The Torture Controversy (1998-2002): Towards a 'new history' of the Algerian War?

Neil MacMaster

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


    During the last two years media attention has centred on the issue of torture during the Algerian war. An exploration of this debate shows that the deep passions and tensions which have, in the past, bitterly divided the participants in the war and prevented an objective historical investigation or dialogue, are now receding. In France, in spite of a long history of state secrecy surrounding 'sensitive' archives, there has been a quiet but significant liberalisation of access and a new body of research based on this huge and growing body of evidence is dramatically changing our understanding of the war. Although many historians hope to see a growing Franco-Algerian collaboration, the torture debate reveals at the same time how far the current political crisis in Algeria and the authoritarian military regime continue to impede access to archives and a more open research agenda.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)449-459
    Number of pages11
    JournalModern & Contemporary France
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2002

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