Lethal Provocation: The Constantine Murders and the Politics of French Algeria


Product Details

Cornell University Press
Publish Date
6.0 X 0.88 X 9.0 inches | 1.43 pounds

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About the Author

Joshua Cole is Professor of History at the University of Michigan. He teaches nineteenth and twentieth century European history and has published work on gender and the history of the population sciences, colonial violence, and the politics of memory in France, Algeria, and Germany. His book The Power of Large Numbers was selected as an Outstanding Academic Title for 2000 by Choice Magazine. He is also coauthor, with Carol Symes, of Western Civilizations.


"This is a very impressive book. Joshua Cole's research, argumentation, and prose are all exceptional. His achievement should not be understated: Lethal Provocation will stand as the definitive history of a key event in Algeria's colonial era for generations to come."

--Benjamin Claude Brower, University of Texas at Austin, author of A Desert Named Peace

"Lethal Provocation is a tour de force. Here, at last, is a book worthy of the importance and complexity of the Constantine riots of 1934: a major and long-misunderstood event of modern French, Algerian, and Jewish history. Carefully researched and brilliantly contextualized, it deserves a wide audience."

--Ethan B. Katz, University of California Berkeley, author of The Burdens of Brotherhood

"Majestic. Cole's powerful narrative of the tragic events of 1934 compels historians of empire to rethink categories, approaches, and methodologies. His deep research into, and reflection on, 'French' North Africa sets a new standard for Colonial Studies."

--Julia Clancy-Smith, University of Arizona, author of Mediterraneans