Seminar on Empire and the Ambiguities of Love

Dr Linnell Secomb, from the University of Greenwich, will be presenting a seminar paper entitled 'Empire and the Ambiguities of Love

Abstract: Colonialism is not only enforced through violence but facilitated also by economic, religious, and social strategies and inducements. Amongst these love has been exploited as a tool of empire to construct alliances, procure compliance and disguise the conquest of peoples and territories. Love has also, however, been the basis for an ethics and politics that contests imperialism. Friendship, affinity and amorous relations between colonizer and colonized enables a resistance to the ambitions of colonial occupation and rule. In this paper, the work of the London based artist, Yinka Shonibare, is used as a means to examine the operation of love in the colonial context.