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Friday, 18 December 2015

Ayibo! Identity, Exclusion and Governance in Rural KZN

* Please note this is an extended and retitled version of a piece originally featured by Daily Maverick 

Through my involvement with a coalition of community-based organizations, I have had the fortune to engage communities across rural KwaZulu-Natal. During this time many things have become apparent: There are many communities lacking electricity, yet power-lines can be seen everywhere, presenting an ubiquitous image representative of the continued exclusion of these communities in the new dispensation; There exists dynamic, organic democratic ethos expressed by local activists and communities amidst a formal political atmosphere that is both deaf to this spirit while caught in a philosophical stasis; Present is a hybridity of identities unique to the turbulence of the modern experience. Underscoring all of the challenges facing rural communities in KZN is a fundamental lack of exposure, these communities and their concerns are invisible both to South African and international society; fundamentally, decolonization and freedom for all begins with the most excluded - rural women and children.
            The aforementioned image of grinding rural poverty (lack of running water, electricity, extreme unemployment) alongside an advanced electrical grid is an aesthetic of very real exclusion. Economic justice has not been achieved for many South Africans including nearly all in KZN’s rural communities; many belonging to the 16.3 million reliant on social grants. Moreover, many rural people, especially young women, face barriers often incomprehensible in the urban context including ukuthwala (which translates roughly into “pick up and carry”), a previously consensual courting act[1] that in some communities has rapidly mutated into nothing short of abduction, sexual violence and forced marriage of girls as young as 12. In addition to the trauma experienced by these young girls (for which virtually no formal mental health resources exist) they are often expected to drop out of school and bear children, forcing them to stay in these toxic relationships while removing opportunities for economic autonomy.
            Contributing to, and often creating, the plethora of social and economic challenges facing these communities is the traditional governance structure and lack of state presence in the rural areas. Most communities reside on land that falls under the purview of Ingonyama Trust; state land in the trust of the Zulu King, administered by traditional councils. Before delving into the ramifications of the Trust, it is important to explain how it came about. Passed just days before the 1994 election, the Ingonyama Trust Act served two functions: The first of these was that it maintained social cohesion insofar as it was the political currency needed to ensure that the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) participated in the elections; The Trust also served as a deal between the Nationalist Party (NP) and IFP, perceived as a reward for the latter’s violent collaboration against the ANC and a guarantee that the latter’s base would have a safe space should things have gone sour after the election.
            Vital to the Trust is that it ensured the dominance of traditional[2] governance in much of rural KZN. While mandated by the Traditional Leadership and Governance Framework Act of 2003 to include female representation on councils, this is not necessarily respected in practice. In one community, with nine female councilpersons, seven have given up due to blatant disrespect and exclusion. One of the two remaining female councilpersons explained that when she tries to speak she is told that she will not be listened to because she “crouches to urinate.” At the meeting where this revelation came out, local women, many of who are illiterate, were unaware that discrimination on the basis of gender is unconstitutional. Gender discrimination is widespread especially in the realm of control over land; almost no traditional councils will designate land to women in their own right. For fear of eviction, women and children often stay in abusive relationships and living situations at the peril of their emotional well-being and opportunity for social mobility.
As the position of tradition governance has been enshrined on Trust land, concurrently, this has meant a lack of state presence. Ostensibly, the presence of the state appears to be limited to social grants - which are necessary for basic social cohesion and stability, as well as the development of highways and electrical grids - both necessary for the facilitation of the market. The relationship of the state to the community is important because with exception of the examples listed above (and perhaps a few other mild interventions), with the fall of apartheid, the function of the national state has not changed in former KZN Bantustans. With this vital power structure unchanged, (asides from the political violence of the 1980’s-90s) this begs the question, how deep could the post-1994 transformation be in these communities?
The state’s absence also makes it easier for capitalist exploitation to be achieved; this is best illuminated in the influx of mining projects in the province. Without a strong state presence it is far easier for mining interests to pass the necessary vetting processes simply by bribing or influencing corrupt traditional leaders. Moreover, this issue is heightened by the lack of educational opportunities for citizens, who often do not know their rights; that they must be consulted and do have the right to refuse relocation. This has profound effects for urbanites as it creates the dislocation of rural communities and upheaval that both fuels and is characterized by the transcendent reach of neoliberalism.
