This book offers a novel sociological examination of the historical trajectories of Burundi and Rwanda. It challenges both the Eurocentric assumptions which have underpinned many sociological theorisations of modernity, and the notion that the processes of modernisation move gradually, if precariously, towards more peaceable forms of cohabitation within and between societies. Addressing these themes at critical historical junctures – precolonial, colonial and postcolonial – the book argues that the recent experiences of extremely violent social conflict in Burundi and Rwanda cannot be seen as an ‘object apart’ from the concerns of sociologists, as it is commonly presented. Instead, these experiences are situated within a specific route to and through modernity, one ‘entangled’ with Western modernity. A contribution to an emerging global historical sociology, Entanglements of Modernity, Colonialism and Genocide will appeal to scholars of sociology and social theory with interests in postcolonialism, historical sociology, multiple modernities and genocide.

chapter |16 pages


part I|48 pages

Modernity, colonialism, genocide

chapter 1|24 pages

Genocide and colonialism

chapter 2|23 pages

Theorising the multiplicity of modernity

part II|106 pages

Entangled routes to and through modernity

chapter 3|18 pages

Precolonial Burundi and Rwanda

A historical survey

chapter 4|22 pages

The colonial entanglement, 1905–1945

The racialisation of tradition

chapter 5|29 pages

Trajectories towards independence, 1945–1965

Multiple ‘societal self-understandings’

chapter 6|28 pages

Postcolonial crisis and genocide, 1965–1994

Traumas of modernity

chapter |8 pages