search. They passed by the area but we already hid some boots in the haystack I remember saw us. Poor man, he almost died of fear. His sons helped us hide 200 pairs of boots It was boxes and boxes. Allah protected us (INT. 3). Haystacks became hiding places for materials waiting to be delivered to mujahidin. It wa s astonishing how the most obvious markers in farming land became the best hiding places and how soldiers never suspected them. When narrating, those wh o remembered were overwhelmed by their challenging experiences to express that the grace of God was watching over them. The Challenge of Hiding Medical Supplies We saw earlier how European pharmacists and their emplo yees helped provide urgently medical supplies. That was only the first step. The next was to store them for later collection and then transport them to jebel for use. Certain medical materials were hard to store and the drama of being caught created stress ful moments, as Saleh recalled One day, I got very scared. That [moving medical supplies] was very dangerous. If they had caught us that day, it was the time of De Gaulle, sans piti [punished with no mercy]. They would have found [in my possession] [ethy l] alcohol [used as an anesthetic] and other surgical materials. Where do you think I put them? Since [ethyl] alcohol has a strong smell, I thought it would be safe in the stables, it would be mixed R ecollecting such emotional moments took back their narrators to those times of selflessness and commitment in service to the thawra. Despite the danger of their actions under very harsh conditions, they turned to be the most creative in finding solutions a nd finish ing the task safely prepared for the next mission.
220 Collecting money for the cause was a necessity. This activity was based on trust a long process that required several skills. The most usual way of finding money for the cause was to get it from relatives and friends in neighborhoods. Yet, the most challenging task was how to move the money without being caught at checkpoints. Behja Toudji Khider and her father in law were part of such memorable maneuvers Re imagining the event and drawing for the listener a dramatic picture that is hard to forget Behja said, My father in law used to collect money from my father, uncle, and cousin sear ched my father in law in Qaluta [at a checkpoint near the army center]. He was lucky. Soldiers did not notice the package on him. That day he came home almost dying [of fear]. He still had the letter from mujahidin to gather the money resting in his pocket He went to bed and was sick for few days (INT. 42). Under such perilous conditions, roles were altered for insuring the flow of financial support to cont inue. Thus, Behja, the daughter in law, took over the hard task and became a money collector, because as a woman she attracted less suspicion when to live in Marsa (port neighborhood) northeast side of town. The trick was how to move money from there to her home in Laje nna, n orthwest of town. Through her emotional narrative, we imagine her riding the bus back home, praying that she would not be money belt round my waist until mujahidin arr ived; then I gave it to them (INT. 42). She could not forget her fear of making mistakes. She tied the package around her waist not knowing its amount until conveying it to the next agent in the safety of her home.
221 Women Feeding Mujahidin and Washing their Clothes Many volunteers in Dellys communities and its surrounding villages were prepared to host mujahidin, feeding them and washing their clothes. Women managed such tasks and were active regardless of a male next of kin presence. Mujahidin sometimes wou ld just appear at the door of designated families expecting to be fed. They shared any food their hosts presented. Mujahidin rapport with local people strengthened through sharing food, resting on their mats, and having strangers wash personal clothes. Thi s created bonds of reliance and appreciation. In the privacy of homes, during the absence of the man of the house, this was a test for the young mujahid never to break the trust that was woven between them and those women whose compassionate hearts made hunger and exhaustion vanish, without allowing wickedness to overpower them. Daoua Baziz Kerbouche was one of these women. She described herself as being all eyes and ears in protecting mujahidin at her isolated property. She recalled how, when the helicop hanging to dry. Other times she was forced to bury soiled clothes to eliminate army a ssisting mujahidin; he says She [woman] used to do it happily as if she washed her father, brother or goumia (INT. 3). Such women were innovative in creating novel ways of drying method such as using the inner bra nches of a large fig tree or putting the cleaned clothes close to the fire pit within their homes. With open hearts, sympathizers turned their hom es into safe haven to mujahidin; as Daoua reminisced,
222 I cooked and spread beddings [for mujahidin]. Fifteen d ays, tamni billah (by God, believe me) in that room, you could not see the floor (the room was so full). Their [mujahidin] clothes were wet. I gave them coffee btalwat ha (quickly prepared with grains still in it)... kbadi wladi nearby, and we were afraid that French soldiers came. I, quickly, gave them [mujahidin] maHkuka (prepared traditional sweet from semolina an d of Salam and safety be upon them) (INT. 43). The responsibilities of women were enormous, and one cannot separate material from emotional engagements. In various villages, mujahidin had sympathizers. W. Cheikh remembered how in their village women used to get up at night to grind sacks of wheat. Early in the morning, they made it into bread and then stored it in sacks. As W. Cheikh illustrated with vivid details, Several women loaded the sacks of bread on donkeys to take to a precise place for mujahidin to pick up. The donkeys were in front of us loaded with big aluminum jugs conveying the impression that we were on our route to fetch water. When we got to the fountain, we left the sa cks of bread for mujahidin and returned home with our fetched water (INT. 53). Despite the dangerous industry, the village women were available for helping mujahidin As W. Cheikh jokingly reminisced, Mujahidin were meticulous with food. They asked women t o bake bread for them instead of prepar ing couscous, because when they eat couscous they would get hungry sooner (INT. 53). army. To survive in such harsh environments, kind and caring souls sustained the struggle for freedom. Feeding mujahidin was a well organized undertaking, yet on many occasions it became a task that caused trouble to volunteering families. Y. Badache was a young
223 woman and divorcee, living with her p arents in Dashra Takdempt. She remembered the dilemma of preparing food for mujahidin and fearing soldiers who kept visiting them because of their home's proximity to Mizrana Mountain. She remembered the day she prepared about 30 loaves of bread for mujahi din. When French soldiers came, she had to hide them ; she explained with great emotions, We were very frightened. We were lucky that my father provided them [soldiers] with a piece of paper with the names of our family members. So, they did not get insid e the house (INT. 68). At other times, mujahidin asked her father to buy them fuel and asked her elderly mother to make bread. Eventually, they had to stop when her father complained to the Mudjahidin leader in Beni Thour because the old couple could not h elp anymore. Thus, not all homes kept providing food, shelter, and other services. They changed depending Similarly in Lajenna, homes adjacent to the army compounds sent hungry mujahidin to other places. The popu lation and mujahidin interaction remained brotherly, yet challenging. constitute another deep subaltern history, surface d to provide testimonies of intimate connections with t he daily struggles of the thawra, and voicing of histories that will influence how the war of liberation is now historicized People had great impact on mujahidin ability to move from place to place without being caught by soldiers. With great skills, men and women created situations Tahtali Souag is one of these great women whose courage saved the lives of many mujahidin, including her own brother. She told the story, narra ting expressively the dramatic event,
224 Soldiers came and surrounded mujahidin with planes. They killed two mujahidin. The plane kept flying over and then targeted me. I took off my scarf and showed myself to them so they knew I was a woman. The other two m ujahidin entered a hole that I covered with bamboo and cactus leaves. The plane moved on and I rushed to uncover the hole. The mujahidin were very thankful, and kept hugging me. They promised that if they lived, they would reward me. This event marked me. I always remember it (INT. 1). The Algerian woman was extremely helpful to mujahidin. She played the role of a skilled to find safe paths for mujahidin without confrontatio n with soldiers. Other than feeding mujahidin and washing their clothes, people built shelters for orchards, and even in mountains. Z. Khetib homes. In the mountains, they were built underground with an opening for air circulation In homes, they were underneath the floor (with an opening), concealed as a si in shelter in their home in a tazeqat (large common room). She remembered when her brother in law built it with stones and cement covering it to look like a sitting area in the room; she recounted because it was built with stones, for a month no one from the outside knew that her brother in law was building the shelter that was then used to store papers, shoes, clothes, a nd other goods for mujahidin. During the revolution, moral support was expressed in various ways. Impressively, women were very creative in forming rhyming lines to sing during
225 celebrations (e.g., weddings, circumcisions, and births) or while doing their household duties (e.g., milling, buttermilk making, or gardening). Mujahidin were always included in songs, providing a connection with those who were away from family celebrations and daily activities aroun d the house. Through rhythmic words, women eased their hard conditions, finding hopes and dreams to express in songs. The songs became part of still remember them. Among the women in Dellys, memories are dive rse, ranging from those who do not sing these songs to those who still remember many lines. I shared my childhood memories, telling my interviewees of the lines I heard and learned from elders. They reminisced about the times during colonialism when girls tapped on the darbuka and sang. Z. Saber Khetib and F. Z. Souag Benkanoun agree that singing the mujahid songs became popular during the war and persisted after independence. Together, the women reminded each other of a few verses and sang t hem in a warm m elody (Appendix I ). One wonders how the population in villages was able to commit to the mujahidin. Listening to the stories about various situations and events, one concludes that there was always a connection and close relationship between civilians and mujahidin. They were relatives or from the same areas, which explains a willingness in helping sons, cousins, brothers, and neighbors. They handed their help to trustworthy young men from various villages and town neighborhoods. Such connections set up a kinship network that was unparalleled. Mujahidin and sympathizers united and with limited means were able to face an army that was well prepared and a political system that had a clear agenda using various means and technics to eliminate the rising trouble s in the empire. Despite the continuous humiliations and tortures, the population was
226 psychologically prepared for the worse and found ways to avoid danger and yet suffered tremendously. The oral history of the thawra brings to life stories of courage, com passion, and generosity, accounts of those members of the society who dedicated their time, wealth and dignity to the service of those who sacrificed their lives to fighting the occupier
227 CHAPTER 8 CAN THEY FORGET ? MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD TRAUMA AND VIOLENCE During his first visit to Algeria on December 19 2012, French president Franois in the relations between France and Algeria. He was the first French president was to acknowledge, (the guardian, 12/20/ 2012). Such an admission departure from Hollande's predecessors, who, if not defending France's tormented pa st political parties demanded that France recognize, apologize for, and compensate for its crimes. Yet, much like his predecessor Sarkozy Hollande refused to express regret for a truth to be spoken about the past and there is also a willingness to face the future. (HurriyetDailyNewS, 20/20/012). Despite the positive effect that such political visit leaves on both nations, the crimes and cultural abuses that occurr ed during the 132 years of French occupation of Algeria remain unaddressed. Thus, an ethical approach to memory (un devoir de memoirs) is necessary and in postcolonial times, as Murray Until today, to many Algerians, independent Algeria represents a place that is precious, if intertwined with violence and trauma. Moreover, it society is still traumatized and has yet to reconcile itself with its past.
