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L’État : entre universalisme et variabilité des pratiques

The State : between universalism and variability of practices

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Published on Monday, January 09, 2023 by Lucie Choupaut

Summary

From ancient times onward, different state models have been conceptualized and applied all over the world. The main objective of this colloquium is to enrich an intellectual and interdisciplinary discussion which is about observing and analyzing how the States are created, how they work, survive and are contested from ancient times onward.

Announcement

Argument

From ancient times onward, different state models have been conceptualized and applied all over the world. Despite the attempt to make the Western model universal, although it displays itself slight differences depending on countries, we notice more and more varieties which take into consideration the social progress of people and the contradictions they lived through time. From absolute monarchies to presidential regimes through corporate monarchies of the medieval period and the constitutional monarchies, different models have been applied and have also underpinned the relationships between the rulers and the ruled, the administrators and the administered with convulsions and compromises which make the States function in a lively way.

According to Nicolas Machiavelli, “it is impossible for a Prince [...] to refer to his own behavior in order to know that some people should be regarded as good. [...]. He often has to, in order to strengthen the State, act against humanity, against charity and even against religion. As long as he can, he does not have to [...] be away from good, but if need be, he should be brave enough to take the way to evil”. (See “Comment les Princes doivent tenir leur parole” Le Prince [1532], Chapter xviii, pp135-136.

This political philosophy constitutes the foundation of the resolution approved on August 28, 1572 by the Parliament of Paris in order to explain the massacre of la Saint Barthélémy. Consequently, for the benefit of France, the council of the King Charles IX claimed the salvation of the kingdom and urged the catholic population to kill the Protestants. “To extreme dangers [...} extreme solutions” the writer Francois Chantelouve declares, at that time, in La tragédie du feu Gaspar de Colligni, Amiral de France. It was about these resolutions that the disciples of Machiavel considered as painful necessities to save a nation. A somewhat similar situation known as the phenomenon of microbes happened in Côte d’ivoire in 2018. To eradicate juvenile delinquency and restore public security, the government of Côte d’ivoire allowed to attack the young males who were spreading terror in different areas of the country.

The human consciousness does not accept such violent measures. In those instances, in the 18th century, the enlightened cannot accept that evil is so necessary to the extent that it can help to bring good. To the political philosophy of Machiavelli as well as the long monarchic reign of Louis XIV (1661-1715) who was believed to say: “The State, it’s me”, these thinkers oppose new forms of governments of our societies which have in common the everlasting kindness of the rulers towards the ruled. These theories inspired a great number of constitutions of the world today.

Judging by Montesquieu, author of the book entitled Esprit des Lois (1748), if the same man supported by a few advisors decides on everything while controlling all the powers by himself (legislative, executive and judicial), he will finally abuse his powers and reduce his people to servitude. “To avoid power abuse by anyone else, things should be as such that the power can stop the power” and “the government should be set up in a way that no citizen must fear another one” he recommends. Denis Diderot is also in favor of the rejection of the Monarchy, he writes in his article entitled “Autorité politique” published in 1751 in the Encyclopédie volume 1 : “No human being has been given by nature the right to command others”. Liberty is a gift from the sky, all the people from the same race have the right to benefit from it as early as they benefit from human reason. In order to allow all the citizens of the country to benefit from liberty, Voltaire himself is inspired by La République of Plato and suggests in his Lettres Philosophiques (1733) the enlightened Despotism, “ a wise government where the almighty Prince who wants to do good deeds has tied hands, which prevents him from doing evil things”. “Kings must become philosophers and philosophers become kings”, he suggests.

Following these protests of Machiavelli’s political philosophy and the monarchic regime, the Enlightened concretely spread revolutionary thoughts which foster, early in the 18th century, the creation of States based on new models. In Africa for instance, most countries which became independent in the 1960s adopted these models of state organizations: at first with the maximum State, then with the minimum State under the sociopolitical constraints of the 1970s.

What about, in today’s context of asymmetric war against terrorism, these states which are supposed to safeguard every individual’s rights to well-being, protection, education, work, movement and so on and so forth....?

Several questions come out and bring back the substantive debate, on a global scale, about the great political issues like violent extremism, sectarian tensions, immigration, the President of France, Emmanuel Macron meeting with the African civil society, the sanctions of ECOWAS against Mali etc...

This serial of crises and events permanently puts the State in the spotlight. Today, after the COVID 19 pandemic which caused people to return home and not crossing the state borders along with repeated lockdowns, the Russian Ukrainian war sets the world in a context of a new cold war which gives birth to an era where the image of the global geopolitics and geo-economics is rebuilt.

