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This chapter is an introduction that explains the relation between this book and The French Imperial Nation-State and situates this study relative to recent scholarship on decolonization, postwar France, negritude, Aimé Césaire, Léopold Senghor, French imperial history, the postwar order, historical temporality, intellectual history, critical theory, and postcolonial studies. It criticizes the methodological nationalism that underlies much scholarship about decolonization and the territorialism that underlies much scholarship on African and Caribbean colonial intellectuals and their forms of thought, which are mistakenly presumed to be local and particularistic.

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