228 Historicizing the memory of colonial violence and trauma relies heavily on the point of view of the victims, those who are voiceless in the media and organized official national meetings. I argue that the memory of trauma plays a central role in reconstructing such painful events and will crucially help in writing an Algerian colonial history from the point of view of the victims. During memory work, the voice s of the child and the young adult surface to depict a narrative of colonial violence. More importantly, the wounded are not isolated as individual casualties. They are members of communities, witnesses, and narrators of atrocities that they cannot forget. They belong to villages and towns and to a society that shared, and is still feeling, the pains of t he wounds that accumulated in long lasting suppression s Drawing upon this perspective, this research aims at including and highlighting such painful times in Algerian history by emphasizing the words of those who endured violent events and are still haunted by their ima ges, sounds, and lost souls. This research refuses to deny or suppress these voices in moving on to build a better future ; rather, this research include s these voices while contextualizing them in their life story/history. According to Antze and Lambek (19 96), Memories (good or bad) can be re conceptualized as a practice, an act of gazing. They are produced out of experience and, in turn help to reshape it. Hence, memory worth talking about and worth remembering is memory of trauma focusing on how the tra uma happened and what we make of it. As a result, narra tives of trauma and historical memory" (Kirmay er 1996: 175). In the remainder of this chapter, I present a number of narratives of Algerians recounting their suffering and trauma caused by the
229 violence of colonial times with a foc us on the period between the end of WWII and independence. Tormented Best Years of Childhood I met Zoubida Rouibeh (Figure 8 2. A) She was an exceptional woman ; expressing the amount of hardship she e ndured in her early teens, she said Zoubida was born in 1945. When the war started in 1954, she was about 9 years old growi ng up in the hottest point of the war in the valley of Djebel Boubareg where fighting between mujahidin and the colonial army tremendously a ffected the inhabitants of the area. Because of traumatic events, at eleven or twelve years old, Zoubida was hospi talized for almost two year s During the interview, narratives of trauma and violence of the war of independence unfold ed anchored in events that we re Zoubida, getting into the telling of a tr agic story of a little girl in the middle of a war zone when taking care of her goats along with her friend and at me, [I tell you] I was a shepherd [taking ca said Zoubida bringing humor in the midst of a tragic story. At that moment, she re imagined the scene saying, I was waiting for my brother who was coming from school in Sidi Daoud. There were skermishes between mujahidin and soldiers and bullets were flying over my head and my friend F.S. (INT. 41). One can only imagine the fright of the little girls in such a dangerous sit uation. Yet, as Zoubida recalled each had a different reaction. Her friend quickly fled the scene but o see a mujahid was always happy to chat with them, but to her disappointment they were colonial
230 soldiers looking for mujahidin. Recounting her realizat ion of the dan ger, she noted that alaming situation to the skies where airplanes were dropping bombs on the area of the mujahidin. While listening to the narrative with great emotions, I imagined an injured and devastated little girl running in the middle of the woods for a long time without her goats to arrive home with a bleeding and swollen face injured by a cluster from the dropping bomb s T he exteme shelling prevented her worried mother from going out to look for her The scene of getting to safety and being in th e arms of her dear mother brought back other cherished memories of that d ramatic event. Zoubida expressed with great emotions, When I arrived [home], I was screaming and jumping up and down [from pain and trauma]. They covered me with a blanket and I was very scared. I remember my mother gave me bread and buttermilk but I could not [eat]. I was shivering all the time and my mother was hugging me to stop my shivering (INT. 41). Psychologically, many children are most resilient and are able to come out of a trauma successfully. However, when such children are within the battlefield, their spirited selves are shattered with continuou s tragedies as demonstrated by Zoubida con tinued recounting of her childhood traumas. ing and feeding the mujahidin. As the inhabitants often expected in the aftermath of a fighting the army invaded the village the next day that gathers all inhabitants out side the ir homes in an ac t of revenge. Zoubida recollected the even t moment by moment without missing fac es, time and place; she narrated
231 Every bush was covering a soldier [the area was filled with soldiers]. I remember they came at four in the morning. My brother already left to work in Sidi Daoud and was not aware of the presence of the soldiers. The bombing and fighting was going on from four til ten in the morning, as if you were looking at it. Every family remained in the home covering their kids as much as they could (INT. 41). Zoubida described her dashra being in the middle of the fighting, yet, by the end of the fight ing the soldiers turned on the population dragging them out of their homes to a Without hidin g her emotions, Zoubida ex plained that every person was dragged out of their homes even women who just gave birth, a new bride who should not be out, and the most fragile of the young and old members of the village. She re i magined the scene feeling one more time the stress of not knowing wha t will happen to the whole dash ra at the hand s of the soldiers. She remembered the elderly by names especially sidi Hmida who could not walk and the soldier who went toward him and kicked the son with his weapon ordering him to leave his fathe r behind and move. Lik e reading a story, Zoubida moved from a scene to the next until she got to the gathering place, saying When we arrived to the place, I remember, they [soldiers] started shooting [live bullets] between our legs and shouting at us to stand and sit, maybe to scare and confuse us (INT. 41). Soldiers schemes of alarming the captives remain ed The long hours of terroriz ing a population which is recounted in a detai led narrative allows listeners to imagine th e agony that evey member of the com munity was feeling ; she continued Soldiers started talking in French and my brother translating [to Arabic]. [Traumatized], I remember I covered my face in fear of a bomb striking me [as it did before]. I remember, and believe me; I was urinating on myself and did not feel it. It was the first day of Ramadan. Before Ramadan, it was the fighting between the mujahidin and the soldiers and on the day of
232 Ramadan, they were going to burn us alive. The people were so thirsty women lost their children in the prairie and were not aware of it. They were so scared they did not know what to d o. The soldiers kept terrorizing us for hours (INT. 41). Although traumatized, Zoubida was well aware of her surrounding. When recounting, every face came back to her reminding her of the agony they faced on that piece of land. The trauma did not howeve r prevent her from recognizing the courage of many members of the community and the word of truth that with it they dared to face the enemy. Zoubida remember ed a woman of th e community and vividly recounted her cour age facing the tormentors; she said She house. If you find one kilo of wheat come back here and burn my kids and me. How can I feed the fellagas if I do not even have what to feed my children with of and kicked her on the head cursing at her (INT. 41). The lan dscape around Zoubida represented a chain of calamities that kept u nfolding one after the other and befalling on a frightened population under the grip of a revengeful army. At this stage Zoub ve enticed the listeners to never forget the last day she spent in her village she dearly loved and among her peop le she cared about; she explained six in the eveni ng, if we find one of your birds in the air we will burn it. You them but us [father in prison and son trapped in Sidi Daoud not knowing if alive or dead]. My mother, little brother an d I were the only ones in the dashra crying (INT. 41). We imagine a village in a state of chaos, all running before the deadline to leave the village to a safe place taking what they could with them. We are left with Zoubida, her mother and little broth er none of who m could move before the arrival of the older
233 brother. We live for moments with the heart of a mother whose love for all her kids could not decide what to do. She knew that the Y et the reality of leaving her h ome while not knowing where to go and without her other son disable d her and made her incapapable of moving or act ing As Zoubida recounted they remained there until her brother arrived and together they left their village faced with night falling and the soldiers anger ; she narrated When he [brother] arrived from Sidi Daoud, he took us to an area called Jalfan close to Sidi Daoud. To go to Dellys [town] it was late it already passed six [ beginning of curfew]. We remained in Jalfan that night with our 30 goats. We left everything in the house and fled just to save our heads. The next day, our relatives in Dellys sent us a truck and moved us to their home (INT. 41). We can imagine the frightened family finally regrouped and rushing out of the village befo re the er and their goats. W e can also imagine the dilemma of this traumatized family : they had no safe refuge ; the curfew was already in effect which meant that should they be caught they cou ld be killed for disobeying the order That night was a nightmare for them and their relatives in Dellys Casbah who rushed early in the morning to send a truck t o rescue them as Zoubida recalled That night nobody cooked dinner although they were fasting [ during Ramadan]. They were scared for us and saw that Sidi Daoud was burning. They thought we were all dead (INT. 41). We are left to imagine a town in extreme distress rushing to assist the less fortunage to share with them their homes. The Casbah and became a safe refuge for many other families fleeing burning villages. Y et, as noted by Zoubida the situation was far from stab ilizing for her family; she said
234 Since that day, my brother fled on his own to France and my father was still in prison. Therefore, we remained there, and then I got sick. [Under the shock,] I was vomiting blood, and had chest pain (INT. 41). Given the ent ire trauma that took place, it wa s not a surprise that a little girl would get sick In the case of Zoubida, she was repeate dly traumatized not being able to recover until she collapsed. time of fleeing the terror of the French ar my that uprooted them and burnt their homes. I was thus astonished when she expressed her appreciation of the mercy of some Nsara, discerning the good from the evil among the same group the French She evoked Dr. Bedon, one of the local doctors who sent her for treatment to Beni Messouss hospital in Algiers wherein she remained for almost two years until she completely healed While in the hospital, Zoubida, a courageous teenager remained engaged with other patients; she noted I remember I had no father, uncles or brothers who came to visit me. My mother reminded me not to say that my father was in prison because they will not give me medicine I stayed there exactly one year and seven months. On the day my father came to visit me, I could not believe it. The other [Algerian] patients could not believe it too because I have been telling them that my father was dead (INT. 41.). Trauma followed Z oubida through her best age, a time that should have been spent in day dreaming and growing while learning new skills. Yet, during the violence of colonialism and especially during the war of independence, Zoubida and many other young and old Algerians lea rned how to survive on a daily basis. As a community of faith, they believe d 1 Hope became their support. They 1 But lo! With hardship goeth ease. A verse of the Quran from Surat Al Inshirah (Surat 94 Ayah 5).
