Italy's Colonial Futures: Colonial Inertia and Postcolonial Capital in Asmara, a 2011 article by Mia Fuller
The core of Asmara, Italy’s former colonial capital in Eritrea, is widely known as a unique repository
of 1930s Italian architecture. In addition, its Italian food and other traces of the colonial era lend it
the semblance, to foreign eyes, of a still-colonial city. This article describes this apparent colonial
inertia with respect to Eritrean citizens’ and government’s interests in sustaining the illusion, and
argues that they use their past as Italian colonial subjects – specifically, their postcolonial cultural
capital - to fortify their sense of separateness from Ethiopians, and celebrate their independence
from their African neighbor.