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Colonial Switzerland


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Table of Contents

Contents 1. On the Tropical Origins of the Alps. Science and the Colonial Imagination of Switzerland, 1700-1900; Bernhard C. Schar 2. Race in the Making: Colonial Encounters, Body Measurements and the Global Dimensions of Swiss Racial Science, 1900-1950; Pascal Germann 3. The Other's Colony. Switzerland and the Discovery of Cote d'Ivoire; Lukas Meier 4. Patriotic Bonds and the Danger of Estrangement: Swiss Networks in Colonial Southeast Asia (1850-1930); Andreas Zangger 5. 'Wonderland' Peru: Migration and the Making of an Andean Switzerland; Angela Sanders 6. Bollywood, Chicken Curry - and IT: The Public Spectacle of the Indian Exotic, and Postcolonial Anxieties in Switzerland; Rohit Jain 7. Becoming Imperial: A Swiss Woman's Shifting Identity in British Southern Africa; Ruramisai Charumbira 8. From 'Native' Alpine Guides to Foreign 'Sahibs' in the Himalayas: Swiss Identity Formation at the Moment of Decolonization; Patricia Purtschert 9. Overburdened White Men (and Women). Ruptured Self-Images of Young Swiss in the 'Third World' (1950s to 1970s); Patricia Hongler and Marina Lienhard 10. The Other Side of Internationalism: Switzerland as Hub of Militant Anti-Colonialism (c. 1910-1920); Harald Fischer-Tine 11. 'The Chinaman of old cannot be compared to the Chinaman of today': Official Views of China and the Construction of Colonial Knowledge in Interwar Switzerland; Ariane Knusel 12. Glimpses into the Hearts of Whiteness: Institutions of Intimacy and the Desirable National; Anne Lavanchy Colonial Complicities and Hidden Imperial Entanglements: An Afterword; Shalini Randeria

About the Author

Patricia Purtschert is Postdoctoral Researcher at ETH Zurich, Switzerland, and a philosopher. Her areas of research are feminist, gender, queer, postcolonial and cultural studies. Together with Barbara Luthi and Francesca Falk, she has co-edited the volume Postkoloniale Schweiz: Formen und Folgen eines Kolonialismus ohne Kolonien (2012, 2nd edition 2013).

Harald Fischer-Tine is Professor of Global History at ETH Zurich, Switzerland. He has published widely on South Asian history and the history of colonialism and imperialism. His latest monograph is the biography of a diasporic Indian revolutionary: Shyamji Krishnavarma: Sanskrit, Sociology and Anti-Imperialism (2014).


"Colonial Switzerland is awkwardly intriguing given a lack of Swiss colonies overall. ... Colonial Switzerland looks at Switzerland `as a country shaped by colonialism in a variety of ways' ... and thereby explores overlooked avenues of inquiry tied to the `colonialism at the margins' or `colonialism without colonies' ... . Colonial Switzerland constitutes, without a doubt, a valuable contribution to ongoing conversations around the study of `colonialism without colonies' ... a scholarly interest apparent well beyond the small Alpine state." (Martin Kalb, Itinerario, Vol. 40 (1), April, 2016)

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