Recognizing the correlations between the challenges faced in rural communities with that elsewhere enables us to learn from, while bringing rural communities into a shared struggle.  Evident at workshops hosted by Rural Women’s Movement (RWM) is an ethos of togetherness, acceptance and positivity fused with a recognition of self and community, as rural women – forged activists, meet to discuss concerns, share information, food and stories. Most impressive is that the act of listening continues even through the most controversial of topics, for instance, recently a roomful of grandmothers, mothers, daughters and a few sons, discussed virginity tests – a controversial and needless to say, personal issue. The community members approached the practice from positions across the spectrum, but those who fundamentally disagreed with each other patiently listened and discussed with one and another their viewpoints - certainly we could all learn something from this. Moreover, in my observations, the term most frequently used at workshops has to be umpakathi, or community, certainly emblematic as to how challenges are approached and as to how individuals conceptualize of themselves.
The continued emphasis on community and thus one’s upbringing is also evident in basic customs; for instance, to begin every workshop community members introduce themselves, giving their name (itself a story) and community. This reflexive location-of-self demonstrates that these rural, often illiterate women, whom are actively meeting to better themselves and their communities recognize an inherent flaw in liberalism; while their attendance and activism signals that individuals are empowered to write their own stories, the location of self points to the fact that we are not all starting in the same proverbial book. This practice is a tangible melding of the best in liberalism, an emphasis on human agency, with ubuntu.
This community-based ethic also infuses itself into actions communities take against injustice; the best example of this is in eMangweni, KwaZulu-Natal where previously ukuthwala had been rife. In August 2015 the community celebrated five and a half years without an incident. This change occurred because community members’ fed up with the practice reached out and engaged their neighbours. Critically, this engagement included the perpetrators, whom were not simply ostracized from the community but in this sense, through engagement were reintegrated into a stronger public. This was only possible because an issue of gender-based violence was not conceptualized of as simply a women’s issue, but a social issue, thus the solution involved not simply women but men too. All the more incredible given the aforementioned systemic and interpersonal patriarchy.
There is a lot more to learn from eMangweni’s experience, perhaps an exploration of the process would lead to clues as to how a society deems some members as excludable or disposable; this is the case elsewhere as well, including my central Canadian hometown where the Red River, has taken on new meaning as young indigenous women are far-too-often pulled out brutalized or murdered.
Underscoring the lessons to be learned from rural communities are chiefly two imperatives in terms of identity: Firstly that the challenges of rural communities become visible to the public at large and not isolated from other mass struggles; Secondly, that this exposure will challenge all-too pervasive conceptions of rural persons. Paradoxically rural people (particularly women) are often conceptualized as the gatekeepers of tradition or the authentic, yet also pathologized as simple, uneducated, illiterate and lazy.
The static conception of rural society, while ostensibly positive or well-intentioned, presents an image that is damaging to the agency of rural people, nor does it accurately reflect reality; cell phones are ubiquitous and through processes including mineral exploitation and migrant labour, rural communities do not simply stand outside of the modern global economy. Further, this image gives credence to proponents of distorted cultural practices (such as ukuthwala) that either do not reflect historical practices or have not transformed traditions in a way that maintains and respects core values while negotiating modern realities. Ideally, proponents of this conception of stasis would peel back their layer of analysis and call for change to the structural inertia that is Ingonyama Trust.
For perhaps more obvious reasons, the idea that rural people are stupid or lazy is simply incorrect and damaging. This image represents a bankruptcy of empathy as well as a lack of insight into the realities of many rural communities. The detrimental effects of widespread malnutrition can prevent individuals from reaching their potential and thus perhaps from a distance, negative perceptions of the work ethic of rural persons can be created.
            Truly unfortunate about both perceived identities of rural people is that neither involves actually engaging rural communities but rather is based in perceptions generated from afar. In this regard, the rest of society is missing out, as South Africa is urbanizing and (like any other society) continuing to reinvent its self, this is an opportunity to see how some of the most excluded negotiate this continuous transformation.
            Operating from an ethic embodied by the last must be the first; it is time to take an honest interest in rural KwaZulu-Natal, and to make these communities visible while linking their challenges to mass movements. Moreover it is a perfect opportunity for all to learn from a different set of experiences while fighting negative, frankly simple, conceptions of rural society.

