The escalation of systematic, if random, violence in the contemporary world frames the
concerns of the article, which seeks to read Baldwin for the present. It works by a
measure of indirection, arriving at Baldwin after a detour which introduces Chinua Achebe.
The Baldwin–Achebe relationship is familiar fare. However, here I explore not the shared
congruence between their first novels, but rather focus on their later works, in which the
reflexes of terror lie close to the surface. I use Achebe’s final novel, Anthills of the
Savanah, as a way into Baldwin’s “difficult” last book, The Evidence of Things Not Seen,
suggesting that both these works can speak directly to our own historical present. Both
Baldwin and Achebe, I argue, chose to assume the role of witness to the evolving
manifestations of catastrophe, which they came to believe enveloped the final years of
their lives. In order to seek redemption they each determined to craft a prose—the product
of a very particular historical conjuncture—which could bring out into the open the
prevailing undercurrents of violence and terror.
Fanon, postcolonialism and the ethics of difference raises a host of crucial
questions regarding the relevance of Fanon today: in today’s world, where
violence and terror have gone global, what conclusions might we draw from
Fanon’s work? Should we keep on blaming Fanon for the colonial violence, which
he internalized and struggled against, and overlook the fact that the very
Manichaeism that previously governed the economy of colonial societies is now
generating violence and terror on a global scale? Has the new humanism which he
inaugurates in the concluding section of The Wretched of the Earth turned out to
be nothing but a vain plea? What grounds for optimism does he allow us, if any?
What is to be salvaged from his ethics and politics in this age of
globalization? Fanon, postcolonialism and the ethics of difference offers a
new reading of Fanon’s work, challenging many of the reconstructions of Fanon in
critical and postcolonial theory and in cultural studies and probing a host of
crucial issues: the intersectionality of gender and colonial politics; the
biopolitics of colonialism; Marxism and decolonization; tradition, translation
and humanism. Fanon, postcolonialism and the ethics of difference underscores
the ethical dimension of Fanon’s work by focusing on his project of
decolonization and humanism.
. And this headlong, unstructured, verbal revalorization conceals paradoxical attitudes.73
Such attitudes express for Fanon a form of exoticism which ‘allows
no cultural confrontation’, no revolutionary praxis for a genuine
In The Wretched of the Earth, Fanon adds to his critique of negritude.
As we will see in Chapter 1, his argument runs counter to Sartre’s
views in Black Orpheus: the poetry of negritude is not revolutionary.
Fanon makes a clear distinction between the revolutionary and acculturated elite, between the former engaged with current
Jean Genet has long been regarded as one of the most influential artists of the
twentieth century. Since the publication of Jean-Paul Sartre's existential
biography Saint Genet: Actor and Martyr in 1952, his writing has attracted the
attention of leading French thinkers and philosophers. In the UK and US, his
work has played a major role in the development of queer and feminist studies,
where his representation of sexuality and gender continues to provoke
controversy. This book aims to argue for Genet's influence once again, but
it does so by focusing uniquely on the politics of his late theatre. The first
part of the book explores the relationship between politics and aesthetics in
Genet's theatre and political writing in the period 1955 to 1986. The
second part focuses on the spatial politics of The Balcony, The Blacks and The
Screens by historicising them within the processes of modernisation and
decolonisation in France of the 1950s and 1960s. The third part of the book
analyses how Genet's radical spatiality works in practice by interviewing
key contemporary practitioners, Lluís Pasqual, JoAnne Akalaitis, and Ultz and
Excalibah. The rationale behind these interviews is to find a way of merging
past and present. The rationale so explores why Genet's late theatre,
although firmly rooted within its own political and historical landscape,
retains its relevance for practitioners working within different geographical
and historical contexts today.
Western colonialism which suppressed the contribution of the Arabs; through a consideration of Frantz Fanon, Abdelkabir Khatibi, Abdallah Laroui and Edward
Said, I will argue that a genuine decolonization must be sought at the
level of European thought.
