This article examines processes of community-building in the immigrant quarter of New Bell, Douala, during the interwar years. Historians of Douala have overlooked the history of New Bell, focusing instead on the political and economic activity of Duala's Westernized elite during this period. This historiographic oversight reflects a preoccupation with elite politics identified as the seeds of nationalism in Cameroon. An examination of the community of immigrants provides us with an alternative conceptualization of a multiethnic collective. By tracing the construction and evolution of public space in interwar New Bell, we can uncover elements of group solidarity binding together this highly diverse population.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cultural Studies