Moussa Zabsonré

Moussa Zabsonré
Moussa Zabsonré
( University of Fada N’Gourma / Burkina Faso )

Since February 2020, I have held a unique PhD in African History from Joseph KI-ZERBO University (Burkina Faso, formerly Upper Volta). My thesis focused on Health policies in Burkina Faso and the fight against tropical diseases: onchocerciasis and trypanosomiasis (1960-2012). These two diseases have been major public health problems. Since then, my area of interest has been health issues from a historical perspective. For this purpose, I have directed my current scientific activities on the post-doctoral research project on Colonial medicine and the care of the insane in Upper Volta from 1897 to 1960. Supported by the Fondation Maison Sciences de l’Homme, this study delves into the country’s colonial past in order to understand the place of mental health in the public policies implemented by the coloniser who, according to Paul MARQUIS, did not place the mentally ill at the forefront of colonial concerns.

This study, through its chronology, its issues and its main themes, fits in well with the guidelines of the MaDAf project, which aims to retrace the history of madness in West Africa during the period of decolonisation and after independence. My participation in MaDAf will enable me to interact with researchers from other backgrounds in order to capitalise on experiences, angles of approach and scientific and historical developments on the issue of the insane in their respective areas of study, with a view to contributing to the writing of a history of madness in Upper Volta.

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