235 were resilient to live and reunite again. Her best gift was seeing her father coming through the door of the hosp ital as if she had seen an angel that took her under his wings and protecting her from harm In her old age, Zoubida kept reminisc ing about those times. She told me that she always hoped that one day she wou ld tell the world her traumas; she noted, oul d be talking the whole day and would not be able to opportunity to record her testimonies, l ike others, Zoubida historicized what has been kept in her chest for more than fift y years. Eager to Reveal Abuses of Colonialists Th ose who sacrificed their lives f o r the revolution suffered tremendously. Yet, whether being killed or traumatized for life, they have not been able to present their t estimonies. Such personalities are great ly revered by many war survivors who keep repeating their stories as a sign of love and respect for their great character so that younger generations would learn about their tremendous courage and endurance. In the fol lowing narrative, Baya Qab retold the story of Enna Zohra (Figure 8 2 B) She spoke for a woman who was abused in fr ont of her community. Baya felt responsible for retelling her story but also the story of her people. Both women were from the village of Sid A'mar Sharif from the mountain of Bo uberag, from dashra Sid Alhaaj Al Yassin called Ma'suum. At the beginning of the interview, despite pressin g her to tell me first who she was, Baya continued speak ing about the past. She explained that she was a little girl of seven years old in the late 1 940s after WWII. Baya had a tremendous understand ing of her village history and wa s able to relate names to events. I learn ed that Ma'suu m, the village where she grew up wa s named after the blessed mare of Haaj al Yassin, a scholar of Quran revered for b eing pious. She also knew that her
236 ancestor, Sid A'mar Sharif, came from Assaqia al Hamra in Mauritania. He settled in the valley of Mountain Boubareg and established a zaoua. After his death, the zaouia r generatio ns. Baya did not remember well her parents since they died when she was young. Her uncle raised her. According to her identification card, Baya was born in 1936. Baya was the youngest of four children. When I asked abo re member, excla ages but I remember t 23). As a young girl, Baya witnessed the story of defiance that was countered with extreme retaliation and collective violence and abuse. Showing great anguish all al ong the narrative, Baya said : village]. Eleven of them came up. They got the whole dashra. It is a big dashra. They put Enna Zohra, her father and mother naked in the middle. They got her naked and when she tried to cover herself, they beat her with an iron stick. They hit her and forced all others to watch. They told her beat her then they left ( I NT. 23). Listening to Baya, I was not prepared for such powerful and disturbing narration. Baya got right to what was on her mind without much prelude. I expressed my astonishement nguish and tr embl ing voice Baya went on narrating moving from the first traumatic scene of humiliating a young wife in front of her family and the whole dashra. After that, list e ners could easily visualize the image of the husband the mujahid, Mahfoud, who showed his rage as Baya repeated while sobbing and praying for the souls of the mujahidin; she said He heard of the news and came down... He got on a high rock called a 23).
237 I imagine d Mahfoud, a husband and a mujahid, mortified by his tarnished honor. He could not do more than stand and dare the torturers to face him instead of being cowered punishing the helpless population. At this point, I understood the v oice of the traumatized little girl Baya who wa s speaking on behalf of a young couple whose best years were spent in distress. Going between past and present, Baya expressed her admiration of Enna Zohra who wa s still alive and in good health. Yet, Baya jum ped back in to the darkness of the past to the tale of Enna zohra and Mahfoud the courageous couple, For fourteen years, Enna Zohra was in the mountain moving from house to house, sometimes in the mountain and other times in houses. Her husband had to take her with him. She had two children a boy and a girl... two girls and a boy. In reality, the boy did not stay with her. A fam ily in Dellys adopted him (INT. 23). At this point, I was listening to stories retold by Enna Zohra when she returned from the mo untain at the eve of independence. I learn ed how she worked as a house cleaner to remain safe away from any suspicions. She told them how she collected olives and wil d n uts to feed her little girls; h ow she kept a piece of bread, she begged for to divide i t later among them without leaving any of it for herself Baya cried for th e honorable aunt whose courage wa s so great. I learn ed that Enna Zohra remained among other mujahidin moving from place to place the who le period of the war. Baya moved from the tal e of Enna Zohra to tell me more about the courage of Mahfoud whose sacrifice started since 1945. He never gave up until the time of cease fire when the war ended on March 19, 1962. The Algerians were victorious when the two adversaries, the FLN and De Gaul le signed a peace treaty This wa s the last event which instead of leading at last to happy times turned out to be another tragedy ; the couple had been betrayed to
238 be caught by the French army and was humiliated from vi llage to village; Baya reminiced Th ey [army] tied him and his wife on the road of the souk/market that was crowded. They told everyone who was passing by to spit on Mahfoud. a man, and I already got Algeria. I lef t behind me those who are greater jail and put her in a cell. Him [Mahfoud], the poor, they took him from shotgu people. How do you ask me if I knew them? I was raised with them. I know they got Alge 23). In this concise but po ignant n arrative, Baya told the painful stories of her relatives who stood against colonialism since early times and h ow they paid a great price at the hands of the colonial army and th eir collaborators. The sadness o n the face of Baya was so painful to watch and her trembling voice puts the listen er in a great distress and empathy. Yet, Baya did not want to stop te lling the painful story ; nor did sh e want to forget. Instead, she wa s eager to sea rch for me, the researcher who wa s interested in writing about colonia lism and find me to tell me what she still remembered Despite her apparent pain, Bay a, a strong woman, expressed moments of hope and glimpses of happiness following tragic times and suffering. For her and many others, history should be written. Future gen erations should be proud of their ancestors who sacrificed all including their precious life and dignity for a liberated Algeria from the grip of colonialism. Through such moving narrative we le arn that trauma of violence did not affect one victim only ; ra ther, as Marie Anik Gagne (1998) puts it, dramatically, it
239 future generations" (Gagne in Danieli 1998:357). When narrating the atrocities of colonialism and the war for in dependence, Algerian survivors we re surrounded by peers and younger generations who, with eyes held open in disbelief, listen ed attentively to the stories. What Deformed my Father ? The following narrative presents another voice of a child who could not forget the tragic moments of the war of independence and the costs that the loved on es had to pay. Fatma Zohra Souag Benkanoun was only eight years old when the army imprisoned her father for months accusing him of supporti ng the revolution. She remem bered and narrated inca place at the house of Fatma Zohra with her sister Kheira. The discussion was about the hard time of the war of independence; how peoples became fearful of each other; and how the army used members of the population to gather information on those who were involved in the revolution Their father was confined, with no trial, for a someone told on him. The war h what marked the little girl the most was when her father came back home, she said with extreme emotions, picture does not get out of m y head (INT. 2 2 ). The little girl c ould not comprehend what had happen ed to her father. However, learning more about the s ituation, the two daughters helped me visualize the continous torture their father and many other Algerians endured in the ms ; as Kheira explained
240 The French army put the prisoners in wine cellars in [farms] in Sidi Daoud [ex abboville] and others were taken to 2 ). In their old age, the daughters tried to imagine and find words to express wh at deformed their father body Fatma Zohra visualizing the scene as she first glanced at her fathe r, and with great emotions, she said He could not walk straight when he got out of prison. I remember we were waiting for him. We learned that he was getting out of prison. Maybe I was eight years old. I remember, I was playing by the bamboo fence and I saw him coming walking bent over like this (she stands up and shows the position). On that day, I had s that? My father went as a normal man and he cam e back looking like that? (INT. 2 2 ). For the daughters and many others, remembering such emotional moments arouse in them a depiction of French colonialists as monste rs stepping on the population without feeling any pa in as Kheira (Figure 8 2 B) noted with agony or her [France], the ed the stories tol d by their uncle, who was also imprisoned ; h ow their torturers put the barrels in a tight space in which they were either stooping or s through i mprisonment in wine barrels rarely tell such horrible stories. When the traumatized men remember those hard moments, they a re tormented just by describing them, as we learn in the next two sections. Pardon me, They Defecated over our Heads Like other Dellysians a fter being caught and accused of helping the mujahidin Moh Seghir Toudji (Figure 8 2 C) was taken to the farm of t orture and, like many others, was put in a wine cellar; he stated
241 pardon me, they urinated and defecated on us from above through an emember that perio 51). The humiliation hurt the se survivors more than any bodily pain. During memory work, I observe d Moh Seghir an old man in his mid eight i es, covering his face with his hand not able to continue talking about the pain and humiliation he endured In his narrative, he described not only his agony but also that of a prison mate and friend. He specifically mentioned his friend Si Moh Si al Mahfoud, w ho passed away recently ; he said Si al Mahfoud, the poor m an, he got so much beating. They used to shackle us, so we walked like this [on one leg only] and they kept beating us with belts, other times slapping us and kicking us. We were in a big misery (INT. 51). There we re quite a few like these men; yet those w ho have the courage to testify to the shames of colonial wineries that were turned in to a fa rm of torture are heroes. They we s no longer contained wine during the war of of torture; as such they entered in the social memory of Dellysians forever. They could not forget ; they could only remember and historicize. The S equels of the Death Labyrinth When I met Boualem Sa ada (Figure 8 2 D) in the patio of his home, I saw a dignified old man. After telling me of his political involvement since the 1930s and his being jailed several times, I understood that there was also pain beneath the surface. At ninety four years old, incarceration, night in a room by myself. I swear, and
242 excuse my language, when I go to the bathroom, I cannot close the door. I leave it open. No one can put me now in a room and close the door. These are les sequelles [in French] (INT. 70). These are signs of trauma t hat have not been treated. Until he passed away in 2011, B. with the sequels of imprisonment and torture. a visualized going f waiting for your time to be killed, he used the metaphor of the sheep, who one by one we re being slaughtered, It is like having sheep of 3eid (Muslim holiday of sacrifice). Whe n you have three lambs, you start with the biggest, and the other are waiting. I see them everyday taking one of us to kill him and I was waiting for my turn (INT. 70). Torture wa s not always physical ; it also took the form of emotional pain and anxiety in waiting to be killed. In his rememberence, th of ; describing the farm that was converted in to a place of torture of Algerians, he said They took me from here [home in Dellys town] at midnight. They covered my eyes and took me in a 4/4 to the farm, in Sidi Daoud. It was a farm, but they had the army in it. It was a wine vault. He [torturer] opened it and thre w me inside (INT. 70). Since I had already heard of such an unimagi nable place, I kept asking peoples who experienced such agony described to me the pain and trauma the effects of which he still fe lt More importantly, he was able to walk me through various steps by giving me the information that, he thought, was needed to imagine the excess of atrocities perpetrated by the hands of the French army and their supporters the French settlers. The lat t er donated their own homes and farms to torture millions of Algeri ans whom they suspected of seeking to
243 dismantle the empire. The strategy was to punish them in such painful ways that they would regret their activism. During such emotional remembrance, no t only did ing to light the excesses of colonial power in dealing with the Algerian population but he also informed us on how although helpless the captives were courageous to speak truth to power while knowing very well the expected price o f retribution ; he reminisced le used to put the mind. He opened the door and I see a hole. Where do I go? They pushed me in by force ( INT. 70 ). reconstructing the trag ic event while not forgetting how he reminded his torturors of the tragic acts of German Nazis who cremated the Je ws in gas chambers. His narrativ e is a close description of the unspeakable acts French in Algeria used to punish the revolting population especially its youth. da continued in his lesson on His lesson was of a witness who experienced first hand such horrific situation s He continued describing them comparing two different cellars. On the one hand there were the common cellars that were used in the process of making and storing wine to make it tastier to its drinker. On the other hand, there were those concealed cellars converted to graves for torturing a human being with flesh and bones; he explained with emotions, When the cellar was used for making wine, they [wine makers] closed it very tight, no liquid came out. When the wine was ready for use, they released the door. [Similarly] I was breathing through the slight openings [of the cellar]. [I was there for] One month, I had incredible courage. Each [prisoner] in one [cellar]. There could not be two individuals inside. As long
244 as yo When a person is put inside the grave, a slight opening is left to breath. A month later, they got me out. I had tremendous courage. The French authorities were not able to make me talk. H owever, I became sensitive when any one touches me, I cry (INT. 70). his place of torture so vividly. At an old age, he told of the tragic event that happened in his early adult hood. With lucidity, he explained the plot to those who ca nnot imagin e such horrific acts of torture. Figure 8 1. Imagine French oak wine barrel turning into barrel of t orture http://www.europeanantiq ues.co.nz/catalogue/page/view/garden/french wine barrels /?p=1&pp=default Accessed on 1/23/2014 at 7: 30 p.m. We cannot totally imagine the place except by try ing to reconstruct it; and yet we will never be able to reconstruct the farm of torture. In the p resent Algerian landscape, there is no trace of such farms, as developers of the area did not see its importance to learn from the past. For many, the past should be forgotten and the people ought to build their future. However, with no commemoration of th e pains of many thousands of Algerians t from the past and sadly t he dark the past might repeat itself.
