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Finding aid for the ACHAC collection, 1880-ca. 1975
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative History
  • Administrative Information
  • Separated Material
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms
  • Bibliography

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: ACHAC collection
    Date (inclusive): 1880-ca. 1975
    Number: 970031
    Creator/Collector: Association Connaissance de l'histoire de l'Afrique contemporaine
    Physical Description: 32.0 linear feet (31 boxes, 30 flatfiles, 5 rolls)
    The Getty Research Institute
    Special Collections
    1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 1100
    Los Angeles, California, 90049-1688
    (310) 440-7390
    Abstract: A consortium of scholars and researchers devoted to exploring and promoting discussion of race, iconography, and the colonial and post-colonial periods of Africa and Europe. The ACHAC collection documents the influence of French colonialism, both on Africa and on France itself, as represented in images produced and distributed through the media of French popular culture as well as in the personal photographs of European residents of the African colonies. Some materials concern Belgian and German colonies.
    Request Materials: Request access to the physical materials described in this inventory through the catalog record  for this collection. Click here for the access policy .
    Language: Collection material is in French

    Administrative History

    ACHAC (Association Connaissance de l'histoire de l'Afrique contemporaine) is a consortium of scholars and researchers devoted to exploring and promoting discussion of race, iconography and the colonial and post-colonial periods of Africa and Europe. Founded in 1990 by historian and author Pascal Blanchard, ACHAC organizes conferences and prepares scholarly publications on these topics, often in conjunction with other associations. Participants who assisted in the transfer of the materials in this collection include Dr. Blanchard, anthropobiologist Gilles Boëtsch, Director of Research at the CNRS (Centre national de la recherche scientifique), and historian and filmmaker Eric Deroo.
    ACHAC has created presentations on these topics in a variety of media, including a CD-ROM as well as a traveling educational exhibition entitled Images et colonies, consisting of pre-printed panels offering a critical analysis of popular images from the French colonial period. ACHAC's journal Plein Sud, a publication devoted to African studies, released several issues in 1991 and 1992 and also serves as the publishing imprint for ACHAC's conference proceedings. ACHAC's website (achac.com) will be available online as of Dec. 31, 2001.
    ACHAC members participate in conferences and publish articles on topics central to its mission. Most recently, two such articles appeared in the French journal Le Monde diplomatique: "Ces zoos humains de la République coloniale" (Aug. 2000) and "1931! Tous à l'Expo..." (Jan. 2001). Other articles recently appeared include "L'Afrique noire inventée," Historiens et géographes, no. 367 (1999-2000); "Sauvage ou assimilé?", Africultures (Feb. 2000); and "L'invention du corps du colonisé à l'heure de l'apogée coloniale," Le corps dans tous ses états (CNRS Editions, Dec. 2001).
    Images et colonies : iconographie et propagande coloniale sur l'Afrique française de 1880 à 1962. Nanterre : BDIC ; Paris : ACHAC, [1993] Images et colonies : nature, discours et influence de l'iconographie coloniale liée à la propagande coloniale et à la représentation des Africains et de l'Afrique en France, de 1920 aux indépendances : actes du colloque organisé par l'ACHAC du 20 au 22 janvier 1993 à la Bibliothèque nationale. Paris : Syros, 1993. Conference papers delivered at the Bibliothèque nationale, Paris, 1993. L'Autre et nous : Scènes et types. [Paris] : Syros ; ACHAC, 1995. Conference papers delivered in Marseille, 1995. L'Afrique : un continent, des nations. Toulouse : Milan, 1996-1997. A children's book. Images d'empires : 1930-1960, trente ans de photographies officielles sur l'Afrique française. Paris : Editions de la Martinière, Documentation française, c1997. Imaginaire colonial, figures de l'immigré; special number of Hommes et migrations, June 1997. De l'indigène à l'immigré. Paris : Gallimard, c1998. Series: Découvertes. Histoire, 345. Afriques; special number of Passerelles, no. 16, May 1998. L'héritage colonial : un trou de mémoire; special number of Hommes et migrations, Nov. 2000. Paris noir, 1878-2000. Paris : Ed. Hazan, 2001.
    Images et colonies, Bibliothèque nationale (Paris, 1993)
    Maghreb et Afrique noire au regard du cinéma colonial, Institut du monde arabe (Paris, 1994)
    Scènes et types (Marseille, 1995)
    Miroirs d'empires (Lille/Brussels, 1996)
    De l'indigène à l'immigré (Lille/Paris, 1997)
    Zoos humains? Mémoire coloniale! (Marseille/Paris, 2001)
    Images et colonies (appeared in 18 countries in Africa, Europe and America, 1993-1998)
    Images et colonies (educational exhibition with 120 copies circulating world-wide, 1995-2000)
    L'appel à l'Afrique (appeared in 6 African countries, 1995-1998)
    Miroirs d'empires (Lille/Brussels, 1996)
    Zoos humains (Paris, Bamako, New York, 2001-2002)

