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Apostles of ModernitySaint-Simonians and the Civilizing Mission in Algeria$
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Osama Abi-Mershed

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780804769099

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804769099.001.0001

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The Moral Conquest

The Moral Conquest

(p.34) Chapter Two The Moral Conquest
Apostles of Modernity
Stanford University Press

This chapter examines the obstacles and challenges encountered by the French in their invasion of North Africa. Misguided by the unwarranted speculations of policy makers, unable to communicate with the locals, and cut off from Paris after the fall of the Bourbons, the military high command began to shun the directives of the discredited government. Untested rules were improvised to secure the army's tenuous foothold in North Africa and overcome the incoherence and inertia of the new public powers. Yet, ideological incentives also factored in the generals' expedient commandeering of policy making in Algeria, especially in the case of Polytechnicien and Saint-Simonian officers who saw in the political vacuum the opportunity to determine the conduct of the colonial campaign.

Keywords:   Algeria, North Africa, invasion, colonization, colonialism, France, colonial history, policy making

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