November 26, 2022
Doubling Down on British Nationalism
Rishi Sunak and the red box. Photo: UK Govt.
Thus opened Barthes’ commentary on how signs are worked into myths in the contemporary world. Of course, if Paris-Match had wanted to use a real example of a “Negro in a French uniform,” the obvious choice would have been Touissant L’Ourvertoure, that most loyal servant of the French Republic and leader of French Haiti during the most tumultuous years of the Revolution. But we all know how that loyalty was repaid by the French: Toussaint was tricked, kidnapped and left to starve to death in a Parisian dungeon. Better to invent an example.
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