The Algerian War of Independence:   

Global and Local Histories

1954-62, and Beyond

held at

Middle East Centre, St Antony’s College & Trinity College, University of Oxford


Andrea Brazzoduro (Trinity, Oxford)

James McDougall (Trinity, Oxford)

Natalya Vince (Portsmouth & Algiers 2)



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Wednesday 10 May     8.00-10.00pm Investcorp Lecture Theatre                        Middle East Centre, St Antony’s

8pm – 10pm     El-Bi’r/Le Puits/The Well (Algeria, 2016)                                                                           Film screening followed by Q&A with the director Lotfi Bouchouchi

Thursday 11 May     9.20am-8.30pm Investcorp Lecture Theatre                        Middle East Centre, St Antony’s

9am – 9.20am     Registration and coffee

9.20am     Opening remarks Eugene Rogan (Director of the MEC, St Antony’s)

9.30am – 11am     Panel 1 Un-framing/Re-framing the Algerian War of Independence and its aftermaths, in Algeria and in France
Chair: James McDougall (Trinity, Oxford)

Andrea Brazzoduro (Trinity, Oxford)
Is a global microhistory approach of any use in Algerian War studies?
Malika Rahal (CNRS-IHTP, Paris)
Writing about 1962. Questions of time, continuity and revolution
Natalya Vince (Portsmouth & Algiers 2)
When was the post-war, when was the post-colonial? The case of the University of Algiers, 1963

11am – 11.30am     Coffee

11.30am – 1pm     Panel 2 Microhistories I: Actors
Chair: Jim House (Leeds)

Khaled Chérif-Sabeur (Algiers 2)
Les tirailleurs sénégalais à travers quelques extraits inédits de poèmes populaires kabyles
Neil MacMaster (UEA)
From ethnology to counter-insurgency: Jean Servier’s Dans l’Aurès sur les pas des rebelles (1955) 
Sylvie Thénault (CNRS-CHS, Paris 1)
The Froger case, Algiers 1957: Towards a study of Algeria’s colonial society at war

1pm – 2pm     Lunch

2pm – 3.30pm     Panel 3 Bodies at war: violences and representations
Chair: Natalya Vince (Portsmouth & Algiers 2)

Khedidja Adel (CRASC, Constantine)
Femmes dans la guerre d’Algérie: enfermement et corps en souffrances
Todd Shepard (Johns Hopkins)
Who had ‘les couilles’? Far right histories of the loss of French Algeria, 1962-1970
Anissa Daoudi (Birmingham)
Women’s narratives of violence in Algeria: history, fiction and memory

3.30pm – 4pm     Tea

4pm – 6pm     Panel 4 Microhistories II: Spaces
Chair: Andrea Brazzoduro (Trinity, Oxford)

Ouanassa Siari Tengour (CRASC, Constantine)
L’histoire silencieuse de Bir Chouhada, Puits des martyrs
Marc André (UCLA)
Les Algériens à ‘Fort Montluc’. Militariser la répression en France durant la guerre d’indépendance algérienne 
Claire Mauss-Copeaux (Lyon)
À la ferme Ameziane et au-delà: Hadjira
Paul Marquis (Sciences Po, Paris)
Du ‘camp d’hébergement’ à l’hôpital psychiatrique: histoire(s) d’un double internement (1957-1962)

6pm – 6.30pm     Investcorp Foyer, Middle East Centre, St Antony’s

Book launch followed by a reception
James McDougall A History of Algeria (Cambridge University Press, 2017)


8.30pm    Old Bursary Dining Room, Trinity College                                                                                  Dinner for invited participants

Friday 12 May     9.30am-2.30pm          Danson Room, Trinity College

9am-9.30     Coffee

9.30am – 11am     Panel 5 Imagined geographies, imagined communities
Chair: Judith Scheele (All Souls, Oxford)

Amar Mohand Amer (CRASC, Oran)
Algérie en 1962: indépendance nationale et influences étrangères
Kelsey Suggitt (Portsmouth)
The organisation Commune des Régions Sahariennes (OCRS): Eurafrica in action?
Jim House (Leeds)
Solidarity and fear in an Algiers shantytown before, during and after the war for independence

11am – 11.30am     Coffee

11.30am – 1.30pm     Panel 6 Histories, memories, and wars after the war
Chair: Michael Willis (St Antony’s, Oxford)

Hassan Remaoun (CRASC, Oran)
La construction d’une histoire nationale en Algérie
Yassine Temlali (Aix-Marseille)
L’affirmation berbère après 1962 et le mouvement national indépendantiste: de la construction d’une ethnohistoire contemporaine à la régénération du berbèro-nationalisme
Charlotte Courrèye (INALCO, Paris)
La construction de la mémoire de l’Association des Oulémas Musulmans Algériens et de sa légitimité par ses anciens membres dans l’Algérie indépendante: le tournant des années 1980
Nedjib Sidi Moussa (INALCO, Paris)
Djihad, guerre ou révolution? Nommer le conflit algérien: enjeux théoriques et controverses politiques

1.30pm – 2.30pm     Lunch and close

This is a free event open to all

To secure your place, please email, or fill in the contact form. Please indicate if you will be attending the whole conference, or events on 10 May (evening film screening); 11 May (all day) or 12 May (half day).
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement 656782


This conference will mark a major shift in the historiography of the Algerian War of Independence (1954–62). Accounts of this war have largely remained confined within, and constrained by, the boundaries of the French and Algerian nation-states and the conflicting narratives of each. Recent work by Anglophone (especially American) scholars has broadened the field by offering international histories of the war, but such work has moved even further away from engaging with the realities of the conflict as it actually unfolded “on the ground” within Algeria and within the Algerian emigrant community in France. A fuller understanding of the war requires a marriage of both global and local scales of analysis, paying attention simultaneously to the global connections and significance of the Algerian revolution and France’s Cold War counter-insurgency, on the one hand, and to the complex, often very divisive, local experience of the war for Algerian men, women, and children, on the other. Inseparable from such rewriting is critical attention to the construction and voicing of individual, familial, and local memories and memorialisations (and the concomitant forgetting, or silences) of the war, and its key role in social memory in Algeria and France since 1962.

[ALN troops on the Tunisian border (M. Kouaci); front page of Jeune Afrique, 16-22 July 1962 (MEC library, Oxford); woman and child near a regroupement centre, probably ca. 1959 (National Archives, Algiers)]


Please, fill the form below to contact the organising committee

This is a free event open to all

To secure your place, please indicate if you will be attending the whole conference,
or events on 10 May (evening film screening); 11 May (all day) or 12 May (half day).