The Wretched of the Earth

Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
19
Free sample

Frantz Fanon was one of the twentieth century’s most important theorists of revolution, colonialism, and racial difference, and this, his masterwork, is a classic alongside Orientalism and The Autobiography of Malcolm X.
The Wretched of the Earth is a brilliant analysis of the psychology of the colonized and their path to liberation. Bearing singular insight into the rage of colonized peoples and the role of violence in historical change, the book also incisively attacks postindependence disenfranchisement of the masses by the elite on one hand, and intertribal and interfaith animosities on the other. A veritable handbook of social reorganization for leaders of emerging nations, The Wretched of the Earth has had a major impact on civil rights, anticolonialism, and black-consciousness movements around the world. This new translation updates its language for a new generation of readers and its lessons are more vital now than ever.
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About the author

Frantz Fanon was born in Martinique in 1925 and studied medicine in France, specializing in psychiatry. Sent to a hospital in Algeria, he found his sympathies turning toward the Algerian Nationalist Movement, which he later joined. He is considered this century's most important theorist of the African struggle for independence. The Wretched of the Earth, his most internationally acclaimed book, has been translated into over twenty-five languages.
Junot Diaz is the author of the critically acclaimed collection of stories Drown.
Jean-Paul Sartre, the existential philosopher, was one of the early champions of Fanon's work and contributed this introduction to the original edition.
Richard Philcox, the translator, has translated many novels by the Caribbean writer Maryse Conde.
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4.6
19 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
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Published on
Dec 1, 2007
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Pages
320
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ISBN
9780802198853
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Political Science / History & Theory
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Content protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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In analyzing the obstacles to democratization in post- independence Africa, Mahmood Mamdani offers a bold, insightful account of colonialism's legacy--a bifurcated power that mediated racial domination through tribally organized local authorities, reproducing racial identity in citizens and ethnic identity in subjects. Many writers have understood colonial rule as either "direct" (French) or "indirect" (British), with a third variant--apartheid--as exceptional. This benign terminology, Mamdani shows, masks the fact that these were actually variants of a despotism. While direct rule denied rights to subjects on racial grounds, indirect rule incorporated them into a "customary" mode of rule, with state-appointed Native Authorities defining custom. By tapping authoritarian possibilities in culture, and by giving culture an authoritarian bent, indirect rule (decentralized despotism) set the pace for Africa; the French followed suit by changing from direct to indirect administration, while apartheid emerged relatively later. Apartheid, Mamdani shows, was actually the generic form of the colonial state in Africa.

Through case studies of rural (Uganda) and urban (South Africa) resistance movements, we learn how these institutional features fragment resistance and how states tend to play off reform in one sector against repression in the other. The result is a groundbreaking reassessment of colonial rule in Africa and its enduring aftereffects. Reforming a power that institutionally enforces tension between town and country, and between ethnicities, is the key challenge for anyone interested in democratic reform in Africa.

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