HomeFrantz Fanon’s Legacy in the Literature and the Arts of the Americas

Frantz Fanon’s Legacy in the Literature and the Arts of the Americas

Héritages de Frantz Fanon dans les arts et la littérature des Amériques

Herencias de Frantz Fanon en las artes y la literatura de las Américas

One-day conferences

Journées d’étude

Jornadas de estudio

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Published on Friday, July 28, 2017 by Anastasia Giardinelli

Summary

It turns out to be an epistemological necessity to analyze the scope of Fanon’s thought and style in the cultural and artistic productions of the Americas, not only because of Fanon’s concern for the creation and defense of a national culture but also because of his obvious interest for literature and the care he devoted to the process of writing. The transdisciplinary approach of the two one-day conferences « Frantz Fanon’s Legacy in the Literature and the Arts of the Americas » will encompass all the countries and areas of the Americas and the Caribbean, whatever their languages. We also welcome papers on all kinds of art, ranging from literature to cinema, painting, songs and street art (as in Bogota for instance). We warmly welcome papers that will adopt a comparative approach between different geographical areas. Papers will preferably be written in French, but English and Spanish will be accepted.

Announcement

One-day conferences - December 15, 2017 (Tours) and April 6, 2018 (Dijon)

Presentation

« Yet another book on Frantz Fanon ? » asked Lylian Kesteloota a few years ago in a preface to Frantz Fanon, l’Homme de rupture by Abdelkader Benarab (2010 : 9). The same criticism could be levelled at the two study days to be held in Tours and Dijon about the iconic figure of Frantz Fanon, whose « metamorphic thought » (Mbembé 2012 : 9) and works have given birth to a « profuse, rhizomatic and nowadays global field of study » (Mbembé 2011 : 12). The prolific literature and manifold events devoted to Fanon at the turn of this new millenium, in France and Europe as well as in Africa and in the Americas[1], bear witness, if need be, to the relevance and universality of Fanon’s thought. Yet, Fanonian studies have suffered from two major lacks : one the one hand, very few studies have tackled the influence of Fanon’s thought on art and literature. Sociological, historical, and psychological readings have prevailed so far. On the other hand, even if there are numerous studies on the impact of Fanon’s thought in the US[2] and, to a lesser extent, in Latin America, there has been no global study encompassing the totality of North and South America – including the Caribbean - reflecting the dialogue between these geographical areas. The two one-day conferences « Frantz Fanon’s Legacy in the Literature and the Arts of  the Americas and the Caribbean » will try to address these two issues, as they will allow for a dialogue between two subcontinents with which criticism has so far dealt separately, and as they will mainly focus on Fanon’s influence on the artistic and literary worlds.

Examining Fanon’s work and thought through the prism of literature and the arts may not be an obvious approach. Yet, Fanon was very much interested in these cultural practices, as shown by his speeches on national culture, which was according to him a prerequisite to the building of a nation and the emancipation of the people. In Fort-de-France, Fanon had writer Aimé Césaire, whom he much admired, as one of is teachers. He also wrote unpublished poems (Cherki 2011 : 22) and two recently published plays , L’Œil se noie and Les Mains parallèles (Khalfa, Young 2015). In 1959, he participated to the Congress of Black African Writers in Rome, and his essays bear witness to a true literary force :

Beyond the words he uses, and since his very first texts, Fanon undermined the French language through the semiotic infiltration of the language itself, through the beat, the rhythm and the images that seek the words for apt metaphors. In this writing, concepts only arise out of desire, out of bits and pieces of language related to the body, concepts linked to sensations. Fanon’s language doesn’t bother with the difference between spoken and written language, it saps punctuation, it is laden with images coming from the body and bodily sensations. It partakes of the the deconstruction of thought and of its reconstruction through muscular metaphors. It alters and upsets French language. (Cherki 2011 : 274-275)

It thus turns out to be an epistemological necessity to analyze the scope of Fanon’s thought and style in the cultural and artistic productions of the Americas, not only because of Fanon’s concern for the creation and defense of a national culture but also because of his obvious interest for literature and the care he devoted to the process of writing.

