1919-1939 History of West Africa Guinea 1958-1984
Era Sekou Toure

Late Colony, 1939-1958

World War II began in 1939. France surrendered to the Germans on June 25th 1940 and Field Marshall Petain established a government at Vichy. Soon, General Charles de Gaulle established a Free French government at Brazzaville (French Equatorial Africa). French West Africa (with Guinea) remained loyal to Vichy until 1942, when American forces occupied Morocco and Algeria. More than 18,000 Guineans served in the war.
After the war, steps were undertaken to democratize the French colonies. Guinea was proclaimed an OVERSEAS TERRITORY (1946), given an ASSEMBLY and French West Africa was represented in the French National Assembly. However, the French policy to assimilate the colonies failed; sentiment was toward independence. When a referendum was held in France's overseas territories in Africa, Guinea was the only one not to vote for autonomy within the French Union, but for outright independence.
Sekou Toure founded the Parti Democratique du Guinee in 1952; in the elections of 1957 it won 56 out of 60 seats. It pursued an anti-French policy.

Guinea, History of, from Infoplease
Conakry, from Infoplease
Guinea : The Party System in 1950-1956 and 1957-1962, in : Kenneth Janda, Political Parties : A Cross-National Survey
REFERENCE Article : French West Africa, in : Britannica Book of the Year 1953 pp.300-301, 1954 p.299, 1955 p.346, 1956 pp.282-283, 1958 pp.280-281 [G]
Article : French West Africa : Guinea, in : Statesman's Year Book 1943 pp.937-938 [G]

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted in 2001, last revised on September 28th 2007

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