245 A B C D Figure 8 2. Dellysians who lived and recounted colonial violence: A) Z oubid a Rou i beh Baziz; B) Kheira Souag Ammi (left) and Baya Qab; C) Moh Seghir Touji ; and D) Boualem Sa ada Photos courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010 The pictures in Figure 8 3 below represent a turning point at the end of a very emotional interview with Ahmed Briki. In the presence of two of his children, A. Briki from the commune of al Azib lived during colonialism He remembered suffering from violence and witnessing violence done to his loved ones. In his old age, with the help of his children, he audiota ped his autobiography. He used to listen to it often but was usually sad when he did so. His children decided to hide the tape, the source of his sadness. To my surprise, at the end of an emotional interview, the youngest son brought out the tape and prese nted it to his father with a smile and tears in his eyes
246 relieved that his father was changed by the testimony he had related to me from his heart. I saw him as a transformed man who deserves to be recognized in history, one of millions of Algerians who s uffered tremendously during colonial violence. At this point, the two generations supported each other and prom ise to never forget the past, to keep the pain in its place, to become part of the Algerian story and a testimonial lesson for the world. Among h is loved ones, A. Briki remains a symbol of courage, determination, and love to younger generations. Personalities such as A. Briki represent an inspiration to many Algerians, particularly the younger generation s whose minds have been affected by tainted images of their land and people based on colonial writings, which focused on the negativities that inflamed ethnic divisions and hatred among people. A B Figure 8 3 Ahmed Briki during interview: A) Signing papers at the end of Interview; B) Son handing father, A. Briki an audiotape that used to bring sadness. Photos courtesy of author, fieldwork 2010. In conclusion, by narr ating atrocities of colonialism Algerian survivors address peers and younger generations who, with eyes held open in disbelief, list en attentively to the stories. Similar to Holocaust narratives, Algerian survivors of colonial trauma talk about their experiences openly and "share tacit acknowledgment of its horrors" (Kirmayer 1996: 189). They recount their stories in their homes and to their loved ones
247 to remember their struggles in colonial times that ended with the painful war of independence. They want others to understand their past, but more than that, they encourage them to learn from its good and bad times and use lessons learnt from the past to transform their present toward a better future. Narratives that retell trauma of colonialism represent the untold stories and the unturned rocks that reveal not only time and space in their grief and healing. More importantly, they expose a traumatized past for the sake of a better future. For generations, Algerians young, old, male, and female were violated and witnessed violence done to others. Despite surviving, they were traumatized so deeply as to suggest that survival was as traumatic as suffering brutality oneself. The process of remembering, retelling, and recording becomes the catalyst to historicize the traumatic events and with that honor the dead and res tore goodness in humanity. However, such instruction to those rebuilding traumatized lives does not consider the following questions: Do such individuals really forget what happ ened to them? What needs to be done to help the wounded heal and turn into productive members of society who will contribute in building a strong and better future? Scholars agree that memory conceived as truth telling is over estimated ; they also agree th at memory co nceived as narration is crucial (Leys 1996:130 131). Not an easy task, though. S peaking from a postcolonial point of view narrators are in a position of power with no fear of the perpetrator. As shown above, those who were traumatized by colon ial violence, freely choose words and discourses when describing in detail the events and those who
248 traumatized them. According to van der Kolk and like minded scholars, in using this method ence [and victims] are able to soften the intrusive power of the original, unmitigated horror" ( van der Hart and van der Kolk 1991: 450 in Leys 1996: 139 note 34). Theretofore it is no longer a matter of remembering but rather a duty of rewrit ing histor y. Memory plays a crucial role in challenging and correcting official history of the colonial era, especially the war years for which it is the most effective and faithful form of memory. Those who remember point to a wide range of exploitation of boys, g irls, men and women, cutting across different walks of life and generations. They witnessed violence during their colonized life span, which keep s reminding them of their subjugation and of the power and tyranny of colonialists. Those who were traumatized i n childhood do not forget that period in their old age. Yet, during their constructed narratives, they only focus on a specific trauma and repressed other types. Through various narratives (from the same narrator and /or from other s ), the listener can gathe r how other events connect to the same trauma despite the range of violence endured. We follow narrators as they describe, visualize, and remember scenes and events unfolding within the contexts where the violence and trauma occurred. Like Holocaust surviv ors, colonialism survivors feel compelled to tell their stories. Algerians became makes it more possible for individuals to recollect and tell their personal stories" (Kirmay er 1996: 189 90). What is prevalent is that like in the case of Holocaust
249 which needs to be commemo rate d and collectively historicize.
250 CHAPTER 9 CONCLUSION Writing about colonialism occurs in different forms and uses a variety of approaches attesting to specific ideas and agendas. French colonial writings about the colonies depended on army officials an d bureaucrats. In such studies, indigenous voices were insignificant, specifically those without colonial allegiance or political authority, which means the maj ority of people. In response to such studies, others wrote representations of those without priv ilege, yet fell into a similar trap of silencing their voices by ignoring their testimonies. As an anthropologist, I focus on the narratives of those who lived during colonial times and have firsthand experience with colonial practices. As a method of inqu iry, oral history and oral tradition research is significant in the study of colonial times because it privileges indigenous views. Its authority arises both from its power to coexist with written forms and its capacity to challenge rival texts. In this re spect, historicizing Algerian colonialism required a re reading of colonial estimonies and discourses. This enables us to re imagine a more vital relationship w ith the spoken word and bring local perspectives to the forefront of academia, especially anthropology. eagerness to historicize their past through their remembered experiences. The success of fieldwork for both researcher and informant s rested on an open attitude and a reliance on each other in constructing a story of colonialism, a narrative that came out of experiences imbued with feelings, emotions, and reflections during post colonial times. The residents of the town of Dellys in Al geria led me into the most intimate moments of their lives, trusting me with precious information. Their rich narratives and knowledge of
251 events, sites, and landscape helped me imagine the colonial situation and reflect on its complexities. This research w as a result of an intimate cooperation, and I hope my role as the informed messenger and writer are well shown in the messages that I have tried to convey in my writing various li fe stages, using biographies that are contextualized within the time and space that they lived in Each narrative was unique yet agreed with many others when recounting various abilities, resiliencies, and challenges within the colonial culture. Their reme mbrance of events, people, and dates facilitated the reconstruction of their past; they became an exemplary community for writing Algerian history. Together, the life stories of Dellysians led to the construction of a story about colonial times, enriching anthropology and more generally social science disciplines in the study of social memory and colonialism in particular. It also aided in perceiving moments of remembrance, memory work and mnemonics. Using oral history and oral tradition approaches facilita ted the understanding of the intricacies of the remembrance of colonial times show ing why Algerians need to historicize their past. T hree important findings deserve to be highlight ed at this point : 1) Contrary to the metanarrative of French conquerors, th e subaltern Algerian testimonies which emerged in this study do affirm that Algerians continuously resisted colonial rule. 2) The hypocritical civilizing mission enacted in statements and actions ultimately collapsed and failed when Algerians consciously decided which and when knowledge and when it was truly emancipating.