Topic proposals

The two study days will address, but will not be limited to :

  • Forms of expression : how is Fanon’s imprint made perceptible through art and literature in the Americas ? Is he implicitely or explicitely quoted? Do artists and writers pay tribute to his works, comment on them, imitate them (and their style) ? Are his works direct or indirect, conscious or unconscious sources of inspiration (for instance through American[3] theories on gender, postcolonialism and decolonialism,and  intersectionality) ?
  • Most common themes : are the topics covered in literature and the arts in keeping with the prevalent themes in the secondary literature about Fanon’s work (such as violence, national culture, the women issue and homosexuality) ? Is there some critical reassessment of his works ? Which among Fanon’s works are the most influential in literature and the arts ? Is there, in literature and the arts, a common interest in Fanon’s theses on racism, colonialism and negrophobia, and        what is it based on ?
  • Translation :  as pointed out by Neelam Srivastava (Khalfa, Young 2015 : 652), Fanon was much concerned about the linguistic and cultural translation  of his anti-imperialist theses – shaped by his Algerian experience - to other contexts, such as the African and American contexts[4]. How were Fanon’s theories transposed to art and literature in the various areas of the Americas ? Is there any possible analogy ? Were those theories a source of inspiration ? For instance, did Fanon’s Panafricanism find an echo in artistic works as Panamericanism or Pancaribbeanism – which, incidentally, were promoted by Fanon himself (Cherki 2011 : 190) ? 
  • Diachronic perspective : as we’ve said before, studies on Fanon’s influence on literature and the arts in the Americas are marginal. The few existing studies mainly deal with artists from the 1960s, which allows for a comparative approach analyzing Fanon’s contemporary legacies in literature and the arts in regard with other historical periods : how has Fanon been reassessed by artists, more than 60 years after his death ? What is the offset of some of his theories that are considered outdated nowadays, such as the notion of the « New Man », which largely inspired Ernesto Che Guevara (Pérez Alvarez 2013 : 312) ?

The transdisciplinary approach of the two one-day conferences « Frantz Fanon’s Legacy in the Literature and the Arts of the Americas » will encompass all the countries and areas of the Americas and the Caribbean, whatever their languages. We also welcome papers on all kinds of art, ranging from literature to cinema, painting, songs and street art (as in Bogota for instance). We warmly welcome papers that will adopt a comparative approach between different geographical areas. Papers will preferably be written in French, but English and Spanish will be accepted.

  • Interactions culturelles et discursives (ICD) – EA 6297 – Université François-Rabelais de Tours
  • Centre Interlangues - Texte, image, langage – EA 4182 – Université de Bourgogne-Franche-Comté

Submission Guidelines

Proposals should include a title, a 250-word abstract and a short-bio-bibliographical notice before

November 1st, 2017

to Sophie Large (sophie.large@univ-tours.fr) and Flora Valadié (flora.valadie@u-bourgogne.fr)

Scientific and organising committee

  • Flora Valadié, MCF, Université de Bourgogne Franche-Comté
  • Sophie Large, MCF, Université François-Rabelais de Tours

