The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

‘We've never had a voice’: memory construction and the children of the harkis (1962–1991)

Eldridge, Claire (2009) ‘We've never had a voice’: memory construction and the children of the harkis (1962–1991) French History [Special Issue on ‘Spaces and Places’], 23, (1), pp. 88-107. (doi:10.1093/fh/crn062).

Record type: Article


When riots broke out in the Bias Camp east of Bordeaux in May 1975, few in France had heard of the harkis, the Algerian auxiliaries who fought for the French during the Algerian War of Independence (1954-62). This began to change, however, as the rapidly spreading protests instigated by their children garnered increasing media coverage. Seeking to end their status as les oubliés de l’histoire, the children of the harkis sought recognition for the history of their parents, particularly the sacrifices they had made for France and the suffering endured as a consequence. What is particularly interesting about this campaign is that the children of the harkis were not alone in this desire and in fact were relative latecomers to the harki activist scene. The years since the end of the Algerian War had witnessed a range of representations offered by a series of self-appointed spokespeople who, in the absence of direct testimony from within the harki community and often in the service of their own objectives, took it upon themselves to speak on behalf of the harkis. This article seeks to analyse the relationship between these external narratives, put forward by actors including the Algerian and French governments, the former Muslim elite of colonial Algeria, French veterans and the pied-noir community, and those offered by the children of the harkis in order to illustrate some of the issues pertaining to the mobilization and transmission of France’s colonial past in a postcolonial context.

Full text not available from this repository.

More information

Published date: March 2009
Organisations: Modern Languages


Local EPrints ID: 180817
ISSN: 0269-1191
PURE UUID: eedd57f9-7acc-4c9a-a6a9-282b27c8095b

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 13 Apr 2011 09:09
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 12:00

Export record



Author: Claire Eldridge

University divisions

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton:

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.