[1] Traditional ukuthwala was explained to me by an elder using this example: following courting attempts, a young woman would do inform slightly older women who would advise that she do something to show reciprocated interest in the young man, such as to make and give him a scarf or necklace. The female advisors would inform the young man’s older male community and a date for the ukuthwala would be planned. The staged ukuthwala would occur and she would be carried to the home of the man’s older female relative. At this point ilobola would be negotiated between the families, the important point being that the entire process was consensual, not coercive.

[2] Traditional is used loosely, many of the authorities lack lineage to pre-colonial authorities and are the descendants of, or themselves were, installed by the apartheid or colonial regime.

The Endurance of Race in a Postracial World: A Letter to Fanon

* Please note this is an adapted version of a piece originally featured at New Politics

Re: The Wretched of the Earth

Dr. Fanon,

I am writing you in regards to your book The Wretched of the Earth. Before discussing your book in detail, I would like to thank you for writing it. Evidently it was written with passion. This letter serves as a means to recognize the continued resonance your work holds amidst our ever-changing geopolitical realities. Moreover your work, particularly its emphases on structures of power as well as experiential learning has had a direct impact on me. Increasing my understanding of my position in this world, The Wretched of the Earth has influenced my decision to relocate to South Africa as a volunteer with the Rural Women’s Movement. I anticipate the perspective gained from this experience will be incalculable.
To begin I would like to offer a modest summary of your work, followed by a brief critique of your discourse vis-à-vis the lumpen proletariat, and contemporary color-blindness or the postracial paradigm about which your work has proven prescient. I would also like to address the reflexive nature of your work, the romantic tendencies of The Wretched of the Earth, while placing you in dialogue with figures both present and past such as Arendt, Gelderloos and Wright.
The Wretched of the Earth is sweeping in its analysis of both the un/making of the colonial condition, claiming that a system created by violence can only be destroyed through violence. However, you certainly lay out the shortfalls of violence insofar as its destructive impact on those responsible for rebirthing the nation as well as the need to maintain discipline; unfettered or completely spontaneous violence is doomed to lead to a short-lived liberation struggle. Key to this is the necessity for the intellectual to provide a political education to the masses, himself undergoing revitalization during the experience. Perhaps most poignantly, you note the necessity to continue the struggle post-liberation, as white supremacy may take a new shape in an elite-led postcolonial order.
I find the text’s discourse on the lumpen proletariat or unemployed urbanites problematic insofar as your claim of this group’s likelihood to become turncoats in the liberation struggle. If they are some of the most alienated or dehumanized of the colonized, and if violence is as cleansing as you claim, then would they not be some of the first and most eager to heed the liberation’s call to arms? Would the liberation not provide the most relief to these individuals, as they would experience the greatest reinvigoration of self?
One of my favorite passages from your book reads, “…for the colonized subject, objectivity is always directed against him.”[1] As I read this, I could not help but think of how relevant that sentiment is today – one could substitute the colonized for any marginalized group. I realized that your statement forms the basis for oppositional arguments to so-called postracial or color-blind policies, policies that privilege and view formal equality as both fair and the solution to racism. Essentially, postracialism posits racism simply as a legal constraint thus when it is made formally illegal, such as with the end of legal segregation in America, no further action is needed; the problem disappears.[2] Postracialism serves to problematize injustices, leading to a line of thought that ignores structural imperatives; imagining that once racist law is declared illegitimate politically, culturally or legally, racism will end. Similarly, once colonial powers withdraw, foreign exploitation will end.[3]  
Ideologies of color-blindness are inherently flawed as they fail to address various historical inequalities and privileges. Perhaps the greatest contemporary manifestation of color-blindness or postracialism and its inherent maniacal emphasis on the present is the rise of the model-minority phenomena; used to frame initiatives such as affirmative action not as historical correctives, but rather as special treatment at the expense of members of more meritorious communities. The model-minority argument posits a zero sum situation wherein groups such as South and East Asian communities succeed due to thrift and hard work; while African-Americans stagnate due to laziness, single parent homes and so on, thus policies that provide resources to African-American communities deprive more deserving Asian-American communities. Essentially a strong work ethic and fiscal responsibility are highlighted as the exclusive reasons for success while ignoring historical circumstances that inform the context in which communities operate. Author Vijay Prashad notes that these respective narratives or categorizations are superimposed onto a global context such as economic power-horse East Asia and debt-ridden Africa.[4]
