Skip to main content

Frantz Fanon in the Era of Black Lives Matter

Abstract

This chapter reads Black Lives Matter together with Frantz Fanon’s work on the struggle for the dignity of Black people around the world. It demonstrates how, in addition to the work of Négritude thinkers (Aimé Césaire, Léopold Sédar Senghor, Léon Damas, and W.E.B. Du Bois), Fanon’s writing offers the historical background necessary for understanding the Black Lives Matter movement and, more broadly, the Black American experience during the second decade of the twenty-first century. Fanon was among the first to articulate enduring questions about the Black condition in the world and his theoretical insights establish why there is no peace, as long as the dignity of Black men, women, and children are ignored.

What matters is not to know the world but to change it.

—Frantz Fanon, Black Skins, White Masks (Fanon 1967, p. 17)

Frantz Fanon is regarded by many as one of the greatest revolutionary thinkers of the twentieth century.

—Teodors Kiros (Rabaka 2015, p. 251)

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Buying options

Chapter
USD   29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-52726-6_10
  • Chapter length: 11 pages
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
eBook
USD   109.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-3-030-52726-6
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Softcover Book
USD   149.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Hardcover Book
USD   149.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)

Notes

  1. 1.

    This essay is dedicated to Daniel Maka Njoh.

  2. 2.

    Littérature engagée, articulated by Sartre in “Qu’est-ce que la littérature.” For Sartre, to write was to take action.

  3. 3.

    The original expressions read “Sale nègre” and “Tiens, un nègre.”

  4. 4.

    The Congolese philosopher Valentin Yves Mudimbe beautifully articulated that memory as part of history in The Idea of Africa. See Mudimbe 1994.

  5. 5.

    We find in contemporary readings discomfort with Fanon’s apparent disregard for women. This is perhaps most clearly manifested by the fact that he never directly cites his engagement with the work of Simone de Beauvoir, which is certainly important to the development of his ideas. As displayed in the film Frantz Fanon’s Black Skin White Mask by Isaac Julien (1995), Fanon was also homophobic.

References

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Frieda Ekotto .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

Copyright information

© 2021 The Author(s)

About this chapter

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this chapter

Ekotto, F. (2021). Frantz Fanon in the Era of Black Lives Matter. In: Kim, D.D. (eds) Reframing Postcolonial Studies. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-52726-6_10

Download citation

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-52726-6_10

  • Published:

  • Publisher Name: Palgrave Macmillan, Cham

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-030-52725-9

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-030-52726-6

  • eBook Packages: HistoryHistory (R0)