The purpose of this colloquium is to create a political platform. As a whole, it aims at assessing the State service throughout centuries and countries. The main objective is to enrich an intellectual and interdisciplinary discussion which is about observing and analyzing how the States are created, how they work, survive and are contested from ancient times onward. Contributions about the forms, the evolutions, the strengths, the difficulties, the strategies for adaptation, the convergences and divergences about the State through history are expected during the colloquium. The State’s representations and contestations in literary writings, arts and culture are also expected. For information purposes, all the contributions dealing with the issues in relation to the following points are highly welcome :

  1. The State: definitions, theories, ideologies, function and system of operation.
  2. State borders and international relations.
  3. The States in West Africa: origins, evolutions, political choices and constraints
  4. The State: relationship between the constitutions and the international conventions.
  5. State, religions, enterprises, civil society and media.
  6. The State: imaginaries, representations and forms of contestation in arts, languages and letters.
  7. The State and the human rights in the era of social networks.
  8. The State between the local and the global facing the challenge of climate change.

Conditions and terms of participation

This colloquium is open to all researchers in the fields of letters, arts, human and social sciences, especially to the ones whose perspective is to work on many disciplines. French, English, Portuguese are the authorized languages.

The proposals for communication as long as 6,000 words (max), space text and notes included should be attached to a short bio-bibliographical notice and sent to the following email addresses: sndong@univ-zig.sn and ml.manga@univ-zig.sn

Deadline for submission: February 28, 2023.

The organization committee will react to submissions on April 15, 2023

The accommodation and transport fees are payable by the participants. The registration fees for the colloquium are :

  • 25,000 Frs CFA (Twenty five thousand Frs CFA) for Master students and PhD fellows
  • 50,000 Frs CFA (Fifty thousand Frs CFA) for senior researchers.

Scientific committee members

  • Pr Mamadou Badji, Université Assane Seck de Ziguinchor, Sénégal.
  • Pr Saliou Ndiaye, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Sénégal.
  • Pr Ibrahima Thioub, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Sénégal.
  • Pr Mamadou Diouf, Michigan university, États-Unis.
  • Pr Jean-Loup Amselle, ESHSS, Paris, France.
  • Pr Achille Mbembé, Université de Paris, France.
  • Pr Véronique Petit, Université de Paris, France.
  • Pr Ketil Fred Hansen, Universitetet i Stavanger, Norvège.
  • Pr Karin Dokken, Universitetet i Oslo, Norvège.
  • Pr Ousseynou Faye, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Sénégal.
  • Pr Souleymane Bachir Diagne, Columbia University, États-Unis.
  • Pr Alioune Badara Diané, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Sénégal.
  • Pr Jean Francois Bayart, Sciences-Po, Paris, France.
  • Pr Abdoulaye Bathily, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Sénégal.
  • Pr Mariana Fonseca Bracks, Federal University of Segirpe, Brésil.
  • Pr Ibra Sène, College of Wooster, États-Unis.
  • Pr Cheikh M. S. Diop, Université Assane Seck de Ziguinchor, Sénégal.
  • Pr Ndiémé Sow, Université Assane Seck de Ziguinchor, Sénégal.
  • Pr Eugène Tavares, Université Assane Seck de Ziguinchor, Sénégal.
  • Pr Doudou Guèye, Université Assane Seck de Ziguinchor, Sénégal.
  • Pr Séverine Awenengo, CNRS / IMAF, Paris, France.
  • Pr Momar Coumba Diop, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Sénégal.
  • Pr Diélya Yaya Wane, Université Assane Seck de Ziguinchor, Sénégal.
  • Pr Tidiane Sané, Université Assane Seck de Ziguinchor, Sénégal.
  • Pr Paul Diédhiou, Université Assane Seck de Ziguinchor, Sénégal.
  • Pr Melyan Mendy, Université Assane Seck de Ziguinchor, Sénégal.
  • Dr Ndiouga Benga, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Sénégal.
  • Pr Mamadou Fall, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Sénégal.
  • Pr Vincent Foucher, Sciences-Po, Bordeaux, France.
  • Pr Gérôme Lombard, CNRS / Paris, France.
  • Pr Jean-Claude Marut, CNRS / Paris, France.
  • Pr Pape Sakho, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Sénégal.
  • Pr Mouhamadou Nissire Sarr, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Sénégal.
  • Pr Alioune Dème, Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar, Sénégal.

Project initiators Coordinators

  • Dr Mohamed Lamine Manga
  • Dr Sangoul Ndong

Places

  • UFR LASHU - UFR des Lettres, Arts et Sciences Humaines
    Ziguinchor, Republic of Senegal (BP523)

Event format

Full on-site event


Date(s)

  • Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Keywords

  • état, politique, droit humain, guerre, développement, mondialisation, climat

Contact(s)

  • Sangoul Ndong
    courriel : sndong [at] univ-zig [dot] sn
  • Mohamed Lamine Manga
    courriel : ml [dot] manga [at] univ-zig [dot] sn

Information source

  • Sangoul Ndong
    courriel : sndong [at] univ-zig [dot] sn

To cite this announcement

« L’État : entre universalisme et variabilité des pratiques », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Monday, January 09, 2023, https://calenda.org/1042393

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