Color-blind positions assume that all individuals are beginning with the same resources, with the same opportunities. This is of course not true as Mae Ngai notes that 48% of South Asian community in the United States belongs to the professional or business class. This is a result not of a stronger work ethic or thrift but rather American immigration policies that favored skilled immigrants and their relatives.[5] Perhaps this social amnesia evinced by the viewing of formal equality as a fresh start or an erasure of history is a product of capitalism’s ability to renew itself and reform our social relations. In some respects this is a domestic, metropolitan parallel to your concerns over the role of former African liberation leaders turned post-colonial politicians and their participation in the neo-colonial order. Instead of erasing the past to further exploitation, the past is hailed to justify contemporary conditions.[6] In both situations historical narratives are manipulated or erased to foster continued inequalities.  
Your insight into the intellectuals on the fringes of (and later expelled from) the nationalist parties was particularly important. These intellectuals gain much by living amongst and interacting with the peasantry; the nation’s repository of spontaneity, sacrifice and vitality. Throughout this process the intellectual undergoes a psychological emancipation or a vitalization of consciousness in a Hegelian sense.[7] It is through these interactions brought on by common cause of national liberation that the colonized intellectual frees him or herself intellectually, shedding the chains of colonial thought such as individualism.[8] One can easily see how you had grown intellectually from a young man in Martinique to embody these changes as a freedom fighter in Algeria, most notably by your repeated call “…that the last become the first.”[9] This specific, empathic sentiment is beautiful in its timeless social (and could be expanded to ecological) nature. Moreover, this ethic’s continued demand to raise those at the bottom is dynamic and adaptive insofar as a counter to the destructive ability of capitalism to regenerate itself and reform our social relations; as new faces and spaces are designated as disposable by the logic of capital, so too does this tenet define a new front for liberation and uplift.
As you note, these intellectuals are necessary to train, politically educate, and discipline the peasantry in order to prevent “total brutality” from laying ruins to any hope for a successful liberation struggle and also to provide the intellectual framework needed for a true liberation in the postcolonial age.[10] While I admire the concept of the mutually beneficial elite-peasantry exchange, this analysis suffers from the absence of your own position in this affair; there is no guise of objectivity insofar as you are one of the progressive self-conscious elites that you describe and highlight the importance of. The argument would have been stronger had you placed yourself into it, or at least formally acknowledged your position. You essentially spoke to the importance of yourself and your colleagues; you are the intellectual who after “bunker[ing] down with the people…discover[ed] the falsity” of much of Western discourse.[11] Your mind was emancipated from this experience as you were forced to reexamine and reconsider Western culture and your relationship to it. Due to this challenging of hegemonic intellectualism, your work gained credibility with readers sharing your space and epoch but also with readers elsewhere and beyond your time.
However, your work’s lack of personal reflexivity is all the more striking as through its rigorous analysis of class, race and coloniality, your work has informed an intellectual breakthrough in terms of positionality. Today it is hard to find both a scholar or even lay person who does not try to locate themselves in their writing; paradoxically you neglect to do so in your work. This is perhaps all the more notable as you emphasize the power and responsibility wielded by intellectuals; by writing this book, implicitly you recognize yourself as one.[12]
Just a quick note, I do think it worthwhile to put your ideas about individuals such as yourself or conscious intellectuals into a historical context. It is very easy to draw parallels to the vanguard expounded by Lenin[13] or even the notion of the Talented Tenth put forward by Du Bois,[14] especially given that all of you were members of the elite yourself. Although, one key contrast between yourself and Lenin with early Du Bois is that rather than challenging capitalism, Du Bois pushed for inclusion within the capitalist framework.[15] Working within the capitalist structure arose from early Du Bois partially because he was, uniquely, working as a racialized colonial citizen (paradoxical, right?) in a metropolitan context; this fundamentally alters one’s understanding of the possible and thus one’s aims. Perhaps this is similar to your less (albeit still very) radical work Black Skin, White Masks written while you were still in France.