252 3) The evolving subaltern testimonies in their heterogeneity go beyond the colonial and national discourses about the revolution ary moment in history ; they effectively turned the revol ution moment into a moment of emancipati on for the mind s of the people before freeing the land. Social Memory When constructing the story of daily life under colonialism, focusing on social memory of the people was an intrinsic feature of the whole en treprise Social memory was not a simple concept that told me about collective remembrance. The collective depended on individuals whose experiences and interactions became part of the whole. As shown throughout the chapters of this dissertation, the const ructed narratives of individuals and groups conveyed the social memory of various times and events going as far back as the first moments of French invasion of Dellys and beyond. Hardships of colonialism, shortages and sharing of daily substance, and racia l prejudice mixed with kindness all remained alive in the social memory of Dellysians. More importantly, inquiring about social memory of colonialism, I realized that people acquired survival strategies and skills embodied in their daily life and social s tructures, e.g., marriage alliances that allowed Dellysians to practice and transmit their local culture and collectively continue to oppose a conqueror who was overpowering their lives and livelihoods. When inquiring about the social memory of a people, what appeared to be taking on meaning for an outsider was a dialogue that required later reflections and examination. For example, the refusal to send children to the French school occurred in many Dellysian families. Yet, I learned upon further investigat ion that for each occurrence there was a specific reasoning and story to be told thereby revealing the
253 ambiguities of life under colonialism. The powerful memory of never attending French son to French school and thereby shed s light on the Algerian identity in crisis during WWII. Moreover, it was also a celebration of an awakening, a rejecting of a passive lifestyle. The child enrolled instead in the local Quranic/Arabic school and acquired ancestral language and values. A simple telling of a social memory often provided an entry into deep and enlightening discussions with those who understand its connotations. Through long discussions and by connecting various events, an analysis of one occ urrence was linked to another, thus grasping the complexities of social memory. I learned from Dellysians that the reformist movement was more than a religious association that regenerated Arabic and Quran schools. In the memory of Dellysians, the A.U.M.A (association of Algerian Muslim ulama) was essential in reversing the attitude of a subjugated society. Social memory commemorated this period as the awakening, organizing, and changing the status quo of colonialism to restore Algerian historicity, breakin g the silence imposed by colonial hegemony. Social memories of painful events were often treated as taboo, avoided, and even put outside of active memory. Yet, when contextualizing disturbing topics such as rape and abuse within the narrative of colonial violence, they became more accessible. When reconstructing painful events, there was a shift in perception to acknowledge but never forget. In the collective memory, the topic of betrayal and abuse of men and women during the war of independence remains unspoken in public and official discussions. Yet in private, a mixture of discourses emerged, refusing to reduce such
254 acts to a trivial ity though rigid narrative, and instead examining their various causes, motives, and other reasons for their manifestatio ns. Collective memory was not monolithic but came with complexities. For example in case of the goumi (traitor) phenomenon that was created during the war, I sensed a collective sentiment against the cruelty of the goumi for supporting the enemy and harmin g his own people. Yet, when digging into the memories of individuals and groups, stories of goumia as victims surfaced, bringing new dimensions to the accepted reality that is, the circumstances that drove them toward losing their humanity in order to su rvive. More than that, the narratives revealed moments of compassion from all sides which opened a door for the hope that human redemption was possible as explained in the case of one goumi, M.A., whose history is discussed in Chapter 5 The narratives as constructed by Dellys citizens represented these various views, relationships and feelings. These were personal stories that they told to each other, and then transmitted for generations to become part of the social memory of Dellys town and its associated villages. Many events were part of my own childhood memory. Thus, as a researcher I was committed to listening to their stories without neglecting the diversity of voices especially in cases of violence and pain. Fieldwork in my ancestral land became an opportunity to inquire about and rethink important matters hidden in a past but yet were were still present in the social memory of the people of Dellys. Social memory of Dellysians are connected to specific places and landscapes where in memories were mad e through events and among families who were shaped by old and new alliances. The Casbah in its substantial qualities was a place of meanings linked to social memories which were extremely vital in reconstructing family histories
255 and communal life. In Dell ysians remembrances, the Casbah represented the home of the Dellysian family united and caring for the needy, the orphaned and the stranger. Like a tree ring, year after year, events inscribed in the Casbah in each quarter, ally, home, and sacred place, ea ch wall, door, window, brick, and fountain helped retain the arrivals and departures, and the tragic times of the war were all commemorated in social memory, inducing a cont inuity in remembrance among st those who survived and for generations to come. Upon entering a Casbah home, in some habitable or even decaying form guided by those who loved it, as a visitor, I was able to contextualize various narratives of a vibrant soc ial life during colonialism. Mnemonics During memory work, mnemonics became important tools. People of Dellys as well as ancestral] and through their interaction with var ieties of material culture" (Mills & Walker 2008: 13 14). Mnemonics were different materials narrators used as aid memoir facilitating exchanges about past events. At times, materials were in hand when illustrating an event or idea. An old silver plate, a glass, or a piece of paper symbolized the link of the narrator to the story of their ancestry. A framed picture brought to life in commemorating the memories of loved ones who died in war. Newspapers in hand prompted controversies of war to emerge in narra tives. Mnemonics did not have to be present during narration. A depiction of particular materials significant for events and landscape produced memorable moments to arise and express a vivid idea of past practices. The ancestral mosque and the colonial
256 mo sque in the town center stood during memory work as material dimensions and as mnemonics, one obliterated and the other manufactured. During memory work, places and tools of learning surfaced as material culture with agency (Meskell 2008, Mills & Walker 20 08), illustrated in the oral reconstruction of traditional teaching and used materials that allowed the listener to imagine distant (in time and space) forms of teaching and learning. Mnemonics were also manifested as faces of people who shared memories with the narrator, stimulating remembrance through nods and words of agreement as narratives unfolded based on shared experience and supportive knowledge. Such reciprocated remembrance allowed the listener to understand the meaning and importance of an eve nt as two friends helped each other in their old age to remember. Together, they constructed an expressive narrative about the eve of the revolution bringing into the present the sound of a radio, which despite its absence was useful to imagine as the back ground to the story. Throughout narrative constructions, different forms of mnemonics reminded narrators of past events but more importantly allowed the listener to grasp deeper ideas and witness the memory tools of a transformed community. Memory Work Dur ing fieldwork, memory work became a moment of remembrance in which the informant was in a dialogue with both the past and the present evoking meaningful statements. At this level, the collaboration between the informant and the researcher created a narrati ve that was a result of such moments. In some instances, personal character and activities influenced memory work. Many other events sometimes emerged, one memory calling up another. Inclusion or omission of specific narratives at
257 certain times allowed the emergence of a much more complicated story of colonialism. Example of these discursive practices emerge d in my discussion of Algerian and European relations, moving away from discourses of binary opposition s, such as colonizer vs. colonized. During memo ry work, the presence of more than one participant in the sa me room and their mutual relationships a ffect ed positively or negatively as well as evoked and helped in (re)construct ing events. During fieldwork, I observed and sensed when memorable narratives were being formed because of the connections between participants being able to reminisce about precious times helping each other to remember and express what was important to them. In other situations, I was glad to have one informant because the presenc e of others would have inhibited that person from deepening my understanding of the matter. Many informants preferred to speak in privacy, a matter of personal character and choice. During memory work, the focus on specific matters as a leading topic of di scussion helped me compare different narratives and find shared themes that made sense during the designing and writing process. During memory work, narratives were shaped to reveal (explicit or obscure) unexplored events such as the FLN role in the rise o f collaboration with the enemy during the war or retaliation near the end of the armed struggle Such moments of remembrance were useful and produced other ideas for pertinent future projects. Revelations and silences were equally important for reconstruct ing the war period and its impact on postcolonial Algeria. During memory work, those who were involved in the revolution revealed commanding information. For example, to be able to understand the success of the
258 Algerian revolution, specific participants re vealed a well designed organization of devoted members who followed specific tasks and skills cells, password, erasing traces, and secrecy. During testimonies, such narratives referenced mnemonics, leading narrators into deep discussions to re imagine ep isodes within their landscapes. Memory work was also a painful time, especially when informants decided to speak of tragedies. The telling of such experiences also played a therapeutic role. Many informants reflected on surviving and being safe from trauma tic events as miraculous. During memory work, their present self became the storyteller, recounting to the other, past self, in dialogue, gradually distancing their present self from the pain and moving toward the future. Memory of trauma played a central role in reconstructing and historicizing painful events within the context of colonialism. An important concept that emerged during memory work was trapped childhoods Talking about colonial transgressions against people during the war, the voice of the child and young adult surfaced. More importantly, the wounded were not isolated as individual casualties. They were members of communities, witnesses, and narrators of unforgettable atrocities. They were resilient but able to remember vividly specific eve nts allowing listeners to imagine scenes of agony felt by young teens and recounted in old age. The moving narrations were opportunities for analysis, reflection, and transmission to others as history. Emotions during memory work were signs of untreated t rauma. Those who remember ed colonial violence wept for harmed and abused loved ones. Anguish expressed in trembling voices, sobbing, covered faces, and prayer s did not interrupt the construction of narration but became part of it. I think that if such stor ies were told
259 without emotions, their messages would be significant yet different in their effect s The connection of the narrator s to the stor ies were profound deeply personal, expressing their feelings about others and allowing me to move within the st ory and try to imagine what people experienced. My subsequent role as a research er was to transfer words, feelings, and emotions to writing so as historicize Algerian colonialism and violence. My success rests on my ability to represent their traumatized s elves without neglecting their resilience, telling their painful stories but not forgetting the people and villages who are not present to bear witness. Signs of untreated trauma emerged alongside acts of courage in facing a mighty colonial army. Some narr ators are still in a state of disbelief over how they confronted such a brute force. Many recounted the bravery of specific people who faced colonialists until they died. Narrators honored them by telling their stories to those who did not know them. Many others recounted their own stories of into cellars of torture. The captive turned into a moral reminder to the warden admonishing them not to follow the tragic acts of G erman Nazis who cremateds Jews in gas chambers. They did not fear reprisal s but hoped that French soldiers in a moment of remorse might refrain from harming Algerians. Without the remembrance of such painful moments, outsiders would not know about colonial atrocities. The pains of Algerians who witnessed and experienced torture were heading to ward oblivion without these testimonies. In independent Algeria, the government honored many of these ins alive. The process of remembering, retelling, and recording became the catalyst to historicize colonial life,
260 using traumatic events and with their recognition honoring their dead and restoring humanity. Successful memory work, as shown in various chap ability to transcend time and space, and convey a vision of an event wrapped in its characters, landscape, and emotions. Such success developed into a living source that I, the researcher, take with a full heart to position i t as the core of this history, in turn helping the reader imagine such important moments in a far away land and time. Approaching the Past: Oral History and Oral Tradition Throughout the chapters, the voices of the people of Dellys did demonstrate the cen trality of oral history and oral tradi tion in historicizing colonial life. From within, the neglected past. Men and women who lived the harsh times of colonialism spok e in their own words to transmit oral history, an approach that helped to fulfill their desire to bear witness. They uttered the good and bad remembrances of colonial times. Together, Algerians played a unifying role when fighting and resisting colonialism despite tight colonial power. Kinship connections and the power of intermarriage reinforced the autochthonous families in the Casbah which kept branching to form, for the last tw o hundred years, a strong and thriving kinship network. In spite of a violent past, oral transmission of kinship histories persisted, reestablishing in history the town of Dellys and the strategic area of Kabylia that was devastated throughout colonialism. Fifty years after Algerian independence, while investigating the colonial past, I adopted an oral history and oral tradition approach for its powerful role in deciphering a long colonization that pushed some to be come wicked but many others to arise in
261 d issent. Evil acts might have been signs of a population distress and a disoriented attempt to survive. To understand the war of independence in its complexities, oral history and oral traditions made sense of many actions kept in the hearts of Dellysians many of them having died before bearing witness to their pasts. In prose, proverbs, and songs, Algerians moved from moments of desperation to defiance and into a strong resolve for freedom. Rich narratives described the confusion that infused daily life f rom daily oppression to violent confrontation. They mentioned the youth whose awakening became the first step toward an emancipation if with a heavy price as many were killed before becoming liberated from colonialism. Using such an important approach in i nvestigating colonialism, I was able to record stories of popular involvement in supporting the revolution, men and women, Algerians and settlers. A singular history in Dellys region, I was able to collect testimonies that spoke against a colonial history ( which constructed a complete separation between Algerians and settlers), recreating and embracing its complexities. In compiling this dissertation, the strength of oral history and oral tradition was in its flexibility and openness to diversity. Truth tel ling (Leys 1996) and truth making or the quest for real history is not a target but we know that the past (good and bad) is not forgotten. From a postcolonial point of view, unless the past is included in the present, the future will not be reached with a rich sense of belonging to a collective experience. Emergent Subaltern Voices vs. Colonial and Historical Representation s In writing the oral history of Dellys during colonialism, I was able to find many agreements between archived colonial writings and e mergent subaltern testimonies of Dellys. Both emphasized the initial transformation of the town by focusing on the
262 the difference between the two narratives was that t he colonial ones were written from the standpoint of the invader /occupier whose aim was to control people and land. Indigenous narratives went beyond that point of view by exposing the devastation that the colonialists brought on the communities not only d uring the initial stage of colonialism but also throughout the duration of Algeria colonization. Indigenous narratives also expressed their views against the colonizer and their continuous resistance in a diversity of ways. Oral history and oral traditio n took precedence in historicizing important events that colonial archives discounted or ridiculed. Official French war archives give an historical account of the formation of the African army regiments in the colonies since the conquest of Algeria in 1830 (Clayton, 1994), but they overlook colonial use of militias and the traumatic effects they left on the populations during the the collective punishment s of Algerian populations. During fieldwork, I listened to the memories of survivors about the colonial usage of African armies which crushed all signs of popular revolt or dissent in the town and villages An indication of t he severity of the damage that was done through these operations may be measured by the ingrained brutal events in their villages were vivid, significantly creating a deep historical texture for ble and shameful acts. Moreover, in this work oral history and tradition went beyond the scope of colonial writings on many issues S ubalter n voices emerged to testify to life within the dark periods of WWI and WWII in Algeria as marked by famine, disease and extreme subjugation but also marked by caring and sharing families. Narratives of Algerian
263 relationships to colonials which are rarely spoken of in colonial writings and biographies emerged in Dellysians remembrance as an integral part of the daily life in colonial Dellys in spite of the fact that the colonial power endeavored through various strategic design s to separate the communities. It is crucial to state in this conclusion that many colonial writings ( Pitois 1845 & challe (1968) ; Faucon 1889; Auclert 1900 ) promoted optimistic metanarratives of colonization (Lyotard 1984) and created an image of the conquered land of Algeria as an achievement of the French civilized man and empire. Through well crafted memoirs ( Pitois 1845), i n the F rench colon ial memory, Marechal Bugeaud was commemorated to be a man of strong character who made the transition of Algeria from barbary to civilization smooth. Metanarratives can be intimidating for their appearance of being objective, truthful and compassionate sto ries. In the case of early colonization of Algeria, relying on such histori es is alarming for they tend or seek to silence many other narratives that challenge their all encompassing stories ( Faucon 1889) In my work, in the case of early colonization of D ellys town and villages, local accounts create ruptures within the fabric of the colonial metanarrative. They present counter narratives that indisputably examplify the effects of violent and disparaging acts of the invaders including the grabbing of fert ile lands and sacred spaces that were turned into army told and retold transmitting the popular dismay about the French invasion. When local subaltern narratives e merge, the sound of a continuous struggle is heard a sound that colonial writings aim to leave in th e dark and go as far as deface t he reputation of those who dare to resist.