    Administrative Information


    Open for use by qualified researchers.

    Publication Rights

    Preferred Citation

    ACHAC collection, 1880-ca. 1975, Getty Research Institute, Research Library, Accession no. 970031.

    Acquisition Information

    The collection was acquired directly from ACHAC in 1997.

    Processing History

    Collection processed by Paul Arenson.

    Separated Material

    All of the approximately 300 books and 1150 individual periodical issues from the collection were separated to the library. A search using the term "ACHAC" while selecting the index "Provenance" from the pull-down menu in the Getty online library catalog will retrieve a list of these separated materials, in addition to the ACHAC collection-level record and the full records for the photograph albums and collecting card albums, described more briefly in this finding aid. A search using the term "ACHAC" and selecting the "Keyword" index will retrieve the ACHAC collection-level record and individual album records alone, without records for the separated materials.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The ACHAC collection is iconographic in scope, and documents the impacts and influences of French colonialism, both on Africa and on France itself, as represented in images produced and distributed through the media of French popular culture as well as in the personal photographs of European residents of the African colonies. The collection relates principally to French colonialism, although some materials concern the Belgian and German colonies. Included in the collection are 2286 postcards, 350 loose photographs, 14 photograph albums, 19 periodicals, clippings and portfolio publications, 134 posters, prints and items of original artwork, 83 items of assorted ephemera, 148 loose advertising and collecting cards, 5 collecting card albums, 16 children's games and toys, and 14 scores of sheet music. The geographic foci of the collection are the former French colonies of North, West and Central Africa, with some items pertaining to Madagascar, Djibouti and Indochina, and to a much lesser extent the former Belgian colonies of Central Africa; one collecting card album represents the former German colonies in Africa and Oceania. Produced by government agencies, commercial concerns and private individuals, the images provide a representative cross-section of the visual materials in circulation at the time, in France and elsewhere, pertaining to the colonies and the colonial experience.
    The collection is rich in images of colonial conquest and military activity, particularly with respect to the French colonial troops (Troupes coloniales) and the regiments of African soldiers recruited into the French army and serving under European officers, the best documented being the Senegalese infantry (Tirailleurs sénégalais). The collection also features a wealth of images documenting cities, regions and industries within the colonies, as well as the French colonial expositions of the first half of the 20th century, most particularly the one held in Paris in 1931; portraits and depictions of colonized peoples and cultures, ranging in tone from documentary and ethnographic to romanticized, erotic or racist; propaganda and educational images intended to direct public opinion within France into accord with French colonial, military and economic policy; and advertisements and other ephemera employing colonial or racist imagery.

