Archive for the ‘BLACK SKIN WHITE MASKS’ Category

Black Skin, White Masks is a 1952 book written by  Frantz Fanon originally published in French as Peau noire, masques blancs.(Fanons other famous work The wretched of the earth  is available in this blog )

In this study, Fanon uses Psychoanalysis  and psychoanalytical theory to explain the feelings of dependency and inadequacy that Black people experience in a White world. He speaks of the divided self-perception of the Black Subject who has lost his native cultural originality and embraced the culture of the mother country. As a result of the inferiority complex engendered in the mind of the Black Subject, he will try to appropriate and imitate the cultural code of the colonizer. The behaviour, Fanon argues, is even more evident in upwardly mobile and educated Black people who can afford to acquire the trappings of White culture. Originally formulated to combat the oppression of black people, Fanon’s insights are still influential today, being utilized by various groups such as the  Palestinians, the Tamils,African Americans and others, in their struggle for cultural and political autonomy. Fanon presents both historical interpretation and underlying social indictment.


Black Skin, White Masks remained obscure for decades after its initial publication. Since the 1980s, it has become well-known as an anti colonial  and anti racist work in English-speaking countries. However, it remains a “relatively minor work” in francophone nations, despite its explicit connection with those countries.Modern discussions among theorists of nationalism, anti-colonialism, and liberation have largely focused on Fanon’s later, more revolutionary works, rather than the psychoanalytic explanation of colonial relations.

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Black Skin, White Masks-Frantz Fanon –


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