Dr. Fanon, you are fundamentally a romantic. In your call for a rethinking of the Third World and well, frankly everything,[16] you propagate a paradigm shift towards “negation and transformation” such as exists in the Marxist tradition.[17] You are echoing calls not to settle, but rather to struggle until a new dispensation is constructed. This is perhaps best articulated in your belief that for colonized peoples liberation is achievable through violence, as that is how their condition was established; systems and peoples made through violence must be remade through violence. However, this is not on an individual level, as you note the “militant…fully realized the price he had had to pay in his person for national independence.” [18] Effectively, this reclamation of their futures and their world, by the people Alain Badiou frames as the “inexistent” or those in but not of the global order, is achieved at great cost.[19]
Your book’s chapter Colonial Wars and Mental Disorders effectively demonstrates the personal ruin and sacrifice of a generation due to the liberation struggle. This should be taken to mean that the brutality experienced by individual martyrdom exists as part of a project to recreate humanity by re-instilling collective dignity.[20] Herein lies your conception of history, as something progressively made by and through struggle.
Colonial Wars and Mental Disorders also serves to refute many critiques against your work including the claim by Hannah Arendt that your work is riddled with “rhetorical excesses,” such as “hunger with dignity is preferable to bread eaten in slavery.”[21] Firstly, Arendt is missing the aim of your text: Wretched of the Earth acts as a commentary or analysis on both colonialism and the condition of coloniality. While rhetorical or colorful writing is key, Arendt responds to your work as if it is strictly a manifesto. More importantly, had she read or given more weight to your final chapter she would have understood this quote better – individual sacrifice in the act of revolution is better than mild comfort in collective bondage.
Arendt’s observation that nonpacifism (as meaning the inclusion, or at least lack of rejection of violent tactics), progressed from philosophy and rhetoric to practice with the arrival of Black power on American college campuses[22] perhaps shows two things. Firstly, an affirmation that simple (exclusive) compromise fails to shake exploitive systems such as shown in your discussion of the attempts by the national bourgeoisie to maintain their positions.[23] Secondly, that how we remember (non)violence is often mired in racism. For Arendt, many of the “Negro demands [were]… silly and outrageous,” part of efforts to “lower academic standards” and at times acceded due to white guilt.[24] Perhaps concessions were made (albeit incomplete) as Black Power represented an actual threat to white supremacy.
Peter Gelderloos notes that the ethic of nonviolence often serves to sanitize historical narratives of struggle, pointing to the coopting of Dr. Martin Luther King’s memory and the consistent neglect of his support for the anti-imperial Vietnamese struggle as well as the anti-capitalist sentiments he espoused or the censorship of the March on Washington. By selecting pacified, “feel-good” segments from King, white anti-racists are able to stake their place in activist society without having to reconcile their own privilege.[25] Arguably, Arendt does this in her presentation of Civil Rights era successes being attributed to nonviolent politics.[26]
I would like to note one more issue with nonviolence, which you initially highlighted and Gelderloos has brought into contemporary terms. Much as you point out that the colonialist bourgeoisie propagation of nonviolence is based on their established comfort with colonialism and not with the masses,[27] contemporary proponents of nonviolence rely on the violence of the state for protection. This reliance is an implicit acceptance of state violence thereby undermining the pacifist ethic, while leaving themselves helpless to state endorsed or accepted violence such as at the 1979 Greensboro Massacre.[28] Perhaps what is most important about nonviolence then and now, is that it both relies on and derives from, the power of the (colonial) state and thus the powerlessness of the marginalized.
Gelderloos also notes that in Wretched of the Earth’s final chapter Colonial Wars and Mental Disorders, the costs of violent revolution are made clear; however he asks if pacifists are aware of the personal costs of their tactics. Noting that nonpacifist groups are often more effective because the cost of intimidating them is high, nonviolent activists make for easy prey for authorities. How do experiences with the security apparatuses of the state affect those who adhere to nonviolence?[29]
One of my favorite arguments you make is that, “Europe is literally the creation of the Third World.” This has a few important implications: firstly as you note it makes altering the international order a priority; reparations and the like is not simply charity but rather a historical corrective (in many respects this argument is similar to the discussion on model-minorities but internationalized). Vitally, you note this requires a change in consciousness both for the colonizers and the colonized.[30]
