The Affective Politics of Racial Mis-interpellation
Source TitleTheory, Culture and Society: explorations in critical social science
PublisherSAGE PUBLICATIONS LTD
University of Melbourne Author/sHage, Ghassan
AffiliationPhilosophy, Anthropology and Social Inquiry
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsHage, G. (2010). The Affective Politics of Racial Mis-interpellation. THEORY CULTURE & SOCIETY, 27 (7-8), pp.112-129. https://doi.org/10.1177/0263276410383713.
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This article is concerned with some of the ramifications of the affective dimension of Fanon’s writing. In their latest book, Commonwealth, Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri take Fanon’s attempt to transcend European universality through the struggle for a ‘new universality’ as an exemplary schema that informs their politics of alter-modernity. In the article, I show that the affective dimension of Fanon’s search for a new universality is far more anti- than alter-European, albeit in an ambivalent way. I analyse how this difference between an affective ‘anti’ and an intellectual ‘alter’ arises in Fanon’s analysis and experience of racism. I refer to this particular experience as mis-interpellation and analyse the equally particular affect it generates. More generally, I show that if one is to make use of Fanon’s work today one cannot separate the intellectual and the affective that are so intertwined in his analytical work as Hardt and Negri do. To do so is to abstract from the serious political ramifications that the presence of this affective dimension entails.
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