References and indicative bibliography

  • BENARAB, Abdelkader, Frantz Fanon, l’homme de rupture, Paris, Alfabarre, 2010.
  • BENTOUHAMI, Hourya et DORLIN, Elsa, Frantz Fanon, Actuel Marx, no55 (1), 2014.
  • CAMPO, Javier, « Filmando teorías políticas: dependencia y liberación en La hora de los hornos », Política y Cultura, printemps 2014, 41, p. 65-88.
  • CHAULET-ACHOUR, Christiane, Frantz Fanon, l’importun, Montpellier : Éditions Chèvre-Feuille étoilée, 2004.
  • CHERKI, Alice, Frantz Fanon, portrait, Paris, Seuil, 2011.
  • CRUZ, Gustavo R., « Poder indio y poder negro: recepciones del pensamiento negro en Fausto Reinaga », Íconos. Revista de Ciencias Sociales, no51, janvier 2015, p. 29-46.
  • DE OTO, Alejandro, « Aimé Césaire y Frantz Fanon. Variaciones sobre el archivo colonial/descolonial », Tabula Rasa, 15, juillet-décembre 2011, p. 149-169.
  • FANON, Frantz, Peau noire, masques blancs, Paris : Seuil, 1975 [1952].
  • FANON, Frantz, Pour la révolution africaine. Écrits politiques, Paris : Maspero, 1964.
  • FANON, Frantz, L’An V de la révolution algérienne, Paris : Maspero, 1959.
  • FANON, Frantz, Les damnés de la terre, Paris : La Découverte, 2002 [1961].
  • FANON-MENDES-FRANCE, Mireille, « Mon père, cet insoumis », in Fondation Frantz Fanon / Sortir du colonialisme, Frantz Fanon par les textes de l’époque, Paris : Les petits matins, 2012, p. 62-66.
  • KHALFA, Jean et YOUNG, Robert, Écrits sur l’aliénation et la liberté, Paris, La Découverte, 2015.
  • MACEY, David, Frantz Fanon : a Biography, New York : Picador USA, 2001.
  • MARTINS, Pablo, « Confluencias entre el pensamiento de Frantz Fanon y el de Paulo Freire. El surgimiento de la educación popular en el marco de la situación colonial », Educação, Vol. 37 (2), mai-août 2012, p. 241-256.
  • MBEMBE, Achille, « Préface », in FANON, Frantz, Œuvres, Paris : La Découverte, 2011, p. 9-21.
  • MBEMBE, Achille, « Préface », in Fondation Frantz Fanon / Sortir du colonialisme, Frantz Fanon par les textes de l’époque, Paris : Les petits matins, 2012, p. 7-22.
  • NAREAU, Michel, « Fanon, Cuba et autres Journal de Bolivie. L’Amérique latine à Parti pris comme modalité de libération nationale », Bulletin d’histoire politique, Vol. 23 (1), 2014, p. 126-138.
  • OLIVA, Elena ; STECHER, Lucía ; ZAPATA, Claudia (éds.), Frantz Fanon desde América Latina. Lecturas contemporáneas de un pensador del siglo XX, Buenos Aires : El Corregidor, 2013.
  • PÉREZ ÁLVAREZ, Gonzalo, « Frantz Fanon, John William Cooke y la creación heroica », Contracorriente, Vol. 11 (1), automne 2013, p. 306-327.
  • RACZKOWSKI, Christopher, « Chester Himes, Frantz Fanon and the Literary Decolonization of Harlem », Literature Interpretation Theory, vol23, 2012, p.1-25.
  •  RAMALLO, Francisco, « Pedagogía, liberación y negritud: Frantz Fanon como punto de inflexión para
  • (re)pensar las escrituras de las ideas pedagógicas en América Latina », http://www.idaes.edu.ar/pdf_papeles/4-25%20Ramallo.pdf, page consultée le 20 juin 2017.
  • READ, Alan, The Fact of Blackness: Frantz Fanon and Visual Representation, Seattle : Bay Press, 1996.
  • ROCCHI, Jean-Paul, « Littérature et métapsychanalyse de la race », Tumultes, Vol.31, 2008, p. 125-144.
  • VALDÉS LEÓN, Camila, « De cierta manera. Lecturas de Frantz Fanon en Sara Gómez », Cuadernos del Caribe, no19, juin 2015, p. 45-51.
  • WALLERSTEIN, Immanuel, « Leer a Fanon en el siglo XXI », New left review, no57, 2009, p. 109-119.
  • ZURBANO TORRES, Roberto, « Frantz Fanon, ¿un fantasma en el Caribe? », http://laventana.casa.cult.cu/noticias/2015/07/21/frantz-fanon-un-fantasma-en-el-caribe/, page consultée le 20 juin 201

[1] It is impossible to mention them all here. One might refer to Alice Cherki’s essential biography which lists some of them. Cf. also the indicative – and necessarily incomplete  –  bibliography attached to this call for papers.

[2] Cf. bibliography.

[3] Unlike the improper use of the word « American » in French, which refers to North America, here the word will be used to refer to the whole of the American continent and the Caribbean ,i.e « The Americas ».

[4] Fanon’s work was publicized in Latin America thanks to Ernesto Che Guevara’s Spanish translation (Fanon-Mendès-France 2012 : 66). Similarly, in the US, the English translation of Les Damnés de la terre (The Wretched of the Earth) in 1965 played a major role in the impact Fanon had on the African-American community (Cherki 2011 : 248-251)

Places

  • 3, rue des Tanneurs
    Tours, France (37041)
  • 2, boulevard Gabriel
    Dijon, France (21000)

Date(s)

  • Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Attached files

Keywords

  • Frantz Fanon, Amérique Latine, USA, Canada, Caraïbes, littérature, peinture, sculpture, photographie, cinéma, intersectionnalité, études postcoloniales, études décoloniales

Contact(s)

  • Sophie Large
    courriel : sophie [dot] large [at] univ-tours [dot] fr
  • Flora Valadié
    courriel : flora [dot] valadie [at] u-bourgogne [dot] fr

Information source

  • Sophie Large
    courriel : sophie [dot] large [at] univ-tours [dot] fr

To cite this announcement

« Frantz Fanon’s Legacy in the Literature and the Arts of the Americas », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Friday, July 28, 2017, http://calenda.org/412899