Intellectually, the realization of Europe’s reliance both materially and conceptually on the rest of the world has profound consequences. Evidently, we must reexamine and challenge existing historical, sociological and anthropological (among other) narratives to deconstruct the inherent binaries present. Moreover we need to retrieve lost stories, memories and histories previously discarded in order to further our collective understanding of humanity. Essentially, we need to look into what we previously have emphasized and why. For instance, The Universal Declaration for Human Rights is a direct product of the horrors of World War Two.[31] Césaire notes that Nazism was not new to Europe, it had just not been practiced in Europe; Nazism was colonialism returning home.[32] You correctly add “…Nazism transformed the whole of Europe into a genuine colony.”[33] If the horrors of colonialism in Europe (yet ignored elsewhere) were strong enough to generate an entirely new field (Human Rights), is this discipline inherently Eurocentric at best, neocolonial or racist at worst? Moreover, what are the political implications of recovering colonial histories from the colonized? Lastly, if we view Nazism as an extension of colonialism making it a global phenomenon, what are the implications for global capitalism and other structures that are seemingly transcendent in nature?
Dr. Fanon, I think in many ways your analysis and passion matured between Black Skin, White Masks and Wretched of the Earth, in a somewhat similar way to the personal trajectory of the protagonist in Richard Wright’s autobiographical text Black Boy. In your earlier work, your focus is on the colonial condition, evinced by analyses such as that of Europeanized black man who cannot escape his race.[34] In some respects this mirrors Wright’s frustration at having “…to feel that there were feelings denied me, that the very breath of life itself was beyond my reach.”[35] Just as Jean Veneuse is rejected by both white and black society,[36] Wright speaks of the “stunted way of life” that is “mapped out” by white supremacy for black males and the internalization of these norms by his black contemporaries, creating a double alienation of sorts.[37] Together these works serve to articulate the both the emotive and sociological structures of racism in their respective eras and geographies.
Conversely, your final work, written in the context of the Algerian War for Independence, emerges as a commentary threaded with fiery confidence. For instance, though you expect the complicity of the local elite in the neocolonial order, you do not fear this as you have greater faith in the masses. The change in your passion and your increased confidence is perhaps due to your change in location to Algeria but also the international geopolitical realities of the time, wherein the global maturation of capitalism had created a historical moment insofar as the colonized became “acutely aware of everything he does not possess” serving as the stimulus for the colonized individual to shift from an object acted upon to an agent.[38]
 As to your claim that “[t]he colonized, underdeveloped man is today a political creature in the most global sense of the term,”[39] this is affirmed by Wright’s Hegelian informed coming-of-age realization that “the whites… [are] as miserable as their black victims.” A shared global passion for and belief in revolution is also evinced in Black Boy’s final phrase “I would hurl words into this darkness and wait for an echo, and if an echo sounded, no matter how faintly, I would send other words to tell, to march, to fight, to create a sense of the hunger for life that gnaws in us all, to keep alive in our hearts a sense of the inexpressibly human.”[40] This metaphysical humanity conveyed is expressed in On Violence, is worth the Colonial Disorders, and as such is justified by any means necessary.[41]
In Richard Wright’s most famous work, Native Son, following the discovery of the bones of the murdered Mary Dalton, the protagonist, Bigger Thomas, assuming that white society will accuse him of raping the victim, claims a greater predation by white supremacy against him. He describes himself as “…a long, taut piece of rubber which a thousand hands had stretched to the snapping point, and when he [Bigger] snapped it was rape.”[42] The all-consuming pressure described by Bigger is perhaps mirrored in your description of the colonial project’s attempt to alienate the colonized from themselves in order to build a dependency relationship - lest the colonized revert to their natural barbarism.[43] This attempt to devise self-hatred and a loss of a sense of self constitutes the greatest violation of one’s dignity as recognized in your work.
 Dr. Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth has become a seminal text in my personal library. Not only has it altered my perception of present as well as historical events, but more so my understanding of human nature. For instance, as I read Primo Levi describe the amorality of the conniving Jewish Prominents or turncoats in Auschwitz, your conception of the collaboration and the loss of self experienced by the colonized intellectual came to the fore.[44] This may be counterpoised with the intellectual who finds him/herself through exposure to the ostensible other, which has informed my decision to relocate to KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Though inequities of power persist, the flow of knowledge and perspective remains multidirectional potentially serving as liberating and revolutionary forces for social justice; an unalterable truth both in your time and ours.

