Season 2 Episode 1: The Afterlives of Revolution

As we find ourselves working through the current mass media frenzy, we turn to the not so recent past. Season 2 of this podcast begins with a conversation between edna bonhomme and Sara Salem, where they discuss the emergence of British imperialism in Egypt and how it led to the Egyptian revolution in 1952. They ask: What do Arab and Black Marxists have to say about colonialism and what influence did the African independence struggles of the 1950s and 1960s have on the Black Radical tradition? edna and Sara try to answer these questions by meditating on the afterlives of anti-colonialism. They start with the nineteenth century and slowly move to the Arab uprisings of 2010-2011. What they find is that these histories are not neat. There are periods of betrayal, exploitation, and loss. In light of former Egyptian ruler Hosni Mubarak’s resignation in 2011 and his death in 2020, they try to think about the ways that we create our own histories everyday.


Sara Salem is an Assistant Professor in Sociology at the London School of Economics. Sara’s research interests include political sociology, postcolonial studies, Marxist theory, and global histories of empire. She has recently published articles on Angela Davis in Egypt in the journal Signs; on Frantz Fanon and Egypt’s postcolonial state in Interventions: A Journal of Postcolonial Studies and on Nasserism in Egypt through the lens of haunting in Middle East Critique. Her forthcoming book with Cambridge University Press is entitled Anticolonial Afterlives in Egypt: The Politics of Hegemony.


Anticolonial Afterlives in Egypt: The Politics of Hegemony
Twitter: @saramsalem
Instagram: radical_reading


Baldwin, James. Notes of a Native Son. London: Penguin, (1955) 2018.

Baldwin, James. 1965. Excerpt from the debate between James Baldwin and William F. Buckley, Jr.

Davis, Angela. Freedom Is a Constant Struggle: Ferguson, Palestine, and the Foundations of a Movement. Chicago: Haymarket Press, 2016.

Rao, Rahul. “Recovering Reparative Readings of Postcolonialism and Marxism.” Critical Sociology 43, no. 4–5 (July 2017): 587–598. doi:10.1177/0896920516630798.


Interview and editing by edna bonhomme
Assistance by Kristyna Comer
Music by MattiaGiovanetti (477877, Attribution License, Creative Commons), NALALIONGIRL (442612, Attribution License, Creative Commons), X3nus (450539, Attribution License, Creative Commons), zagi2 ( 265251, Attribution License, Creative Commons)