• Rebellion and resistance in French Indochina in the First World War

      Krause, Jonathan (Taylor & Francis, 2019-12-25)
      The First World War was not merely a clash of empires, it was also a clash within empires. This fact remains largely ignored despite the dozens of anticolonial uprisings around the world which erupted during, and as a result of, the war. In 1916 alone there were uprisings across French North, West and Equatorial Africa, in Portuguese Angola and Mozambique, the Middle East, Central Asia, Southeast Asia and Ireland. Most of these uprisings were responding both to European efforts to extract resources (especially manpower) from the colonies to support the war effort, whilst also taking advantage of the reduced presence of European troops in Asia and Africa as men were recalled from the colonies to take part in the war in Europe. This article examines anticolonial rebellions in French Indochina, especially the attack on Saigon Central Prison in 1916, as a case study in the wider global history of anticolonial rebellion during the Frist World War. Examination of this rebellion shows how the First World War not only generated the opportunities and challenges which led to a surge of anticolonial uprisings around the world, but also changed the political, social and religious character of anticolonial struggle in Indochina. This article offers a reappraisal of the global and imperial consequences of the First World War, and argues that anticolonialism should be more central in our discussion and memory of the conflict.