Richard Raber

Works Cited:

Arendt, Hannah. On Violence. Orlando, FL: Harcourt Brace & Company, 1970.

Badiou, Alain. The Rebirth of History: Times of Riots and Uprisings. Translated
     by Gregory Elliott. NY, NY: Verso, 2012.
Césaire, Aimé. Discourse on Colonialism. Translated by Joan Pinkham. 2000 ed.
     New York, NY: Monthly Review Press, 2000.
Du Bois, W.E.B. The Souls of Black Folk. New York, NY: Dover Publications, 1994.

Fanon, Frantz. Black Skin, White Masks. Translated by Richard Philcox. 2008 ed.
     New York, NY: Grove Press, 2008.
Fanon, Frantz. The Wretched of the Earth. Translated by Richard Philcox.
     New York, NY: Grove Press, 2004.
Gelderloos, Peter. How Nonviolence Protects the State. Cambridge, MA: South End
     Press, 2007.
Hegel, G.W.F. Phenomenology of Spirit. Translated by A.V. Miller. New York, NY:
     Oxford University Press, 1977.
Lenin, V. I. Little Lenin Library. Vol. 14 of State and Revolution. New York,
     NY: International Publishers, 1932.
Levi, Primo. If This is a Man. Translated by Stuart Woolf. 2000 ed. London, UK:
     The Folio Society, 2000.
Ngai, Mae. Impossible Subjects: Illegal Aliens and the Making of Modern America.
     2014 ed. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2014.
Prashad, Vijay. Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting: Afro-Asian Connections and the
     Myth of Cultural Purity. Boston, MA: Beacon Press, 2001.
United Nations. "The Universal Declaration of Human Rights: History of the
     Document." Accessed April 4, 2015.
West, Cornel. Prophesy Deliverance! An Afro-American Revolutionary Christianity.
     Philadelphia, PA: The Westminster Press, 1982.
Wright, Richard. Black Boy. 2005 ed. Modern Classics. New York, NY:
     HarperCollins Publishers, 2005.
Wright, Richard. Native Son. 1998 ed. New York, NY: Perennial Classics,

