Azawad: A Stateless Democracy

Azawad: A Stateless Democracy

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January 30, 2015

In To Make a World, Part II: The Art of Creating a State, Jonas Staal observes that in contrast to the mass-performance of the French, which was staged to reinforce France’s empire, “The Azawadian flag forms the ideological, visual, and performative texture of a stateless state.” Examining the conflict between the postcolonial state of Mali and the stateless state of Azawad, Staal notes that the new Scramble for Africa, in which the Europeans and Americans seek to secure fossil fuels and valuable minerals, “We are thus dealing with two fundamentally conflicting states performing themselves: the recognized state of Mali, embedded through the French, in the borderless empire of global capitalism; and the stateless state of Azawad, which enacts the memory of peoples that were never structured in terms of nation-states in the first place.”

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