Tradition, translation and colonization
The appropriative economy of Orientalism as a corporate institution
Translation was a vehicle which carried cultural artefacts from Greek
and other traditions into Arabic. It was part of a complex infrastructure
which helped develop the economy of the
Responding to the resurgence of verbatim theatre that emerged in Britain, Australia, the United States and other parts of the world in the early 1990s, this book offers one of the first sustained, critical engagements with contemporary verbatim, documentary and testimonial dramaturgies. Offering a new reading of the history of the documentary and verbatim theatre form, the book relocates verbatim and testimonial theatre away from discourses of the real and representations of reality and instead argues that these dramaturgical approaches are better understood as engagements with forms of truth-telling and witnessing. Examining a range of verbatim and testimonial plays from different parts of the world, the book develops new ways of understanding the performance of testimony and considers how dramaturgical theatre can bear witness to real events and individual and communal injustice through the re-enactment of personal testimony. Through its interrogation of different dramaturgical engagements with acts of witnessing, the book identifies certain forms of testimonial theatre that move beyond psychoanalytical accounts of trauma and reimagine testimony and witnessing as part of a decolonised project that looks beyond event-based trauma, addressing instead the experience of suffering wrought by racism and other forms of social injustice.
Printing Terror places horror comics of the mid-twentieth century in dialogue with the anxieties of their age. It rejects the narrative of horror comics as inherently and necessarily subversive and explores, instead, the ways in which these texts manifest white male fears over America’s changing sociological landscape. It examines two eras: the pre-CCA period of the 1940s and 1950s, and the post-CCA era to 1975. The authors examine each of these periods through the lenses of war, gender, and race, demonstrating that horror comics are centred upon white male victimhood and the monstrosity of the gendered and/or racialised other. It is of interest to scholars of horror, comics studies, and American history. It is suitably accessible to be used in undergraduate classes.
In its contributions to the study of material social differences, queer theoretical writing has mostly assumed that any ideas which embody 'difference' are valuable. More than this, where it is invoked in contemporary theory, queerness is often imagined as synonymous with difference itself. This book uncovers an alternative history in queer cultural representation. Through engagement with works from a range of queer literary genres from across the long twentieth century – fin-de-siècle aestheticism, feminist speculative fiction, lesbian middle-brow writing, and the tradition of the stud file – the book elucidates a number of formal and thematic attachments to ideas that have been denigrated in queer theory for their embodiment of sameness: uselessness, normativity, reproduction and reductionism. Exploring attachments to these ideas in queer culture is also the occasion for a broader theoretical intervention: Same Old suggests, counterintuitively, that the aversion they inspire may be of a piece with how homosexuality has been denigrated in the modern West as a misguided orientation towards sameness. Combining queer cultural and literary history, sensitive close readings and detailed genealogies of theoretical concepts, Same Old encourages a fundamental rethinking of some of the defining positions in queer thought.
’s ‘Colonialism Is a System’, Fanon contends the status of Algeria is defined by
its ‘systematized de-humanization’.24 In his letter of resignation, he
denounces assimilation as a sham: ‘the lawlessness, the inequality, the
multi-daily murder of man [which] were raised to the status of legislative
principles’.25 He concludes that decolonization is the only way out of
the absolute dehumanization in which the colonized lived. The colonial
doctrine of assimilation succeeded only in denying the colonized a
In The Wretched of the Earth, Fanon represents a
The Wretched of the Earth: the
anthem of decolonization?
In ‘La Socialthérapie dans un service d’hommes musulmans’, Fanon
claims that psychiatry failed to take into account the importance of
colonial politics in its analysis of madness. The assimilationist laws
were at the origin of the alienation – in its psychiatric and socio-political
sense of the term – of the colonized subject. As has been ascertained
in the previous chapter, the assimilationist laws expropriated and
displaced the colonized people, thereby negatively impacting on their