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Senghor and the Arts

A portrait of the writer, poet and statesman Léopold Sédar Senghor (1909-2001), through his cultural policy following Senegal’s independence.
Senghor and the arts. Reinventing the Universal puts into perspective the thoughts and achievements in the cultural sphere of the Senegalese intellectual and statesman, President of Senegal from 1960 to 1980, Léopold Sédar Senghor (1909-2001). A pioneer of Négritude, a political and literary movement initiated with Aimé Césaire, Léon-Gontran Damas, Suzanne Césaire, Jane and Paulette Nardal, Senghor defended the idea of a civilisation of the universal, shaped by the “rendezvous of giving and receiving”. Under this metaphor of exchange, of “cultural crossbreeding”, he expressed the hope of uniting traditions and initiating “the dialogue of cultures”. By reinventing and de-Westernising the notion of the universal, he affirmed Africa’s role in writing its own history.
The exhibition looks at Senegal’s cultural policy and diplomacy in the aftermath of independence, its major achievements in the visual and performing arts, but also its limitations. Senghor’s thought has not left the post-independence generations indifferent; it has been widely discussed, criticised and commented on in successive re-readings.

Place: Quai Branly Jacques Chirac Museum
Date: until 19 November 2023.
Address : 37 Quai Jacques Chirac 75007 Paris
Timing: Tuesday to Sunday, 10.30am to 7pm.
Fare: €12
Transport: RER C station Pont de l’Alma
Bus 42 to Tour Eiffel station.
Bus 63 – 80 – 92 Bosquet Rapp station