    Arrangement note

    The collection is arranged in seven series: Series I. Postcards, ca. 1900-ca. 1957; Series II. Photographs, 1895-ca. 1962; Series III. Portfolio publications and other periodical materials, 1909?-ca. 1960; Series IV. Printed images, posters, maps and original artwork, 1880-1967; Series V. Printed ephemera, ca. 1900-ca. 1975; Series VI. Toys and games, 1892-1941; Series VII. Sheet music, 1908-1956

    Indexing Terms

    Subjects - Names

    Diagne, Blaise, 1872-1934
    Diouf, Galandou
    Foucauld, Charles de, 1858-1916
    Lespinasse de Bournazel, Henry-Marie-Just de, 1898-1933
    Lyautey, Louis Hubert Gonzalve, 1854-1934
    Maginot, André, 1877-1932
    Mutara III Charles Rudahigwa, Mwami of Rwanda, 1911-1959

    Subjects - Corporate Bodies

    Exposition coloniale de Marseille (1906)
    Exposition coloniale de Marseille (1922)
    Exposition coloniale internationale de Paris (1931)
    France. Armée. Méharistes
    France. Armée. Tirailleurs sénégalais
    France. Armée. Troupes coloniales
    France. Armée. Troupes d'outre-mer

    Subjects - Topics

    Africa, Central--Colonization.
    Africa, French-speaking West--Colonization.
    Africa, North--Colonization.
    Architecture, Colonial--Africa
    Colonists--Africa--Social life and customs.
    France--Colonies--Africa--History, Military.
    Indigenous peoples--Africa--Social life and customs.
    Photography of women--Africa.
    Racism in popular culture--France
    Vernacular architecture--Africa.

    Subjects - Places

    Algeria--History--Revolution, 1954-1962

    Subjects - Titles

    Documentation photographique Documentation pédagogique (no. 47, 61, 72) Maduré-Madagascar Pédagogie pratique

    Genres and Forms of Material

    Advertising blotters
    Advertising cards
    Albumen prints
    Board games
    Book jackets
    Cigarette cards
    Clippings (information artifacts)
    Collecting cards
    Collodion prints
    Color lithographs
    Drawings (visual works)
    First day covers
    Gelatin silver prints
    Illustrated menus
    Line blocks
    Magazines (periodicals)
    Maximum cards
    Notebook covers
    Offset lithographs
    Photograph albums
    Photographic prints
    Photographs, Original
    Photomechanical prints
    Pictorial envelopes
    Playing cards
    Relief halftones
    Screen prints
    Sheet music
    Toys (recreational artifacts)