[1] Frantz Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, trans. Richard Philcox (New York, NY: Grove Press, 2004), 37.
[2] Vijay Prashad, Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting: Afro-Asian Connections and the Myth of Cultural Purity (Boston, MA: Beacon Press, 2001), 41.
[3] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 112.
[4] Prashad, Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting, 40-46.
[5] Mae Ngai, Impossible Subjects: Illegal Aliens and the Making of Modern America, 2014 ed. (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2014), 262.
[6] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 110-14.
[7]  Ibid., 78-79.
See also G.W.F Hegel, Phenomenology of Spirit, trans. A.V. Miller (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1977), 111.
[8] Please note your call for gender equality: Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 142.
[9] Ibid., 2, 10-11.
[10] Ibid., 79, 93, 95, 115.
[11] Ibid., 11.
[12] Ibid., 148.
[13] V. I. Lenin, Little Lenin Library, vol. 14, State and Revolution (New York, NY: International Publishers, 1932), 28-29, 18.
[14] W.E.B. Du Bois, The Souls of Black Folk (New York, NY: Dover Publications, 1994), 65.
[15] Cornel West, Prophesy Deliverance! An Afro-American Revolutionary Christianity (Philadelphia, PA: The Westminster Press, 1982), 37-40.
[16] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 55-56.
[17] West, Prophesy Deliverance! An Afro-American, 19.
[18] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 44, 42, 185.
[19] Alain Badiou, The Rebirth of History: Times of Riots and Uprisings, trans. Gregory Elliott (NY, NY: Verso, 2012), 56.
[20] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth,181-233.
[21] Hannah Arendt, On Violence (Orlando, FL: Harcourt Brace & Company, 1970), 20.
[22] Ibid., 18-20.
[23] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 24.
[24] These comments reflect a flaw previously alluded to in liberalism; that as independent agents, all have the same opportunities. Rather than an effort to decrease academic standards, affirmative action was designed to provide opportunities for success for capable individuals belonging to previously excluded groups. Please see Arendt, On Violence, 18-19.
[25] Peter Gelderloos, How Nonviolence Protects the State (Cambridge, MA: South End Press, 2007), 25-27.
[26] Arendt, On Violence, 14.
[27] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 23-24.
[28] Gelderloos, How Nonviolence Protects the State, 50-52.
[29] Ibid., 121.
[30] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 58-59.
[31] United Nations, "The Universal Declaration of Human Rights: History of the Document,", accessed April 4, 2015,
[32] Aimé Césaire, Discourse on Colonialism, trans. Joan Pinkham, 2000 ed. (New York, NY: Monthly Review Press, 2000), 36.
[33] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 57.
[34]  Frantz Fanon, Black Skin, White Masks, trans. Richard Philcox, 2008 ed. (New York, NY: Grove Press, 2008), 46-48.
[35] Richard Wright, Black Boy, 2005 ed., Modern Classics (New York, NY: HarperCollins Publishers, 2005), 250.
[36] Fanon, Black Skin, White Masks, 49.
[37] Wright, Black Boy, 196-97.
[38] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 112-13, 34.
[39] Ibid., 40.
[40] Wright, Black Boy, 283, 284.
[41] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 23.
[42] Richard Wright, Native Son, 1998 ed. (New York, NY: Perennial Classics, 1998), 228.
[43] Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, 149.
[44] Primo Levi, If This is a Man, trans. Stuart Woolf, 2000 ed. (London, UK: The Folio Society, 2000), 116-17.