Sunday, 8 May 2016

The Butcher of Guelma - a novel by Francis Zamponi

Today, commemorations in Guelma, Setif and Kerrata (Algeria), and their surrounding area are taking place. 8 May 1945 has another significance in Algeria. On that day, and for about a month, the French colonial authorities and civilians took it upon themselves to massacre the Algerian population, men women and children, to punish a group of Algerians who had gone out to celebrate the end of the second world war - a struggle in which Algerians participated as soldiers for the allies - and who marched bearing the Algerian flag, asking for the same right to freedom as these nations. 

Francis Zamponi, a French-Algerian writer, was one of the first to net a historical novel around these massacres against the Algerian population. While creating a work of fiction, Zamponi has helped bringing to the fore key historical elements and facts to the public knowledge.

Here is my review of his novel for HuffPost Algerie in French The Butcher of Guelma, one of the first novels that has retraced the events of 8 May 1945.


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