264 Belonging to a male dominated empire, French women had little power in influenc ing the colonial situation. Yet, those who embraced feminist views sought to rescue subjugated Algerian women Ultimately though they ended up proving that they could not escape the engrav ed hypocricy of the french mentality when it comes to colonialism For example, Aubertine Auclert (1848 1914) lived in Algeria (1888 1892) after joining her husband who had been appointed as a justice for peace. She was already recognized in France as a champion of political rights for women. In les femmes Arabs en Algeri e (1900), despite being recognized as a pioneer of French feminism her book did not take issue with colonization as long as the latter sought to civilize people from the ir state of nature. In her feminist struggles, she pushed for having French women invo lve d in the building of the Empire. Because females would be able to enter Arab homes and families, so she thought, they could become the source for Arab women of Algeria to be come familiar with French ways of life and thought (1900: 26 in Taieb 2007: 273) Auclert focused on the right of education for Algerian girls and by that she really meant the ir assimilation within French culture, which to her would put an end to the tyranny Arab women were subjected to (Taieb 2007: 278 279 ), that is, the tyranny of Arab men who opposed mixing between Arabs and French people She took it for granted that the French ways of life were good for Arab Algerians and that they were the only road to success in life Algerian n arratives stand in opposition to such hypocrisy th at glorifies the French s, classifying the colonized as backward and tyran nical Such double standards are unveiled in many Dellysian narratives that focus on many instances in which French officers including teachers
265 were remembered for their racial prejudice against Dellysian pupils and community members. The importance of such evolving subaltern narratives is in their ability to contradict the stereotype that the conquerors entered a society that had no history and sources of knowledge. Not only colonial writings but also many other French writings from the metropole created masterpieces on the colonial situation, yet with a complete dismissal of Algerian voice s A case in point is the set of volu mes written by Ageron (1964 ; 1968 ) on the history of contemporary Algeria in which he dealt with various aspects of colonial life. As a historian, he focused mostly on ar chival sources and colonial Algerians were banned from having their cited as experts in their areas of knowledge and culture. Such an approach g i ve s more importance to the colonial state that was alre ady in control of various realms of living for more than a century and the only representative of colonial discourses. Many Algerian writings also fell in the same trap of ignoring local voices of Algerians when writing their history. Marad 's (1969) book o n the Islamic reform in Algeria (1925 1940 ) is important, and yet what is missing in his inquiry were other of the reform. In my project, through Dellysian remembrances and constructe d narratives, I was able to enrich the research including not only those who were at the fore front of the reform but also women who were brought up during that era. In contrast to both the Ageron and Merad discourses, the subaltern narratives that develop ed during my investigation conveyed new meanings in approaching
266 knowledge. At the local level, not only did the reform influence Algerian s about the importance of learning in the Islamic tradition but it also structured a negociation with the colonial adm inistration to reinstate the Arabic and Quranic School in local areas for all Algerians. More than that, the narratives brought to the surface and expressed a level of consciousness that developed among the people of Dellys that knowledge is power. Thus, t he decision to attend French school was not to assimilate to the colonial culture but rather to learn F rench and other skills for their own sake and future opportunities The involvement of French people in the Algerian revolution for independence (1954 1 962) in the metropol e and among settlers in Algeria remain s a controversy in colonial and contemporary writings. Evans (1991) work on the French resistance and the Algerian war is unique. He was able to interview many French who helped the Algerian FLN f ocusing o n finding links between the experience during the Nazi regime and the struggle against the colonial rule. In French society, the resistors were considered abnormal and they were marked as traitors. Many of them were imprisoned until 1966 and were not gi ven amnesty. In contemporary Fra nce, the work of Evans is not easy to find but more than that, memories of settlers as resisters is not recognized as possible. In my investigation, I found Dellysians testifying that many European settlers and functi onaries in Dellys and surrounding areas were sympathizers of the revolution. Like Algerians, they were volunteering by donating money, food, and medical supplies and providing service s to the fighters. Whether they participated based on convictions or fear of reprisal is not possible to know since the testimonies were those of Algerians
267 and not of the settlers themselves an important future project. As explored here narratives about Algerian collaborators with the French army moved beyond the simplistic story of the harki allow us to grasp some of the intricacies of an inherently much more complex issue Similarly, Algerians refute the myth that colons and settlers were all united against the revolution. The emergence of subaltern narratives and opinions create a space for dialogue based not on nationalities but on shared ethics, lives and memories. As a result, the emerging silenced and ignored narratives overcome the metanarrative of colonial writings. I maintain that using the pe oples na rrations and testimonies compels us to engage a re reading of colonial archives and writings that will necessarily create new meanings of colonial times. This is a significant recognition for future historical research but more importantly, its s ignificance lies in a revised way of seeing the lives of Algerian and French peoples in the post colonial era. the Algerian n ational narrative, it is common to find the allusion to a few mujahidat who were active FLN members, examples of whom are Djamila Boupacha and Djamila Bouhired, who were combattants in the battle of Algiers. The reality is that thousand s of other women from various cities and villages were involved in various w ays to support the revolution and yet they are not recognized. My project opens a different understanding, related by those women who lived in Dellys town and villages. Their narratives bring out the subaltern speech and achievements to be recognized and h istoricized for future Algerian generations and beyond.
268 This study is significant in providing the stage to investigate colonial times through subaltern voices in Algeria and throughout the world. As I have shown in the various chapters of this disserta tion, Algerian men and women remembered the good and bad of colonial times, a task that revived their sense of being a people connected to their land. Memorable stories continue to help Dellys regain its place in the nation, the region, and the world. Its landscape, mountains, Casbah, and farms are living memorials imbued with life, human relations, and meanings, all teaching about a deconstructed the colonial myths and repl aced them with stories that are narrated in every town, village, and home. They are the guide for future generations to know their past and build their country. Without Algerian voices and opinions, the documentation of Algerian history is not possible. Th is, I have found, is a desire easy to fulfill. I noticed there was a readiness to understand history when young Algerians surrounded elders, the survivors of colonialism, with eyes held open in disbelief and listening attentively to the ir stories. These hi stories continue in expressive narratives and when elders perceive an interest in their stories T hey keep transmitting their deep connections to the land and ancestors who sacrificed their precious lives and dignity for a liberated Algeria not only from the grip of colonialism but also from ignorance an emancipation of the mind. The power of oral history is waiting to be used, enabling subaltern voices and historicizing the Algerian accounts of colonialism as ways of truly understand ing 1995: 11)
269 APPENDIX A INFORMED CONSENT Protocol Title: Please read this consent document carefully before you decide to participate in this interview. Purpose of the research study: The purpose of this study is to explore the remembrance of colonial life in the town of Dellys and surrounding villages. The aim of this project is to collect the oral history of peoples of Dellys; about their lives with an d within a colonial culture. What you will be asked to do in the study: I am asking you to participate in this interview because you have been identified as an Algerian who was born and raised during French colonialism of Algeria and specifically from t he town of Dellys or the surrounding villages. I am interested in what you remember about growing up and living in Dellys during colonialism in the 30s, 40s, 50s, and until independence in 1962. As an interviewee, you will be asked to participate in a face to face interview lasting 1 2 hours. You will not have to answer any question you do not wish to answer. Your interview will be conducted in any place you feel at ease preferably in your home. With your permission, I would like to audiotape th is interview The transcription of the interview will be use d for my dissertation that will eventually become a book about the oral history of Algeria and the colonial era. With your permission, I would like to take your picture and picture of important sites, activ ities or artifacts related to the topic studied. I would like to get your permission to reschedule follow up interviews (face to face, over the phone, or by e.mail), if needed. Time required: Between 1 2 hours Risks and Benefits: There are no anticipated risks to you as a participant in this interview. However, this project has great benefits to you, to the community of Dellys, to the writing of Algerian history, and to those interested in the study of colonial history in the world. Colonial history has b een written, in general, by the colonizer, neglecting the voices of the natives and their point of view. Collecting testimonies of those who lived during colonialism will allow future generations to learn the history of their country from the experiences o f their own people, elders and ancestors. Your interview will be part of a collection of interviews that will be archived and used by other people around the world and those who are interested in the history of the 20 th century.
