Towards transcolonial francophone connections

Representations of mobility and immobility in Bel-Avenir by Akli Tadjer

Francosphères (2018), 7, (1), 87–101.


This article analyses the representation of cross-cultural connections in Bel-Avenir (2006) by Franco-Algerian author Akli Tadjer. More specifically, and with reference to Françoise Lionnet’s concept of ‘transcolonialism’, the article argues that the text constitutes a site of transcolonial francophone connection. Through exploring the transcolonial nature of the text, I posit a move beyond viewing the literary output of second-generation Franco-Algerian authors as defined only by the binary relationship between France and Algeria, a relationship which itself is defined as static and immutable. Furthermore, I argue that it is through the use of motifs of mobility and immobility that these broader francophone transcolonial connections are brought to light. Drawing on both established and more recent theories of mobility and travel, the article challenges the simplistic tendency to equate mobility with freedom, underlining that it is not sufficient simply to extol the enabling potential of mobility, as scholars such as Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari have done in the past. Rather, representations of the effects of migration in Tadjer’s text underline the syncretization of mobility and immobility in the modern world. Crucially, it is through the syncretization of mobility and immobility that transcolonial connections are put forward in the text, challenging the rigidity of singular notions of identity, history, and literature.


Author details

Lewis, Jonathan