    Allard, G.
    Aquisti, Danilo
    Asso, Raymond
    Atelier Cob
    Atelier J. Fourastié
    Atelier Salabert
    Auger, Raoul
    Bartet, docteur
    Baschet, Marcel, 1862-1941
    Bayle, Luc Marie
    Bellenger, P.
    Benveniste, S. D.
    Boisselier, H.
    Borel-Clerc, Charles
    Bousquet, L.
    Bouygues, L.
    Boyer, Lucien, 1876-1942
    Braun et compagnie
    Bresson, R.
    Camus, Ernest
    Carbonel, Jules
    Carew, A. Ferdinand
    Casino (Firm)
    Castel, Eric
    Cauvy, Lèon
    Charaire, E.
    Chazeaud, Jacques
    Chocolat Cémoi (Firm)
    Chocolat Pupier (Firm)
    Chocolat Suchard (firm)
    Chocolaterie d'Aiguebelle
    Clairin, Georges, 1843-1919
    Clérice, Charles
    Cohn, Irving
    Colin, Paul, 1892-1985
    Collection idéale PS (Firm)
    Combier Imprimeur Mâcon
    Compagnie alsacienne des arts photoméchaniques
    Contet, Henri, 1904-1998
    Cras, Monique
    Da Cruz, A.
    Dandrieux, G.
    Dellepiane, David, 1866-1932
    Delval, H.
    Denay, Pierre
    Denoncin, René
    Desmoulins, R.
    Dessault, L.
    Destres, Melchior
    Dormoy, Henri
    Douillet, J.
    Dransy, Naja
    Dupuich, J. A.
    Dupuy et compagnie
    Edition Francis Salabert
    Ferréol, Roger
    Fix-Masseau, Pierre, 1905-
    Fort, Jean
    Fortier, François-Edmond, 1862-1928
    Gay, Byron
    Geiser, Jean, 1848-1923
    Giordani, N.
    Goldstein, H.
    Gougeon, Louis
    Géza, Dombay
    Hernandez, E.
    Hilliard, Bob
    Hoffner, L.
    Ifrani, Jacques
    Imagerie Pellerin (Épinal, France)
    Irriera, Roger
    Ithier, Hubert
    Jonas, Lucien, 1880-1947
    Jourdain, gouverneur
    Kahn, Gus, 1886-1941
    Koger, Geo.
    Kálmán, Emmerich, 1882-1953
    La Cigogne (Firm)
    La Croix, Veyron
    Lajoux, Edmond
    Large, H.
    Larue, Jacques
    Latil, C.
    Lebied, E.
    Lecuona, Margarita
    Ledru, Jack
    Lemarchand, Louis
    Lemonies (?)
    Leroux, Pierre Albert, 1890-1959
    Leroy, J. V.
    Levy, Ch.
    Liebig's Extract of Meat Company
    Ligue maritime et coloniale française
    Lion, R.
    Lévy, fils et compagnie
    Marbot, R.
    Mazenod, L.
    Mercier, A. L.
    Merly, Jean
    Monnot, Marguerite
    Morvan, Hervé, 1917-1980
    Neurdein frères
    Nezière, R. de
    Nouen, Guy
    Noury, Pierre, b. 1894
    Office algérien d'action economique et touristique
    Orange, Maurice
    Pelletier, G.
    Pinchon, E.
    Portal, Henri
    Prevot, Paul
    Produits du Lion Noir
    Prost, Gaston
    Quidor, Gaston
    Ranem, M.
    Reclose, Henri
    Reynaud (?)
    Ripart, G.
    Romberg (?), Maurice
    Romberg, Sigmund, 1887-1951
    Russell, Bob, 1914-1970
    Régamey, Frédéric, 1849-1925
    Régnard, adjudant
    Saunier, J.
    Schoeffler, G.
    Service de l'information du Congo Belge
    Service spécial de police et sûreté, Soudan français
    Sigman, Carl
    Silver, F.
    Tabet, George
    Tinayre, Louis, 1861-1941
    Tournaire, Albert
    Valerio, R. de
    Van Den Heuvel, A.
    Veber, Pierre, 1869-1942
    Villaire, Henri
    Vrillon, Pierre
    Waroquier, Henry de, 1881-1970
    Whiting, Richard A., 1891-1938
    Wuillaume, R.
    Zagourski, C.


    Information from the following books was used in the cataloging this collection and in the preparation of this finding aid: David, Philippe. Inventaire général des cartes postales Fortier. [Paris : s.n.], 1986-88, vol. 1, p. 3-4. Dubuisson, Serge, and Jean-Charles Humbert. Jean Geiser, photographe-éditeur : Alger, 1848-1923. In: L'image dans le monde arabe / Institut de recherches et d'études sur le monde arabe et musulman; sous la direction de G. Beaugé et de J.-F. Clément. Paris : CNRS éditions, 1995, p. 275-290. Garanger, Marc. La guerre d'Algérie : vue par un appelé du contingent. [Paris] : Seuil, 1984, p. 41, 86-93. Guenneguez, André. Répertoire de la carte postale ivoirienne en hommage aux fondateurs de la Côte-d'Ivoire : centenaire 1887/1888-1888. Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire : Art et Édition, 1988, p. 190. Images et colonies : iconographie et propagande coloniale sur l'Afrique française de 1880 à 1962. Nanterre : BDIC ; Paris : ACHAC, [1993], p. 130, 186, 196-7, 205, 240. Prussin, Labelle. Hatumere : Islamic design in West Africa. Berkeley : University of California Press, c1986, p. 18, 123, 172. Ripert, Aline. La carte postale : son histoire, sa fonction sociale. Paris : Editions du CNRS ; Lyon : Presses universitaires de Lyon, c1983, p. 52-4. Sorlot, Marc. André Maginot : l'homme politique et sa légende. Metz : Serpenoise, c1995, p. 70, 192, 195-6, 206. Stewart, John. African states and rulers : an encyclopedia of native, colonial, and independent states and rulers past and present. Jefferson, N.C. : McFarland, c1989, p. 226-7.