270 Compensation: There will b e no compensation for participating in this research. Confidentiality: This project is a collaboration between you, the interviewee, and me, the interviewer. As a participant, you share ownership of the constructed narrative during this oral history proj ect. When used for the writing of my desertion and book, in the final project, you, as the interviewee, have the choice to keep your identity known, or not. In case you prefer to remain anonymous, your name will be given a code. Keep my name (circle one) ______________________________ Yes______No_____ Voluntary participation: Your participation in this interview is completely voluntary. There is no penalty for not participating. Right to withdraw from the study: You are free to withdraw your consent to participate and may discontinue your participation in the interview at any time without consequence. Whom to contact if you have questions about the study: Khadidja Arfi, PhD Candidate in the anthropology department University of Florida. My address is 3237 SW 12 th Terrace, Archer, FL. 32618; phone # (352) 332 4998; email: firstname.lastname@example.org My adviser, Dr. Peter Schmidt, Grinter Hall, Room 415 PO 117305 University of Florida Gainesville, FL 32611 7305, Phone # 352 392 44 90 x305; Email: email@example.com Whom to contact about your rights as a research participant in the study: UFIRB Office, Box 112250, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611 2250; ph 392 0433. Agreement: I have read the procedure described above. I voluntarily agree to participate in the procedure and I have received a copy of this description. Participant: _____________________________________Date: _________________ Principal Investigator: _____________________________Date: _________________
271 APPE NDIX B SCHEDULE INTERVIEW 1 I. Biographical Questions: 1. Please state your full name and present address, where and when were you born, and where did you grow up? 2. up? 3. What is your mot grow up? 4. Do you have siblings? If yes, how many? What are their names, where and when they were born and where did they grow up? II. Education: 1. Where did you go to school? (all levels) 2. What was school like for you as a child? What were your best and worst subjects? Where did you attend grade school? High school? College? 3. What school activities and sports did you participate in? Who do you remember? 4. With whom did you go to school? 5. Where did your father go to school (all levels) and with whom did he go to school? 6. Where did your mother go to school (all levels) and with whom did she go to school? 7. Where did your sibling go to school (all levels) and with whom did she go to school? 8. If it was differently, wh at kind of education would you have done? 9. If you attended the French/ Arab school, how is it compared with Arabic/Islamic schools and/or Quranic schools? Were there any interactions between the French/ Arab schools and the Arabic/Islamic schools? 10. If you w ere one of the students who attended French/ Arab schools, how was your interaction with the Algerian and the non Algerian students as well as with the teachers? What is the most memorable event (s)? Speak about that experience. 11. If you attended college, s peak about that experience, the interacting with the Algerian and the French/European students and professors. Give examples. 1 During the interviews, I entend to have simple interjections and follow up questions: "Why?" "How?" "Can you tell me more about that?" "How did you feel when that happened?" to various questions. The success of my interviews is by listening ca refully and responding to what I will be hearing. From time to time, I will refer back to question list, however, I am willing to follow the thread of interesting stories and issues I ha ve no t thought about prior to the interview. examining these items, it can help start or deepen the conversation, especially if the item is relevant to iew.
272 12. Did you belong to any student organizations concerned about civil rights and/or decolonization? Who was part of it? Were there Al gerians and non Algerians in it? What was the relationship like? III. Home/Neighborhood/village/town 1. How long have you lived at your present home? 2. How did you come to live here? 3. Who lives in the present home with you? 4. Do you have any other family members living in your neighborhood? Who? 5. Where did you live as a child? Do you remember how did you come to live there? 6. Who lived in that home with you? 7. Do you have any other family members living in that neighborhood? Who? 8. What can you recall about your family home? What items do you recall from the home? 9. Did you have family chores? What were they? Which was your least favorite? 10. Did you receive an allowance? How much? Did you save your money or spend it? 11. What can you recall about your neighborhood? Who were y our neighbors? How did you interact with them? 12. Who were your friends when you were growing up? How did you interact with them? 13. What was family life like when you were growing up? 14. How did you celebrate holidays and special occasions? Did your family have sp ecial traditions? What are some of the traditions still carried on by your family? 15. Describe a typical family dinner. Did you all eat together as a family? Who did the cooking? What were your favorite foods? Have any recipes been passed down to you from fam ily members? 16. What were your favorite childhood games? What other entertainment have you enjoyed? 17. Who was the oldest relative you remember? What do you remember about them? 18. What do you know about your family surname? How did it originate? How is your fa mily called in Dellys? Do you know how did you get that name? 19. Is there a naming tradition in your family, such as always giving the firstborn son the name of his paternal grandfather? 20. What stories have come down to you about your parents? Grandparents? M ore distant ancestors? 21. Are there any stories about famous or infamous relatives in your family? 22. Are there any physical characteristics that run in your family? 23. Are there any special heirlooms, photos, Quran, books, or other memorabilia that have been pa ssed down in your family? 24. When, where and how did you meet your spouse? How did you feel? 25. Where and when did you get married? 26. What memory stands out the most from your wedding day?
273 27. How would you describe your spouse? What do (did) you admire most abou t them? 28. What do you believe is the key to a successful marriage? 29. Do you remember when you found out you were going to be a parent for the first time? How did you feel? 30. Why did you choose your children's names? 31. What was your proudest moment as a parent? 32. W hat did your family enjoy doing together? 33. What world events had the most impact on you while you were growing up? Did any of them personally affect your family? 34. Of all the things you learned from your parents, which do you feel was the most valuable IV. Spir ituality: 1. What mosque/zaouia/al wali site did you attend when you were growing up? 2. What activities were associated with the mosque/zaouia/al wali site? 3. How has the mosque/zaouia/al wali site affected your life and the life of your family? 4. Were there ot her religious institutions in Dellys and surrounding areas? (e.g., for non Muslims? What are they? Who went to them? 5. wali, church, synagogue or others? 6. Were there celebrations, where Algerians and non Algerian s, Muslims, Christians and Jews celebrated together? What were they celebrating together? Try to remember specific events? What effect did that have on you? V. Work: part time/full time or any other kinds of work 1. Did you work when you were young (before ten, teenager)? If yes, what kind of work did you do? And to whom did you work? What do you remember about the conditions you were working in? Who were your co workers? Your boss? Speak about your relationship to each one of them. 2. What kind of work did you do when you were adult (18years old and up) and to whom did you work? What do you remember about the conditions you were working in? Who were your co workers? Your boss? Speak about your relationship to each one of them? 3. What type of work did you do as a homemaker? 4. What is your profession and how did you choose it? 5. If you could have had any other profession what would it have been? Why wasn't it your first choice? VI. Growing up during colonialism 1. What is your earlier childhood memory?
274 2. What was your favori te thing to do for fun? Your favorite place in Dellys? Your favorite toy/game/entertainment? 3. Do you remember any fads from your youth? Popular hairstyles? Clothes? 4. Who were your childhood heroes? 5. What were your favorite songs and music? 6. Growing up duri ng colonialism, can you recall an early incident when you recognized that your people and your land are colonized? 7. Did you recognize that there was a difference of treatment on account of Algerian and French/European? If there was a difference, on what cr iteria do you think it was based on? Give examples. 8. Did you have access to non Algerian homes, farms, or any other places? How and when? Give examples. 9. Were there people in your life who encouraged you to think about the treatment of Algerian by the coloni zer in the society? If so, can you tell us more about them? 10. Were there articles, books, films, speeches, newspapers, or theater performances that influenced your thinking about colonizer/colonized relations? Give examples. 11. Describe your memories and feelin gs about living under colonialism. What was it like? Were you ever personally discriminated against because you were colonized? How did you respond to this treatment? How did that make you feel? Did you ever confront the discrimination? If not, why not? 12. D o you remember family members, friends, or individuals in your community being discriminated against under colonialism, in education, public accommodations, employment, etc.? How did this make you feel? 13. Was any of this treatment ever violent/ if so, how d id the Algerian community respond? How did the French (settlers) community respond? 14. Were the responses to the discrimination different depending on ethnicity, family, age, gender or any other criteria? If so, in what way? 15. Who were your heroes, locally, na tionally, and internationally? What do you remember about them? 16. Are there records of decolonizing activities in your community? Photos? Where are they located? 17. Were you involved in any decolonizing organization? If yes, name them, what was the membershi p like? What kind of activity did you have? Were there diversity in gender, age, ethnicity, Algerian and European? Who held the elected positions? Who did the organizing work (collecting due, arranging meetings, hospitality, etc.)? Can you recall any of th e more active members? Name them and describe them. 18. Describe any participation of your mosque/zaouia/ al wali site in civil rights or decolonizing ideas. Was there support for speaking out against colonizer treatment in those places? How was that demonst rated? 19. What world events had the most impact on you while you were growing up? Did any of them personally affect your family? 20. How is Dellys, the same or different, today from what it was like when you were a child?
275 21. How is the world, the same or differen t, today from what it was like when you were a child? 22. Were you ever mentioned in a newspaper, on the radio or written about? 23. What accomplishments were you the most proud of? 24. What is the one thing you most want people to remember about you?
276 APPENDIX C INTERVIEWS AND MEETINGS SCHEDULE Table C 1. Interviewees Codes, Names, Genders, Place and Meeting Day Interview (INT#) Gender INT. Place INT. Date Current situatio n INT 1 Tahtali/Souag Baya F Lajenna, Dellys May, 4, 2010 INT 2.1 Souag Benkanoun Family F Lajenna, Dellys May, 10, 2010 INT 2.2 Souag Benkanoun Family F Lajenna, Dellys May, 10, 2010 INT 3 Souag Saleh M Lajenna, Dellys May, 7, 2010 INT. 4.1 Chabani Ameur M Lajenna, Dellys May, 5, 2010 INT 4.2 Chabani Ameur Lajenna, Dellys June, 6, 2010 INT. 5 Saber Khetib Zoulikha F Dellys Casbah May, 6, 2010 Died, 13 INT 6.1 M Lajenna, Dellys May, 8, 2010 INT 6.2 Zoulikha Souag Tchaklat F Lajenna, Dellys May, 9, 2010 INT. 7 Kadri Toubal Aicha F Lajenna, Dellys May, 10, 2010 INT. 8 Azli Mahdjouba Zohra F Lajenna, Dellys May, 10, 2010 INT. 9 El Amri Rabah M Lajenna, Dellys May, 12, 2010 Died, 12 INT. 10 Khetib Allalou Zahia F Lajenna, Dellys May, 14, 2010 INT. 11 Belhaoua Mohamed M Lajenna, Dellys May, 17, 2010 INT. 12 Z. S. F Lajenna, Dellys May, 27, 2010 INT 13 Fernouh Baya F Lajenna, Dellys May, 27, 2010 INT 14 Khetib Khadouja & Bahja Fx 2 Lajenna, Dellys May, 31, 2010 INT 15 Nesnass B oualem M Lajenna, Dellys June, 2, 2010 INT 16 Chikhaoua Ali M Lajenna, Dellys June, 2, 2010 INT 17 Ben Achour Fatma & Ali F + M Lajenna, Dellys June, 3, 2010 INT 18 Souag Bachir M Lajenna, Dellys June, 4, 2010 INT 19 Azzouzi Chabani Aicha F Dellys Casbah June, 5, 2010 INT 20 Wali Chabani Mouni F Lajenna, Dellys June, 6, 2010 INT 21 Zarouali Rabah M Dellys June, 8, 2010 INT 22 Souag, Rabah M Lajenna, Dellys June, 8, 2010 INT 23 Qab Baya F Lajenna, Dellys June, 9, 2 010 INT 24.1 Yahi Mohamed M Lajenna, Dellys June, 9, 2010 INT 24. 2 Yahi Mohamed Lajenna, Dellys June, 24, 2010 INT 25 Abdi Bahja F Dellys town June, 10, 2010 INT 26 Brahmi Abdi Kheira F Dellys town June, 10, 2010
277 Table C 1. Cont inued Interview (INT#) Gender INT. Place INT. Date Current situation INT 27 Ayoub Habib M Lajenna, Dellys June, 11, 2010 Sedonym INT 28 Lehmel Khider Ghalia F Lajenna, Dellys June, 12, 2010 INT 29 M Takdemp t, Dellys June, 12, 2010 INT 30 Dhrif Fatma Zohra F Lajenna, Dellys June, 14, 2010 INT 31 Khetib Toudji Zohra F Dellys town June, 15, 2010 INT 32 Malki (focus group) FX3 Dashra Takdempt June, 15, 2010 INT. 33 Souag Ammi Kheira F Lajenna, Dellys June, 15, 2010 INT. 34 Husseyn Wannass M Dellys town June, 16, 2010 INT. 35 Azouzi Rabah & Mohemed Laleg MX2 Dellys town June, 17, 2010 Azouzi Rabah Died in 2013 INT 36 Briki Ahmed M June, 18, 2010 INT. 37 Senaoui Ahmed M llys June, 18, 2010 INT 38 Mrabet (focus group) FX5 Tizaghouin, Dellys June 20, 2010 INT. 39 Belhaoua Hajj Moh. M Lajenna, Dellys June 21, 2010 INT. 40 bout Amar M Lajenna, Dellys June 24, 2010 INT 41 Rouibeh Bazizi Zoubida F Lajenna, Dellys June 25, 2010 INT 42 Toudji Khider Behja & Mhemed Khider F+M Borj Mnael June 27, 2010 INT 43 Baziz Kerbouche Dhaoua FX2 Lajenna, Dellys June 26, 2010 INT 44 Wali Saber Fatiha & mother Zhira Zahed Wali FX2 Lajenna, Dellys June 27, 2010 Z. Zahed /Wa li died in 2012 INT 45 Hanin Nesnass Fatiha F Takdempt, Dellys June 28, 2010 INT 46 Benhamida Mina F Lajenna, Dellys June 28, 2010 INT 47 Nougal Souag Behdja F Lajenna, Dellys June 30, 2010 INT 48 Achir Mohamed & Rabah MX2 Takdempt, Dellys Jun e 30, 2010 INT 49 M Takdempt/cariar June 30, 2010 INT 50 Sahibi Ali & F.Z Chabani Sahibi M+F Lajenna, Dellys June 30, 2010 INT 51 Toudji Mohamed Seghir M Dellys town July 3, 2010 INT 52 Flici Moh Rabah M Takdempt, Dellys July 4, 2010 INT 53 Cheikhchouyoukh Wardia and Sister F Lajenna, Dellys July 4, 2010 INT 54 Khider Ahmed M Takdempt, Dellys July 5, 2010 INT 55 Kharba Ali M Lajenna, Dellys July 5, 2010 INT 56 Toudji Khider Behja F Borj Mnael July 6, 2010 I NT 57 Ben Touati Baya F Lajenna, Dellys July 7, 2010 INT 58 Rouibeh Family M Dellys Casbah July 11, 2010 INT 59 Hamadou Bhalil Family M+F Benchoud village July 12, 2010 INT 60 Saber Doudja F Lajenna, Dellys July 12, 2010 INT 61 Dhrif Rabah M Boumerdess July 13, 2010 INT 62 Chernouh Charadi Fatma F Lajenna, Dellys July 14, 2010
278 Table C 1. Continued Interview (INT#) Gender Place of interview Date of interview Current situation INT 63 Abbass Moh Seghir M Takdemp t, Dellys July 14, 2010 INT 64 H. K A F Algiers July 18, 2010 INT 65 Nesnass Boualem M Algiers July 19, 2010 INT 66 Badachi Ali M Dashra Takdempt July 21, 2010 INT 67 Kerbouche Fatma & Ben FX2 Lajenna, Dellys July 22, 2010 I NT 68 Badache Yamina F Isser, Dellys July 23, 2010 INT 69 M Lajenna, Dellys July 24, 2010 Died in 2011 INT 70 Local archives office July 27 2010 I NT. 71 Mayor Zarouali M office June 17, 2010 INT. 72 Khider Therifa F Lajenna, Dellys June 11, 2010 INT. 73 Visit Scout center Dellys town June 17, 2010 INT. 74 Visit Adult Women School Laciti, Dellys June 17, 2010 INT. 75 Garoumi + Gassous FX2 Ladjenna, Dellys June 1, 2010 INT. 76 Visit Event an Benchoud July 8, 2010 INT. 77 Attended Independence day Commemoration Ladjenna, Dellys July 5, 2010 INT. 78 Attended end of school celebration Ladjenna, Dellys July 1, 2010 INT. 79 Attended Dellysian Wedding s Ladjenna, Delly s July 21, 2010
279 APPENDIX D DELLYS MAPS Figure D 1. Maps of Dellys and surrounding villages: A) the map Dellys town in relation to the country Algeria and mediteranian region http://en.wikipedia.org/wik i/Dellys (2/10/2014 1:28 pm), B) the map of Dellys and villages http://nona.net/features/map/placedetail.1589706/Dellys/ (2/10/14 1:30 pm), and C) the map of Dellys center with various subsectors as explained below (from Montada forum).
280 A B C Subsector I: Represents the area of the Casbah, which is characterized by a dense, mainly residential, constituting the first nucleus from wh ich the current town grew. Subsector II: Represents the extension intramural, which is characterized by the fabric of the city from the French era. It's the first expansion experienced by the city. Subsector III: Represents the extramural extended area. It characterized before independence the countryside of the city of Dellys. This area is now, due to urban pressure, dominated mainly by buildings and residential (multi family and single family) home s. Subsector IV: Represents the port area. In addition to its own activities, including fishing, this area is also the headquarters of important equipment, such as the slaughterhouses, the casern, customs, and the frontier poli ce. In the past, there was also a railway passing through a tunnel crossing the peninsula of Dellys.
281 Subsector V: Represents the cemeteries (Muslim, Christian and Jewish). Its vegetation overlooks the sea. It characterizes the cliff zone. Subsector VI: Represents the forestry and land oriented forest. It is located immediately upstream of the town area not built on the mountain of Bouarbi. Subsector VII: Corresponds to th e great basin of the port and a continuous coastal strip. http://www.montada forum.net/galleria accessed on 7/24/2013 at 12:30 pm, translated by researcher.
282 APPENDIX E MARRIAGE ALLIANCES COLONIAL D ELLYS
284 A PPENDIX F AL HAJ AL ARBI AL IDRISSI OFFSPRING AND KINSHIP CHART Al Hajj al Arbi al Idri ssi Zhira Fadaoui Uthmani Saber Saber = Fatma Abdoun = Aicha = Mouni Chaid= Yamina Belhaoua= Zahira Souag=Y + S.S=K.B H. = S M.S. = Z.A W. = Kh. Ch = Gh. Ar. + A. = Mah. M. = F. (INT.5) (INT.6 ) (INT.60) (INT.33 2.2, 2.3 ) (I NT.20) (INT.4) (INT.50.1) (INT. 39) (INT.11)
285 APPENDIX G THE WILL TO LIV Early 1950s, Wannas Hussein was a student in zaouat Sidi Abderrahman, on the Kabylian Mountains, memoriz ing Q uran and learning Arabic literature and the rules of Arabic grammar. When I met him, he still remembered by heart and recited to me parts of what he remembered of the first poem he learned ti tled liv e) by Kacem Chebbi (1933), the Tunisian poet, as follows, Idhash If one day, people decide to live Destiny will no doubt respond Night will no doubt dissipate Chains will no doubt break hayat Tabakhara fi jawwiha wandathar Whoever never felt Life celebrating him Must vanish like the mist Kadhalika qalat liyal k mustatir Thus the living creatures had told me And their enlightened spirits talked to me Wa dabdabati er rihu binnatijat Wa fawqa al jibali wa tahta ash shajar The wind howled in the va st path Over the mountains and under the trees Idha ma tamanati al hayatu en If souls longed for life Destiny would definitely respond While reciting the poem and reflecting abo ut it, W. H ussein had tears in his eyes. This (poem) affected me to evaluate my environment. I cry when we remember it. We were forced to revolt against colonialism. We lived in oppression. Their [colonialists] children learned and ours did not. They lived in palaces and it was out country. There was no more land for Algerians. This poem taught us about the spirit of nationalism. We were affec
286 APPENDIX H PICTURES OF FLN MEMBERSHIP CARD The two pictures (in and out parts) of th e FLN membership of Mr. Lounes Djamaoui used and cited, in this project, with his permission, by Khadidja Arfi who interviewed him at his home in village of Tadkempt, Dellys, Algeria during fieldwork on June 13, 2010. A B Figure H 1. Picture of FLN m em bership card (in and out) Photos cou rtesy of author, fieldwork 2010
287 APPENDIX I K H UYA AL MUJAHID SONG Thanks to many of the Algerian women of Dellys for their generosity to remember such important lerics, especially the following informants, (INT. 1), (I NT. 2), and (INT. 5). sifil a el khabitha taqtal fi lulad dini murak treasonous France will take me after you Ya tiyara as safra! A habsi maa tadharbish_____Khuya el mujahid ra yeh maywallish Yellow plane! Stop, do not target____My brother the mujahid is leaving forever u ng during the war and after i ndependence. They became famous folk songs that revealed the closeness of the community, whether fighters or civilians. As an oral tradition, khuya al mujahid represents an emotional song yet that shows the endurance of the population during the hard times of the war for their independence.
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300 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Khadidja Arfi was born in the town of Dellys Algeria where she spend her early childhood surrounded by a lo ving extended family. She spend her early adulthood in Alg iers with her nuc lear family. She was educated in Algeria and the USA. She obtained a teaching degree, a licence in biological science in 1981 from The University of Houari Boumedienne in Al giers, A lgeria. She received a b nthropology from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Illinois i degree from the U nive r sity of Florida in 2008 in a nthropology. Sh e has been teaching (T.A.) (from fall 2006 fa ll 2013) independently and as assistant in various disciplines at UF. She has been an active member of the various communities she lived among in Algeria and USA. She currently lives with her husband in Archer, Florida.
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